Handy and party ready: Creative potluck recipes for any occasion

MANILA, Philippines — Filipinos love to party, and with the Christmas season just around the corner, expect an occasion every weekend. A fair share of these will probably be at-home potlucks with family and friends, so it’s a good idea to start thinking about what to bring yourself.

To help you out, here are some creative potluck recipes to upgrade the usual holiday fare. From appetizers down to desserts, all are simple, delicious, and best of all, easy to transport (READ: Make it gourmet everyday).

If you’re a chef or restaurant owner, it would also be a good idea to offer bigger portions like these. Your customers will surely appreciate it; especially those who are not keen on cooking or do not have the time to spend hours in the kitchen.

These dishes are versatile so you can personalize them to your own style of cooking or flavor preferences. And although simple, they’ll all look professionally prepared and ready to impress. 

The Appetizer

Instead of the usual cheese dip, try making this: Warm Feta and Artichoke Dip.

A grown-up version of a cheese pimiento spread, this dip made with feta instead of cheddar is creamy, slightly salty, and goes well with chips and melba toast. Try this if you’re looking for something both kids and adults will enjoy.

Ingredients:

-       About 400 grams of drained and chopped artichoke hearts

-       140 grams of crumbled feta cheese

-       ¾ cup Lady’s Choice Real Mayonnaise

-       1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

-       ¼ cup canned pimientos, diced small

-       2 teaspoons minced garlic

Procedure:

-       Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl, making sure everything is well incorporated.

-       Move mixture to an oven-safe dish and bake in an oven that’s been preheated to 350°F for 25 minutes, or until light brown in color.

-       Once it’s cooler, place the lid of the dish and pack.

-       When ready to serve, warm for 5-10 minutes in the oven. Serve in a platter with pita chips, corn chips, or melba toast.

The Main Dish

Instead of the usual pan-fried fish with lemon butter sauce, try making this: Roasted Salmon with Parmesan-Mayo Crust.

This dish will look like you slaved over it for hours, but the actually simple recipe is made with only three key ingredients. Unlike the usual pan-fried fillets of fish, this is light and flavorful, but still has that crispy skin people look forward to.

Ingredients:

-       1 ½ kilograms salmon fillet, skin on

-       Salt and pepper to taste

-       9 tablespoons Lady’s Choice Real Mayonnaise

-       6 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese

-       Sweet paprika to taste

Procedure:

-       Pre-heat oven to 425 °F and line a baking dish with foil. Place the rinsed and dried salmon on the dish and season with salt and pepper.

-       Mix together the Lady’s Choice Real Mayonnaise and Parmesan cheese. Spread mixture on top of the salmon. Sprinkle extra Parmesan cheese and a little bit of sweet paprika on top.

-       Roast for 15-20 minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon.

-       Transfer to a foil tray and cover. 

The Dessert

Instead of the usual leche flan, try making this: Southern Chocolate Cake.

Baked desserts take a little bit more of time but this decadent chocolate cake is worth the extra minutes of prep. Your family and friends will be impressed by how moist this is, and it’s all because of one secret ingredient — mayonnaise. 

Ingredients:

For cake:

-       2 cups all-purpose flour

-       2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

-       1 teaspoon baking soda

-       1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

-       ¼ teaspoon salt

-       ¼ teaspoon baking powder

-       3 large eggs

-       1 2/3 cups light brown sugar

-       2 teaspoons vanilla extract

-       1 cup Lady’s Choice Real Mayonnaise

-       1 1/3 cups hot water

For frosting:

-       1 pack cream cheese

-       ½ cup softened butter

-       2 teaspoons vanilla extract

-       4 cups powdered sugar

-       ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

-       5-6 tablespoons heavy cream

Procedure:

For cake:

-       Preheat oven to 350 °F and grease and flour a 13x9 inch pan.

-       Whisk together flour with other dry ingredients. 

-       In a separate bowl, beat eggs, sugar, and vanilla at medium-high speed until mixture is light brown in color.

-       Add Lady’s Choice Real Mayonnaise and beat at low speed until well incorporated.

-       Alternately add and beat flour mixture and hot water with egg mixture.

-       Pour batter into the pan and bake for 30-35 minutes.

-       Cool and spread Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting on top.

-       Pack in an airtight container.

For frosting:

-       Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla extract until creamy.

-       In a separate bowl, whisk together powdered sugar with cocoa powder.

-       Alternately mix powdered sugar mixture and heavy cream with the cream cheese mixture until you get the desired consistency. 

The Beverage

Get creative with drinks, and try making: Holiday Fruit Punch.

Put a little more thought on your drinks by bringing a special mix to the party. Instead of relying on powdered juices and soda, try this fruit punch. Great for all ages, the colorful beverage is fizzy, fruity, and party ready. 

Ingredients:

-       1 liter lemon-lime soda

-       8 cups cranberry juice

-       3 cups pineapple juice

-       3 cups orange juice

-       ¼ cup lemon juice

-       1 thinly sliced orange

-       1 thinly sliced apple

Procedure:

-       In a large jug, mix together cranberry juice, pineapple juice, orange juice, and lemon juice. Pack with lemon-lime soda and sliced fruits.

-       Before serving, combine juice mixture with lemon-lime soda and sliced fruits in a punch bowl.

Be inspired with more mayo innovations from top chefs from all over the country. Be at the Lady’s Choice Real Chef Grand Finale on November 25, 2 pm at the Glorietta 3 Activity Center to see how chefs make your favorite dishes exciting with the #1 mayonnaise brand, Lady’s Choice Real Mayonnaise. Visit www.ufs.com/realchefgrandfinale for more information.