Comfort food – it means something different to everyone. It can be something that evokes warm memories of family time, the staple you look for in the cupboard after a long day, or just the meal you know will always deliver.
Here at Oklahoman, our staff come from quite diverse backgrounds and educations. So what do journalists, columnists, editors and other staff crave when it comes to comfort food? We asked and they shared their answers, along with some recipes.
What does comfort food say?
Jana Hayes, City Reporter: “My favorite comfort food would have to be my grandma’s – some call her Juanita, to others she’s Mawmaw or Mawmaw Nee – cookies and gravy. Every time I spent the night at her house, it did she prepare me for breakfast with sausage, eggs and toast with all the toppings we could possibly like.
“It’s really a simple recipe, and can be adjusted to your own tastes and cravings. Sometimes she will add chunks of sausage, but she knows I prefer to have my sausage patties separate and dip them in my sauce.”
Don Mecoy, Editor and David Dishman, Economics Editor: A jar of beans. Specifically, for Mecoy, beans and cornbread with a side of greens and a splash of vinegar.
Berry Tramel, sports columnist: “When I was a kid, my mom made two kinds of pies that we loved, egg custard and Tramel pie. Tramel pie was a concoction she made, a kind of graham cracker/nut mix. pecan, with real whipped cream on top. She didn’t have “I don’t make this often. The truth is, only my brothers and I liked Tramel Pie. No one else was too mad about it, which was fine, more for us.
“I always wondered what would happen to Tramel Pie after my mum left. She passed away in 2014 and my niece stepped in. She started making Tramel Pies whenever we got together on vacation. This Thanksgiving, we weren’t having dinner together, but she knocked on my door at 10 a.m. and got me a Tramel pie for the afternoon. I don’t know if it’s as good as my mom’s. mother, but I also know that I don’t care if I don’t.
“My mother has been gone for eight and a half years, but Tramel Pie still fills our stomachs and warms our hearts.”
Darla Lindauer, Data Team Leader: “Nacho chips and cheese. I eat some kind of chips and cheese almost every day, even if it’s just a few bites.
“When I was a kid, I had a traumatic experience that kept me in children’s hospital for a long time. I had fries and cheese at the cafe, and that was a comfort to me. I still remember how it tasted 38 years later and spent that time trying to match the taste.”
Yesenia Jimenez, Community Engagement Specialist: Fettuccini Alfredo.
Hallie Hart, high school sports reporter: “I honestly don’t even know for sure if there’s a set recipe for what I would consider my comfort food. It’s my grandma’s chocolate chip cookies and I honestly think she just looks at the ingredients instead of measuring, which is why you can’t make them exactly the way she does.”
Josh Dulaney, Reporter: “A big bowl of cereal, probably something like Raisin Bran.”
Cheyenne Derksen, Editor-in-Chief: “Every culture has a form of stuffed dumpling, and verenika with ham sauce is ours. Growing up, my church (Mennonite Brethren) served a heritage meal once a year, and all the grandmothers worked together to do all the verenikas to serve the crowd.
“At Christmas, Grandma Carolee would make it again for the small crowd of my immediate family. She and Grandpa would always talk about how our ancestors traveled by ship from Prussia in the 1860s to the Midwest, and the verenika was a recipe they brought with them. She didn’t speak English until she had to learn it at school as a child, so she always kept this heritage recipe close at hand and is sure to pass it on to our grandchildren.
“It’s a comfort food for me because it meets the universal criteria – bread, cheese, sauce – but it’s also comforting for me in that it reminds me to keep those close ties to family.
“My mother is not as enthusiastic as her mother-in-law when it comes to cooking for a crowd. At Christmas, my mother serves French toast that she made the night before and has just put on the table. oven closer to breakfast. The bread can take its time to absorb the custard, and what’s left at the bottom of the pan creates a sweet caramel, so when you take a slice and turn it over, it’s almost like a creme brulee toast, and we can open the presents right away on Christmas morning.”
Jeff Patterson, sportswriter: Pizza. Patterson even likes to make her own at home with dough from scratch.
Nathan Fish, photographer: “My grandmother’s potato croissants. Nothing more I expect during the holidays, even if I can’t make them very good.”
Clytie Bunyan, Senior Director for Diversity, Community Engagement and Opinion: “Comfort food for me at this time of year is Braum’s eggnog with Barbados Cockspur rum and a slice of rum cake. Make yourself comfortable with that and a book or movie and I’m in Paradise. “
Mamaw Nee Cookies and Gravy
1 box of store-bought cookies (flaky, buttermilk, or whatever you prefer).
Sauce for 4
- 6 tablespoons oil
- 6 tablespoons of flour
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 3 cups of milk*
Cover the bottom of the pan with oil. Let it heat up.
Add the flour. Stir and make a paste, also known as a roux. If it’s too thick, add a little oil. Let brown but do not burn.
Sprinkle salt on top. Add the milk. Bring to a boil and let boil 1 to 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. If you want it thinner, add a little more milk. If it is too runny, cook longer. If you like sausage gravy, you can brown and drain the sausage and add it when done.
* Jana’s great-grandmother Sally, Juanita’s stepmother, didn’t grow up on cold milk, so she used a can of evaporated milk and a can of water instead.
Source: Jana Hayes
French toast overnight
- 1 loaf of French bread
- 8 eggs
- 3 cups of milk
- 4 teaspoons of sugar
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 tablespoon of vanilla
- 2 tablespoons butter (reserved for cooking)
Grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Cut the bread into 1-inch-thick slices and arrange them in a layer on the bottom of the pan.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Add milk, sugar, salt and vanilla. Pour the mixture over the bread. Cover with foil and refrigerate 4 to 6 hours or overnight. To bake, remove foil and sprinkle with butter. Bake at 350 F for 45-50 minutes. Serve with syrup.
Source: Cheyenne Derksen
Verenika with ham sauce
- 3 pounds dry cottage cheese (you can use farmhouse cheese or just drain and dry regular cottage cheese)
- 4 or 5 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon of salt
Mix all the ingredients and set aside the time to make the dough.
- 6 eggs, beaten
- 1 1/2 cup milk
- 1/3 cup Crisco or butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 6 to 9 cups of flour
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
Combine eggs, milk, Crisco, oil and salt.
Mix 1 cup of flour with baking soda, then mix it with the wet mixture. Keep adding flour until the dough forms – you want a soft but semi-rigid dough, similar to pasta dough.
Roll the dough as thin as pie crust. You can use a rolling pin for this or roll by hand. Cut out 4 1/2 inch circles (a mason jar lid works for this). Pour a heaping teaspoon of filling, nearly half a circle, and seal.
Once you have made all the verenika, you can place them on a waxed paper lined cookie sheet without overlapping and freeze them. (Put in plastic bags to store.)
Cook each verenika in boiling water, very slowly and gently for 10 minutes. Gently lift each from the water, drain, then fry in the pan on both sides until golden brown.
If there are small pieces of dough left after cutting out the circles. You can also boil them and treat them like egg noodles.
- 2 cups ham, chopped
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons of flour
- 2 cups of cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
Brown the ham and onions in the pan. Add the flour and mix. Whip the cream. Pour the sauce over the verenika and serve.
Source: Cheyenne Derksen
Grandma Brown’s Potato Croissant Rolls
- 1 1/2 cup warm water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2/3 cup shortening
- 1 cup warm mashed potatoes
- 2 tablespoons of yeast
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 2 eggs
- 7-8 cups flour
- 1/2 cup butter, plus enough to coat the croissants once formed (melted and reserved)
Dissolve yeast and sugar in lukewarm water and let rise.
Incorporate all the other ingredients, adding the flour last. Mix until easy to handle. Cover and let rise for a few hours.
Roll in a large circle. Melt the butter and spread over the ring. Cut into 16 wedges. Roll up and coat with melted butter. Let rise 1h30 to 2h.
Bake at 375 F for 10 minutes.
Source: Nathan Fish
source : https://folobooks.com/
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