Prepping for Potlucks

Potluck dinners are a St Andrews staple; they bring together friends and food and let you taste a variety of dishes in one seating. Stumped what to make at your next potluck gathering? Here are a few delicious recipes, varying from easy and quick to show-stopping!

Chocolate Crackles

200g (or two bars) of chocolate

3 cups of a cereal, such as rice crispies or corn flakes

  1. Place chocolate in a glass heat-proof bowl and microwave on medium high for 1 minute and then stir well. You may need to heat in further 10 second bursts to entirely melt.
  2. Pour in the cereal.
  3. Stir to coat with chocolate and fill patty pans or cupcake cups with mixture, sprinkle with any decoration (coconut sprinkles, chocolate eggs etc) and refrigerate for 10 minutes to set.


Roasted Tomato Pasta with Mozzarella Salad

450g red and/or yellow grape or cherry tomatoes, halved

2 tsp dried oregano, crushed

3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 tsp kosher salt

60ml olive oil

450g of dried pasta

80ml olive oil

1 tbsp white or balsamic vinegar

1/2 tsp black pepper

230g small fresh mozzarella balls or cubed fresh mozzarella

15g snipped fresh basil

  1. Preheat oven to 230 degrees C. Arrange tomato halves, cut sides up, in a foil-lined 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Sprinkle with oregano, garlic, and salt; drizzle with the 60 ml olive oil. Roast tomatoes, uncovered, for 20 to 25 minutes or until light brown and shrivelled. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package directions; drain. In a large bowl whisk together the 80ml olive oil, the vinegar, and pepper. Add warm pasta to bowl; toss to coat. Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the tomatoes and any drippings from the pan, the mozzarella, and basil to the pasta. Toss to combine. Serve at room temperature.


Chicken, Leek and Bacon Pie

450ml chicken stock

3 chicken breasts, skinned

75g butter

2 leeks, trimmed and cut into 1cm/½in slices

2 garlic cloves, crushed

50g plain flour

200ml milk

2-3 tbsp white wine (optional)

150ml double cream

150g of bacon (smoked or unsmoked)

1 tbsp of Dijon Mustard

Salt and pepper to taste

Oil for frying

Pre-made pastry (preferable pre-rolled)

  1. Heat the chicken stock in a lidded saucepan. Add the chicken breast and bring to a low simmer. Cover with a lid and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the chicken breasts from the water with tongs and place on a plate. Pour the cooking liquor into a large jug.
  2. Melt 25g of the butter in a large heavy-based saucepan over a low heat. Stir in the leeks and fry gently for two minutes, stirring occasionally until just softened. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Add the remaining butter and stir in the flour as soon as the butter has melted. Cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
  3. Slowly pour the milk into the pan, just a little at a time, stirring well between each adding. Gradually add 250ml of the reserved stock and the wine, if using, stirring until the sauce is smooth and thickened slightly.
  4. Stir in chicken, ham and leeks. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 3 minutes.
  5. Season the mixture, to taste, with salt, pepper and Dijon mustard. Remove from the heat and stir in the cream.
  6. Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas 6. Put a baking tray in the oven to heat.
  7. Pour the chicken filling into the pie dish. Roll out the pastry for the lid.
  8. Cover the pie with the pastry lid and press the edges together firmly to seal. Trim any excess pastry. Tip: If you have any extra pastry, try making some shapes or letters for the top of your pie!
  9. Make a small hole in the centre of the pie with the tip of a knife. Bake on the preheated tray in the centre of the oven for 35-40 minutes or until the pie is golden-brown all over and the filling is piping hot.