Hard day at the office? Fight with your spouse or your mother-in-law? Dating difficulties? While comfort foods are only a temporary fix and don’t solve long term problems, they sure make us feel good “in the moment”.
What exactly constitutes a comfort food? I’d probably define it as a food that triggers a feeling of nostalgia, one that brings us back to a time when things were better, or at least simpler.
Of course what passes as a comfort food to one person is different than what someone else might consider one to be. Cultural and/or ethnic background, what part of the country one is from, and even age will influence our taste. For example, grits might be a comfort food to someone raised in the South, where tamales might cause someone with a Mexican heritage to be reminded of home. To many people any fast food, be it a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder or a Nathan’s hot dog, is plenty comforting.
It’s safe to say that by and large, comfort foods would not make it to the top of a nutritionist’s list. After all, ingredients such as butter, oil, and sour cream don’t do wonders for one’s cholesterol level. But who cares? Comfort foods are not intended to replace a regular diet. They’re meant to offer solace and, well comfort, for a brief time.
I made up a list of what I believe a great percentage of Americans might consider their ten favorite comfort foods. The list is not in any particular order and I tried not to be swayed by my own prejudices (though ice-cream did make the list:) There are foods I enjoy that are not on the list and others that don’t particularly appeal to me.
Please feel free to add your personal favorites.
- Ice cream
- Mac and cheese
- Potatoes (French fries or mashed)
- Stew or Pot Roast
- Home made soup (one of my personal favorites)
- Fried chicken
- Spaghetti and meatballs
- Tollhouse (chocolate chip) cookies and milk
Hope this whetted your appetite and that your weekend is a good and comforting one.
And thank you for joining me on this week’s journey along,
RHODES LESS TRAVELED,