Comfort Foods to Spark the Ultimate Food Coma

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By Cooking Panda

Authentic Canadian Poutine

Cheese curds, fries and gravy – oh my!  Throw on your Canadian tuxedo and whip this up. 

 

Ingredients for Poutine Gravy

  • 3 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 20 oz beef broth
  • 10 oz chicken broth
  • Pepper, to taste

Ingredients for Deep Fried Fries

  • 2 lbs Russet potatoes (3-4 medium potatoes)
  • Peanut or other frying oil


Toppings

  • 1 – 1½ cups white cheddar cheese curds (or torn chunks of mozzarella cheese would be the closest substitution)

 

Directions

  1. Prepare the gravy: In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in the water and set aside.  
  2. In a large saucepan, melt the butter.  Add the flour and cook, stirring regularly, for about 5 minutes, until the mixture turns golden brown.
  3. Add the beef broth and chicken broth and bring to a boil, stirring with a whisk.  Stir in the cornstarch and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Season with pepper.  Taste and add additional salt, if necessary, to taste. Make ahead and re-warm or keep warm until your fries are ready.
  4. For Deep-Fried Fries: Prepare your potatoes and cut into ½-inch thick sticks.  Place into a large bowl and cover completely with cold water. Allow to stand at least one hour or several hours.  When ready to cook, heat your oil in your deep fryer or large, wide, heavy cooking pot to 300F. 
  5. Remove the potatoes from the water and place onto paper towel.  Bot to remove as much excess moisture as possible.
  6. Add your fries to the 300F oil and cook for 5-8 minutes, just until potatoes are starting to cook but are not yet browned.  Remove potatoes from oil and scatter on a wire rack. Increase oil temperature to 375F. Once oil is heated to that temperature, return the potatoes to the fryer and cook until potatoes are golden brown.  Remove to a paper towel-lined bowl.
  7. To Prepare Poutine: Add your fried or baked fries to a large, clean bowl.  Season lightly with salt while still warm. Add a ladle of hot poutine gravy to the bowl and using tongs, toss the fries in the gravy.  Add more gravy, as needed to mostly coat the fries.
  8. Add the cheese curds and toss the hot fries and gravy.  Serve with freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately.

Inspired by Seasons and Suppers.

 

Hot Cheeto Fries

Yes, you read that right.  It’s a true culinary miracle.

Ingredients

  • Canola oil, to fry
  • 1 lb flank steak
  • 1 teaspoon taco seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice, divided
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 2 avocados
  • 1 bag frozen french fries
  • ¼ cup mexican sour cream
  • 1 8 oz flaming hot cheetos, 1 bag

 

Directions

  1. Cut flank steak into fajita size pieces and place in bowl.  Add the taco seasoning, 1 teaspoon lime juice and salt. Let marinate for 30 minutes.  
  2. Scoop avocado with a spoon and place in a bowl.  Add 1 teaspoon lime juice, salt and mash with a until soft enough to whisk. 
  3. In a frying pan, add 1 tablespoon of canola oil and let heat for 30 seconds.  Add the marinated meat and let cook for 20 minutes, stirring until meat is browned. 
  4. In a small saucepan heat condensed cheddar cheese for 3 minutes, stir throughout.
  5. Heat a pot with oil and heat to 350F.  Add frozen french fries and let fry until they rise to the surface.  Sprinkle with salt and let oil drain from fries and set on a plate.  
  6. Add the rest of the guacamole, cooked meat, sour cream, hot cheetos and warm cheddar cheese. 
  7. Enjoy!

 

Inspired by Tasty.

 

Loaded Mac and Cheese Quesadillas

Highly recommended to block off your schedule for a day or two after devouring this bad boy.

Ingredients

  • 1 box Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, made to box directions
  • 4 Oscar Mayer Wieners
  • 8 slices Oscar Mayer Bacon
  • 8 Kraft American Cheese Singles
  • 2 flour tortillas
  • Heinz Ketchup for dipping

 

Directions

  1. Make Kraft Macaroni & Cheeseaccordingto box directions.
  2. Cook bacon slices.
  3. Warm up hot dogs, either pan cook them or grill them (you can even microwave them!)
  4. Preheat a lightly greased medium skillet over medium heat. 
  5. Lay down a slice of Kraft American Cheese torn into pieces.
  6. Next add about ½ cup of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese to the tortilla, evenly spreading it around.
  7. Next add 2 slices of bacon and a hog dog sliced into rounds.
  8. Top with another slice of cheese torn into pieces. 
  9. Top with another tortilla and lightly spray that with cooking spray or butter.
  10. Flip when first side is brown.
  11. Once second side is brown, remove from pan and slice into quarters.
  12. Serve with Heinz Ketchup for dipping.

 

Inspired by Life With the Crust Cut Off.

 

French Onion Soup

Cheese, bread and a hearty broth – what else could you possibly need in life

 

Ingredients

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 pounds Vidalia onions (about 4 medium), halved lengthwise, peeled, and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1½ cups dry white wine
  • 6 cups homemade beef broth or store-bought low-sodium beef broth
  • 10 sprigs thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 baguette
  • 1 garlic clove, cut in half lengthwise
  • 2 teaspoons sherry, preferably Fino or Manzanilla
  • 4 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated (about 1 cup)

 

Special Equipment

  • Kitchen twine, six 8-ounce or four 16-ounce oven-safe ramekins or bowls (optional)

 

Directions

  1. In a large Dutch oven or other large pot, melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat.  Add the oil and onions; cook onions are [sic] until softened, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.  Add the salt, pepper, and sugar; continue to cook, stirring occasionally, untilonions are deep golden brown and caramelized, reducing heat slightly if onions seem to be browning too quickly, 35 to 45 minutes more. 
  2. Add wine and raise heat to high.  Cook until almost all liquid has evaporated, 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Tie thyme and bay leaves into a bundle with twine.  Add broth and herb bundle to pot with onions. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, uncovered, until broth is thickened and flavorful, 20 to 30 minutes.  Remove from heat and whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  4. Heat the broiler.  Cut two ½-inch baguette slices for every serving of soup.  Place baguette slices on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in oven until crisp and dry but not browned, about 1 minute per side.  Rub one side of each toast with the garlic clove and set aside.
  5. Place ramekins or ovensafe bowls on a rimmed baking sheet, add ½ teaspoon sherry to the bottom of each, and ladle soup on top.  Top each serving of soup with two garlic-rubbed toasts. Divide cheese among the servings, covering the bread and some of the soup.  Carefully transfer baking sheet to oven and broil until cheese is melted and bubbling, about 4 to 8 minutes. (alternatively, i using regular soup bowls: Top each garlic-rubbed toast with some cheese and return to broiler to melt, about 2 minutes more.  Divide sherry and soup among bowls, sprinkle with remaining cheese, and top each serving with two cheese toasts.)

 

Do ahead:

Soup can be made up to 3 days ahead (without toasts or cheese) if refrigerated, or up to 6 months ahead if frozen.  Toasts can be made (without cheese) and kept sealed at room temperature for up to 3 days.

 

Inspired by Epicurious

 

The Best Classic Chicken Pot Pie

Creamy, flaky heaven for the palate. 

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast – cut into small bite size pieces
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • ½ cup sliced celery
  • ½ cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1¼ teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 (1 top and 1 bottom) unbaked pie crusts (could use pre-made refrigerated – 1 box)

 

Directions

  1. Make sure there is an oven rack on the bottom rack of the oven. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Add the butter to a large skillet over medium heat. Once the butter is melted, add the chicken, carrots, celery, onion, salt, garlic powder, thyme leaves, and pepper. Cook for 8-10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through, stirring often.
  3. Add the flour. Stir well, until no dry flour remains. Slowly stir in the cream, then the chicken broth. Cook until bubbling and thick, stirring often, 3-4 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat. Stir in the peas and flat leaf parsley. Let this cool for 15-30 minutes before filling the pie.*
  5. Fit one pie crust into a 9-inch pie plate. Spoon the cooled filling into the pie crust. Top with the second pie crust. Seal the edges of the pie crust together. Cut 3-4 slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape.
  6. Place the filled pie plate on a baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes on the bottom rack of the oven.
  7. Cool for 15-30 minutes before slicing and serving.**

Notes

  • Pouring hot filling into the unbaked pie crust will make the crust soggy.  You could make the filling up to 3 days ahead of time and store it in a sealed container in the refrigerator. 
  • The longer the hot pie can cool before slicing, the thicker/less runny the filling will be.

 

Inspired by The Wholesome Dish.

 

Ultimate Gourmet Grilled Cheese

While the original bread and cheddar cheese combo will always be near and dear to our hearts, this amped up recipe changes the game.  It’s a true gooey grilled sandwich sensation.

Ingredients

  • 8 slices good quality bread, I used thick cut Artisan bread
  • Mayonnaise, for spreading
  • 12 oz Gruyere cheese, sliced thinly or grated, at room temperature
  • 6 oz White cheddar cheese, sliced thinly OR grated, at room temperature
  • 4 slices thin Muenster cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 yellow onions, diced
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme, minced
  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary, minced, divided
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 Tbsp butter, divided
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

 

Directions

  1. Add 1½ Tbsp butter and olive oil to a skillet and heat over MED-LOW heat.  Ad diced onions, salt, pepper, fresh thyme and 1 tsp of fresh rosemary to the hot skillet and saute, stirring often, until onions are soft and starting to brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. Stir brown sugar into the onions and cook another minute.
  3. Transfer onions to a plate.
  4. Spread one side of two pieces of bread with a little it of mayonnaise.
  5. To the same skillet, add remaining butter and rosemary, and heat over MED heat.  Swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet with the melted butter. 
  6. Add both pieces of bread, mayonnaise side down, and cook until bread is golden brown and crunchy, about 2 – 3 minutes.
  7. As soon as you add the bread to the skillet, adda bit of cheese to the top of each piece of bread.  Once it starts to melt a little, sprinkle a couple tablespoons of the caramelized onions over the top of one of the pieces of bread.
  8. When the bread is good and golden brown, sandwich the pieces of bread together and cookon LOW until cheese is fully melted.
  9. Transfer to a plate, repeat with remaining slices of bread and ingredients. 
  10. Slice and enjoy!

 

Inspired by The Chunky Chef.

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