This post is over a week late, but let's pretend it just happened. It was my (almost) birthday last weekend, so we took advantage of the extra day off to squeeze in some celebration.
I've often lamented that one of the biggest sacrifices of city-dwelling is the lack of private outdoor space, or enjoyable outdoor space in general. NYC has some gorgeous parks, but no warm-weather afternoon is complete for me without a grill. Last summer I picked up a collapsible, portable charcoal grill at an end-of-the-season sale at Duane Reade for appx $15 and didn't have the opportunity to use it.
When you're travelling to grill, at-home prep is key. We spread out our grocery store haul and got to work.
Cute aprons and big knives help. Say 'hey' to my dinosaur in the background!
I scrubbed some Idaho potatoes and sliced them 3/4 of the way through and rubbed with some olive oil and sea salt. Wrap these babies up in some foil and they're ready to be tossed on the grill.
Cucumbers and yellow squash got the Adobo con Sazon and olive oil treatment. The eggplant took a balsamic bath.
We live pretty close by, but since we were schlepping all our gear, we took the A to 207th (you can also take the 1). There are a few delis and a Rite Aid plus a coffee shop nearby, so if you forget anything, you're covered. We walked uphill from the station to the park, entering near the baseball fields and walking around them (head to the right, past the playground and the big field) and made our way back to the peninsula where the grilling happens (and also where the theatre in Inwood Park is performed). If you get lost, just follow the smoke and the loud music.
Finding the perfect spot is key. We walked all the way down to the tip of the peninsula to enjoy a sliver of privacy (depending on which direction you faced). Be forewarned- Inwood Hill Park is a party park. Huge gatherings of people, young and old, celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, graduations or just the weekend with soccer games and grills full of meat and blasting music. It doesn't bother me at all, but know that you won't be whispering sweet nothings into your picnic partner's ear because they probably won't hear you.
Tiny grill performed like a champion and the adorable vintage beverage suitcase my mom got Jorge for Easter served it's purpose perfectly!
That's not a wine bottle peeking out, because you totally shouldn't sneak wine at a park, and there definitely were not a million bajillion other people drinking out of curious containers...
The steak nearly brought me to tears.
Do you have a grill at home?
What's your go to outdoor summer meal?