Get your alfresco feast off to a stylish start, with Philippa Davis' peach, brandy and raspberry punch

For a stylish start to your picnic, try Philippa Davis’ peach, brandy and raspberry punch. A pre-made cocktail is the only way to open a proper alfresco feast. To ensure the tipples are suitably refreshing, put the ingredients in the freezer for an hour before setting off. Large ice cubes are best, as they will melt more slowly, but use a wide-necked, stainless-steel lined Thermos flask to transport them to your picnic spot.

You can’t do better than Pimm’s for a proper summer drink. But instead of shop bought, raid the drinks cabinet and make your own. It’s stronger than the shop bought stuff, and you can adjust your concoction to taste. Read how to make homemade Pimm’s ahead of your annual summer get-together. It is guaranteed to impress your guests, and make it a rather jolly affair.

But ensure there’s an option for the drivers of your party. Our elderflower cordial recipe is super on especially warm days.

PEACH, BRANDY AND RASPBERRY PUNCH

Serves 8

  • 200g raspberries
  • 2 peaches, cut each into 8 slices
  • 1 tbsp lime juice (about 1 lime)
  • 100ml brandy
  • 100ml crème de pêche
  • 25ml lemon juice
  • 25ml simple sugar syrup (12.5g caster sugar mixed with 12.5ml hot water)
  • 1 bottle of chilled fizz
  • 8 sprigs of mint

Toss the raspberries and peaches in the lime and place flat on a tray in the freezer for at least 3 hours.

Mix the brandy, crème de pêche, lemon juice and sugar syrup in a jug then strain into a bottle with a lid.

Just before you go, take the fruit out of the freezer and place in a jar; keep as cold as possible for transport.

To serve, place a few frozen raspberries and peach slices in a glass with a large cube of ice and sprig of mint.

Fill with one-third brandy mix and top with two-thirds fizz.