When we think of Italian food, the entire culture of Italy comes to mind. From large families to big, multi-course meals to bold, rich flavors, who wouldn’t want to dine like an Italian? We all love potluck dinners, but sometimes it is difficult to figure out what to make. Fortunately for you, there are many easy Italian dishes for potluck dinners to choose from.
If you want to go all out and serve up courses of a lifetime, then Italian food is a perfect option for you. On the other hand, if you’re not into long, confusing recipes, there are great options for every family chef out there. The best part is that many Italian recipes require similar starting ingredients, making it easy for you to get crafty in the kitchen and save money doing it.
In this blog, we will be covering the basic herbs and ingredients necessary for many easy Italian dishes for potluck, some of the most popular meals and drinks that originate from Italy, and how to make sure what you’re cooking leads to an authentic experience that only Italian food can provide. Let’s get started!
Key Ingredients for the Best Easy Italian Dishes for Potluck
There are two main components of a meal: the flavorings, such as herbs, and the body of the meals. The following two sections will cover the components that you will likely use the most.
The Most Used Herbs and Flavorings
Classic Italian recipes incorporate many herbs and flavors. Oregano, parsley, basil, thyme and bay leaves are just a few useful herbs to have on hand. Also be sure to stock up on garlic and olive oil, as you’ll be using them frequently.
Bread with olive oil
An easy way to incorporate Italian food into your meal is to make a simple olive oil dip for sliced bread. While the baguette is a popular choice for bread, you really can choose any kind for this appetizer. At its most basic level, this recipe requires extra virgin olive oil, garlic, oregano, and balsamic vinegar. There’s a good chance you already have most of these ingredients in your pantry, making this dish a money-saver.
Mix all the ingredients together, pour the dip into a family-sized dish, place the warmed bread into a basket, and you’re ready to go!
A great dish to follow the bread and olive oil is minestrone soup. Garlic, oregano, and olive oil are also ingredients that can be found in this soup. Use a vegetable or chicken broth and a can of crushed tomatoes to make the base. You can throw in any vegetables you have on hand to create the perfect, vegetable-based soup. Complete by throwing in some rice or pasta to add texture and fullness to your soup.
Common Meals One Would Find in Italy:
Pizza and pasta
Perhaps one of the most-eaten and best Italian kitchen recipes is the classic pizza. Tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, and oregano are the key ingredients to a classic Margherita pizza. If you want, add a few ingredients of your own choosing to personalize it. Likewise, there are many pasta dishes in Italy. Spaghetti, lasagna, macaroni, and ravioli are a few options.
Italian drinks and dessert
Bold coffee and white wine are very popular in Italy. For a big celebration, Prosecco, a bubbly white wine that is much like affordable champagne, is a great option. Complete your Italian dining with the perfect dessert. If you want to really impress your family with your cooking skills, then tiramisu is the best and most popular dessert of choice. Made primarily of eggs and ladyfingers, this tasty dessert is perfect for coffee lovers, as it also contains a cup of brewed coffee.
How to Make Your Best Italian Recipes as Authentic as Possible
You’ve got your ingredients and real Italian recipes, but what makes an authentic Italian experience? Well, when it comes to the Italian culture, we need to look beyond the food itself. In fact, when it comes to all foreign cuisines, it is important to take into account the culture of that country so that you can get the most out of your cooking experience.
In regards to Italian dining, go full out. Invite all your family over and make it a family event that will be sure to be talked about years down the line. Italian culture is all about large families coming together to dine and enjoy each others’ company. It’s a great opportunity to reconnect with family you seldom see, or to simply spend more time with the family you do see.
Italian food has more to offer than a mere change of dinner choices. By immersing yourself into a culture that is family-oriented and merry, you’ll find that the energy of such a lifestyle impacts your own family experience. So, invite all your family over, pop the cork off that bottle of wine, and fully indulge in all that the Italian culture has to offer.