Sep 132016
 

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New Pinterest and survey data released today shows a real shift in how people are thinking about comfort food. People are now rejecting traditional comfort foods (we’re looking at you, lasagna and mac n cheese), in favor of meals with fresher, healthier ingredients. The trend shows Americans’ association with comfort food moving away from a traditionally emotional connection to a more mindful approach.

An analysis of Pinterest user data found that comfort food Pins are on the rise, with 54,000 comfort food ideas saved each day, a 140 percent increase over last year. But people are increasingly looking for “veggies” in their “comfort food” searches (336 percent increase), instead of things we traditionally think of as comfort food, like lasagna (down 69 percent), macaroni (down 55 percent) and stroganoff (down 50 percent).

The national consumer survey found that:

·       58 percent find noodle and carb substitutes like cauliflower and zucchini noodles, or “zoodles,” appealing.

·       Millennials (50 percent) are 16 percent more likely to seek inspiration for recipes on social media, compared to 34 percent of older generations

·       63 percent seek more meat and poultry raised without hormones and antibiotics

·       91 percent like fresh vegetables, with 66 percent saying they are “very appealing.”

·       86 percent agree they focus on simple-to-prepare dishes and wellness.

·       69 percent find incorporating super foods or ingredients that have wellness benefits appealing, more so among millennial moms – 75 percent.

Here are some examples of new comfort food recipes, developed by Chef Dean Rucker for Foster Farms: http://www.fosterfarms.com/recipes/the-new-comfort-food/.

It is really true – Rex and I are trying to cut out sugars and carbs in our diet.  At first I thought it would be hard not having carbs with our meals – but I have found a number of comfort meals I like better.  Many of them are using Foster Farms Simply Raised (no antibiotics ever) chicken. This past weekend I made a meal that was great for a fall Sunday dinner.  We invited our friend Billy and his son over for a nice homemade meal that tasted great and is good for you.

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I started with Foster Farms Simply Raised (no antibiotics ever) chicken thighs – normally I like chicken breast but for this recipe I wanted to use the thighs.  I used two packages – so there were 8 pieces of chicken.  I made Braised Chicken, Carrots and Mushrooms.

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I started by seasoning the chicken with salt and pepper and then browning all sides in oil in what I call “The Magic Pot”  others might call it a dutch oven.  It is great for making all kinds of comfort foods. After browning the chicken I used the same pot and sauteed the carrots, onions and mushrooms.  Then removed the veggies – returned the chicken and liquids and cooked for an additional hour and half.  Then returned the veggies – cooked until they were hot and served!

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Here is the finished dish!  It was tender, juice and very delicious.  Loved by all.  Billy said it brought back lots of memories of meals from growing up! Not only did it taste good ~ I know it was good for us.  We never missed the potatoes or carbs that in the past I would have added to the meal.

 

Braised Chicken, Carrots And Mushrooms
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Recipe type: Dinner
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6-8 servings
Nice fall comfort meal
Ingredients
  • 8 Foster Farms Simply Raised (no antibiotics ever) chicken thighs
  • 2 Pounds mushrooms (I used white and baby bella) cleaned, trimmed and cut in half or quarter
  • 2 Cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • ¼ Cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ Cup apple cider vinegar
  • 5 Large Carrots peeled and cut into about 1-2 inch pieces
  • 1 Medium Onion , Chopped
  • 3 Cloves of garlic
  • 3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Season the both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper
  2. Heat olive oil in "The Magic Pot" brown all sides of the chicken in batches. Put on separate plate and set aside after browned.
  3. Saute carrots and onions in same pan - until tender about 10 minutes.
  4. Add mushrooms and garlic and saute about 6 more minutes. Remove veggies and set aside.
  5. Sprinkle flour in Magic Pot and cook 1-2 minutes to get it brown and nutty flavored.
  6. Add in the Balsamic and apple cider vinegar - whisking with flour until smooth and thick about 3-5 minutes.
  7. Gradually add the chicken broth.
  8. Return chicken to Magic Pot with liquid. Bring to a boil.
  9. Reduce heat to low and simmer covered for about 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes until chicken is cooked through.
  10. Add the veggies back in and stir. When veggies heated again and sauce has reduced.
  11. Serve in bowls with a bit of the sauce.

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