VBT’s Top 5 European Comfort Foods
Comfort food isn’t often associated with spring time. And although your calendar says that spring is here, the chill in the air and the lingering snow on the ground seems to indicate that we have a few more weeks remaining of winter. While you wait for longer days and rising temperatures, warm up with some of our favorite European comfort foods.
We’ll start in the comfort food capital of the world, Italy. However, we’re steering away from pasta as Riboletta is chockfull of fresh veggies, legumes and, of course, just a bit of olive oil. Bring them to a boil and warm up from the inside out with this hearty Tuscan soup.
There are many variations on the classic Cassoulet. It can be prepared with goose, duck, pork, pancetta or any combination of the four. Slow-roasted and utterly magnifique, this dish is certainly not as veggie-friendly as Riboletta. But if you enjoy roasts, then kick back by a fire and savor this robust stew from the south of France.
If stew’s not your style, then lighten things up, just a bit, with this delightful medley from Spain. Sure, paella can be enjoyed year-round. However, if you’re after a true taste of Audalusia, add a little cayenne pepper to spice up your seafood and fend off the bite of winter’s last few weeks.
Not always noted for its cuisine, the UK shouldn’t be overlooked when it comes to purveying rich comfort foods. Shepherd’s pie is now a classic winter dish here in America, but for lending us the recipe, we owe a bit of gratitude to Ireland—a land of rolling, green hills where potatoes were plentiful enough to make this dish ubiquitous, even back in the 19th century.
They say that March comes “in like a lion and out like a lamb”. Well, we’ve sort of reversed that order with our list of comfort foods, beginning with a Tuscan specialty and ending with a Slovenian dish that comes to us from the snowy Julian Alps. Suggested by VBT’s very own, Damjan, Pecenica is a delicious pork sausage, served with sauerkraut, mashed potatoes and beans together. For a nice full meal, start with a traditional Slovenian mushroom soup.
This March, don’t shiver your way through the last few weeks of winter, track down a few recipes and keep warm with our favorite European comfort foods or Travel to Europe with VBT to sample some authentic cuisine straight from the source!