Thursday, July 10, 2008

Regarding the Potluck Dinner

I have feelings about potlucks which are, summed up nicely, I do not care for potlucks and summed up not-so-nicely, Sucks to your potluck (with apologies to William Golding).

I like to be cooked for. It's fine if you don’t want to cook for me but please do not deny me a good dinner. We can see each other after dinner, say around 8.

Cooking for someone is a demonstration of pure affection. It requires generosity of time and talent and attention to differing tastes. Potlucks are usually organized one of two ways: 1) By people who do not know each other well but share some commonality - kids, church, etc. 2) By someone lacking time and talent but still wanting to entertain guests at mealtime. It's hard enough to make everyone in my house excited about what I've cooked for them. It's impossible to make everyone happy with the options at a potluck.

My principal problem with potlucks is they are too accurate a reflection of the American diet. Where nutrition is concerned we have a long way to go, baby. We need to ditch the canned cream of mushroom soup, the frozen taquitos and the Mini Cheeseburger Salad. We need to reject processed crud and start consuming foods closer to their point of harvest.

My feelings about potlucks (with even more snark: I would rather eat fur) will remain unchanged until we start feeding ourselves - and each other - with more concern for health and nutrition.


Kate Jaquet said...

i am with you sister. i loath the potluck. someone always brings jello salad or something similarly yucky and completely devoid of nutritional value.

Unknown said...

Oh Katie! I am in your corner on this one! Pot Yuk Dinners (as I call them) always leave me wanting for more - a real meal! I have actually gone to a potluck AND a dinner reservation in the same evening knowing I wouldn't be satisfied! Too many people take their cooking too casually and find the easiest and quickest thing to throw together at the host's home 10 minutes prior to dining (can I call it that?) I almost want to cry when I see the offerings. The way people eat and what they call dinner amazes me! No one thought of a protein? No one though of a salad without bottled dressing laden with MSG and sugar? Arghh!

Because I take such time and care in my ingredients and preparation and want to put a whole meal together whose flavors and contents balance each other and complement each other, I have NEVER done a potluck and I entertain about 50 times a year in my home.

I also do not feel the need to drink the wine people bring to a dinner party if it does not go with the meal. I simply serve what I purchased and say thank you so much for the lovely wine and either serve it at a different meal or take it to someone's tacky pot luck! Cheers! Kristine

Unknown said...

PS. was I venting???