The Big Thaw has started, and the time change has brought longer days and sunnier dinnertimes. It seems somehow less rushed to get dinner on the table these days, as the sun isn’t going down at the same time the 5 o’clock news comes on. I feel like cooking brighter dishes, like a sweet and spicy stir-fry and roasted tomato soup with the last of last summer’s roasted tomatoes from the freezer.
But comfort food is still called for during these last days of winter and early spring – a bubbly baked mac & cheese goes over so well when there’s still a chill in the air.
That classic creamy tomato soup and gooey grilled cheese combo is embodied in this bowlful of comfort – the grilled cheese made mini in crunchy bite-sized croutons!
Photo credit: Laura of Sweet Potato Chronicles
As Aimee says, unpredictability is to be expected when you have a family. It’s great to have a few meals you can pull out of your sleeve using staples you generally have in your pantry, fridge and freezer. This is one of those meals. Try adding whatever veggies you have on hand – or whatever you family likes. Broccoli, pea pods, zucchini, carrots, asparagus and red peppers are all perfect.
Photo credit: Aimee of Simple Bites
It’s the ultimate comfort food, right here, baked until it’s bubbly and made into more of a real meal with the addition of jarred tomato sauce and crumbled bacon. Make it ahead, if you like, and pop it in the oven when it’s getting close to dinnertime. Tear open a bagged salad and dinner’s done.
Photo credit: Jaime of Sophistimom
Rustic and charming is still in season, and this long braided pie stuffed with beef, onion, garlic and spices wrapped like a pretty package in golden, flaky pastry is perfect while there’s still a chill in the air. Perfect with frozen peas alongside.
Photo credit: Amy of Family Feedbag
When the weekend rolls around, we tend to be in the mood for something a little more festive, perhaps something nibbly we can share with friends, and even fire up the barbecue if the spring temperatures stick around. Ribs are among my favourite foods, but I’m not always in the mood for sticky-sweet barbecue sauce; these Thai-spiced ribs in coconut milk are deliciously different – perfect for a party, or for dinner along with steamed rice, sautéed pea pods or greens, or maybe an Asian-style slaw.