Beach barbecue

It's hard to beat a party at the coast, especially when shrimp's on the grill
Linda Lau Anusasananan

 Cooking at the beach is more fun than trouble these days, with the large array of totable barbecues ― both charcoal and gas ― available. And throwing some shrimp on one is so easy it has become a cliché in the best sense. We've added a dip to serve with veggies to start the meal and a great, packable summer salad to go on the side.

A few tricks make everything fresher and tastier: Make your own hummus; it takes little time and is far better than most kinds you can buy. Cure the shrimp briefly in salt and sugar to tenderize and flavorize, then transport them on skewers in their marinade. Carry the salad in layers, then dress and mix it at the beach.

Finally, get creative with s'mores for dessert. Marshmallows melt as well over a grill as over a fire, and sandwiched with yummy new layers ― chocolate wafer cookies and strawberries, for instance ― they make watching the sun set over the water extra sweet.

Next: Packing tips

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