Oxmoor House cookbook editor Shaun Chavis is working on one of Cooking Light's newest cookbooks -- Feel Good Food. And she needs your help!

What's your feel good food? I really want to know: I'm working on a Cooking Light book that focuses on the foods and recipes that make us feel happy, and I want to include reader stories. 

Everyone's got a go-to food that's guaranteed to put them in a good mood. Mine is the popular dish you see in Indian restaurants, palak paneer (spinach or greens with cubed cheese). When I introduce a newcomer to Indian cuisine, I describe palak paneer as an exciting twist on creamed spinach. I used to work in TV news, and going to an Indian restaurant to enjoy a dish of palak paneer was my favorite way to unwind after the anchor signed off and the studio lights were out. The spices are so warming… even though I recognize them as I savor every bite, together they seem to work together to work some kind of magic on me… a culinary alchemy of soothing comfort and adventure at the same time.

I've been talking to friends and colleagues about their feel good foods, and I've learned that there's a wide world of eats that lift our spirits. There's comfort food and special holiday foods, for sure, but I've also heard stories about favorite party foods and cocktails, vacation foods (like Cajun peanuts from the gas station on a road trip, and clam bakes at the beach!), favorite childhood foods, game day foods, special dishes that set the stage for romance, and things people like to eat when they're feeling excited and adventurous. Some people have told me about food they make to show love and care to friends… or the pride and sense of accomplishment they feel when they finally master their grandmother's light touch at making homemade dinner rolls, or bake cookies with their children for the first time.

If you're interested in sharing your story—and possibly having it published in the book, scheduled to come out in April 2013—email me at (and please keep your story to 100 words max). If your story is about a favorite Cooking Light recipe, include the link of the recipe from, or include the name of the recipe with the month, year, and page number of the issue it was published. Please don’t forget to include your name and contact information. I'd love to hear about your favorite feel good food!