Easy “Al Fresco” – Julie’s Picks for Outdoor Entertaining

COVER - summer entertaining easy julie miguel

This is the first summer we are able to dine outdoors right in our backyard. Since moving into our home, we’ve had so many projects on the go that our backyard was pushed to the end of the priority list. This year, we finally have outdoor dining furniture and dining space all worked out. All that was left to do was to purchase outdoor dining pieces to enjoy our summer meals.

I went with the Summer Oasis Collection from Kitchen Stuff Plus – this collection immediately caught my eye. I love how classic the pieces are and how they reminded me of dining on a Mediterranean terrace.

Easy looks to coordinate


Kitchen Stuff Plus’ coordinated collections makes it really easy to put together a beautiful table setting. Also, with the kids always running around, it’s a huge weight off my back knowing that nothing is breakable too. My husband and I get to enjoy our meal without worry and the kids can just be kids!

Kitchen Stuff Plus is great for all things dining and kitchen because they are budget-friendly, simple and great quality. I love that these pieces integrate really nicely with my existing dining and serving ware pieces, too.

Fresh, summer flavours

fresh-summer-flavours-easy al fresco

Keeping with the theme of “easy”, I’ve included two simple recipes that you can put together for your next outdoor meal. Margarita Marinated Chicken with a Grilled Mango salsa is one of my favourite summer main dishes. It also looks beautiful because it has all the colours of summer! Same goes for my Citrus Caprese Salad. It’s light, bright and delicious! Check out those recipes below.

I hope this inspires you to create your very own summer oasis in your backyard or patio this summer! Visit to shop the collection.

Next up, I’m going to be showing you how I used Kitchen Stuff Plus to put together the Ultimate Tapas Spread – stay tuned!

With love,


RECIPE: Margarita-Marinated Chicken with Grilled Mango, Avocado and Corn Salsa


Grilled chicken gets a bright accompaniment with this fresh, grilled salsa. The salsa also works great as a side dish with your chicken, too. With the salsa on top or on the side, this dish is definitely a summer favourite of mine!

Serves: 4


For the chicken:

2 lbs Chicken Breast or chicken Thighs

1 lime, zested and juiced

⅓ cup tequila

¼ cup canola oil

2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped

1 Tbsp Cointreau

2 med cloves garlic, minced

⅛ tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper

For the Salsa:

1 Tbsp olive oil + more for grill

1 avocado, chopped

3 ears corn on the cob

1 large mango, chopped

½ medium red onion, finely chopped

1 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped

1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped

1 lime, zested and juiced


Season your chicken all over with salt and pepper and place in a re-sealable (gallon size) plastic bag and set aside.

Combine all ingredients: tequila, oil, Cointreau, lime juice and zest, garlic and pepper flakes, except chicken, in a small bowl or measuring cup. Whisk to combine. Pour the marinade over the chicken, seal the bag and place in the refrigerator to marinate for 3-24 hours. Turn chicken occasionally.

Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

Make the salsa, Peel and cut mango into large pieces and set aside. Pit and peel the avocado and cut in half lengthwise, set aside. Remove the outer husks from the corn and set aside. Rub the corn, mango and avocado with oil. Grill the corn, avocado and mango until you have good grill marks all around and they start to become soft, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a large, heat-safe bowl and cover with plastic wrap until cool enough to handle.

Finely chop the red onion, jalapeno and cilantro and add to a medium bowl. Add the juice and zest of 1 lime. Chop the mango and avocados and add it to the bowl with the onion mixture. Shuck your corn and add it to the bowl. Drizzle the olive oil and incorporate all ingredients. Season with salt and pepper.

Grill chicken on each side until cooked through. Serve with the grilled salsa and enjoy! Notes: The salsa can be prepared up to 2 hours before serving.

RECIPE: Citrus Caprese salad

Serves 4



2 yellow, red or orange tomatoes, sliced into ¼ inch thick slices

2 grapefruits or oranges, peeled and sliced into ¼ inch thick slices

Basil leaves

Pine nuts

Extra-virgin olive oil

Salt & Pepper, to taste


On a serving platter, layer tomatoes and citrus creating a round pattern. Tuck in basil leaves within the citrus and tomato layers. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, pine nuts, salt & pepper. Serve immediately or keep it covered with plastic wrap in your refrigerator until you’re ready to serve it.

Share your al fresco style

easy-outside-dinner al fresco

How are you entertaining this summer? Share with Julie at @julie_miguel_ and with Kitchen Stuff Plus at @kspstuff! Want some tasty drinks to go along with this fabulous meal? Check out these must-try summer cocktails and mocktails.

Julie Miguel

Julie is a trusted food and lifestyle expert, wife to her high school sweetheart and mother to two rambunctious young boys. From recipes to entertaining to travel - Julie loves to create easy entertaining, delicious recipes, and family-friendly travel adventures. You can see all of her recipes and follow her family travels at her Daily Tiramisu website. Follow along as she shares more of her day-to-day life and discoveries on Instagram @julie_miguel_.