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Weekends are always a delight, but they’d be even better if they lasted a bit longer. So, what a treat it is when a bank holiday weekend comes along, as manic Monday gives way to a blissful break. We’ve already had two this year thanks to Easter, but May is another month with two breaks to make the most of – and that’s certainly made easier by improved weather.

Looking for bank holiday weekend ideas? From picnics to parties at home, and baking to barbecues or May bank holiday breaks, May is a great month to get together with friends and family. So make the most of the bank holiday double header with our guide to making your May bank holidays marvellous.

May Bank Holiday

May-k Something with the Family: Easy Baking Ideas

If you’re wondering what to do on May bank holiday weekend, why not have fun in the kitchen? You and your little helpers can cook up some delicious sweet treats or even a few picnic snacks to make use of later in the break. 

You won’t want to spend too much of the May bank holiday weekend watching the oven or shopping for cake baking supplies, so how about some tropical rocky road? This classic just combines melted chocolate, marshmallows, biscuits and traditionally, currants.

But for a tropical twist this spring, add in some dried mango and pineapple in place of the currants, with a little desiccated coconut to give the flavour a bank holiday boost. Once chilled and set, these can be stored for up to three days – making them the perfect easy picnic food or post barbecue treat.

For a summery savoury favourite for all the family, how about a pastry-less pork pie? Replace the pastry casing with courgette slices – ideally prepared with a mandolin if you have one.

  • Slice thinly lengthways and add to a griddle pan with a little oil until softened and grill marked.
  • Line the base of a tin with overlapped slices, leaving enough excess to cover the sides and top of the pie and add a few breadcrumbs to the base.
  • Add minced pork combined with the zest of a lemon, one egg, red peppers and parsley (which is fun for the little ones to mix together by hand), then fold the courgette over the top to complete the pie.
  • Bake for 75 minutes, leave to cool and serve or pack up.
What to do on Bank Holiday

May We Suggest Getting Active this May Bank Holiday?

Make the bank holidays this year all about getting active. Chances are you and the family have spent enough time recently sitting and staring at screens. So make the most of the extra time to get out for a family hike, bike ride or a swim if the weather permits. This is a great addition to May bank holiday breaks at a holiday park or near the coast, if you are able to travel.

Whatever activities you choose, set yourselves up for a day of activity with a nutritious breakfast – mango and banana smoothies, porridge or scrambled egg on toast and make sure you pack some cereal bars too. If you’re going in the afternoon, there’s a whole host of delicious nutritious lunches you could try, such as a Mediterranean basil pasta:

  • Simply slice red peppers, red onions, chillies, garlic, tomatoes – toss in olive oil and a teaspoon of golden caster sugar.
  • Roast until soft before combining with boiled fusilli pasta and sprinkle with parmesan. This takes just 15 minutes to make and is easily possible if you have limited kitchen space.
Bank Holiday Weekend Ideas

May-d for a Picnic

Whether you have spent some of the May bank holiday long weekend making the contents, or you are just going to buy your snacks, bank holidays are perfect for a picnic. So grab your hamper, your plastic cutlery and all the family and head out for a day of fun spent playing on the grass and lounging on your blanket.

Find out some of the best choices to put in your picnic hamper in our Pick of all Picnics' blog.


What To Do on May Bank Holiday Weekend

May-be Spend it Eating Barbecue Food?

Are you sat around thinking of things to do on a bank holiday? Nothing says May bank holiday quite like a barbecue. Hopefully the weather will be perfect for throwing the tarpaulin off, digging out the patio chairs and firing up the grill so that you can have a May bank holiday barbeque to remember.

There’s a whole host of barbecue food to choose from including hotdogs and burgers, but as it’s springtime, why not mark it with lamb?

Look no further than barbecued meatball kebabs:

  • Take minced lamb mixed with mint, coriander, harissa and diced red onion before shaping it into balls.
  • Add three to a skewer alternated with chunks of pepper and grilled potato pieces.
  • Barbecue for 10 minutes, turning occasionally and serve with flatbread.

To go with it, how about a refreshing cooler of watermelon and orange blossom lemonade? You’ll just need golden caster sugar, ½ a watermelon, the juice of 2-3 lemons, two teaspoons of orange blossom water and crushed ice. Blitz and strain before adding to a jug – a perfectly refreshing bank holiday weekend idea.

Or May-be a Party could be a Good May Bank Holiday Idea 

May Day bank holiday (May 3rd 2021) is a day of celebration across the UK – a celebration of spring time fertility and traditionally marked with Morris dancing around a maypole. As it’s a day of celebration, why not throw a Bank Holiday party at home? While you may not be able to host a May bank holiday bonanza with all of your friends and extended family, you could certainly throw a mini version with those in your household or with up to 6 people outdoors. 

As a celebration of fertility of the soil, you should definitely hold your party outdoors – surrounded by flowers. Keep the table decorations bright and colourful and serve striking coloured food, marinated meats with Mediterranean vegetables and followed with fruit trifle and Pimms.

Opportunities like the May bank holiday double header only come along once a year, so make sure you take full advantage of the free time, with fun activities and great food. All of the suggested ingredients above, along with more Bank Holiday inspiration is available at your local SPAR.

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