Now that spring is springing in the northern hemisphere, I'm sure a lot of people are dreaming of summertime dinners outside. The kind where you linger for hours as the sun sets. Conversations by the dim light of patio torches and citronella candles. Ahhh, good food and good company; it gets no better.
Photo by Chipper Hatter, used with permission
If you're of a mind to entertain al fresco, The Taunton Press has a great resource for you in Deborah Krasner's The New Outdoor Kitchen; Cooking Up a Kitchen for the Way You Live and Play.
The photography in Krasner's book is gorgeous, but this is not just a picture book. She offers reams of practical advice that can be applied to projects as simple as moving a table into the yard to outfitting an outdoor kitchen with $30,000 worth of appliances.
Photo by Eric Roth, used with permission
The book's broken into chapters that deal with planning; outdoor fireplaces; outdoor cabinets and counters; dining and entertaining; lighting; sound systems and landscaping. She leaves no topic untouched and at the same time, allows her readers to apply her points and ideas to their own homes and lives. Krasner broadens the appeal of this book through a series of outdoor kitchen case studies, actual and live examples of how other people have integrated an aspect of outdoor living into their lives. These examples' locations range from California to Maine. With locations as diverse as these, there's bound to be something (several somethings I'd bet) you can apply to your own home.
So, are you ready for summer?