Contributed by Bridget Egan, Think Big Member and Content Strategist at Influence & Co.
At Think Big, we’re excited to announce that we’re hosting a lucky potluck lunch for charity from noon-2 p.m. March 16 on the second floor coworking space!
For a $5 donation, Think Big Members and friends are encouraged to serve their own lucky dishes, sample others’ creations, and vote for their favorites. In true Think Big style, all proceeds will be donated to the winning chef’s charity of choice.
The excitement of the potluck had me reflecting on my family’s lucky dish. Every time we get together, somebody brings thunderstorm bars.
What are thunderstorm bars, you ask? Well, one night many years ago during a raucous thunderstorm, my aunts Marcia and Liz couldn’t sleep. Rather than rearrange furniture — a habit that gave my grandparents gray hair — they decided to bake.
Upon opening the pantry, however, my aunts realized they were short on ingredients. Thanks to my grandpa’s midnight snacking habit, there weren’t enough chocolate chips for brownies, peanuts for peanut brittle, or marshmallows for Rice Krispy treats.
But my aunts weren’t about to give up. That night, fueled by hunger and thunder, they got to work creating a beautiful, monstrous Frankenstein’s candy. They built a bar with caramel, peanut butter, cornflake crust, and chocolate ganache topping.
Some might consider it lucky enough that such a bar was born at all. But while Marcia and Liz created the confection, they weren’t the ones to perfect it. That sweet honor goes to my grandmother Fran.
What’s Grandma Fran’s secret? Everyone in the family had a theory. “Is it the air in her house?” I asked one night. “Maybe it’s the pan she uses,” another grandchild guessed. “Her old age — err, experience?” my uncle inquired as Liz elbowed him.
Following a lively debate, we settled on an answer: Grandma is just lucky. After all, we reasoned, her maiden name is O’Shaughnessy.
Then, one summer day while I visited her in Minnesota, my Grandma decided we’d bake thunderstorm bars. We were finishing the chocolate ganache as my mother walked into the kitchen for some coffee.
“What are you making?” my mother asked. “Thunderstorm bars,” I smartly replied. Anxiously, my grandmother tossed the evidence into the trash. My mother and grandmother traded guilty and curious looks; I just licked the chocolate-covered spoon.
The secret, my grandmother begrudgingly shared, isn’t luck: It’s to double the butter and chocolate.
So whether your lucky dish involves a touch of Irish luck or an extra stick of butter — hopefully both — it’s more than welcome at our potluck.
Sign up to cook or attend by filling out the Google form below. We’re excited to eat, drink, and celebrate with you!
All Think Big Members and Friends Welcome!