I’m super excited about this Five Fandom Friday. It’s all about comfort foods. And I’m hoping people share recipes that I can add to my collection. I only wish I had more photos of these foods, apparently they’re so good I focus more on eating them than capturing the moment.
1. Beef Stew, or more accurately, my mom’s beef stew. This was always a favorite growing up. And of course, come to learn years and years later, apparently my mom put this through the food processor to make baby food for my brother and I. So I have definitely grown up on this dish. I go through phases with this. When I was little, the potatoes were my favorite part, then the beef chunks, and now the carrots. I mean, I love the soup as a whole, but it’s fun to get a bowl with more of your favorite pieces than not. And my mom, she makes this with big chunks and it’s awesome.
3-5 potatoes, cubed
2-3 carrots, cubed, 1-inch chunks
½-1lb of stew beef, cubed
1 ½ cup tomato juice
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoon minute tapioca
Cut and layer your meat and veggies. Mix 1 ½ cups tomato or V8 juice with 1 tablespoon sugar, 3 tablespoons minute tapioca and pour over stew, cover and bake at 250 degrees for 4-6 hours.
One thing to note, apparently my lack of proper measurements in recipes also runs in my family. Go figure. So basically for this, my mom just sent me only the instructions. So…. I guestimated on the rest.
2. Potato Soup, and yes, this one is family tied too. I’m talking about my late stepmom’s potato soup. This was always one of my favorite dishes that Karen made. It’s creamy and a little cheesy, and could just make any day better.
6 potatoes, peeled & diced
2 carrots, diced
¼ cup chopped onions
5 bouillon cubes
¼ cup half-and-half or milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Take vegetables and cover with water in a large pot. Add bouillon cubes. Boil on med-high until potatoes are soft and could be mashed. When some water has evaporate, turn down heat to med-low and add dairy. Cook until cheese has completely melted.
3. Mashed Potatoes. Definitely another childhood favorite. I could probably eat my weight in mashed potatoes if given the chance. But though I love mashed potatoes just the way they are, the fun part is using it as a base for extra flavor. And right now, my favorite variation is Rosemary Ranch.
4+ servings prepared mashed potatoes
½ teaspoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
2-3 tablespoons ranch dressing
dash of minced rosemary
salt & pepper to taste
Prepare your mashed potatoes however you like — instant, from scratch, doesn’t matter. Mix in all other ingredients. Good to go.This was adapted from a sauce/glaze you put on chicken before bbq-ing, so it has many, many uses and is a good one to keep around.
4. Lemon Goat Cheese Pasta Sauce. In the timeline of comfort foods, this is definitely a newer one. It was also a sort of special recipe to me in that it reminded me that good food isn’t hard. Kitchen messes are definitely a bane, so I want food that won’t be a hassle as well as, you know, taste amazing. This recipe is just that. I know I’ve shared it before, but here it is again.
2 cups uncooked pasta; I prefer farfalle
1 container of crumbled goat cheese
1 tablespoon (roughly) of lemon juice
½ teaspoon of black pepper
chicken sausage or spinach or capers or bacon or prosciutto if you’d like
Cook pasta. Drain but DO NOT get rid of the water. Set noodles aside. Add cheese to pan, slowly add in a little bit of the pasta water at a time. Melt the cheese. Probably 1-1 ½ cups of pasta water is all you need, just so the sauce covers all the pasta but isn’t too runny. Add in lemon juice and pepper. Stir in sausage or spinach or capers (or any other addition items you’d like). *Precook the sausage, but let the spinach cook in the sauce. Stir in the cooked pasta. Allow to sauce to set for roughly 5 minutes or so before serving. If you chose bacon or prosciutto, use as a garnish. Use more cheese, or grated parmesan cheese to thicken if you’d like.
5. Sweet corn. It was really hard to pick a 5th, because there are so many foods I love. However, I am an Indiana girl deep down, so it’s hard to beat a good ear of sweet corn fresh from the farm. And really, I just need a couple ears with butter and salt, and I’m all set. But in the heart of sharing recipes, here’s one for elote — a very tasty Mexican version of corn on the cob (or in a cup, as is how I make it most often.)
Corn: either on the cob or 1 cup frozen
Cotija or parmesan grated cheese
Cook the corn
On the cob
Put a layer of mayonaise on the corn. Then cover with cheese, sprinkle with ample amount of chili powder and cayenne. Tiny bit of paprika. Hint of lime to top it off.
It’ll be messy but awesome.
Mix all ingredients in bowl with cooked corn.
Very close runners up would be date, bacon and goat cheese empanadas, braunschweiger, and si ji dou.
What are some of your favorite comfort foods?