Potlucks can be a lot of fun. Partly because they can be a lot less work than the one cook wonder. Meaning (in theory) that even the host has time to enjoy the festivities. But that doesn’t mean a Potluck Party is without stress. There’s the social pressure. The lurkingly painful doubts in the back of your head. Those little voices that say: “Will this be good enough? Will my friends like my Gramma Jeanne’s braised turnip greens?”
Then there’s the etiquette. Not just the what to bring, but the how to bring it. You need to choose wisely. Many a disaster has befallen a would be potlucker during the drive to the party. Because the challenges of potluck mean you need to choose food that will not only be delicious, but will travel well and stay good after hours of sitting on the buffet line. Slaw is always a crowd pleaser. It has real staying power too. Besides there are so many creative ways to shred vegetables. Try kale, I like to make a garlicky raw slaw with the nubbly variety known as lacinato or dinosaur kale.
There are other great ideas. It all starts this week on The Table Set with a call from a listener in Hawaii, whose weekly beachside potlucks sound like something to envy. So Andy, Nathan and I decided to talk Potluck Party. From the friend who says “bring octopus” to the idea of a Sizzler-style Salad Bar for the home. Even the High Brow/Low Brow dilemma presented by casserole– including two healthier versions of a ubiquitous Green Bean Casserole, plus a trumped up, truffled up Mac N Cheese Pie. But sometimes you want the Low Brow original, so check out Nathan’s Gala Parfait “church lady basement style” casserole cook-off, which includes a recipe for Glorified Rice that should catch attention.
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Since potlucks can make some people uneasy. I also put together a few simple guidelines for a successful potluck here on Sippity Sup. Because, like everything in life, the Potluck Party goes much smoother when a little common sense etiquette paves the way. GREG