(Family Features) After families across the country began cooking more at home during the pandemic, that trend has continued as loved ones seek comfort in the kitchen in the form of their favorite recipes and time spent together.
In fact, according to the "Hunter Food News Study," cooking continues to change as more Americans come together at the dining table with recipe usage up 21% and dinners cooked from scratch up 14%. Around half (54%) of Americans are cooking more than they were before the pandemic, and 35% said they "enjoy cooking now more than ever," according to "Harvard Business Review."
If those closest to you are looking for home-cooked comfort, you can turn to satisfying family meals like Plant-Based Meatloaf Sandwiches or Chicken Souse. These hearty recipes make it easy for loved ones to involve everyone in the cooking process from preparing vegetables and hand-mixing meatloaf to seasoning chicken and simmering ingredients.
With 65% of consumers saying they're most likely to purchase a whole week's worth of groceries when shopping, according to research from Datassential, opportunities abound for families to enjoy delicious, comforting dishes together.
Find more family meal inspiration by visiting Aramark's Feed Your Potential website, fyp365.com.
Plant-Based Meatloaf Sandwiches
Nonstick cooking spray
1 1/2 pounds plant-based ground burger, thawed
1 1/2 cups cooked wild rice, chilled
1 cup diced onion
1 cup diced red bell pepper
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
2/3 cup barbecue sauce
vegan cheddar cheese
Heat oven to 375 F. Spray rimmed baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
In bowl, thoroughly mix ground burger, cooked rice, onion, bell pepper, paprika, garlic, sage, thyme, salt and white pepper until well blended without overmixing. Shape mixture into loaf on baking sheet. Spread barbecue sauce over meatloaf.
Bake 1 hour, or until internal temperature reaches 160 F.
Slice meatloaf into six pieces and place each piece on bread. Top each meatloaf slice with vegan cheddar cheese and sautéed onions then close sandwiches with top bread slices. Using panini press, griddle or frying pan, cook sandwiches until golden brown and cheese is melted.
Tip: Pairs well with potato salad.
Recipe courtesy of Aramark
8 ounces boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper, plus additional, to taste, divided
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced celery
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup peeled potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2/3 cup canned diced tomatoes, undrained
1/4 cup tomato paste
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons minced, seeded jalapeño pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons minced, peeled ginger root
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional, to taste, divided
2 pinches dried thyme leaves
1 small bay leaf
1 1/2 cups thawed mixed vegetables, drained
Season chicken with 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder. Cover and chill 2 hours, or overnight.
In saucepan over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add onion and celery; sauté 2 minutes, or until tender-crisp. Add garlic and sauté 30 seconds.
Add chicken and sauté until browned.
Stir in broth, potatoes, tomatoes, tomato paste, vinegar, jalapeño pepper, lemon juice, ginger, 1 teaspoon salt, thyme and bay leaf; heat to boil. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer 1 hour, or until potatoes are tender.
Stir in mixed vegetables and simmer 10 minutes. Remove and discard bay leaf. Season with additional salt and pepper, to taste.
Tips: Serve souse with griddled corn cakes and saltine crackers. Make vegetarian by replacing chicken with canned drained and rinsed black-eyed peas or red or white beans.