There’s nothing I love more than hanging by the pool at my apartment complex. This time of year, we’ll often set up shop out there early in the afternoon and camp out until long after dinner time, enjoying wine, beer, and freshly grilled food for hours. The only issue? Our building, like all public pools, has a strict no-glass safety policy. So, all that beautiful food ends up being served on flimsy disposable plates, which are both bad for the planet and flat out not cute.
When we were first introduced to Q Squared, we instantly loved the patterns on their melamine tableware. But it wasn’t until they arrived on our doorstep that we were blown away by the look and quality of their products. We quickly got to work planning an al fresco meal that would do our new dinner set justice, and with the help of local Israeli chef Berty Richter of Hummus Among Us, we enjoyed an epic end-of-summer meal. Keep reading for all the details and recipes, and be sure to look for our special reader discount below…
This dinnerware from Q Squared was the inspiration behind our shoot. The pattern and finish was perfect for our casual outdoor gathering, and upon learning that they’re melamine, we each did a double take in disbelief and had to feel the plates for ourselves.
pictured: the jules top from st. roche
How great do they look on our low table? We paired the dinnerware with a soft pink linen and a few summery details for an easy, laid back look. I think we all assume that pool-side entertaining has to mean paper plates or — at best — bamboo dinnerware, but the style and quality of Q Squared‘s products proves that that doesn’t have to be the case.
pictured: Aurora Crystal Wine Glass from Q Squared
A few in-bloom peonies added just the right amount of softness, and low vessels ensured they wouldn’t blow over.
The only thing that could make these plates better? A menu worthy of their prettiness… and our friend Berty from Hummus Among Us provided us with an Israeli feast that was just that.
- Classic Hummus Masabacha (marinated chickpeas)
- Kabocha Squash Hummus with Whole Tahini and Pumpkin Seeds
- Fatoush (a Middle Eastern Panzanella-style salad)
- Fried Cauliflower Salad
- Lamb Kofta Kebabs
pictured: Palazzo Cereal Bowl from Q Squared
Much like a traditional meal in Israel, we kicked off the first course with the two hummuses, tahini, zhug (a Middle Eastern hot sauce), fresh pita, and assorted pickles.
pictured: Provence White Flatware from Q Squared
From Berty: “Fatoush is a great way to use up one- or two-day old pita leftovers. Combine it with whatever fresh vegetables and herbs are available. Radish, cucumber, tomato, hot peppers, parsley and mint are most common as they are usually found in every Israeli refrigerator.”
Stay tuned for Berty’s fatoush recipe next week!
pictured: Palazzo Serving Bowl and Provence White Salad Servers
We brought out the fatoush for our main course, along with a cauliflower salad and lamb kebabs. The nibbles from the first course stayed on the table, of course, ’cause hummus and pita are always good idea.
From Berty: “Many versions of this salad exist in Israel. I created this specific one back in New York when I was the executive chef of Isabella’s. It features strong and pungent Israeli “street food” flavors using Amba, tahini and lots of herbs, with the smokiness of charred tomatoes.”
It’s amazing, you guys. Q Squared’s 100% high quality melamine has the look and feel of porcelain and ceramic, and they’re virtually unbreakable. Just about anything you serve on this rectangular platter is made to look even tastier, and the fact that all their products are BPA-free makes them the perfect solution for al fresco entertaining.
Click here to get the recipe for Berty’s Lamb Koftas.
Every single menu item was unbelievably delicious. We hung out around our table for way too long, combining flavors, admiring our dinnerware, and enjoying the last few weeks of summer.
Receive 20% off everything at Q Squared with code CAMILLE20 until midnight, August 15th.