As you all know our city is going through some hard times right now. Hurricane Harvey hit with some serious impact, a plethora of tornadoes and thunderstorms that are continuously sweeping the city the city as well. Not to mention the flooding…isn’t that the icing on the cake…the freaking flooding.

I am seriously praying for all the families who are being affected by Hurricane Harvey as we speak. I also pray that everyone continues to remain safe – there are some dangerous waters out there people. Please don’t try to drive – your job, your friends. house, etc is not worth your safety, not worth your life.

I’ve been staying away from the news this weekend, I just can’t bare to watch so much sadness and allow it to weigh me down or discourage my family. During rough times as these, my family loves to be together, loves to spend time with each other, and eat, drink, and enjoy the days we’ve been blessed with. It’s our way of dwelling on the good times and showing our thankfulness for all that we have. Focusing on the negative isn’t an option – yes..we are aware of all the loss that has come to pass and that can come to pass – however we choose not to zero in on it. Our faith in God will always guide us towards appreciating each other over all else. So what do we do when we get together..we eat!!

Like any normal person – FOOD has a big impact on me and my mood. Typically during sever weather conditions, if I’m stuck in the house, I tend to gravitate towards hot, hearty, and flavorful goodies.

During Hurricane Rita (12 years ago) we were all together eating gumbo, fried chicken, and ice cream sundaes. What else are you supposed to do with food that will go bad due to lack of power – eat it …DUH! And in my opinion, there is nothing greater or more comforting than GUMBO!! Which brings me to…

Comfort Food Pick #1

My Momma’s nerve calming Gumbo! There’s nothing like a thick, hearty soup filled with creole flavors and juicy chunks of sausage, chicken, and shrimp that warms you from the inside and out. Want some stress relieving yumminess..Cast all your cares in the pot and let ’em simmer.

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Louisiana Style Gumbo

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: intermediate
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Ingredients:

Roux:

– 1/2 cup Flour

– 1/4 cup Butter

– 1/4 cup Oil

– 2 cups Onions, diced

– 3 Tbsp. Garlic, minced

– 1 cup Bell Pepper, diced

– 3 Stalks of Celery, diced

Gumbo Base:

– 1/4 cup Worcestershire Sauce

– 1 cup Parsley, chopped

– 4 cups Seafood Broth or Water, hot

– 2 cups Stewed Tomatoes

– 4 cups Whole Okra

– 2 Tbsp. Green Onions, sliced

Meats

– 1/2 lb. Shrimp, peeled and deveined

– 1 1/2 lb. Cubed Chicken Breast, cooked

– 1 lb. Diced Andouille Sausage, cooked

*you can also add oysters, crab, crawfish, etc.

Directions:

Heat oil in a large, heavy bottom pot. Sauté onions, peppers, garlic, and celery until slightly soft. Add butter, then sprinkle flour over the sautéed veggies, stirring constantly, until brown for 8-10 mins.

Once the roux is ready, whisk in worcestershire sauce, then add parsley. Whisk in hot broth, stirring constantly. Season with salt pepper or creole seasoning. Add chicken and sausage, the bring to a boil. Reduce heat, then add shrimp and let simmer for about 15-20 mins. Add tomatoes and okra and let simmer for 1 hour. Season to taste.

Serve hot with green onions over rice or potato salad.

 

Comfort Food Pick #2

Yum. Yum. Yum. Perfect for this extremely rainy weather we’re having. This hearty dish is comforting, yet leaves you feeling light throughout the day that way you won’t have that sluggish feeling while you sit around the house DOING NOTHING! UGH!! Please food..be my safe haven from boredom while we are stuck in our homes with little to do.

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1-Pot Vegan Chili

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Ingredients:

– 1/2 cup Red Lentils, cooked according to package

– 2 Sweet Potatoes, peeled, diced, and roasted

– 1 can Black Beans, rinsed and drained

– 1 can Pinto Beans, rinsed and drained

– 2 cups Vegetable Stock

– 1 cans Diced Tomatoes

– 1/4 cup Tomato Paste

– 1 Onion, diced

– 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

– Feisty Flavors™ Chili Blend

Directions:

Heat olive oil in a large pot, sauté onions for about 1-2 mins. Then add lentils and sauté for about 1-2 mins.  Season with salt and pepper. Add chili blend, tomatoes, tomato paste, and stock. Simmer for about 5-8 mins, then add black beans and pinto beans. Simmer for about 5 mins, then add sweet potatoes. Simmer for 2-3 mins. Season to taste.

Comfort Food Pick #3

Want an easy multi-purpose meal? This is it! Nothing like throwing together some red beans in a pot with some ham hocks turkey necks (or sausage) and letting do its things. Nothing more comforting than a set it and forget it dinner.

Red Beans & Rice. Comfort Food.JPG

Feisty's Red Beans & Rice

  • Servings: 4-5
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Ingredients:

– 1/2 lb Dry Kidney Beans, pre-soaked

– 1 cup Onion, diced

– 2 stalks of celery, diced

– 1 Green Pepper, diced

– 1 lb Smoked Turkey Necks

– 1/2 lb Andouille Sausage, sliced and cooked

– 1 Tbsp. Butter

– 1 tsp. Garlic, minced

– Feisty Flavors™ Creole Blend

– 6-7 cups of Chicken Stock

– Salt & Pepper, to taste

Directions:

In a large pot, heat butter and sauté onions, celery, garlic, and bell pepper for about 2-3 mins. Then add stock, turkey necks, kidney beans, and creole blend – bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for about 30-40 mins. Then add sausage, and let simmer for an additional 15-20 mins or until beans are tender.

Serve hot over rice.

Comfort Food Pick #4

I mean do you really need an explanation?! Its freaking chocolate! Aside from being extremely, mouthwatering and yummy… Chocolate actually possesses natural calming attributes and mood altering compounds. Plus, who doesn’t love chocolate.. especially when its paired with fresh fruit and yummy treats. If this isn’t a pick me up..then I don’t know what is.

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2-minute Chocolate Fondue

  • Servings: 1-2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

– 1/4 lb Dark or Milk Chocolate

– 1-2 Tbsp. Coconut Oil

– Choice of Fruit, Cookies, or Treats

Directions:

In a microwave safe bowl, heat chocolate in 20 second intervals in the microwave. Slowly mixing in between each interval. When chocolate is melted, stir in coconut oil until desired consistency is reached.

Serve warm with yummy dippers.

Comfort Food #5

I know its technically not food, but hey – if all else fails…Whiskey won’t!

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Stay Safe. Stay Dry. Stay Feisty!

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