We were talking about comfort foods the other day when I was whining about being sick and trying to be comfortable. I mentioned soup, specifically New England clam chowder. I have lots of other comfort foods, and since I've been watching cooking (no surprise there...) a lot lately, I've gotten fixated on a show called, “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”. Celebrity chefs talk about their favorites in various categories, say “with chopsticks”, or “in a deli”, or “wish I'd thought of it”. I'm going to write some posts about my favorites in various categories, and pretend I'm on the show. Today is: comfort foods.
Nothing beats a dish we call Jenocide's Favorite. It's her childhood favorite (see nickname tab if you don't remember who she is) and she and her mother have made it for me when I've had babies, or surgeries, or just been sick. It warms my stomach and my heart.
It's a simple dish. Layer of mashed potatoes, layer of hamburger gravy, corn on top. It's super easy to make, and I can have dinner on the table in under ½ an hour. Or like today, breakfast in 2 microwave minutes!
Jenocide's Favorite (also known around here as Tina's Favorite)
½ onion, chopped
1 pound of hamburger
1 packet Betty Crocker Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
lots of salt and pepper
Kitchen Bouquet Browning and Seasoning Sauce (the secret)
corn, either frozen or canned.
Chop onions and brown with hamburger, and seasonings -being generous with all the spices. Once hamburger is cooked, adjust seasonings. You will need a lot more salt than you think.
Toss in enough flour to coat meat, then add about a cup of water per pound of hamburger. (Now that I have large teenage boys, I make this with 2 pounds hamburger.) Let gravy come to a boil. Add a teaspoon or two, according to taste, of the Kitchen Bouquet. Keep adjusting seasonings.
Cook corn in microwave and mashed potatoes according to box directions while gravy is simmering.
Let people serve themselves in the proportions they prefer. If you've got OYT, then your left-overs will be short on mashed potatoes, as you can see in my bowl. That's OK, I don't do so well with lots of carbs.
It's just so deliciously simple, yet the flavor of rosemary comes through as a nice surprise, and the Kitchen Bouquet adds that “It's been on the stove all day” depth to it. Try it for dinner sometime soon. You'll be comforted.
P.S So what's this Kitchen Bouquet thing? It's a little bottle found on the bottom shelf of the store, under the display of all the dry packs of seasoning mixes.
You know, taco seasoning, brown gravy mix, fajita seasoning, chili seasoning. Those packets you dump in your food with all the MSG and flavor crystals and make it taste so yummy without you having to have a rack of spices like some folks do...