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What's Cooking?: Winter Comforts

This winter has been very tough.  The onslaught of snow storms seems never ceasing, occurring one after another.   After digging out from the heavy snow and ice in freezing temperatures, I look forward to coming back into the house for something hot, steamy and full of comfort.  Such foods sure hit the spot when you are in need of recovery, rejuvenation, and relaxation.  

We all have our favorite comfort foods and dishes that remind us of nostalgic memories in a time when all is well.   When our spirits are low or when we feel depleted from physical activity, many of us seek respite with a nourishing bite to eat.   Some love rich and creamy like baked macaroni and cheese with gooey cheese just oozing over the side of the ramekin.  I like crispy pieces of bacon in mine.  Some prefer something hearty like tender short rib stew with colorful root vegetables accompanied with a loaf of pumpernickel bread which is used to mop up that succulent brown gravy.   It is no wonder those one pot meals and casseroles are so popular and easy to prepare.   Finally, after a cold day, who can forget a hot steamy bowl of soup which comes in all forms from light broths to thick chowders?  One of my favorite comfort food on a cold wintry day is a big bowl of chicken broth overflowed with dumplings made with pork and shrimp, and noodles topped with leafy greens, shitake mushrooms, bean sprouts, and lots of chopped scallions.  The extra spicy soy vinegar sauce for dipping the dumplings warms those chilly bones of mine.

We all have our particular comfort foods we seek when we need a lift.  Although I have a weakness for Lindt chocolates and kettle potato chips when those moments come, I rather indulge in chicken pot pies and fried chicken.  What are your favorite comfort foods that put a smile on your face and warm your heart?

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Kevin Dundon's Modern Irish Food: More than 100 Recipes for Easy Comfort Food

The Gluten-free Gourmet Cooks Comfort Foods: Creating Old Favorites with the New Flours by Bette Hagman

Vegan Diner: Classic Comfort Food for the Body & Soul by Julie Hasson

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Old-School Comfort Food: The Way I Learned to Cook by Alex Guarnaschelli

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Bubby’s Brunch Cookbook: Recipes and Menus from New York’s Favorite Comfort  Food Restaurant by Ron Silver

Southern Living Comfort Food: A Delicious Trip Down Memory Lane

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