Comfort food, and more freakin’ snow

March 4, 2015

Because sometimes you feel like meat and two.

Because sometimes you feel like meat and two.

I do not like winter, with the bare exception of the fact that it causes me to want to stay in the kitchen ad cook, which is its one redeeming factor.

I have gotten to enjoy that the last couple of winters. Enough of a good thing, already.

Except it isn’t, apparently, as it’s supposed to start sleeting just any moment, and then turn to snow later tonight, and snow all freakin’ night. And then be cold for the next two or three days, which, given that our snow removal equipment in this part of the world consists of a box of ice cream salt and a windshield scraper, means we are housebound.

So I’m going to be cooking.

The above is typical of the comfort food meals for which winter calls. T’other night, it was cold and nasty, albeit one could get out and about, which I did, which resulted in me being damned cold, which meant I wanted something that would warm me from the inside out.  I wanted comfort food.

The result? Meat loaf, a baked sweet potato (and yes, that’s an unhealthy amount of butter on it) and edamame succotash.

I could have sworn I had lima beans in the freezer. I still think they’re there, and I just can’t find them. But I did find shelled edamame,which make for a quite interesting take on succotash. They add a nutty quality that limas lack, and they have the added bonus of lending a good portion of protein to a vegetarian dish.

To make succotash, take a pint of frozen corn (I used some I froze last winter); and add a 16-ounce bag of frozen limas or shelled edamame. Put them in a saucepan with a half-stick of butter, and add enough water or chicken broth to give it enough liquid to cook (say 1/2 cup or so). Bring it to a boil, then turn it down to low and salt it to taste. Simmer it for 20 minutes, or until beans are nice and done.

Simple, but good. Do not skimp on the butter. This is what makes this dish. And don’t go trying to add stuff, unless it’s summer and you have fresh tarragon, which adds immensely to anything with corn OR limas, let alone both.

The meat loaf was my basic one. Not sure why it crumbled; didn’t hurt the taste, nor did it harm its efficacy in a meat loaf sandwich the next day.

The sweet potato? Bake the sweet potato. Cut it open and add a copious quantity of butter. It’s cold outside. Your inner paleo person needs fat to help you survive. Trust me on this.

In the interest of being prepared for a cooking binge, should we get the predicted half a foot of snow — which I doubt — I am prepared. I have milk and eggs, and plenty of flour and sugar, so I can bake whatever I take a notion to bake. I have frozen tamales from my trip to Newport last weekend; I stocked up on canned tomatoes, since I have used all mine I canned from last summer (boo, hiss), so I can make the chili to go with them. I’m planning on making pimiento cheese, and I have the makings for vegetable soup. And I have the makings for chicken and dressing, as well as a can of cranberry sauce to go with it. We will not starve. Provided I can gather up the energy to get up off my posterior and cook, which I do not have to do tonight, because I brought home chicken and dumplings from my friend Andrea’s restaurant yesterday to have for dinner last night, except I was so exhausted I skipped dinner, so that’s tonight. So I’m thinking C&D tonight, veggie soup and pimiento cheese on homemade bread tomorrow, chicken and dressing on Friday. Sounds like a plan to me.

What do you ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em like to cook when it’s cold?




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