Monday, 17 July 2017

Summer Potluck on a Budget

It's patio season and that means backyard parties.

Sometimes it's hard to come up with something to bring along. I don't like being the person who brings the soda, so I always try to figure out something unique to make and share with my friends. This weekend was my community band's summer picnic, and I rose to the challenge like a champ.

The first thing I made ultimately didn't make it to the picnic, but they have always been a perennial favourite in our home and the homes of my friends. These are awesome because they are cheap to make (they are mostly bananas and oats), quick and almost completely impossible to screw up.  Believe me, I've tried. They also work best with overripe bananas, so you're using up all the food in your house and eliminating waste!

You will need:
  • 2 medium bananas, mashed
  • 1.5 cups of oats (give or take, depending on the size of the bananas)
  • 0.5 cups of mini chocolate chips, walnuts, or anything you want to use!
  • Parchment paper (ideally) 
These babies didn't make it past the kitchen door.

Preheat your oven to 350F and leave it to heat. Spread your parchment paper on your baking tray. Mash the bananas until they are liquid. Honestly, hands work best. Mix in your oats half a cup at a time until the mixture looks well combined, but almost like it wouldn't be able to hold together if you added more oats. Mix in your mini chocolate chips. make balls and press them on the cookie sheet. One-inch balls are good for group gatherings, but when I make them for home I tend to make them larger. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until firm.

Pennies a person and delicious.

The food that I ended up taking was a batch of coconut flour blondies that were to die for (recipe here at Ambitious Kitchen). I am usually looking for cost-effective alternatives, but sometime it is just too challenging. I have some friends who have food sensitivities so I take special care to try and make things that everyone can eat. You can't get around the fact that coconut flour is relatively expensive but in all honesty, of all the gluten-free flours I have tried, I have had the best luck with it which, to me, makes the extra expense worth it. Also, the recipe doesn't use too much. If you need to go food-sensitive, this is a great option - BUT I would suggest going to your local bulk food store and buying the exact amount of coconut flour you need to cut costs.

These. Were. Delicious.

What is your favourite potluck recipe? I would love to hear from you!


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