Have you ever looked up the definition of potluck? I just did, and Google expectedly says “a meal or party to which each of the guests contributes a dish”, but it also says “used in reference to a situation in which one must take a chance that whatever is available will prove to be good or acceptable”, which I found hilariously spot-on!
You never really know what you’re in for with a potluck, you may end up stuffed silly, or you may find yourself stopping at Wendy’s on the way home for something slightly more edible, or you may contract the dreaded potato-salad-poisoning. Mayo and sunshine are beautiful on their own, no so much when mixed together.
According to Wikipedia, potluck was first used in the 16th century and referred to providing food for an unexpected guest, they would be served whatever was available, so it was the luck of the pot. I wonder if people strategically timed their “unexpected” visits? Like if they saw their neighbor walking home from the market with fresh bread, they knew it was a good time to drop by? That’s what I’d do. “Oh, fresh bread? You don’t say… Well, if you insist! Got any butter?”
Thankfully my potluck experiences have been very lucky. I work with a bunch of foodies and we can’t go more than a few month before someone is suggesting another potluck. We keep a Traeger in the shop, that’s how serious we are about it. With the bar set so high, I wasn’t getting my hopes up too much about the first annual member potluck at Our Table. I thought the food would be good, of course, but I wasn’t convinced it would hold a candle crockpot to our work shindigs.
I am happy to report that I was so very wrong! These co-op members can COOK! I guess I shouldn’t be that surprised, if you’re buying fresh produce from a co-op, you probably know your way around a kitchen. Pretty sure I’m the only one who doesn’t, haha!
(There’s the bag of chips from my last post, and the black bean and corn salsa/salad/relishy kind of thing I made. Oh, and if you also fell in love with that vegan broccoli raisin salad, the very nice gentleman who made it shared the recipe he used!)
The beautiful farm setting only enhanced the food experience! It was so fun to meet fellow members, watch the kids play, walk the flower garden during sunset, and stay warm by the fire pit.
The only tiny thing I would suggest for next year is an epic s’mores bar! Or maybe that just needs to be an event all it’s own – Our S’mores Table? Oh goodness, could you imagine… some Betty Lou’s graham crackers (or homemade cookies!) with marshmallows, a little Alma Salted Caramel Sauce, and some Honey Mama’s Cocoa Nectar… a glass of local wine on the side for good measure. Might have to bring sleeping bags and just stay the night!
Hey, I’m a member, I can bring that to the board for a vote or something like that, right? Anybody want to second my s’motion? I mean, marshmallows are an Oregon crop, right?
Don’t worry, I’m admittedly clueless about farming but I do know marshmallows are not an Oregon crop. They obviously only grow in the North Pole!
What’s your go-to dish for potlucking? Or s’moresing?
(The fun legal disclosure: This September is membership month at Our Table and I’m partnering with them for a blog series sharing my co-op story and how they help me eat local. I am receiving a small discount on purchases I make, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. If I didn’t genuinely love this place I would not be telling you about it. Check out all my Our Table coverage here!)