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Interesting pot luck themes?

A post on the etiquette blog made me wonder... what potluck themes have worked well for people?

One idea listed in the blog was to either pick one nationality to base dinner around, or to have everyone bring something from his or her own background... I guess I'm looking for anything that works, but I'm especially interested in more out there ideas -- like I know someone who had an "Earth, Wind, Water and Fire" potluck that inspired some serious creativity.

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  1. A friend had a white trash potluck for his birthday which was intensely popular and think people got pretty creative reinventing some trashy favorites.

    2 Replies
    1. re: bite bite

      yes! i had a white trash Christmas party that went over hugely well. served twinkie "hors d'oevres," an american cheese platter, Funyuns, and 40s, among other things.

      1. re: bite bite

        I had one of these and I also have to agree that coming up with the white trash dishes and creativity was really fun. The only bad part I didn't anticipate was that all of that processed food cannot sit out for more than 1/2 hour before it starts getting hard and gross on the outside (like wonder bread sandos and twinkies). Fun time though!

      2. A specific era? Or yeah region - or maybe all the same colour?

        I love the white trash idea.

        Katerina
        http://dailyunadventures.com

        1 Reply
        1. re: daily_unadventures

          The same colour is a good idea in theory, but not in practice. It becomes really unappetizing.

          Some themes inspired by previous threads:
          finger foods
          ball-shaped foods
          gourmet versions of cafeteria/childhood foods
          unlikely fusion foods (ie, swedish-chinese)
          foods shaped like other foods (ie, a cupcake disguised as a hamburger)
          restaurant copycat foods (ie, PF Chang's lettuce wraps)
          foods named after people (ie, crêpes Suzette)
          Americanized ethnice foods (ie, chop suey)

        2. I like themes revolving around an ingredient. A friend had a plum potluck and provided links to plum recipes. I attended a peanut butter potluck at work. Next winter I'd like to have a lemon potluck.

          1. My little circle has a "tea" each year. It's fab. Teas, coffees, clotted cream,scones, shaped (using cookie cutters) sammys, small cakes, pies and cookies. The tea/coffee servers, dishes, knives and the like also come out. You can take the day one step further and ask that all dress in period attire. :)KQ

            1. I would enjoy going to a 70's theme.
              ambrosia salad
              meatloaf
              anything with hotdogs
              alfredo
              port wine cheese ball
              clams casino
              caseroles
              mint chocolate chip ice cream
              chicken divan
              soft pretzels
              hot air popcorn
              pop rocks (okay i better end it.)

              4 Replies
                1. re: bite bite

                  A great potluck party that I attended had dishes assigned this way: snack/appy & color
                  salad & color, main dish & color, you get the idea, I was assigned main dish - purple, I sure had to get my creative juices going'

                  1. re: Quine

                    What did you make? I'm totally drawing a blank.

                2. re: howchow

                  If it's a 70's theme, you HAVE to have cheese fondue.