Potluck parties are a very affordable way of entertaining – anyone attending brings a dish to pass, while the host supplies basic utensils, plates, and beverages, and maybe a dish or two. One variation of a potluck is a dessert potluck, which can be a very decadent affair. If you are invited to a dessert potluck, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
*Try to get an idea from the host of how many people may be attending – it will help you decide what kind of dessert to make.
*If possible, find out some of the other desserts that guests are bringing – if there’s a number of people bringing cookies, you might want to try something different, like a cake or pie.
*Pick a recipe that will make a large amount of the dessert – this is especially easy if you decide to make cookies or a sheet cake of some sort.
*Make sure the dessert can be easily transported.
Cookies are a very good dessert for a potluck – most recipes will make a few dozen. A classic and easy yet elegant-looking cookie that most people adore is the Peanut Butter Blossom, better known to many as the “Kiss cookie” (derived from Hershey Kitchens recipe).
8 oz bag of Kisses
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar, plus extra for rolling
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 Tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
Preheat oven to 375-degrees F, unwrap Kisses. Combine shortening and peanut butter until blended well; add 1/3 cup sugar plus brown sugar and beat until fluffy. Add egg, milk, and vanilla; mix well. Combine flour and baking soda separately, and gradually add to peanut butter mixture. Shape into 1″ balls, roll in extra sugar, and place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, remove from oven, and immediately place an unwrapped Kiss in the center of each cookie (cookie will crack some). Remove to a cooling rack and cool completely before storing.
If you’re attending a very large party, or have room in your freezer to store a dessert, try this Streusel Coffee Cake recipe, which makes four 9″ x 13′ cakes (note: you will also need a large bowl to mix the batter) (derived from Betty Crocker recipe).
2-1/4 cups baking mix (like Bisquick)
2-1/4 cups brown sugar
3-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 cup firm butter or margarine
15-1/4 cups baking mix
5 cups milk or water
3/4 cup sugar
7 large eggs
Preheat oven to 375-degrees F, grease four 9″ x 13″ pans. Combine streusel ingredients, set aside. In a large bowl (6 to 6-1/2 quart), combine cake batter ingredients until well blended. Spread into pans; top with mixture. Bake 18 to 22 minutes. Serve alone or with fruit, whipped cream, or warm with vanilla ice cream.