BBQ time with Dealz Summer Living range #ad
Question: When is a pound shop not a pound shop? Answer: when it's so much more than a pound shop. Now, let's get one thing out of the way: I am not saying this because Dealz is paying me to say this. When I work on a commercial collaboration with a brand, it's just that – a collaboration. I don't sell catchphrases or particular words, so I'll never guarantee that I'll gush about any particular aspect of any particular brand. Everything that I write about my brand, and my experience with it, will be in my own words and including my own opinion. Okay? Okay!
Dealz Summer Living range – what's what?
So: when I went into the Moore St shop to stock up on barbecue essentials from the Dealz Summer Living range, I was really shocked by the sheer amount of stuff you can pick up. I'd been in Dealz before, right, but I'd actually forgotten the massive range of things – all at a bargaintastic €1.50 – they had in-store. Like, they do little nick-nacks and things like paper napkins, disposable tablecloths, pegs and so on, but they also have a huge beauty section – including their own make-up range – and sell foodstuffs like biscuits, chocolate, tea and coffee.
Even Dealz Summer Living range itself was massive – I went in thinking we'd pick up a few nice glasses, maybe a few bowls and some napkins (which we did), but they also had barbecue charcoal, lighters, kindling, barbecue trays, hanging lanterns... The list goes on.
I won't lie; we definitely got sidetracked, and I ended up stocking up on a lot more than barbecue essentials – adding pegs for the washing line, a dog toy for Coileán, two gorgeous glass bottles that are now sitting pretty as vases on our sideboard (and functioned as vases for some gorgeous wildflowers on BBQ day!) and a net fruit bowl cover that essentially reassures my boyfriend that I'm 31 going on 65.
Barbecue basics: the food
When it comes to BBQ food, I am a bit of a purist, so the menu was pretty simple. We had steaks, marinated in soy, garlic and Worcestershire sauce; Aldi's jumbo sausages, in caramelised onion and (I think) tomato and basil flavour, and they were both delicious; and ribs that my Dad had brought, already marinated. He even made home-made foccaccia, which was a particular highlight!
I always think barbecue doesn't need any particularly heavy sides, so we went light on the rest of lunch (Doritos, also bought in Dealz, were Stephen's idea!) – I made a simple cherry tomato and baby mozzarella salad, and then one I got from Foodie's Chloe (she's great for sharing recipes on Snapchat @foodiecafe), of spiralised courgettes, beetroot, feta, mint and lemon juice. I was recently sent an incredible spiraliser by Kenwood (this one, which should be available now in Harvey Norman, DID and Arnotts), which has changed my life.
Almost everything you're seeing in these pics is from Dealz, bar the cutlery, which is by Newbridge Silverware – we picked up some melamine glasses and bowls (which we later served Haagen Dazs and pavlova in, so much for being healthy), which would be great for picnics too, especially if you have kids in tow and don't want to worry about glass shattering; these super-cute candle-holders (below), citronella candles (unnecessary in Ireland, really, but they make it smell like holidays so what about it) and these gorgeous paper lantern strings that I'm planning on bringing out again the next time we have people over, for some tropical vibes.
In all, we spent around €52 on the Dealz Summer Living range, and came home with three seriously massive bags of loot, most of which we'll have for years – and barbecues – to come, too. You may have spotted Coileán loving her softy squirrel on my Snapchat, too; I'm never sure where she even puts her toys, and then she'll find one and come running up to me wanting to play fetch (and never surrendering her loot).
There are Dealz shops all over Ireland, but if you're unsure where your nearest one is, check out their handy store finder. My advice: do not go to Dealz with an avaricious child, rumbling tummy or a credit card. You'll most certainly regret it...
This post is in partnership with Dealz. As usual, all opinions, sentence structure and hilarious self-deprecation are my own. For more on my attitude to freebies, commercial collaborations and more, check out my disclaimer.