October 17, 2010

What's Cookin'?

I have decided to make black bean soup for dinner and instead of just opening cans I'm gonna cook the beans.  I soaked one cup of beans overnight then added salt to the soaking water after reading a blog by a vegan cookbook author this morning.
I then drained the rinse water and added 1/4 whole onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 3 bay leaves and salt. When the beans are tender, which should take a couple of hours, I will discard the onion, garlic and bay leaves, and there should be about three cups of black beans.
In large soup pot I will sauté the rest of the chopped onion, two chopped cloves of garlic and two cups of sliced carrots.  When those are done, I will add the beans, 1/2 cup of orange juice, one can of Rotel tomatoes with green chiles and enough bean broth to make it a soup.  Salt, pepper and cumin will spice up the dish.  I would add a chipotle pepper in adobo sauce if I had it.

What to go with the meal?  How about some real southern cornbread and a cabbage slaw with red bell pepper with Caesar dressing?  Yup, that will definitely fit the bill.  A cheap red wine and Ben & Jerry's Karamel Sutra ice cream for dessert sounds good to me.

Let me tell you, the aroma in my house is glorious right now.  I love cooking!

Because the beans were so dang good and all of the ingredients so far were organic, I decided to ditch the Rotel tomatoes.  After I discarded the bay leaves, I left the onion because it had basically disintegrated and the one garlic clove I could find I smashed and added to the sauté mix.  I used the juice of 1/2 organic orange (devoured the other half) and then added Muir Glen Fire Roasted Tomatoes.  I don't like my soup to be too "soupy" and this turned out to be "da bomb".  Too bad you can't have any.

October 16, 2010

The Doctor Is In

I really dislike going to the doctor.  All of my life I have gotten nervous the minute I step into the building and only feel relief when I am outside the door.  It is completely irrational but it's the same feeling that I got when I would get in trouble at school or at home.  I just know the doctor is going to yell at me for being fat or for not living right.  Rest assured, I rarely got in trouble at school or home and I am perfect.

I had to go to the doctor this week to get my medications refilled.  I arrived a bit early hoping that I could get in right away but I ended up sitting in the waiting room for forty-five minutes.  The waiting room has two tv screens, one playing some news program and the other giving health advice and advertising medications.  The news was all about some missing girl and her mother who beat her and some celebrity scandal.  There was an older man across the room who kept falling asleep and snoring himself back awake which kept me entertained, but it couldn't keep me from getting anxious and thinking that this was a complete waste of time.  

The nurse finally called my name, directed me to the scale (which always lies about my weight), and then took me to the exam room.  She chatted me up a bit (at least she was in a good mood for once), and then took my blood pressure.  She was quite pleased with my numbers this time so that helped relieve some of my anxiety.  She then said the dreaded words, "the doctor will be with you shortly".  

So.....I waited and I waited.  I've known my doctor for ages.  I've even cooked a dinner for him and his wife that my boss decided he wanted to throw.  Hmmm, did I say that right?  Do you actually throw a dinner?  Anyway, the doctor was doing an exam in the room next to mine and I could hear him saying things like, "I am going to order a mammogram for you" and "no, we need to do that now since you're here".  To me that translated as, "to hell with my next patient, she can just wait some more".  I was in that exam room for thirty minutes, chomping at the bit.

Mister Doctor finally strode into the room, read my file on the computer screen, asked me how I was doing, and then chastised me for not getting that mammogram that he ordered last year.  I explained to him that the cost of the test is what is keeping me from getting it, and we discussed my insurance for a bit.  He then ordered another mammogram for this year.  Obama care needs to kick in quicker for the under-insured like me, then tests like mammograms would be more accessible.  He then asked if I have any vaginal bleeding or bloody stool.  Why would he ask that?  He must have been jonesing for a problem to explore.

I then had to go to the phlebotomist (medical vampire) and get my blood taken for my thyroid test and metabolic panel.  This is the first time a vampire has hurt me. Note to vampires, don't move the needle up and down once it's in the vein.  I then made a hasty exit and await my test results.  I assume that they are fine because the "doctor man" never called me about them.

I have survived another medical visit nightmare and I don't plan on going there again in 2010.  The doctor may be in, but I'm outta here.