Let’s Picnic

The Sierra and its foothills are ideal for picnicking with all the parks, canyons, rivers and lakes:

GOURMET PICNIC SUPPLIES

SUMMER THYME’S in Grass Valley offers homemade sandwiches piled high with fresh, local ingredients on freshly baked bread. Examples include Bacon Turkey Gorgonzola, Roasted Turkey or Veggie Pesto. Homemade salads and desserts too. SummerThymes.com

NEWCASTLE PRODUCE, just two minutes off of I-80 in Newcastle, is a “one-stop” shop for a gourmet picnic. It offers a deli, fresh fruits and vegetables and local wines. Ingredients come from local farms, including their own. NewcastleProduce.com

HARMONY RIDGE MARKET, just five miles east of Nevada City and in a new downtown Nevada City location, is a picnicker’s paradise. Fresh sandwiches are made all day, along with fresh baked goods. S’mores fixings and healthy snacks are available. The store on Hwy. 20 also carries fishing and camping gear. The HarmonyRidgeMarket.com

OBEXER’S GENERAL STORE in Homewood on Tahoe’s West Shore has a creative selection of sandwiches, deli items and wines for a picnic. Boaters can stop at their dock to stock up. ObexersGeneralStore.com

OUR FAVORITE PICNIC SPOTS

AUBURN STATE RECREATION AREA
The 20-mile long park on two forks of the American River is situated south of I-80, stretching from Auburn to Colfax. The main access is from Auburn, either on Hwy. 49 or the Auburn-Foresthill Rd. 530-885-4527

SCOTT’S FLAT LAKE
Swimming, fishing, hiking, beach, playground and picnicking. 23333 Scotts Flatt Rd., Nevada City. 530-265-5302

SOUTH YUBA RIVER STATE PARK
Swimming, fishing, hiking, picnicking and a nature museum. 17660 Pleasant Valley Rd., Penn Valley. 530-432-2546.

SUGAR PINE POINT STATE PARK
The beautiful grounds of the Hellman-Ehrman Mansion have spectacular views of Lake Tahoe. About 10 miles south of Tahoe City on Hwy. 89. 530-525-7982.

CAMPFIRE GOURMET

More and more campers want healthy, home-cooked meals, not just hot dogs and baked beans.

A new cookbook called Campfire Cuisine: Gourmet Recipes for the Great Outdoors by Robin Donovan is a handy guide. It offers more than 100 simple but inspired recipes for meals that can be cooked at a campsite— from fresh foods, not ready-made products.

Entrees include Maple-Mustard Pork Chops, Orange-Herb Salmon and Bourbon-Glazed Chicken. “Donovan’s recipes require only two types of pans: a 2-quart lidded pot and a 10-inch lidded skillet,” as one book reviewer writes. RobinDonovan.com

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