During this time of uncertainty, one excellent way to cope is to turn to comfort food recipes. In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, many of us are relying on home-cooked meals to take the place of our regular quota of takeout food. But, if you’re tired of making your regular rotation of dishes, why not branch out and explore what other countries around the world consider to be comfort food?
From frikandel (fried sausage) and omurice (omelette with rice), these delicious comfort foods from around the world are sure to make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. Sometimes a dish just knows how to convey so much more than words ever could. Here are 14 comfort food recipes you can try tonight.
Also read: Easy dessert recipes from around the world
Here Are 14 Easy Comfort Food Recipes From Around The World
Russia: Blini (Pancakes)
Blini are small Russian pancakes, usually made of wheat or buckwheat flour. They’re traditionally served with butter, sour cream or fruit jam, though you can mix it up a bit and opt for some savoury ingredients like caviar or smoked salmon (or chicken and mushroom if you’re on a budget). Find the recipe here.
Serbia: Prebranac (Baked Beans)
A popular comfort food in the Balkans, prebranac (also known as pasulj or grah), is a baked-bean soup made of white beans or pinto beans. You can also add smoked bacon, sausage or Han to make it a more hearty meal. See how to make it here.
Czech Republic: Smažený Sýr (Fried Cheese)
Smažený sýr—meaning “fried cheese”—is a Czech cheese-based dish that is widely consumed as a comfort food. A thick slice of Gruyère or Edam is breaded with flour, egg, and bread crumbs, deep-fried and then served with tartar sauce and a side salad. It’s also a common street food in the Czech Republic and in Slovakia. Get the recipe here.
Denmark: Biksemad (Hash)
Biksemad (which is also called pyttipanna in Norway and Sweden) is a simple hash of meat and veggies that lets you use up all your leftovers. It usually includes pork or sausages, onions, carrots, and potatoes, and is often topped with an egg. See how to make this easy recipe yourself here.
Netherlands: Frikandel (Fried Sausage)
This traditional Dutch snack originated from the “Low Countries” (Netherlands, Belgium, and the north of France) and includes a fried, skinless sausage served with mayonnaise or ketchup. The sausage can also cut like a hot dog bun and stuffed with chopped onions. You can make it here.
Germany: Käsespätzle (Cheese Noodles)
Literally translating to “spätzle with cheese”, this German comfort food is incredibly similar to mac ‘n’ cheese. It consists of spätzle (or egg noodles) layered with grated cheese and finally topped with fried onions of sauerkraut. Check out the comfort food recipe here.
Italy: Minestrone (Vegetable Soup)
A hearty Italian soup that’s made with vegetables and pasta, and garnished with tons of Parmigiano-Reggiano. It’s filling enough to have as a main course and can be everything from vegan to full of meat. There’s no set recipe, as you’re supposed to tailor the ingredients to your taste, but you can find out how to make it here.
Nigeria: Puff-Puff (Deep-Fried Dough)
This Nigerian snack consists of pillowy and chewy, deep-fried dough that is deep-fried until golden brown. They can be topped with powdered sugar (like French beignets), or rolled in other spices/flavouring such as cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg. They’re often served with fruit dips and coffee. Find out how to make this easy comfort food here.
Iran: Tahdig (Scorched Rice)
Rice can sometimes be a little bland, so it can do with a bit of texture. Tahdig does exactly that. Literally meaning “bottom of the pot”, this dish consists of crisp, caramelized rice taken from the bottom of the pot. The rice is often cooked with saffron and turmeric and made crispy using a special steaming technique (which you can mimic using a kitchen towel). Find out how to make it here.
Sri Lanka: Kottu Roti (Shredded Flatbread)
Kottu roti (which means “chopped roti”) is a delicious Sri Lankan comfort food made with roti (or chewy flatbread) that’s chopped up and cooked with spices, vegetables, egg and sometimes meat. It’s pretty impossible not to fall in love with this delicious dish. See the recipe here.
Taiwan: Lu Rou Fan (Braised Pork Rice)
This rice dish is a comfort food recipe commonly seen throughout Taiwan. It’s made with ground pork marinated and boiled in soy sauce served on top of a bed of steamed rice. It’s the perfect mix of umami flavours from the pork and starchy carbs from the rice. Serve it with vegetables to make a complete meal, and check out the recipe here.
Japan: Omurice (Omelette with Rice)
This western-influenced Japanese dish consists of an omelette that’s filled with tomato-flavoured fried rice and thin, fried scrambled eggs, and usually topped with ketchup. It originated around the turn of the 20th century and has since become a favourite with children and families. See how to make it here.
Canada: Poutine (Topped Fries)
Originating in the Canadian province of Quebec in the 1950s, this iconic dish is made with french fries and cheese curds topped with brown gravy. There are tons of variations which add toppings such as sausage, chicken, bacon, brisket, or smoked meat to the fries and gravy. See how to make this easy food recipe here.
US: Grilled Cheese
The Americans have figured out what is probably the ultimate comfort food. Grilled cheese sandwiches are made with two pieces of bread and a layer of gooey cheese, grilled on a pan with butter until crispy. There are tons of variations to play around with, but the plain version is a classic for a reason. See the recipe here.
So, What Comfort Food Are You Planning To Try?
Of course, there are tons of other comfort foods from around the globe, such as French onion soup, shakshuka from Morocco, and pierogies from Poland. But whatever you choose, these international comfort foods are sure to do what comfort food is meant to do – cheer you up, keep you warm on cold winter days, and remind us of wonderfully simpler times. Let us know in the comments which of these food recipes you’ve tried.