Enjoy a Picnic Under the Stars with this #diydatenight complete with recipes and a galaxy light show.
We’ve got an all-star lineup for this indoor date. You’ll make an Orzo Salad with Starfruit Salsa, Galaxy Donuts with Chocolate Starglazing and create a Galaxy Light Board craft. You add the romance.
Welcome to the new #diydatenight series! In yesterday’s post, I briefly introduced Megan Crow, my partner in date night crime, but today you get to see just how awesome her illustrations are. She will be bringing our themed date nights to life…because words don’t always do justice to how much fun #diydatenight can be.
For our first #diydatenight we are creating indoor romance with a Picnic Under the Stars theme. It’s perfect for when it’s cold or rainy and you can’t go outside for a picnic, but its also great for all those parents out there looking to enjoy an evening together while the kids are sleeping. So crack open a bottle of wine (I’d suggest Sauvingnon Blanc to pair with dinner) and let’s get started!
For a stargazing picnic, you need stars! My hubby Kevin and I made the above Galaxy Light Board using inexpensive materials we got at Walmart and the Dollar Store. Some of the items we already had on hand, like the string of lights, the toothpicks and paper plate, so the project cost less than $15.
To keep the mess to a minimum we laid out newspaper on the kitchen island and started painting before making dinner. Because the paints are acrylic they dry really quickly, but you’ll want to start your craft first and cook dinner during the intervals when the paint is drying.
Ta-da! Isn’t Megan’s illustration so cute? This has been me and Kevin for the past month! Not only is the galaxy board pretty, its a great nightlight, so we haven’t taken it down.
Once your star show is ready, it’s time to finish dinner. Because I’m a theme nerd, the main course is a cold orzo salad with a starfruit salsa. We served it with shrimp, but if you’re vegan like Megan, the salad is great with black beans.
Because it’s picnic food, I served the salad in wide mouth Ball jars. The pictures look deceptively like jam jars, but these are the 16oz jars… and speaking of which, the salad filled 4 of these, so the recipe is scaled such that you can do your picnic under the stars as a double date, a family date or you can have leftovers for lunch the next day.
I guess I could have gotten out my old school wicker picnic basket, but I decided to keep things simple and load our dinner onto a metal tray. But you can do as much or as little as you want to do to create the picnic vibe. All you really need is a blanket and an imagination!
Finally, the evening ends with these stellar Galaxy Puff Pastry “Donuts” with Chocolate Starglazing. They are super easy to make, but if you fall asleep while stargazing, you can always have them for breakfast!
We hope you have an out of this world date! If you try it, please let us know how it went ;-) Scroll down for the Orzo Salad with Starfruit Salsa recipe ↓
Orzo Salad with Starfruit Salsa
- 1 starfruit, half diced, the other half sliced for garnish
- 1 mango, diced
- 1 kiwi, diced
- ¼ cup diced red onion
- ⅓ bunch cilantro, chopped
- 2 large jalapenos, finely diced
- ½ lime, juiced
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 16oz box orzo
- 24 medium sized shrimp (or for a vegan version, substiture with one can of rinsed black beans)
- 1½ limes, juiced
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- ⅔ bunch cilantro, chopped
- ½ cup diced red onion
- salt and pepper to taste
- Combine all starfruit salsa ingredients in a bowl and set aside
- Cook orzo according to package instructions, drain, rinse in cold water and drain again.
- In a large bowl combine olive oil, lime juice and sugar and whisk to combine.
- Add in orzo, shrimp (or black beans), red onion and cilantro and toss to combine.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Salad can be served with the salsa and orzo salad tossed together or can be served deconstructed
#diydatenight is brought to you by:
Megan is a Seattle area freelance illustrator. She loves drawing people’s mugs, laying on the ground with her dogs, eating beans and traveling. She can most often be found sitting in the rain, contemplating life’s great question: Spike or Angel? For commission information: firstname.lastname@example.org | megan-crow.com | Instagram: @megzcon