Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Comfort Food

I know it's too early to start thinking about comfort food. After living in Canada for 25 years now, I think I have learned the ropes to keeping warm in the cold Canadian weather. According to the definition from Wikipedia, comfort foods are "familiar, simple foods that are usually home-cooked or eaten at informal restaurants. They are foods that are often emotionally significant to a person or group of people and are sometimes related to pleasant associations of childhood". Congee has always been my comfort food. It's made of boiled rice and little seasoning. To keep it simple, spicy or flavored meat or vegetable from cans or jars were often added. It is versatile and it serves as my go-to food when my stomach needs a little comforting...

In the colder months, I utilize my crock pot so much that I don't bother to put it away in the pantry any more. It was my early (cheap) smart purchase when we first got married. I never did use it much until the last few years. First, it was because it's EASY! When my mind is pre-occupied with my card-making, cooking becomes my 2nd job. As long as I can feed the hungry ones in my household, my goal is complete! The following dishes are the kind of food that reminds me of what a happy meal was when I was a child...

All I did was to throw the chicken thighs into the crock pot along with ginger, garlic, soy sauce, salt, pepper, five spice powder and hot water (just enought to cover the chicken). Afer two hours, you have a yummy entree! I love the sugar snap peas, carrots, boiled eggs and buckwheat noodles in them.
Another classic in my kitchen is Won-Ton Noodle.

I loved to help my mom wrap these when I was a child, the act itself makes me feel grown-up. Now I realize that we often associate food with some kind of longing. I often laughed at the comments in Iron Chef America, one of the judges always says (in English with the fake Japanese accent) :".....hmmmm, this brings back my childhood memories..ah.. so.. happy, so.. delightful...this is what a good dish is about!!". Well, I now can relate to those comments.
I like to buy fresh ground pork and use the ready-made wrappers. I wrapped them up ahead of time as they freeze so well. When hunger strikes, all you need to do is boil them and add vegetable and noodles. Another happy meal! 
Now you can't have all that without any yummy desserts...

Apple Pie was foreign to me until my twenties. I grew to love it and call it comfort food. It is a wonderful feeling to know how much my family loves this simple dessert that I can make in a pinch. No, I never get the store-bought /ready-made crust. It comes from my heart and own creation.
I no longer need the recipe for the pie as I make the Apple Pies WAY too many times. Now that is a plus when you are busy and are in need of some comfort food. What's your comfort food?



18 comments:

Linda aka Oz said...

Bread pudding, corn bread and Ruffles and cottage cheese. Not all at the same time by any means!! Looking at the top 3 explains why my waist line is larger than my age...LOL Hugs the Oz

Vanessa said...

Yumm, I`d love to taste your food (but only the vegetarian)! My comfort food is: warm chocolate blancmange, rice pudding with applesauce, samosas, dhalcurry and a lot of pasta dishes (although I really tend to eat sweet stuff when I need comfort food)

Hugs,
Vanessa

Dawn said...

great food Virginia. Mine is beef casserole with carrots and vegies, apple crumble, bangers and mash ( sausages and mashed potato) with lots of gravy, Hot chocolate, .... I could go on and on... love food.

Dwita said...

Virginia, you make me even hungrier than my lunch... LOL... You cooked them so well. My favorite is Won-Ton noodle. We have it here in Indonesia. I sometimes make the wonton myself, too. It's not as difficult as I thought previously. And, for sure, it's so yummy and tasty... Love your post, Virginia...

Lin said...

Great post, Virginia! My comfort foods - from my childhood, homemade vegetable beef soup, creamed chicken over waffles, chocolate chip cookies, apple dumplings, and from my "grown-up" years, eggplant parmigiana, DH's butternut squash soup. I do love to eat!!

Jane said...

goodness......I'm soooo HUNGRY now!!!

Tiffany said...

Delicious, thanks for sharing your wonderful photos! I would have to say my comfort food is always some type of rich, thick soup or noodles combined! I also like to eat rice with everything...I can't imagine eating meat or anything without a little bit of rice on the side...yum!

Kelly Booth said...

YUMMY V.....Can I come over?? I LOVE Noodles...I would have to say that is my comfort food...either that or Tacos....I know strange...but I could eat tacos or Pizza everyday of the year!!

Nancy said...

Oh I so wish I could cook like you! Luckily my hubby is a good cook. Check out my blog today, I've passed on an award to you!

Alice Wertz said...

I am drooling Virginia!!! I love a bowl of hot soup noodle!! can I come over for some of your comfort food?? =) Thanks so much for sharing!!!

donna mikasa said...

YUMMMMM! My favorite comfort food is YOUR comfort food! You really must open a B&B, Virginia!! I would stay just for the apple pie!!!

Jill said...

I am in complete awe of your love of cooking! I can really tell it comes from your heart - your family is so lucky! My comfort food is Hershey's Milk Chocolate or my mom's goulash!

Kathy said...

Wow Virginia you should be a food writer..seriously babycakes!!!!! Loved reading your column on this post and enjoyed all the food photos!! My new favorite comfort food is/was what you cooked for TRace, Dr. J, You and I...it was so awesome. As for desserts...cookies hands down. xo

Tracey said...

I TOTALLY agree with sista Kathy!!!!!! We'll be back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!muhahahhahaaa!!!

ivy said...

virginia---coming to SoCal anytime soon?? you can stay w/ us!!! i'd love to taste all that yummy goodness! i am NOT know t know my way arounfd the kitchen! as we speak, my rice cooker is doing the cooking--i am making congee too. the boys & i are still a lil' under the weather and you're right, this is great comfort food!

Heather Maria said...

It all looks so yummy Virginia! Thanks for sharing your comfort foods with us.

When I have cheese on toast with cocoa it's a comfort food and reminds me of my childhood, sitting down for tea on a Saturday evening and watching Lamb Chop. On a cold day I love a big bowl of carrot, parsnip and coriander soup with the heel of a batch loaf. Unfortunately for my waistline, freshly baked scones or buns and chocolate are also comfort foods! Mmmmm what will I have now?!

nancy demond said...

I love spring rolls and hot and sour soup. I love a good cup of coffee and cream or a glass of wine. I love my mom's hamburger and rice casserole. Now, that's comfort because she makes it for me every time I visit, with her jello salad and fresh bread and butter. My lasagne is pretty dang good, too.

fika said...

thanks for sharing all the comfort foods.. for me my comfort food is always chicken soup, everytime i get sick i always eat it :)
as i'm a big fan of noodle, i'm drooling over your won-ton noodle, pour some chili on it, o yeah!! ok, will looking for some noodles for my lunch :p