Our Families Share Comfort Food Recipes

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In tough times, we all need comfort food more than ever, even as we watch our pennies. So we asked readers to tell us some of their family’s favorite comfort food recipes.

Here’s their collection, everything from good old-fashioned chocolate chip cookies to Middle Eastern hummus, which one mom says her son loved, once he tried it! Try out another mother’s early morning or rainy day treat: Crustless Spinach Quiche. Enjoy Grandma’s Yummy Stuff, which brings back memories of yesteryear. Got a new one to add? E-mail it to us with the Comfort Food in the title! We’d like to spread the joy around!

FOOD TO SOOTHE YOUR SOUL!

Chocolate Chip Cookies, submitted by Gina Taffe, of Raleigh, N.C.

2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 teasp baking soda
2 eggs
1 1/2 sticks melted butter that has cooled slightly
2 tsp vanilla
1 12 oz package chocolate chips

Mix dry ingredients together and then add eggs, butter and vanilla. Then add chocolate chips. Put small spoonfuls of dough on cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.

Hummus, submitted by Pamela Taylor, of Raleigh, N.C.

“This is an easy and healthy recipe to make with your kids,” Pamela says. “I made this with my son, and he now enjoys something that he never would have tried if he didn’t participate in the preparation,” she says.

1 15 ounce can of chick peas;
1 tablespoon of olive oil;
2 tablespoons of tahini;
1/2 teaspoon of salt;
1/4 cup lemon juice;
1/4 cup water;
3 large cloves of garlic

Add your favorite pita chips or sesame crackers and you have the perfect snack.

Crustless spinach quiche recipe, submitted by Leah Wall, of Wake Forest, N.C.

“I love to make the crustless spinach quiche recipe found on allrecipes.com — except i use the mexican blend cheese instead of the Muenster, and I shred my onion up in the food processor,” Leah says. “I make these in mini tart pans. when it’s rainy, or early in the morning, I can take one from the freezer, microwave it for 40 seconds and, instantly, I have a delicious and cozy snack or breakfast!

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 10 ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
5 eggs, beaten
3 cups shredded Muenster cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F or175 degrees C. Lightly grease a 9-inch pie pan. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft. Stir in spinach and continue cooking until excess moisture has evaporated. In a large bowl, combine eggs, cheese, salt and pepper. Add spinach mixture, and stir to blend. Scoop into prepared pie pan. Bake in preheated oven until eggs have set, about 30 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Grandma’s Yummy Stuff, submitted by Rachel Faulkner, of Morrisville, N.C.

“This is a recipe handed down to me by my grandmother,” Rachel says. “It reminds me of her. Today, I share this recipe with my family, and it provides me comfort with memories of her and taking care of my own family. It is also very inexpensive to make.”

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 8-oz can of tomato/pasta sauce
1 8-oz can of tomatoes
1 small green pepper, chopped
1 4-oz package of sour cream
1 4-oz package of cottage cheese
1 8-oz cream cheese
1 small package of shredded cheese any type
1 10-oz package of macaroni noodles

Heat oven to 350. In large bowl mix sour cream , cottage cheese and cream cheese, then set aside. Mixture will soften.

Pour water in large pan and bring to a boil. Add macaroni noodles.
In large size pan, cook beef until done. When done drain grease and add green pepper, tomato sauce and tomatoes. Keep on low heat until macaroni is done.
Remove macaroni and pour into large casserole dish. Remix cheese mixture and pour all on top of macaroni. Spread evenly. Pour rest of macaroni on top.
Pour beef mixture on top of macaroni and sprinkle with shredded cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until cheese in center is hot and shredded cheese is melted.

Prep Time: 20 minutes Ready in 40 minutes
Serves 6 to 8

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Treat, submitted by Amanda Dorsey, of Timberlake, N.C.

Take a Hershey Bar and spread peanut butter on top of it before warming it in the microwave. Then, put whipped cream on top–but not too much. It tastes like a extra-creamy Reese’s cup!!

Aunt Susie’s Broccoli Bread Pudding, submitted by Tara Green, of Holly Springs, N.C.

12 oz of frozen broccoli florets
1 cup of cottage cheese
3/4 stick of margarine
1 small chopped onion
2 eggs
2 Tbs sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 box Jiffy corn bread mix

Cook broccoli florets until tender. Drain and chop. Mix in the cottage cheese, beaten eggs, onion, salt, pepper and sugar. Melt the margarine and once it cools down some, add it to the mixture. Mix in the Jiffy corn bread mix. Spoon into a greased glass loaf dish. Cook on 325 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. It’s a delicious comfort food.

Easy Garlic Chicken, broiled-baked, submitted by Kenia Burwell, of Raleigh

“I love it!” Kenia says.

1/2 cup butter
3 tablespoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon dried parsley
6 boneless chicken thighs, with skin dried parsley, to taste

Preheat the oven broiler. Lightly grease a baking pan.
In a microwave safe bowl, mix the butter, garlic, soy sauce, pepper, and parsley. Cook 2 minutes on High in the microwave, or until butter is melted.
Arrange chicken on the baking pan, and coat with the butter mixture, reserving some of the mixture for basting.
Broil chicken 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until juices run clear, turning occasionally and basting with remaining butter mixture. Or you can bake it at 375 for about 45 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley to serve.

The Fresh Fruit/Ice-cream Salad, submitted by Judith, of Carrboro, N.C.

“This is my all- time favorite comfort food which I enjoy without feeling guilty because it is filled with the goodness of fresh fruit,” Judith says.

1 quart vannila ice cream

1 red delicious apple cut into 8 pieces
1 sweet ripe mango cut into small pieces
10 strawberries cut into halves

In a bowl pour half quart of ice cream. The, add a layer of apples, followed by mangoes and strawberries. Add the remaining ice cream on top of the fruits. Enjoy!

Baked Ziti, submitted by Madelyn Archibald, of Raleigh, N.C.

1 pound dry ziti pasta
1 onion, chopped
1 pound lean ground beef
2 26 ounce jars spaghetti sauce
6 ounces provolone cheese, sliced
1 1/2 cups sour cream 6 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti pasta, and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes; drain. In a large skillet, brown onion and ground beef over medium heat. Add spaghetti sauce, and simmer 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F or175 degrees C. Butter a 9×13 inch baking dish. Layer as follows: half of the ziti, Provolone cheese, sour cream, half sauce mixture, remaining ziti, mozzarella cheese and remaining sauce mixture. Top with grated Parmesan cheese. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheeses are melted.

Ginger Chicken Fried Brown Rice, submitted by Elyse Nieves

Boneless chicken breasts
Ginger Garlic Sesame, Garlc or Vegetable Oil
Soy Sauce or Lite Soy Sauce
Bag of Frozen Vegetables asian stirfry mix
Brown Rice
Chicken Broth

Cook brown rice according to directions, but substitute water for chicken broth and add one tablespoon of soy sauce. Slice chicken into very thin slices or small bite-size pieces. Finely chop garlic and ginger. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to wok, and cook chicken for about 5 to 7 minutes over medium-high to high heat. Season with salt and pepper, add garlic and ginger and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add about 3 tablespoons of soy sauce and cook for an additional minute then transfer to boil. Add another 2 tablespoons of oil and cook frozen vegetables, and lightly season them with salt and pepper. Add cooked chicken and cooked rice and an additional 4 tablespoons of soy sauce and mix very well. And serve!

The Original Chex Party Mix, submitted by Becca Thomas of Huntersville, N.C.

“It is amazing,” Becca says.

3 cups Corn Chex cereal
3 cups Rice Chex cereal
3 cups Wheat Chex cereal
1 cup mixed nuts
1 cup bite-size pretzels
1 cup garlic-flavor, bite-size bagel chips or regular-size bagel chips, broken into 1-inch pieces
6 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder

Microwave Directions

In large microwavable bowl, mix cereals, nuts, pretzels and bagel chips; set aside. In small microwavable bowl, microwave butter uncovered on high about 40 seconds, or until melted. Stir in seasonings. Pour over cereal mixture; stir until evenly coated.
Microwave uncovered on high 5 to 6 minutes, thoroughly stirring every 2 minutes. Spread on paper towels to cool. Store in airtight container.

Oven Directions

Heat oven to 250 F. In a large bowl, mix cereals, nuts, pretzels and bagel chips; set aside. In an ungreased large roasting pan, melt butter in oven. Stir in seasonings. Gradually stir in cereal mixture until evenly coated. Bake 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Spread on paper towels to cool, about 15 minutes. Store in an airtight container.

Prep Time:15 minutes; Start to Finish:15 minutes. Makes:24 servings, 1/2 cup each

Categories: Food + Fun, Recipes, Seasonal, Seasonal Fun