Friday, May 30, 2014

Weekend Flight

I'm sitting here in the airport waiting to board my flight to my hometown for my college friend's wedding this weekend. Just a few weekends ago I going the same place for the same reason. I guess I've reached the age where everyone I know is either married or getting married. :)

My "foodie" post missed the promised deadline. I fail.... again. I hope that I can make up for m y failure with enough fancy pictures and appropriate food indulgences to deceive you into believeing that I eat well balanced, creative, original and fresh ALL THE TIME. (HA!) Ok, bear with me folks, these meals go waaaaay back and I mean beginning of internship variety of "waaaay back". 

First up: 

Some sort of grilled egg and cheese sandwich with tomato and fresh persimmon on the side. (see what I mean by "bear with me"? I don't remember what I put in this or how I made it. But I DID take a picture of it. :)

This colorful concoction was thanks to Pinterest. Believe it or not, I actually do make a lot of the recipes I pin on my boards and for the most part I delete the ones that aren't worth making again. So far that's only been 1 or 2. This one was a success and made when I happened to have all the ingredients on hand. Arugula, pomegranate seeds, cashews and a homemade balsamic dressing (also pinterest). After I dug in I realized that the salad was supposed to be topped with fresh pear slices so I added them in after the fact but they didn't make the curtain call for food photo shoot.

This little beauty has become one of my go-to recipes for busy days. It's crockpot magic and guess what.... It's a pinterest find! I call it taco chili but you may christen it whatever you see fit. It is literally as easy as throwing everything in the crockpot and turning it on. By the time I get home from work, the house smells all yummy and I LOVE walking in and knowing dinner is ready. I top it will cheese, a dollop of sour cream and usually cilantro (all of which are optional of course). Add a few tortilla chips if it suits your fancy. This one is making it to the recipe page here on Short'n'Savory so look out for it!

Here's a veggie stir-fry that I was apparently too ravenous to plate before I took a picture and filled my growling stomach. I hope you'll excuse the wok featured as the serving dish. There's nothing like fresh veggies in a stirfry to add the necessary crunch!

Back to the basics. You know I love my sandwiches! This one I threw together for lunch when I was home for some reason... must have been a Saturday. I always like to toast or grill my sandwiches and it looks like an egg made it on the cast list here. 

OK... so this is most definitely not dietitian approved for many reasons. I would never admit to eating this to any of my cardiac, renal, or diabetic patients. Actually, I wouldn't admit it to anyone who asked so for the record, I made this for my room mate and just watched her eat it. Before baking the potato you make horizontal slices and fill them with cheese so that it gets all crispy and melty while the potato bakes! Then you top it with whatever you want or whatever you have in the fridge. Sources say it was yummy.

 This is a little more acceptable as a balanced meal. It's low on the protein side as most of mine are. What can I say, I'm a sucker for carbs. This is a very simple spinach salad with purple cabbage, bell peppers, and topped with a sliced pear. The rest of the pear served as dessert and my side dish was black bean hummus with toasted pita bread.

This obviously isn't a meal but it's making this post because I love this little tin. I picked it up as a give-away at our dietetic conference in April. I love to fill it with my own little version of trail mix and it's a perfect 1 oz container. Simply awesome! 

Above is my first attempt at a black bean burger.... While it wasn't bad, it doesn't look great. However, I felt the need to post it becausemy second attempt was such an improvement! I've been wanting to find a great black bean burger recipe for a while and I've done some experimenting. I finally found one that I thought was closest to what I wanted out of it. Then I tweaked it to my liking and the following resulted...

It was so awesome! I loved it despite the scoffs I received! Not only that but the leftovers were awesome too! Add to the fact that I was able to serve it on my mom's fresh baked bread rolls from home and it was a dinner to beat all dinners. But that's just my humble foodie opinion. 

 Alright, down to serious business. Brussel sprouts. Why do these tiny, cute little cabbage like veggies get such a bad wrap? Before making these particular ones, I had tasted brussel sprouts just once before. While at Sprout's Farmers Market one fine day, I spotted them on sale. So I got adventurous and grabbed a few to try out on my own. I pulled a recipe from my trusty pinterest board and wah la! Baked, basalmic glazed brussel sprouts. My PSA here is... give brussel sprouts a try, what did they ever do to you? Just, whatever you do, don't boil them! 

I seem to receive the most dissent in my meal choices when meat is lacking from the menu. Here is another example. A veggie sandwich featuring one egg, grilled bell pepper, sliced avocado, hummus as spread, and red leaf lettuce sandwiched between warm toasty whole wheat pita bread. How's that for scrumptious? No? Well, I thought it was. :)


Another meatless meal. Bear with me here meat-eaters and facebook friends (who have already seen a lot of these). Most of the time I'm too lazy to cook meat and rarely have any in the fridge that I can quickly make. It requires either making a special trip to the store or planning in advance enough to thaw the meat. Keep in mind I'm gone between 8 and 12 hours of the day and there's still work to be done when I finally return. Sometimes I take time to shower.... ;) So I made black bean tacos one night with the remainder of an avocado. The trick is to season the black beans so you aren't eating plain old canned beans. I threw some purple cabbage in a skillet and sauteed it up. Fresh salsa finished it off nicely!

Alright, we're already up to just a few days ago! I made this marinade for some chicken I had thawed because  it had been in the freezer for a lengthy period of time. Totally oblivious to the fact that Monday was a holiday and the first official day for summer barbecueing... I planned to grill up this marinaded chicken and sadly found the apartment barbecues well used and very unavailable. Thank goodness for my multiple use panini grill! 

I grilled the chicken and made chicken salad for the summery (aka HOT) Memorial Day.

Then I used the leftover chicken for a sandwich today which I didn't think about photographing because... I was running out of the house to the airport. 

Alright, I think I'm satisfied with this food update. It hits at least some of the highlights of my adventures in the kitchen over the last few months. 

Since my last post I've started my final clinical rotation and I'm really enjoying it. One of the nice things is that I have regular hours. Maybe I'll have more time for kitchen adventures and consequent blogging! If there's some "recipe" (and I'm using the term VERY lightly) that you would like to inspect, feel free to comment and I'll see what I can share! 

That's all folks!!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Delayed Update

Considering my last post was before I had actually started rotations for my internship year, I think it is safe to say that I officially failed at blogging through my year as a dietetic intern. For anyone who has been through a dietetic internship, you will understand why. For those of you who haven't and never plan to... suffice it to say that my reasons for not blogging are justified. 
I spent a few nights stuck to my work.... literally.

Maybe it would have sufficed for me to simply write quick posts here and there but what's done is done. (or in this case; not done)

So much has happened this year that I wouldn't even know where to begin explaining it all. I'm currently midway through my spring break which is a glorious week of no rotation. Unfortunately for me this means that I should be spending my time catching up on all the side-projects that I've let slide over the last several months. Instead I've been lounging in bed, taking naps and enjoying the blissful feelings of NOTHING! And that, dear friends, is why I'm blogging now. 

Let's do a very abbreviated recap of the major events since my last post (sadly in August)

Remainder of August: Foodservice rotation: tons of projects and little to no guidance, 120 mile commute every day.

 Upheaval of the internship due to a change in staffing which left us without a director. I just about went out of my mind trying to manage my foodservice projects. Got sick.

Finished food service and turned in the first of many humongous binders full of projects. I started my WIC rotation right here in sacramento. Only 20 minutes of driving. Yay! I got very familiar with making handouts and telling single moms the benefits of breastfeeding and not propping bottles up to feed their babies. Also had some great learning experience working with an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) in which I learned more about breastfeeding than I ever thought I would. 
Some of my WIC companions at our monthly potluck lunch

Back to French Camp for my first clinical rotation of 10 weeks. The 120 mile commute was old hat by then and I was resigned to becoming good friends with pump #4 at the gas station down the street. Got sick again, some form of the flu this time despite my required flu shot. On a non-internship related note but one that is very significant: I started dated the most fantastic guy that I was convinced couldn't exist in today's world. :) November was a good month.

 I was feeling very thankful for my experience as a diet tech because it set me up very well for my clinical rotation. This hospital was all paper charting which was new to me but I learned a lot and worked with some fantastic dietitians. Went home for Christmas and New Years and caught an awful stomach bug which laid me out flat for about 3 days and took weeks to fully recover from.
The awesome dietitians at San Joaquin General Hospital

Presented my first case study on diverticulitis and finished up my clinical rotation in French Camp. My preceptors took me out to dinner in Stockton to celebrate. I miss those people and I still keep in touch. It was such an excellent introduction into clinical dietetics for me. I started my rotation in dialysis which mainly took place in Elk Grove. Got hit in a pretty stupid accident on my way to a patient meeting for dialysis. I was out of my car for the next month and a half. It doesn't look that bad but if you look closely at that back tire.... yes, it isn't supposed to be at that angle. 

My poor car

 Finished my dialysis rotation where I never once passed out despite all the needles draining blood from peoples' arms... shivers. I learned a lot and realized that nutrition in dialysis is completely different than anything else and you should value your kidneys while you have them. Care for your kidneys people! I had a visit from my guy and a week later, from my mom. She came in time to celebrate my birthday. I've hit a quarter century everyone! Time for that life crisis I guess. Started a rotation in School Nutrition. 
Birthday Dinner with Mom!

FINALLY got my car back after it needed extensive body work and finally an axle replaced. Probably should have been totalled but.... 
I thoroughly enjoyed my rotation in school nutrition. I miss teaching little kids all about healthy eating and my preceptor very kindly told me that this is my niche and it's what I was meant to do. :)

Did 2 weeks in elderly nutrition which flew by and I mostly worked from home. It was a nice change of pace to be sure. Then I started the rotation for which I was most apprehensive: at a community health clinic that specializes in HIV treatment. For all of my anxiety, I learned a lot from this rotation and did enjoy my time. I did work some long days though and I was tired most of the time. It was nice to get back to electronic charting for a change. I went down to SoCal for the annual dietetic conference and mostly enjoyed the time I got to spend with the other interns. It was a true bonding experience. 
My preceptor and a coworker on my last day of rotation at the clinic.

My awesome co-interns at the annual dietetic conference.

Here we are in May. It's a busy month. I just finished 2 weeks in long term care from Napa to Stockton. I've been all over Northern California this year. After this week is over I'll be starting my final clinical rotation in Roseville. I can't believe I'm starting my last rotation (not including 2 weeks of an elective rotation at the end) aaaaa! I'm so so so anxious to be done. 

Ok! now that I've written the world's longest, most visually boring post, I can say that I'm caught up in my blogging. Surprisingly, despite my reprieve from writing anything, I have continued to take pictures of my adventures in the kitchen. I'll plan to provide PLENTY of food-tastic pictures of my creations in my next post. That's a promise!