Helena61

How to navigate being invited to a pot luck

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I have just started my 3rd whole 30. I did not make it through the 2nd because we got invited away for a weekend and I had to eat! When no one else is doing whole 30 its really hard. I am the only one in my family doing this. I can not get my husband or daughter to buy into it. It does not help when I fall of the wagon when we go out or to friends. I get together with my girlfriends, attend small group studies with church ladies and have just been invited to a mother daughter luncheon. I am frustrated that I just can not seem to make it through these events because I do not know what to take to share with non whole 30 people. I have looked through sites to find appetizers and ideas but honestly they are too far out there and no one wants to eat them. I need some normal food ideas that people will eat. Any suggestions anyone please

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Meatballs -- here's a traditional Italian version in a sauce, or there are a ton of variations. Tuna or chicken salad in lettuce cups or just served with celery, carrots, tomatoes, cucumber slices, and other vegetables for dipping -- you could take some crackers or chips or rolls for other people to have with theirs if you really wanted to, but I don't think it's necessary.  Bacon wrapped potatoes or sweet potatoes.  There are compliant potato salads, google and see what looks closest to how you would normally make yours, or see if you can alter yours to be compliant. Buffalo wings, if you're into spicy. Vegetable trays. Chicken tenders -- make some mayo or ranch to dip them in.  For brunches or ladies' luncheons, something like this quiche or this frittata.  

What I would do for any of these is make sure you have a complete meal for you, and then also the stuff you bring to share -- either that or eat before you go. That way, if you get there and the only compliant thing there is what you brought, you've still got food. It may feel awkward at first, but really, the point of these get-togethers is the people and the socializing. No one really cares what you're eating. Don't make a fuss about it, but if someone asks, you can say something like, I'm doing an elimination diet to see if I can figure out what is causing some issues I'm having. Or, I'm currently doing a 30 day food challenge to see if what I'm eating really affects how I feel or not. If they want to keep talking about it, say something like, I'd be happy to tell you all about it when we're all through eating, but right now I really just want to catch up with everyone for a little while.

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Thank you for your reply Shannon, I will think about one of your suggestions. The problem seems to be that the whole 30 food tastes different and sometimes takes adjustment. i have tried making potato salad before but being made from home made mayo is not the same as miracle whip and english salad dressing with the sugar and people I have made it for do not like it and think its bland.  But you gave me some good ideas; maybe the quiche. thank you!

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We make a potato salad without any mayo and no eggs. It's an ancient recipe that calls for olive oil and vinegar and lemon. Boiled cut potatoes.  Dijon mustard and fresh pressed garlic to taste.  Celery and finely chopped red peppers if you like.  Herbs, salt and pepper. Goes over well at potlucks and you don't have to worry about food poisoning as much on a hot, summer day.

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As a Southerner, where potlucks full of junky Bisquick casseroles and decadent desserts abound, I know exactly how you feel. 

I recently made this squash casserole, which got rave reviews from several of my 100% S.A.D. family members!

https://amberwoodterrace.wordpress.com/2013/07/15/zucchini-and-squash-casserole/

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I second the meatball idea. Melissa Joulwan's meatballs are great, and she's got tons of variations:

http://meljoulwan.com/2014/03/08/march-meatball-madness/

My favorites are the Gyoza (they seriously taste like Chinese dumplings), the Merguez (the easiest of the bunch), and the Bora Bora Fireballs (not too spicy).

Also, I'm starting to feel like a broken record, but this dip is so good:  http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/hearts-of-palm-dip  You can bring red bell pepper strips for yourself and fellow veggie eaters, and pita chips for other folks.

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