pot luck food
i am going to a family reunion at a resort out of town. most of us will be staying at the resort which does not have kitchen or refrigeration facilicities. on the 2nd day is a pot luck. what to bring for 30 people- am i overthinking this as a food safety problem?
i'd bring dessert since it doesn't run into veggies browning and food safety issues with meat.
bake 2 or 3 pound cakes in bundt form and bring them with you. if you can find a nice market or farmer market, pick up some peaches or plums. if they are grilling, you can slice the cakes, caramelize the fruit halves and serve them with some simple whipped cream or ice cream.
and there is always cookies and ice cream =)
Is it somewhere you can plug in a crock pot? If so, you could do some pulled pork ahead of time, then freeze and take in a cooler - let thaw overnight and then reheat in the crock pot.
Take a cooler full of sandwich makings and put together the day of the pot luck.
hit the local store and get something, this past weekend - I did just that as: 1) sounded the menu was covered pretty good 2) I didn't have time to spend in the kitchen - so I bought a couple of those jars of 3 bean salad and doctored it up a bit by adding corn, kidney beans, chick peas, roasted peppers, pickles carrots, etc. It was different, went over well and not a duplicate.
You can always do a nice platter or store bought antipasta, like pepperoni, peppers, cheese, etc.
Or my fav, get all the fixins for smoked salmon, cream cheese, red onion, capers, lemon platter!!!
You could do a combination of grocery store/items from home. Bring the utensils and ingredients from home that you can. I wouldn't be worried about keeping cooked pasta and homemade dressing in a cooler overnight and then adding fresh store bought ingredients at the last minute. I just made a couscous salad that had blanched and fresh veggies plus a lemony dressing. Since couscous just needs hot water added to it, I would (since I like challenges) consider heating the water in the room's coffee maker. Veggies could be chopped and blanched at home. Put everything together at last minute.
Pulled pork in a crock pot is a terrific idea. I have frozen things and then defrosted but if the pot luck is outdoors you might not have electricity. But, if you can leave the crockpot heating in your room until the last minute, pulled pork would still work. Food shouldn't be left un-refrigerated more than 2 hours (I'm sure someone will post if I'm mistaken) so I would remove it to a trash bucket if it doesn't disappear right away. My concern with the pot luck is the food left on the tables afterwards.
i agree dessert is the safest -- i'd bring gramercy tavern gingerbread :)
you could also do some snack type things like cheese straws or roasted spiced chickpeas (in several varieties - did this for a bridal shower last weekend) or homemade tortilla chips or veggie chips...
possibly also cornbread