Comfort foods- Recipes that are prepared easily

  • Today 04-05- 2018 Melbourne received its first dose of winter . I had my Flu shot Tuesday afternoon . It tends to put me off my food for a few days but otherwise I have no problems or side effects .About 2 pm , even though I had a light lunch , I started to feel hungry again . /

  • I’m not sure of the definition of comfort food versus fast food. I class it as an easy dish you prepare yourself whereas fast food is more take away ./

  • I decided to make an easy Scottish dish my grand mother had taught me called Scottish Tatties or just Tatties ./

  • This is for one to two people ./

  • Take 3 potatoes peel and boil them to mashing consistency /

  • Place them in a bowl after draining water off them and give a light mash . /

  • Add plain flour to thicken the mixture as well as a good nob of butter (room temp ). I sometimes use olive oil margarine . Incorporate ingredients to the consistency you want ./

  • Heat up a pan or skillet to a medium temp and add a light coat of oil to it . I use canola but use what you are confident with ./

  • The consistency of the mixture should be somewhere between scone and pancake .Add water if mixture is too stiff . I differ from my grand mother in as much as adding finely chopped spring onions to the mixture , a touch of garam masala and a dash of cracked black pepper corns ./

  • Ladle mixture onto the preheated skillet and use the back of the ladle to spread mixture to your desired thickness . About 2 -3 minutes either side and they are ready to eat /

  • A light dash of garlic salt and you are ready to go . /

  • Well that’s what I like to prepare to beat the hunger pangs . What is a dish you seem to make in similar circumstances? If it is a packaged store brought mix feel free to add it to the post .


Sounds wonderful. Comfort food doesn’t have to be bad :slight_smile: it might be ‘special’ and have ingredients that are not eaten every day, but thats OK … A comfort food I like is spinach and fetta pie. High-ish in salt I know … another favourite of mine is spag bol - I make it from scratch and include lots of mushies and zucchini and capsicum … a great way to get vegies into the kids and who doesn’t love Parmesan cheese !! I cook it in a pressure cooker, I actually over-cook it so the meat/vegie sauce is completely infused. Never get a complaint, and theres always heaps to ‘bank’ in the freezer.

The ultimate comfort food for me is Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte. Cooked from scratch, made to a recipe passed down in the family, made with the proper ingredients from the region, made by someone from the region, my lovely partner - it takes all day, and bears no resemblance to the kind of ‘mere cake’ passed off here under the ‘dirty anglicised name’ we Aussies give it - it is eaten with true reverence!


Sounds good to me mate . I bet it tastes good too .:grin:


Not a healthy suggestion! ALL carb + Canola oil ( not poly unsat, but more or less ok) - and a dose of salt I bet. Minimal vitamins, NO fibre. Obesity here I come!

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Potatoes do have fibre, whether peeled or not. Most of the soluble fibre is in the flesh of the potato. The insoluble comes from the skin.

Soluble fibre is what binds up LDL cholesterol in the gut to stop it being adsorbed.

Potatoes as food eaten in moderation are a healthy choice, particularly when mashed, steamed or nuked. Of course it is better eaten with the skin but without is just fine too.

Poly unsaturated oils (PUO) are quite high in Canola Oil (roughly 28%), but the health benefits of PUOs is nowadays being questioned as it is a type of oil we as humans don’t deal well with in terms of making it human body friendly. For comparison Olive Oil is about 10% PUO.

Mono Unsaturated fats tend to be better harnessed by the human body and again Canola Oil is pretty high in them (about 63%) including a lot of the one found in Olive Oil (Oleic Acid) at about 61% (Olive Oil is about 73%).

Canola Oil also has reasonable levels of Omega 6 (Linoleic Acid about 21%) & 3 (Alpha-Linoleic Acid about 11%) oils and has small amounts of Vit. E & K.

So as described by @vax2000 the product/food he makes seems quite good and tasty eaten in moderation.


you might want to read this:



I like the way you put the “selfie” down the bottom . Did you enjoy the cake ?:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


See no. 10

Perfect on a cold winter’s night. It is however difficult to get duck or pigs blood in Australia…one needs to know a very good Asian butcher. Can add quail eggs, dumplings (jiaozi), any green veges etc as well. A dash of Chinkiang vinegar also never does astray.


Our Comfort Food is a hearty meat & veg soup. No set recipe. Start with chopped up beef (husband does not like lamb, pork etc, but feel free to substitute), sometimes I coat with flour and fry first, or just put in the stockpot raw. Add chopped onion, then any vegies to hand - hard veg first - cabbage, pumpkin, potato, carrot etc. Cover with water and put on to simmer (turn down as low as possible to get slight movement, not roiling boil).

Once at the boil, add lentils, brown rice, dried beans (what ever you have). Leave simmering for 3+ hours. Then add the ‘soft’ or easily discoloured veg, green beens, zucchini, peas etc. You can bulk it out with noodles or pasta. The result is a very tender meat with a great taste and smell. I don’t need to flavour it with stock or salt.

I have surprised myself with the things I can put in - husband suggested cooking our surplus lettuce, which worked out well. I have tossed in bones we have cut out of other cuts of meat (the marrow thickens & flavours and the last sheds of meat fall off), the scrapings/wash out from jars, out of date Cup-a-soup, stems of broccoli, cauliflower leaves, fruit, dried up pastry (freezer burn, then baked and not liked). The result is always an appetising smell all afternoon and a watery, steaming hot, satisfying soup. Usually with home made wholemeal bread. The stockpot is 28 litres, we farm (so work from home & can keep going back to check), freeze in 4litre ice cream containers (sometimes I thicken it and make a pie). Meat is the most expensive part, the rest is mostly out of the garden or farm.


Wow that sounds really great . A real minestrone type dish . A bit of this a bit of that it all turns out fantastic . Thanks for sharing that with us .


I love it - same with my spag bol - kids have no idea how many vegies are in there, its different every time and a great way to use up vegies that are still ok but a little on the old side - sometimes they even seem more flavoursome that way … I can never remember exactly what went in, the only exeptiomns I had were corn and beetroot, while they taste great, they aren’t spag bol compliant, too obvious and too colourful respectively - but still tasted great.

The only problem I have now is a hankering for a good beefy vegie soup - but thats a good thing :slight_smile:


I know the feeling and I’m usually a vegetarian . I feel like a disgrace to the cause .:fearful:


Rangeland grazed cows are vegetarian, so one could argue that eating beef from such cows is actually eating processed vegetarian products.


I think this definition is closer to what I thought comfort food was. My immediate response is tea and toast. But if I think about that a little further, and consider the initial ‘condition’ of the post-flu shot, I think comfort food is that which my mother gave me when I was sick, that I then gave my children when they could keep nothing else down, that my step-mother added to the family repertoire. Something with a bit of salt and a bit of sugar - tea and toast from my mother and from my step-mother, rice porridge. Asians give their babies porridge made from over-cooked rice. It is boiled until it splits and turns on itself, which takes a long time (2 hrs?). When sick, add sugar, honey or stock powder, depending on what you crave.
Sorry, no recipe to madly copy and paste. Just simple food that makes you feel like you’re home.


Winter has really set in this week . Not too bad in Melbourne but will get worse no doubt . Anyway Wednesday afternoon 16-05-2018 the hunger games started to play in my stomach again . /

Checked what I had in the larder . Potatoes , some red and green capsicums . , onions and some garlic cloves . .

What you will need . A skillet or frying pan , you know what they are . A large mixing bowl . I used a 7.5 litre Chef Inox stainless steel . I always prepare this snack in a raw cast iron 30cm low walled Dutch oven with lid . Very heavy . I made a special rack to take the weight in my wall oven . A Westinghouse Gas fan forced . For safety sake I will describe how to prepare this dish on a baking tray . I think you all know what they are too . /

Down to business . I use 5 medium sized potatoes . /

Cut the potatoes into cubes , as square as you can get them , bigger than bite size but not that big that they will take forever and a day to brown . /

Toss them into the bowl and give the a liberal hit of Extra Virgin olive oil . Between 1/3 and 1/2 cup is good . You got to get down and dirty . Get your hands in there . It’s fun . /

Ok , now think of your favourite herbs spices or what ever . I added a teaspoon of dried Chives . A dash of Masterfoods All purpose seasoning to the potato chunks in the bowl. I like that coz it hasn’t got a panel of numbers on it . I like eating food not numbers . All ingredients I use I check for preservatives etc . I got so many allergies I get a break out walking down the aisle of the local supermarket . As I said I eat food not numbers . Go easy on the spices . Remember you can always add them later if you need to liven things up a bit . /

I like pepper so I give the potatoes in the bowl a good hit of it . MIx it all together . Use a spoon , your hands , whatever . /

Take baking tray and add the potato cubes onto it after giving it a bit of a slosh of EVOO . Start to preheat your oven ./

Cut up an onion . I used 2 small whites . I medium red or white will do too . Your choice there . I used what I had on hand . Cut the capsicums into strips and mince or finely chop a couple of garlic cloves . Heat up your skillet or frying pan to low medium heat .Most people saute in butter , 2 knobs I think , I had none so used EVOO. Add the capsicums , onions and garlic to the skillet and cook to the capsicums start to soften .Stir it a bit if needed ./

Ok . Pour the contents of the skillet over the chunks of potato you have placed on the baking tray . Give it another hit of EVOO before you put baking tray in the oven . I usually cook at around 150-180C as shown by my heat probe thingy . Turn the potatoes as you see fit during the cook . You should know how to do that . I use stainless steel tongs . /

When the potatoes are nice and brown take out the tray and serve up . I grate Bega low fat tasty cheese on mine as a garnish . Others use Parmesan . /

It sounds complicated but it is so easy and also very tasty . Fresh oven baked bread dipped in good EVOO goes down a treat too with it . Enjoy

  • Another dish that I prepare regularlty and is quite tasty is /

  • Roasted Curried Cauliflower Florets /

  • For this you will need a rimmed baking tray . I use a 36 x 26 cm tray .

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil . I use Cobram Estate but use what you prefer .

  • Cummin and Mustard seeds

  • Cooking salt

  • A 1 KG Cauliflower or there abouts

  • Curry powder .

  • A mixing bowl

  • pre heat the oven to 170C .

  • Into the mixing bowl add 1 1/2 Table spoons of the Olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon of Mustard seeds

  • 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds

  • 3/4 teaspoon of cooking salt

  • 3/4 Teaspoon of curry powder

  • Stir the ingredients well together .

  • Spray the baking tray with either olive oil or Canola baking spray .

  • Add the cauliflower florets into the bowl and give them a light toss to make sure they are coated well with the mixture.

  • Place them evenly on the try and bake in the oven for around 30 minutes . When the bottoms start to brown press a fork into the top of the floret . If soft they are cooked .

Enjoy .

My mother passed that recipe onto me years ago . I think it is in a cook book she had purchased in the 90’s . I think was a Martha Stewart Book , not sure .

Also I use the American definition of comfort food . . Things like Glocamolly-Glocamollie and corn chips eaten whilst watching the NFL is comfort food . Not the chicken and beef broth we would eat when sick which to them is comforting food . I had all American teachers in my High School years so the influence of them and their differences to our Australian ways still remains with me even to this day .



O yum!

I would extend that to say that most cakes made here in Australia bear no more than a passing resemblance to real European cakes/Torte/Torta…


Another favourite comfort food of mine which is very easy to prepare is

Sweet potato hash browns

  • For this recipe you will need a grater baking tray, cooking oil , your choice , I use Canola , butter , salt and black pepper , mixing bowl .

  • I usually use 2 medium size sweet potatoes but that will depend on number of people you are preparing for /

  • Line the baking tray with a double thickness of paper towel and put aside .

  • Coarsely grate the sweet potatoes and add to the mixing bowl . Season with salt and pepper and mix well .

  • Divide the mixture into equal portions and shape each portion into a round patty . Roughly 1 cm thick .

  • Heat up your cooking oil in a skillet or fry pan and add 1/2 table spoon of butter .

  • Place 3 to 4 patties in the skillet , I use a 26 cm , and cook on medium heat for around 5 minutes . You can use egg rings if you have trouble with the patties holding together . Flip them over and cook for a further 5 minutes or till crisp .

  • When cooked transfer to the lined baking tray to drain of any excess cooking oil. Reheat the rest of the oil and butter in the skillet and add the remaining patties till cooked .

You can add other spices at the mixing stage . One of my friend adds paprika and a dash of chilli powder . Another adds finely chopped bacon or ham . It is really up to you .

Enjoy .


Punjabi Potato Patties

A favourite of mine and easy to prepare .

Ingredients .

  • 500 g of potatoes diced

  • Salt

  • 1 onion coarsely grated

  • 1/4 teaspoon chilli powder

  • 1 Teaspoon of Garam Masala

  • 2 teaspoons of lemon juice

  • 3 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves

  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil , use canola or evoo or your favorite for cooking

  • 3 teaspoons of butter .

Cooking method :

Put potatoes in pan cover with water , salt , ,put lid on pan and bring to boil . Simmer gently for around 10 minutes . Don’t over cook potatoes.

Put grated onion on a double thickness of paper towel and squeeze out any moisture . Then put onion in a bowl . Add Garam Masala , chilli powder , lemon juice and chopped coriander and a pinch of salt .

Drain potatoes , add to the onion mixture and mash roughly. Shape into 6-8 patties about 5 cm wide .

Heat oil and butter in a large frying pan until sizzling. Fry patties for 2 - 3 minutes each side until crisp and golden .

Drain the patties on a paper towel and serve .



Ok that one made me salivate, I might replace the coriander with using spring onions chopped instead. I will not meddle with that ingredient until the first batch has been taste tested :slight_smile: I will however be replacing the butter and oil with Ghee from the onset :slight_smile:

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