Comfort Food Recipes

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Celery Risotto with Pistachio Pesto Recipe

Daddy's been dieting diligently lately, and he told me yesterday that he had a craving for celery risotto. Of course, I was happy to oblige. Unlike many of my other risotto recipes, which will probably never be considered healthy, I decided to make this risotto (almost) as good for you as it is good to eat.

To complement the very distinct flavor of celery, I added lemon juice and a pistachio pesto. I also threw in a little parmesan cheese for a nutty aroma and flavor. Daddy enjoyed it so much that I froze several portions of the risotto so that he can get his "fix" whenever he wants, whether he's on a diet or not.


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Baked Spinach Penne Pasta (Gratin de Pates Aux Epinards) Recipe

For me, baked pasta is the ultimate comfort food. What could be better than pasta and spinach mixed with creamy béchamel sauce and smothered in melted cheese? This dish is very similar to a spinach lasagna, but without the extra work of layering everything.

I've found that it's one of the easiest ways to get the girls to eat their vegetables. Each serving is packed with spinach, but who can tell, what with all the cream and cheese? I didn't say it's the healthiest way to get kids to eat their vegetables, just the easiest...


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Cumin and Saffron Flavored Butternut Squash Risotto Recipe

If Fall had a flavor, it would be butternut squash. I know pumpkins are the symbol of Halloween, and sweet potatoes are a staple of Thanksgiving meals, but to me, nothing compares to the earthy sweetness and versatility of butternut squash. It works perfectly in salads, soups, side dishes, and, in the case of this risotto, as a main course.

To prepare this dish, I just diced and roasted some butternut squash and mixed it with a pot of risotto I infused with saffron. It's a simple, no frills preparation that really highlights the flavor and texture of the butternut squash.


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Corn Chowder Recipe Recipe

Corn Chowder Recipe

08.22.09 by Jackie

Chowders, like many other Western soups, are thickened with a roux. A roux is a combination of flour, butter and milk. To make corn chowder, just add corn kernels and some diced potatoes for texture. It couldn't be simpler than that!

I think chowder comes from the French word chaudière, which is the name of the pot in which the soup is made. It seems though, that the dish first gained popularity in New England. Traditional chowder is prepared with seafood, but I only had some fresh ears of corn on hand. After making countless corn salads, grilled corn on the cob and desserts, it was time to make some good ol' comfort food for dinner.


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Vegetarian Tajine Recipe

Vegetarian Tajine

07.07.09 by Jackie

Tajine is a Moroccan dish that is named after the special pot in which it is cooked. It's a melting pot of savory and sweet flavors and it's a staple in Mediterranean cuisine. I love all its interesting ingredients like saffron, cinnamon, cumin, ginger, apricots and sun-dried tomatoes.

A lot of my cooking is my own improvisation. I went into the garden and found only 5 apricots that were fully ripe. We've had a lot of problems lately with animals like deer, squirrels and rabbits eating the fruits of Lulu's labor. Of course, this would have never been enough for a tart or preserve. I had a few potatoes, some sun-dried tomatoes and tofu. Eating them as is would have been an option but I thought I would use them to make a vegetarian tajine.

There was a lot of the leftover sauce, so I saved it to make a real lamb tajine stew the next day. All I have to do is run to the store and buy some lamb shanks.


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