i8217;m really excited about this post! before every shoot i have a vision in my head of how i want it all to come together and my goal is to always match the vision with the final images but this shoot exceeded my vision. it was the perfect light, all the decor came together perfectly in a relaxed way. this is our second post in a series of three for MorningStar Farms. it was really fun to hear all your feedback on our first post, lots of people are excited about us featuring more veggie/vegan friendly foods and we8217;re excited too! this time it8217;s all about their MorningStar Farms® Spicy Black Bean Burger, which has been a fave of mine for years.
the whole inspiration of this series is to encourage everyone (meat eaters included!) to make room on your grill this summer for vegetarian and vegan foods. and that it8217;s a category of cuisine that doesn8217;t need to be exclusive, you can grill it and serve it right along side a piece of meat. we8217;re hoping that these images make you want to bust out your grill (or head to your local park) and enjoy a meal outside!
we threw in a ton of colorful elements into this outdoor dinner, gingham napkins, bright florals, mismatched table linens, etc. i like to mix and match different prints and colors that are all in the same family but that make it feel a little more rustic and natural. there is a time and a place for perfect dinner parties but outdoor BBQs are a great time to keep it low key and uncomplicated with food and decor.
for drinks we served lemonade with mint and lemonade ice cubes which keep your drink cold but don8217;t dilute it as it melts and iced coffee with coffee ice cubes (which are so easy and always a hit with guests!)
one of the keys to keeping hosting from becoming overwhelming is to keep the food on the simple side, you don8217;t need tons of different options, just a solid main course with some sides and a simple dessert. for the burgers, we decided to mix it up and serve them with lettuce wraps instead of buns. we offered toppings like crumbled feta cheese, regular and beet hummus and cucumber salad (recipe below!). the feta paired with the MorningStar Farms® Spicy Black Bean Burger was a solid match!
for sides, we did individual foil packs on the grill with potatoes and radish. to make these, you simply cut the potatoes into wedges and slice the radishes in half, drizzle with olive oil, salt and Herb De Provence and place inside foil squares. wrap the sides up and place on the grill. these will take longer than the burgers to cook through so put them on first!
the cucumber salad is two cucumbers diced, half a red onion, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, all mixed together! you can eat it on it8217;s own or top on the burger, it8217;s delicious both ways!
throw a blanket over a picnic table or create a place to eat on the ground by spreading pillows and blankets out on the floor. entertaining doesn8217;t have to be complicated! focus on creating a relaxed environment and everyone will have a good time!