Way back in 2003, scientific findings linked the body’s stress-response system to cravings for high-energy foods—many of which we think of as comfort foods. It should be no surprise then that comfort food is the most common theme for the latest surge in potluck gatherings.
While images of barn raisings and block parties come to mind, so does community, friends and family all supporting each other in these challenging times. As we watch our expenses and look for moral support, we’re sharing meals in similar fashion. What better way to console, raise spirits, network—and share costs and prep-time—than lingering over traditional favorites such as mac and cheese, hot dogs and baked beans and homemade chocolate chip cookies.
Today’s comfort foods are anything but bland—it’s all about spicing up basic ingredients and the presentation! How about seasonal corn chowder in silo mugs, marinated beef stew in sleek modern bowls, and organic apple pie a la mode on zoid plates?
Let your imagination run outside the cookbook. We believe easy, inexpensive and tasty recipes are out there. For a quick search, check out the Top 25 American Comfort Foods and Recipes, at Home Cooking on about.com and share yours with us. Who knows, maybe you’ll see it in a future catalog?