Superior Quadrantanopia (PIEEEEEEEE)

OMG I just took 1.5 days off my step studying because my fam came into town…I already feel incredibly behind. My brother flew home from school for the summer and my rents wanted to come for the weekend. It is really funny how different my brother and I are. For example, I am feeling really guilty for not studying and he just realized that he has to take the SAT in less than one week and he still hasn’t started studying. But I guess our priorities our different. In high school I used to hate practicing violin so much and was always really unprepared for auditions. One time I even got demoted to a lower orchestra because I pretty much site read my piece. And my violin teacher told me to quit because I would just talk through my lesson and never even open my case…

One thing we do have in common is being insatiable epicureans and having a shared disdain for the same people (i.e. our parents…jk). And we also love getting diet cherry limeades at Sonic. Sometimes we just look at each other, don’t say a word, get in the car, and end up at Sonic! I can’t wait until 4th year when I get my part time job there so I don’t have to pay for them anymore.

So Memorial Day usually marks the beginning of summa time. This year, my summer is going to consist of 3 weeks of misery + 1 week of fun. I decided to start off the summer the same way I’ll end it: pure decadence. This was my first time to make a real pie with a crust on top too! I wanted to try to lattice the top but I don’t think I made enough dough…I also don’t have those kind of skillz. I thought my brother would help me with this but my parents got so pissed that he hadn’t started studying for the SAT that he was forced to read Barron’s or whatever that book is called. Regardless, the pie turned out delicious! I am so full from eating this that I know I’m going to sleep well tonight! I really think they should add eating a massive piece of dessert to the list of things under good sleep hygiene!

Blueberry Blackberry Pie (adapted from http://www.allrecipes.com)

  • 2/3 cup shortening
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Directions

  1. Cut shortening into 2 cups flour and salt until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle in water 1 tablespoon at a time until flour is moistened. Gather into a ball, and roll out onto a lightly floured board. Make two rounds. Place one crust in a 9 inch pie dish.
  2. Mix sugar, 1/3 cup flour, cornstarch, and cinnamon. Stir in berries to coat. Turn filling into pastry lined pan. Sprinkle with lemon juice, dot with butter. Cover with top crust; cut slits in the top. Seal and flute.
  3. Bake at 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) for 35 to 45 minutes. Cover edges with foil to prevent burning, and remove foil for last 12 minutes of baking.

Next time I would probably add more cornstarch because the filling was a little runny but it was still good! I’m also gonna make vanilla ice cream to go with this next time! Then I’m going to eat it, go into a food coma, and die in utter bliss.

Also, I can’t resist: PIE IN THE SKY!!!!! Quick, where’s the lesion?

India India India India

The best thing about being Indian is the food. That, and knowing that every time you see another Indian ANYWHERE you know you’re both thinking, “OMG Indian Indian Indian Indian Indian.”

I rarely ever make Indian food even though I could probably eat it every day if I had to. I think it’s because any time my mom or dad makes it at home they never use precise measurements and that bugs me a LOT. I guess I’m not comfortable yet with just throwing in pinches of this spice and that spice. And I’m extremely anal-retentive. Plus, all the jars in our house are labeled in Telugu so even if I’m helping make something I have no idea what it is (unless its something obvi like cinnamon sticks).

I thnk every Indian person has a spice dish like this. Look at me being more creative with my pictures (that’s a scarf that I put the spice tray on haha):

One of the really great things about Indian food is that it doesn’t rely on butter/oil/sugar/salt to make it taste good. The combination of all the spices that are used is more than enough to give a vibrant flavor We almost never use cream when we cook at home and it still tastes amazing! And if you DO need the food to be creamier, you can always use homemade yogurt, which I don’t know how to make so I’m just leaving it out entirely.

I am almost certain I could be vegetarian if I could eat Indian food more often (I could also do it if all I ate was cereal- which, I pretty much did for freshman year in college because I was stupid. I think you can get marasmus from that). In fact, I think that vegetarian Indian dishes taste much better. The texture of meat, in my opinion, doesn’t add anything to the food. It’s def all about the LEGUMES! I love beans of almost any sort: butter beans and kidney beans are my favorites though. Today I really wanted to make Rajma, which is a kidney bean curry. I have only had this a few times because it’s not South Indian at ALL so we never make it at home. But I had all these extra cans of kidney beans in my pantry so I decided to see if I could whip something up. I’ve had these cans lying around for awhile so hopefully they are still good…they weren’t bulging so at least no botulism risks! And I have all these random Indian spices that my parents use to cook food for me every time they come over, which is a LOT!! I love having roommates that only live with me for 2-4 days a month!

I really hope I don’t smell up a mile radius of my kitchen with this recipe but at least it’s a GOOD smell right? On a side note, I’m going to do another entry with SOUTH INDIAN food sometime soon. I’m going to try to make sense of what my parents do when they’re cooking and come up with a recipe!!

http://www.happytummyblog.com/2009/04/09/rajma-kidney-bean-curry/. This only took me 10 minutes to make!

Recipe: Rajma (Kidney Bean Curry)
Serves 2 as an entree or 4 as a side

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 green chili, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. ginger, minced
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup pureed tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 15 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Sauté onion, garlic, green chili and ginger over medium heat until softened. Add minced onions, garlic, green chili and ginger. Add water, pureed tomatoes, tomato paste, spices, and salt and stir to mix well. Add kidney beans and stir to coat. Let curry simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until it is thick and creamy. Serve with basmati rice and/or naan.

Ice Cream SOUP!!!!

I am SO over studying for step…time to take yet another break. For some reason I’ve been feeling really energetic lately. I think it’s from all the frustration of sitting at a desk almost all day. My muscles were just fasciculating so I decided to go on a run. I love running because

  1. There are really hot people on Katy Trail.
  2. It’s the only time I allow myself to think about things that are bothering me (I think that’s a mature defense mechanism- Suppression right?).
  3. You’re allowed to wear your emotions on your face and no one’s really paying attention.

    When I go running I always start off with the intention of thinking about what I’ve studied that day. This is a breakdown of what actually goes through my head:

Hmmm I should go over the endocrine stuff I learned today, ok, 17a-hydroxylase deficiency causes masculinization and hypotension. OMG I don’t want to keep studying for step…I feel like my whole mind is numbing from it. Blahhhhh I really want to go to Ice House. All those people look like they’re having so much fun! Maybe I could study there for step (think about that for 10 minutes). ….wow, that guy is really hot…. OMG that woman’s baby is SO CUTE. Shit, I’m almost 24 and my fertility is going to slowly drop…I wonder if I should freeze my eggs (contemplate that for like 10 minutes). I wonder how many people have actually followed Kanye’s workout plan. Hahahaha. RIP MJ. I can’t wait until Jersey Shore starts up again. I think I would take a year off school to do a reality show. I wonder what is going happen to them after the show is over. I should read their twitters. Speaking of Twitter, why the hell did Diddy change his name to swag…he should have changed it to WHACK. It would be so cool to have swag written on my white coat though…maybe I should do it too. Maybe I should really freeze my eggs. Then I get home and I’m like EFF I didn’t make it past 17a-hydroxylase.

And that’s pretty much what happens every time +/- a few deeper thoughts. Now, on to my food!!!!

My ice cream maker came in a couple of days ago so I decided to try to make a TON of ice cream. I really shouldn’t be eating ice cream because one of my teeth needs a filling and I get to around a 8/10 pain when something cold touches it. I know what you’re thinking- I DO BRUSH MY TEETH…I think I’m just prone to cavities…and I chew an unhealthy amount of gum. And I’m so lazy that I’d rather just eat on one side of my mouth than go to the dentist. For now I’m just going to give myself some Tylenol prophylaxis before I eat my ice cream.

I wanted to make a TON of ice cream and invite people over to try it. I finally settled on Blueberry Cheesecake, Caramel Macchiato, and Strawberry. The ice cream maker is super easy to use and so convenient. It makes about 1.5 quarts of ice cream with each bowel. I think the base of the ice cream maker has liquid nitrogen in it so you just put it in the freezer and wait for the liquid to freeze and then you can use it. I had made a batch of strawberry frozen yogurt yesterday to make sure I was using the machine right and it turned out GREAT. So then I figured ok cool…in the words of Jayden Smith “I can handle it.”  The only problem is that the bowel starts to melt really quickly, which I DID NOT realize…fatal flaw. I ended up making really soupy strawberry frozen yogurt, soupy caramel macchiato, and blueberry cheesecake ice cream, which somehow turned out really well! YUMMM. Even though the other two flavors were not the right texture the flavor was really really good and I would totally eat/drink it anyway. Either way, any food that doesn’t require teeth to eat is always good. But next time I’m only going to make one batch at a time…

Blueberry cheesecake Ice Cream (adapted from Brown Eyed Baker http://www.browneyedbaker.com/2008/12/28/blueberry-cheesecake-ice-cream/)

Blueberry Filling

½ cup sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

½ cup water

1 ½ cups frozen blueberries

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Gram Cracker Filling

2 cups gram cracker crumbs

2 tablespoons sugar

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ cup butter, melted

Ice cream Mixture

1 ½ cups sugar

1 (3.4 ounce) package of cheesecake pudding (or vanilla)

1 quart heavy whipping cream (shit, that’s a lot…I know)

2 cups milk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  1. In a small saucepan combine the sugar and cornstarch and stir until smooth (about 5 minutes). Add the blueberries and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes or until slightly thickened. Refrigerate until chilled.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, combine the gram cracker crumbs, sugar, and ground cinnamon Stir in the butter. Pat into an ungreased 13.1 x 9 inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes or until slightly brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the ice cream ingredients. Prepare the ice cream in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions (MAKE SURE THE BOWL IS TOTALLY FROZEN BEFORE YOU START!).
  4. Crumble the graham cracker mixture. In a large container, layer the ice cream, graham cracker mixture, and blueberry sauce; swirl. Freeze.
    I swear it tastes better than it looks!! I need to learn how to take better pictures and get a better camera because mine is kind of jankEven though it looks gross it was a success!! People really like it! I think I’m going to take my friends advice and drop out of med school and start an ice cream company. Either Anita cream (this one has so many good tag lines that can be associated with it), or brown bell…..

First cut is the Deepest…and yummiest!!

My first entry! I’m really looking forward to keeping this blog throughout medical school, especially since I’ve been thinking about starting it for over a year now. It’s going to get a lot more interesting once I start my rotations in July since I’ll have experiences to write about, but for now it’s purely going to be about FOOD…and nerdy things I find interesting. Sometimes I think I would have been way better being a chef or a bartender than going to medical school. There’s just something about infusing flavors and stimulating the palate that is so drawing. I guess mixing cranberry and vodka at parties will have to suffice. Plus, that’s all I’ll be prescribing anyway so I guess it worked out.

OK, so enough digressing and on to the food! WARNING: these pictures are explicit and will arouse multiple senses. They may also provoke hypersalivation, diaphoresis, and feelings of being frustrated as EFF because you can’t just eat the food off the screen!

Last week, after anxiously waiting 6 weeks to get a reservation, 5 of my friends and I ate at this amazing Italian restaurant, Lucia, in the Bishop Arts District. It actually worked out to be good timing because it was sort of a last hoorah before we have to start the painful process of studying for the boards.

When we got there the chef’s wife Jennifer went through the entire menu for us. I wish I could talk about food half as eloquently as she did because I literally wanted to eat everything on the menu after hearing her describe the options.

Right when we sat down I knew I loved the place when they had olives out…and they were warm which made them a MILLION times better! I hope there are guys out there who hate olives because I’m going to need to find one according to the olive theory (HIMYM!!!!!!).

We decided to get Salumi misti for our antipasti, which was a plate of house-made cured meats that is a specialty of the restaurant. I normally don’t eat a lot of meat, or pure fat in general, but this was incredible. I can still taste the lardo melting in my mouth. YUM. I wish fat wasn’t so bad for you because I would be PRADER WILLI-ing all over it.

Salumi misti

Everyone ordered different things and everything was amazing…so complex yet so cozy.

I’m really glad someone ordered the beef tongue because I really wanted to try it but I was too scared to order it as a meal. It was surprisingly delicious and the texture was much smoother than I imagined. I think everyone should try tongue (as a meal).

Gnocci with lima beans

some sort of pasta- i should have posted this right after i ate it so i would have remembered the name. oops!

Quail!!!!!!!!

Squid stew

I have to say that the veal was in the top 5 things I have ever put in my mouth…I still have dreams about it.

I love long dinners. I think we were there for almost 3 hours just savoring the flavors and talking. I really think that the keys to having a happy life are to eat good food and be in good company, and last night was full of both. I was actually considering not eating for a while afterwards because I didn’t want to bastardize my taste buds after such a delicious meal! But then I got hungry and ate Cookie Crisp in the morning…oops.

So my next entry is actually going to be a recipe!! I ordered this ice cream maker on a whim on Amazon so hopefully that arrives this week so I can start experimenting. Also, I hope my writing skills improve past the level of a 5th grader. I don’t think I’ve written anything this long that didn’t involve me taking notes (blindly copying my syllabus while thinking I’m paraphrasing it) in a LONG time.