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Mac and cheese? Noodle soup? Top chefs share their go-to comfort foods

March 30, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Comfort food knows no geographical boundaries. Wherever you are in the world, there will always be a dish that your fellow citizens are more than happy to gravitate towards. Here are 10 such dishes from around the world, as recommended by top chefs.

When asked to choose the ultimate comfort food, the Canadian has to think long and hard before finally settling on one favorite.

"While butter tarts, Nanaimo bars, KD (that's Kraft Mac n' Cheese) and tourtière all come to mind, there can only be one dish that completely symbolizes Canada, represents our people and unites us from coast to coast: The almighty poutine," says Docherty.

"One of my favorite bakeries in Stockholm to get them at is Lillebrors, while I also have a recipe for semlor [see link] if you'd like to try making them at home. "

When it comes to comfort food, the Nigerian-American is drawn to a popular Nigerian dish, pepper soup.

"There's nothing like getting your comfort food when its executed properly.

Vicky Cheng is chef at the Michelin-starred contemporary restaurant VEA, an intimate 25-seater in Hong Kong that combines French cuisine with Chinese techniques and ingredients to remarkable effect.

"I'd say noodles in general, but specifically soup noodles are the ultimate comfort food," says Cheng.

"For me, mac and cheese represents the ultimate comfort food.

A humble dish; simple, filling and warm, it is something we all associate with childhood and the comforts of home," says the American chef.

Her absolute favorite is from one of our local amazing restaurants in New Canaan, Connecticut -- South End, owned by Nick Martschenko, an award-winning chef who credits his love of food to his two grandmothers from Italy and Ukraine.

"For Italians, comfort dishes usually mean carbs and dairy, everything from pizza to good cheese and, of course, lasagna," says Degani.

"My favorite comfort dish is a classic carbonara, a delicious sauce that gives a smile with every bite.

Australian chef Shane Osborn runs the acclaimed one-Michelin-starred restaurant Arcane in the heart of Hong Kong.

"Australia is a country with so many different cultures and we've absorbed so many different cuisines, but the one dish I always like if I was at my mom's place is pavlova," he says.

"There's a big argument whether it comes from Australia or New Zealand, but pavlova with fresh strawberries and passionfruit sauce is one of those dishes that just brings back memories.

His dishes celebrate the diverse culture of the Philippines, so it comes as no surprise his choice of comfort food is one of the nation's favorites.

"I think a lot of Filipinos would say adobo -- and I think it's a great example -- but for me the best example of comfort food would be sinigang," he says.

Finally to Thailand's capital, Bangkok, where chef Bongkoch "Bee" Satongun has won both a Michelin star and a spot on the list of Asia's 50 Best Restaurants for her elegant Thai eatery Paste.

Before entering the world of high-end dining, she helped her mother run a food stall selling fermented rice noodles and fragrant types of curry, pounding the pastes for the curry and squeezing freshly ground coconut to extract the milk.

Bee's choice of Thai comfort food is called kai palo, a five-spice soup with hard boiled eggs that are slowly simmered to take on the sweet-salty mix of spices: cinnamon, cilantro, cloves, star anise and Sichuan peppercorns.

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