It’s Tuesday! I hope all of you had lovely weekends filled with whatever it is you like to do best. This post was supposed to be up yesterday, so I apologize for the delay. I was exhausted yesterday.
But I’m back now, ready to give you deets about our vegan potluck and 2 fantastic recipes, neither of which are mine! 🙂 (Scroll down to the bottom for recipes)
My weekend was JAM-PACKED with stuff. Holy mol-ay. Saturday, I helped host a baby shower from 2-4 then hosted a vegan potluck at my house at 6. So naturally, I stayed up until 2 am on Friday preparing, then woke up at 6:30 am on Saturday to continue getting ready.
It’s not that potlucks require a lot of work – they don’t. I am just an insanely meticulous planner, especially when it comes to gatherings at my home, and I need everything to be perfect down to the very last detail…which ended up failing miserably as I was abysmally prepared when 6 o’clock came around. Spoiler alert: Everything was okay, anyway.
Since we moved into our house in Austin almost a year ago, my boyfriend Harrison and I have been wanting to host a potluck. We didn’t know a whole lot of people last Summer, so that wasn’t really much of an option. Fast forward to where we are now and we actually have friends! YAY! We were at the pool with our friends last weekend when I mentioned that we would be hosting potlucks sometime in May and they all insisted we have it the following weekend. So, we did.
Keep in mind, Harrison and I keep an entirely vegan home. We don’t allow any one to bring or consume animal products in our house. Call us crazy, we call it boundaries. Understandably, we were a little hesitant about having a vegan potluck with our omnivorous friends, but to our surprise, they were all gung-ho about the vegan-ness of it! We are very fortunate to have such awesome, open-minded friends. I’m really quite grateful.
We had quite a spectrum of eaters at our house that evening, which was perfect! We had 4 vegans, 2 vegetarians who eat mostly vegan, and 3 omnivores. There was a wide variety of dishes and a whole lot of alcohol. I was completely negligent about taking photos, so I got like 7 total, all of pretty poor quality, but I’m going to share them anyway. Ha!
I set all the dishes out on a table in our dining room, along with the flatware separated into mason jars. I got that idea from Pinterest and thought it was super simple and super cute! A ribbon tied around the lip would have made it even cuter! Next time…
I also made this pendant banner by using printable letters from Pinterest, cutting out the pendant shape, and gluing each letter to card stock, then cutting the card stock to fit. I punched 2 small holes in the top corners of each letter and strung them together with some hemp to hang over our fireplace! I’m obsessed.
Our easel hung out by the open front door (we have a clear glass door we left closed but unlocked), letting people know they could come on in!
Our awesome friends Mike and Adnan not only brought food, but they also brought along fresh flowers and alcohol! That is the kind of friend every one needs, just saying. Now, onto the food…
I made this very simple green salad (every potluck needs a green salad) with romaine lettuce, sliced strawberries, sliced and halved cucumbers, and diced avocado mixed in for dressing. I also made the food label cards myself, which I was pretty excited about. I just used card stock and a Sharpie pen and mimicked some patterns I found on Pinterest.
This spinach and artichoke dip was a huge hit! I used a recipe I got from the internet (scroll to bottom of post for details) and almost the entire dip was gone before I even had time to snap a picture! Vegans and omnivores alike were raving about it.
My friend Clare brought a huge assortment of fresh fruit in a bowl, which was a lovely and light addition. Apples, grapes, blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries – YUM!
Our friend Julia brought 3 things. One of them was cornbread, which I haven’t had in YEARS. It was delish. She also brought the amazing potato salad in the next photo and watermelon lemonade, which I totally forgot to get a picture of because it was in the fridge (along with all the alcohol I also forgot to photograph).
Julia’s potato salad was a HUGE hit. People were asking who made it all night long. Julia was kind enough to share her family recipe with me, so scroll down to the bottom if you are looking for the perfect potato salad recipe (I’m not exaggerating, people.)
And of course, dessert! Our friend Mike brought chocolate chip cookies, made using the vegan cookie dough sold at Whole Foods. They were really good and were all gone before the potluck ended. I majorly regret that I only ate one. I think the brand he used is Eat Pastry, but I know there is also Celeste’s Best and Just Cookies (by Hampton Creek), if any one is looking for some ready-made vegan cookie dough.
And last, but certainly not least: this gloriousness. Two of our friends, Adnan and Chevy, had been planning to cook dishes all week. Come Saturday, they didn’t reaaaally feel like cooking. So instead of cooking, they went to Whole Foods and did the next best thing. (Honestly, in my world, this is the first best thing, but whatevz.)
They got a disgusting amount of vegan dessert, including cupcakes and cake. They walked in apologizing for only bringing pre-made desserts, like I was going to be upset. I literally screamed with joy when I saw all the goodies. I have a sweet tooth like no other, y’all. Just ask my parents… they paid my dental bills all through childhood.
We had a total of 9 people at the potluck, which I thought was a great number for our first ever potluck. The number kept it intimate but also not too small. All of our friends did an amazing job with their contributions and I am so happy it all turned out so well! It was lovely to share time with all of our friends from different circles over satisfying food.
We chatted, played with our cat Fred and Julia’s boston terrier Ruby (find her on Instagram at @ruby_mooseface) in the backyard, and just generally had a good time. Now, onto the recipes. I know that’s why you are here, don’t pretend…
Another giant thank you to Julia for sharing this ridiculously tasty potato salad recipe! You can find Julia on Instagram at @youngnancybotwin. She’s a pretty awesome person and I’m so glad I met her in Austin! We actually met through Instagram. Anyway…
Julia’s Tichy Family Potato Salad Recipe (aka the best potato salad ever)
6-8 large russet potatoes (or a bag of small Yukon gold potatoes, they’re cuter)
1 bunch of scallions
4-5 sticks of celery
1 block of extra firm tofu
Fancy mustard (grey poupon level)
Pickle juice and/or homemade balsamic dressing (Julia says this is the secret ingredient)
1) Peel and cube potatoes
2) Bring water to a boil, then leave potatoes in a rapid boil for 10 minutes (so they don’t get too mushy)
3) Drain and cool immediately using ice cubes, ice water, and the fridge (or however you prefer)
4) Prep the celery, scallions, and dill by washing and cutting, then drain and cube the tofu.
5) Add a little bit of turmeric to the tofu to give it an egg-like color *optional*
6) Add in all the cold vegetables to the tofu, then add the potatoes.
7) Add salt and pepper to taste
8) Add in 4 T mayo (adjust to your preference), 2 T yellow mustard, 1 T fancy mustard
9) Stir well, adjust seasoning to taste.
10) Add a drizzle of dill pickle juice. Just trust me. It’s delicious.
Potato salad is the perfect Summer side dish and I absolutely love eating massive amounts of it. I’m super happy Julia shared her recipe, because I was never quiiiite content with the ones I found online. If you give it a try, comment and let us know what you think! Or head to Julia’s Instagram and tell her yourself 🙂
Next up, the Spinach and Artichoke Dip! I actually made this dip for dinner last night (yes, I ate dip for dinner) because it is so easy and I had enough ingredients left over to make a second batch. So, last night, I took a much better photo of the dip than I got at the potluck.
How amazing does that look? It tastes just as good. I used to be obsessed with spinach and artichoke dip, starting in middle school all the way through college, until I graduated and entered my “healthy eating” phase, which a few months later turned into veganism. That being said, this dip doesn’t taste *exactly* like the version filled with mayonnaise, parmesan, sour cream, and other gobs of dairy cheese, but it’s pretty damn close. Plus, do you really want that bloated post-dairy feeling after eating this? I didn’t think so. So, try this version instead and be amazed!
Here’s the deal. This recipe is not mine; I used a recipe I found from the web. Normally, I would share the full recipe and link to the website, but this page specifically says not to share the recipe. Not one to be disrespectful of copyright, I am abiding by those directions, so hit the following link for Vegan Spinach Dip over at No Recipes.
The only adjustment I made was when I added the tofu mixture to the pan, I also added a can of artichoke hearts, which I had chopped into small pieces. Spinach dip is great, but in my opinion, adding those artichoke hearts takes it to a whole new level!
This post was looong, but I hope you enjoyed a glimpse of our potluck. We will be having another one in a few weeks, so stay tuned! Oh, and don’t forget to separate trash and recycling! We love the environment over here.
Happy Tuesday peeps! I hope you have an awesomely productive day, whether that means working hard or just laying in bed. Sending you good vibes wherever you are!