Comfort Food

by Cate on September 2, 2006

Icky, rainy, wet and miserable … the perfect day for comfort food. The Husband offered to make dinner – who am I to stand in the way of that? He made one of his favorite Cuban dishes, Carne con Papas, from a very well-used Cuban cookbook, Memories of a Cuban Kitchen. I happened to catch an episode of Rachael Ray’s 30 Minute Meals today and she made Smashed Potatoes and Creamed Spinach, two of my favorite side dishes and perfect for today’s weather and The Husband’s main course. Of course, since neither The Husband nor Nicholas will touch potatoes or spinach, they were mine, all mine. Delicious stuff. Both recipes were done in under 20 minutes and could not have been simpler to make; these are definite repeats, and the Smashed Potatoes will be perfect as a side for many a cold Winter’s meal and Thanksgiving dinner (‘specially since I know my Mom will like these!).

In the beginning of August, I announced the topic for I’ll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours #4. The topic this time is to post about what item in your kitchen you can’t live without. I’m going to post the round-up on Monday, to give everyone two more days to join in. Just post about the item in your kitchen that you can’t live without, and send me the permalink.

I’ll leave you with a picture of Callie for Weekend Cat Blogging, hosted by Miss Ellie this time. I bought this blanket from The Company Store last week, and she has been hogging it ever since. I don’t blame her – it’s ultra soft, and perfect for curling up with in this weather.

Until tomorrow…

A year ago today … peace and quiet.

Smashed Potatoes
Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and chunked, 3 large potatoes (I didn’t peel)
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup half-and-half or cream, eyeball it
4 ounces, 1/2 cup garlic and herb cheese (recommended: Boursin) (I used regular cream cheese, and add minced garlic)
3 tablespoons chopped chives or, 2 scallions, thinly sliced

Place potatoes in a pot and covered with water. Cover pot with lid and bring water to a boil. Salt boiling water and potatoes. Leave lid off pot and simmer at rolling boil until tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain potatoes and return to hot pot. Smash potatoes with a little half-and- half or cream and garlic and herb cheese. Smash and incorporate chives. Add salt and pepper, to your taste.

Creamed Spinach
Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray
2 boxes frozen chopped spinach, 10 ounces, defrosted in microwave
2 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream

Squeeze defrosted spinach dry by wringing it out in a kitchen towel. To a small skillet, add butter and cream and heat to a bubble over moderate heat. add spinach and salt and pepper. Cook until spinach thickens with cream, 3 to 5 minutes.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Bonnie Loves Cats =^..^= September 3, 2006 at 11:49 am

Callie is a beautiful Calico and Miss Ellie is a Calico too. The colors of her blanket really sets off the autumn colors in her fur.
I also love Rachel Ray (I think a lot of people do) she is going to have 3 TV shows.


Anonymous September 3, 2006 at 1:06 pm

Great minds think alike… I am making carne con papa tonight. I went shopping yesterday under the rain and got all the ingredients.

Happy Birthday Pee Wee!

The Sister In-Law


Sylvie September 3, 2006 at 2:37 pm

Hi Cate. I’m visiting with my daughter in Philadelphia this week. I expected hot humid weather, but as you mentioned, nothing but rain. Autumn is jumping ahead.


Erika September 4, 2006 at 1:57 am

Hey Cate! I have an entry for I’ll Show You Mine…

Here’s the url:


Cate September 4, 2006 at 11:37 am

Bonnie – she definitely knows what she’s doing when she picks that blanket, it’s fluffy AND makes her look beautiful. ;)

The Sister-in-Law — too funny. You’ll have to share your recipe.

Sylvie – the temperature is certainly great. At least it finally stopped.

Thanks, Erika – roundup tonight. :)


SweetSarahJ September 7, 2006 at 5:47 pm

I guess Clare and Kiri are still taking it easy…. and so I volunteer to host this weekend!
Drop me your links at Or leave a comment at

Looking forward to all your kitty links!



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