Comfort food, to me, is food that makes my taste buds AND stomach happy. It is not food that tastes good but makes me feel like crap an hour later, and it is not food that makes me feel good but I don’t truly love. Sometimes, comfort foods aren’t the healthiest, but we all deserve to enjoy them now and again.
Here in Newfoundland and Labrador, we have a number of traditional dishes that everyone seems to love and cherish. Most of these fall into my category of comfort foods. These are my favourites:
Jiggs Dinner. Every Newfoundlander and Labradorian knows what Jiggs Dinner is, although there might be some conflict about what exactly it consists of. For me and my family, Jiggs Dinner involves one-pot veggies and puddings and a turkey. Typically it includes turnip, potatoes, parsnip, carrots, cabbage, greens, pease pudding (made with split peas), bread pudding (basically boiled bread with sugar, I always skip this one), figgy duff (recipe here), and stuffing. Paired with a juicy turkey and gravy, it is one of the most satisfying meals you’ll ever enjoy.
Hash. The best hangover food you’ll ever have, hash is literally Jiggs Dinner leftovers mashed up together and fried up in a pan. It looks and sounds kind of gross, I’ll admit, but it tastes amazing. A comfort food for sure.
Knockers. The only person I’ve ever heard call these knockers is my Mom– most people call them hors-d’oeuvres even though they’re specifically referring to this dish. They’re Vienna sausages, cheddar cheese, baby sweet onions, and baby gherkin pickles shishkabob-ed on a toothpick. Certainly not healthy, but a Newfie finger food staple around the holidays.
Anything made by Purity. Purity is a Newfoundland owned and operated company that produces a variety of food products that have been loved by NLers for a hundred years. Their syrup is added to water for a sweet and refreshing drink, again often enjoyed around the holidays. They make candy such as peppermint knobs (pictured) and butterscotch bites. They also make cream crackers which are delicious with butter and a cup of tea.
Other Newfoundland and Labrador comfort foods include:
- Bottled moose
- Fisherman’s Brewis
- Tetley Orange Pekoe tea
- Pineapple Crush soda
- Mustard pickles (often enjoyed with Jiggs Dinner!)
If you ever find yourself here in Newfoundland, you have to give these foods a try. Can you think of any other classic Newfoundland comfort foods that are missing from this list? Let us know by leaving a comment or reaching out on social media, @twowildtides.
Have a great week,