Food has a wonderful power to comfort and restore. Macbeth longed for “sleep that knits up the ravelled sleeve of care,” but I think food–the right kind of food–has even greater power to heal the mind and renew the body.
Everyone has their “go to” comfort food, but not all comfort foods are created equal. I used to end a trying day with a bag of Orville Redenbacher and a glass of chardonnay. That didn’t restore so much as stupefy me.
Now instead of just tamping down cravings, when I need to eat something comforting, I look for foods that are both satisfying and truly nourishing. I want to eat something that will leave me feeling better, not worse.
When I get home late and dinner was put away hours ago, I open up the fridge and look at the leftovers to see what I can eat. I’m so happy if I find brown rice, eggs and spinach. That means I can make my favorite comfort food, which I think of as a very simple version of Korean bibimbap. It only takes a few minutes to prepare, but it soothes my soul like no other food. It’s like a soft, worn old sweatshirt, not glamorous to look at, but so warm and comfortable.
- 1 cup of leftover brown rice
- ½ tsp garlic powder or 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- ½ tsp ginger powder or 1 tsp fresh, finely chopped
- Big handful of baby spinach
- 1 free range egg
- 1½ Tbsp roasted sesame oil, divided
- 1 Tbsp roasted sesame seeds
- Sriracha sauce, as much as you can handle!
- Heat ½ Tbsp sesame oil in a nonstick pan.
- Add garlic and ginger and stir.
- Add brown rice and toss to coat with oil and spices.
- When thoroughly warmed, remove to bowl or plate.
- Add ½ Tbsp sesame oil to pan.
- Add spinach and stir to coat.
- When bright green and wilted, put spinach on top of rice.
- Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
- Add ½ Tbsp. sesame oil to pan.
- Break egg into pan.
- Let fry until white is cooked and crisping on the edges.
- Slide egg onto brown rice and spinach.
- Add sriracha sauce and a little bit of tamari, if you want.
- Optional additions: sauteed julienne carrots or red peppers
What’s your favorite comfort food? Please share in the comments, I’d love to hear about it!