Saturday, October 4, 2014

Pasta Puttanesca and cookbook review

Lately I have been enjoying borrowing cookbooks from the library. Currently, I have a book on knife skills, and "Get Cooking" by the precociously brilliant young British chef Sam Stern.

I like his cookbook for several reasons.

  1. His recipes are foods teens like; some elegant, some plain, but all appealing.
  2. He writes like a kid, not a food critic. The language is engaging and it makes the instructions feel easier, even though the techniques are the same used in more erudite cookbooks. For example, "Drain. Slap back into the warm pan. Jiggle for 1 minute to dry."
  3. Pictures of every recipe.
  4. Large print and only one recipe per page. (Yes, I am getting older. Ironic that a book targeted toward teens is perfect for the middle aged...)
  5. Sidebars with variations, ideas, and simple side dishes.

I've tried a couple of the recipes so far and liked them.

Tonight I used one of his recipes to make a puttanesca sauce from scratch. There is no comparison to the stuff that is sold in the supermarket by the same name. It was so delicious, I was three quarters of the way through my plate before I was able to slow down and eat mindfully (rather than like a starving wolf).

I will definitely be making this again!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Now THAT's a bruise!

Update on my fall at the gym on the 7th of January. Here is how my leg looks today, the 13th:

Look, I'm a rainbow!

It looks pretty spectacular, but now that the swelling has gone and it's "just" a bruise, it doesn't really hurt (unless touched, obviously).

I was avoiding anything higher impact than walking, but yesterday I did a little jogging on the treadmill and it's totally fine.

Today is warm, so I'm gearing up to go for a real, outdoor-type bike ride! Haven't done so in ages, I'll be happy to get out in the sun.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Humiliation at the gym

Yesterday I was feeling really tired, with a scratchy throat. With a potential cold coming on, I really thought about skipping the gym, but I talked myself into going. Next time I should listen to my instincts.

I decided on just a light workout, and did 15 minutes on the rowing machine. So far, so good.

Then comes my moment in the spotlight... I stood up, and without even pausing to get my balance (or apparently figure out which leg was which) I attempted to step over the machine to get off.

I'm not even sure what happened; either the seat slid forward and I got caught on it, or I simply didn't lift my leg up enough and totally tripped over the whole machine and went down like a sack of rocks.


What the?


How humiliating!


The girl on the machine nearest me doesn't bat an eyelash. However, a young man nearby got off his machine to make sure I was all right. Embarrassing, but also made me feel better about humanity.

I got up as soon as I could and assured him I was all right (I wan't really, but there was nothing he could do about it), thanked him, and tried not to limp (or trip) going down the stairs.

My lower back had already begun to spasm, I could see a massive bruise beginning to swell on my calf, and my elbow had a matching bruise and carpet burn.

I went right into the shower and stood in the warm water and stretched my back, until the spasm feeling went away. Slathered all my owies with arnica gel and went to bed.

This morning my back is sore but not too bad. Very grateful to have come through with nothing more than bumps and bruises.