So, I did what I always do, I took the question to my friends via social media. "Can someone please succinctly define 'comfort food'?" I posed.
The responses ranged from actual suggestions - mac'n'cheese, lasagna, and mashed potatoes & gravy - to sweet compliments. But the answer that made me laugh aloud and had the boys looking at me quizzically was my friend Kevin's response: "Any food you disapprove of." Now that makes sense to me.
Hold on! Before you, dear reader, get indignant and come to my defense, please know that I actually do have a sense of humor and found his answer - while not entirely helpful at helping me pick a few recipes from my blog - informative. He went on to suggest that I respond to the request with an apology: "Sorry, I only make uncomfortable food."
That is actually a true statement. When people tell me that they don't like some food or don't eat something, I take that as a personal challenge to get them out of their comfort zone. I make them uncomfortable, for a little while, until I win them over to my side!
Case in point: my friend Brian told me that he, unequivocally, did not eat beets...under no circumstances. Well, I created those circumstances for a birthday dinner and he walked away with a full belly and a new declaration - "I only eat beets at Cam's house." I'll take that. Aforementioned pal Kevin once said something about not eating cabbage. So I had my husband deliver a trio of cabbage dishes to try - stuffed cabbage rolls, coleslaw, and kimchi. Kevin ate them, documented his foray into cabbage-eating with a video and gave me a 'not bad' verdict. And just last month, I co-hosted a baby shower for a friend with a pumpkin theme. One of the guests confided in me, "I don't really like pumpkin. If anyone can win me over, it'll be you." I never heard a definitive 'yea' or 'nay' from her that afternoon, but I think her plate was empty at the end of the lunch.
So, here are my comfort foods with an uncomfortable twist...and by 'uncomfortable' I just mean 'Cam-style.'
Meat and Potatoes = Tajine-el-Khoukh (Algerian Stuffed Peaches)
Mac'N'Cheese = Truffled Mac'N'Cheese with Tarragon and Pancetta
Chocolate = Homemade Snickers
Thanks to all my friends who rang in with answers this morning.
I couldn't have done this post without your help.