musings about food, travel, creativity and life

What Can I Bring?

What Can I Bring?


We’ve just been invited to a potluck and we’re on the list for a main course.  I don’t know yet what I’ll bring, but I do know which cookbook I’m going to use.  Appropriately, it is called Bring It!:Tried and True Recipes for Potlucks and Casual Dining by Ali Rosen (2018).

I bought the cookbook last year when we had been invited to a series of potlucks. I made a few quite tasty offerings from it–the first was a pear appetizer with blue cheese in endive; the second was a dessert of baked pear with raspberry filling.  I also bought a casserole dish so that I could “bring it” in style.

I like Bring It!  There are 100 recipes for potlucks, or as the author calls them, “outsourced dinner parties.”   The book has an accessible style, with a lean and clean format for text and photographs. The author’s main goal is creating recipes that are “fun and easy.”  Both of my endeavors were certainly that.

The author gives practical ideas on how to store the food and “how to bring it” (literally) to an event; she assigns a “badge” to each recipe designating which dishes can be served hot or cold, which take 30 minutes or less to prepare, and which can be made a day ahead. She gives helpful and thoughtful reminders to inquire about people’s allergies and to make sure that there is enough food for each course of the meal.

Ali Rosen, the author, also hosts a food television show on NYC Life and has a website, Potluck With Ali, where you can see some of her shows, recipes and interviews.  I just watched a short video of her interview with Dorie Greenspan, whose hefty and wonderful cookbook Dorie’s Cookies I used when I was into my “First 100 Days” cookie-making binge.

For that next potluck, I think I’ll try either the Portobello Mushroom and Herb Casserole or the Broccoli and Almond Quiche.  I’ll keep you posted. 


** One of my favorite poets, Mary Oliver, died this month. So many of her poems are inspirations.  The question she asks at the end of her poem “The Summer Day” always gets to me: “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” A toast to you, Mary.  Thank you.

4 thoughts on “What Can I Bring?”

  • Lynn,

    Would it be heretical if I said that I am now getting 99% of my recipes from the web? For instance, if I want to make a “broccoli rice casserole”, I can get many many variations on line and just choose the one with the best ingredients or easiest procedure. Of course, I have to start out with a specific dish in mind.

    • I don’t think it’s heretical at all to say you go to the web for many of your recipes. I do, too. At the same time, of late I’ve been trying to
      reinvigorate my cookbook collection by using a recipe from each one to see if the cookbook still has life for me. If it does, great; I keep it and hopefully enjoy it anew. If not, I pass it on in hopes that it brings someone else pleasure and good new adventure recipes.

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