Whenever I was sick as a child, my mom would make a big batch of matzo ball soup. And, she hasn’t stopped yet.
I’ll never forget when I told my mom I wasn't feeling well when I was pregnant with my first child. Hours later she was on my doorstep with a large metallic soup pot in her hands, ready to make me feel better with each sip of her matzo ball soup.
To this day, my mom’s matzo ball soup brings me instant comfort.
And, it’s slightly the same for my husband. But, with Chinese vegetable soup instead - something he enjoyed as a child growing up in New York City.
Whenever he’s sick or run down, I know it’s time for my husband to have a large bowl of clear liquid with lots of vegetables – and rice spooned on top right at the table just before he digs into it.
So, it’s not surprising that our sons seek out comfort in soup – matzo ball and Chinese vegetable.
After trips abroad, just as the jet lag starts to sink in and our eyelids get weighed down, we always head out for soup. Recently, our new tradition is to seek out comfort from a steaming bowl of ramen – often served at a Wagamama.
On our most recent trip to Europe, we were fortunate to be able to tuck into a bowl of ramen at the United Kingdom-based chain in Amsterdam – and then again in Copenhagen. And, then, with each spoonful we found our needed comfort, our needed sustenance and our needed feeling of being home – even when we were thousands of miles away.
Our family’s desire to seek out the comfort of soup – matzo ball, Chinese vegetable and ramen – at home and abroad, made me wonder what other families eat to find comfort in their homes around the world. So, I sought out the insights of my fellow Multicultural Kids Bloggers.
Here are some of the comfort foods enjoyed by moms - and their families - around the world:
Galina of Raising a Trilingual Child is Russian – and now lives in Italy. She loves beef stew with potatoes - made the way her mom always cooked it.
Leanna of All Done Monkey was born in North Carolina and now lives in California with her Costa Rican husband. When she first moved from her home state, Leanna always had to have biscuits when she returned home. But, now, her comfort food is the Costa Rican atol (oatmeal steamer) that her husband and his family always enjoyed.
Jackie of Bringing Up the Parks is from Malaysia and the Phillippines – and is married to a Korean. Some days she craves Malaysian nasi lemak (rice with chilli sambal) and teh yarik (milk tea). While at other times, she wants Filipino barbeque chicken. Back when Jackie was in Korea, her “go-to dish for stressful days” was yukgaejang (spicy beef soup), adding another multicultural mix to her list of favorite comfort foods.
Ayesha of Jeddah Mom is an “Indian in Saudi Arabia.” Her go-to comfort food is dahi chat (“a sort of chick pea and yogurt salad”).
Residing in India, Charu of Kidzlens enjoys curd and rice with brown sugar (or sugarcane sugar) lavishly sprinkled on it. No matter where in the world she eats it, Charu instantly feels like she is at home.
Becky of Kid World Citizen always reaches for black beans and rice when in need of some comfort food.
Originally from Peru, Orana of Crazy Little Family Adventure now lives in Sri Lanka. Her favorite comfort food is Locro, Peruvian-style pumpkin stew.
Aileen of Mama Lingua is Venezuelan, and her chosen comfort food is arepas of any kind.
Born and raised in Minnesota, Amanda of The Educators’ Spin on It, says wild rice soup is her go-to comfort food.
Kelly's mom is Pennsylvania Dutch. Even from her home in Buffalo, New York, Kelly of Kelly's Classroom, craves Pennsylvanian Dutch-style homemade children soup with thick egg noodles whenever she's in need of some comfort food.
Born and raised in Texas, Becky of Gianna the Great enjoys “nice, warm tortillas.” The comfort food is a special one for Becky since her mother made them for her when she was growing up in Dallas.
Alexandra of Madh Mama is Canadian. Her favorite comfort food can be considered a meal: roast turkey dinner with mashed potatoes, carrot-turnip mash, roasted brussels sprouts/red cabbage salad, gravy and cranberry sauce.
Originally from India, Puneeta of Maple and Marigold now lives in Canada. Whenever she goes home, her mom makes her family’s favorite dishes – including chane Ki daal with baingan bharta (lentils with a roasted eggplant hash). For Puneeta, just the thought of the dish takes her right back home – and to the comfort that awaits her there.
Which foods to you eat when you need a little TLC? Which ones bring you the most comfort – at home or abroad? Please share your stories in the comments below.