Friday, January 29, 2010

And they all lived happily, sooner or later.

Ok so this story has an ambitious beginning, kind of a sad middle where I remember that I don't actually like pasta sauce, and a happy ending where I eventually realize that I am willing to eat just about anything these days.

Ok so.  I can eat oatmeal and popcorn and muffins, but none of these are technically meals.  Pasta sauce is part of a meal, and was also something I figured I could make iodine-less so I bought a zillion tomatoes.

Good thing I have that tiny food whizzer.  ANYways, whizzed fresh tomatoes mostly just look like tomato-smoothie.  Urgh?

Whizzed fresh tomatoes with a bunch of other stuff that has been simmering for, like, five hours looks like sauce!

The chunky bits is carrot, not delicious beef.  I'm not supposed to have ground meats.  But this is the part of the story where I remember how fond I am of cream sauces, and how turkey, unless you bake it, is kind of gross, and how rice is not pasta.

This was a sad day for me, and was followed by a few more sad days until I just threw the rest of the sauce in the freezer.  And then I ate nothing but popcorn and oatmeal for three days straight and then I remembered the sauce in the freezer and I think I was starved for nutrients, because it. was. great.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

In which, with one fell swoop, I make myself lunch for the week.

Hey kids, what's new.  I suppose you'd like to know how this whole iodine-less business is going, and the answer is both 'shitty' and 'fine.'  'Shitty' because sometimes I just want a quick snack, and I don't want it to be carrot sticks or kiwis eaten furiously over the sink because I'm so hungry.  'Shitty' because none of my food really tastes like food.  My chili tastes like a bunch of beans and tomatoes, because I realized at the last minute that chili powder has salt in it, and that all the things you think are in chili powder don't seem to add up to a chili-flavor.  'Shitty' because I'm so sick of bagels I could die.

But then 'fine' because I made the bagels that I was so sick of and which were rapidly going stale into bagel chips, so I have a quick, carb-loaded snack until those run out.  'Fine' because I can still have popcorn if I air-pop it, and if I add olive oil and kosher salt it is the only thing I can eat that tastes like food.  'Fine' because if I can't put dried fruit in my oatmeal, oatmeal + honey is actually pretty damned good.  And then fine because of these:

Deathless muffins!  I am a triumphstress of substitutions.

Not actual butter.

Eggs with all the delicious, iodiney parts removed.

Subbing oil + applesauce for butter and egg whites for eggs is actually standard health-nutty practice, so I like to think of this as embracing Victoria.  When in Rome, etc. (...go on...)

And then various flours with hella bran, because what I totally need in this oatmeal-popcorn-veggie-eating phase of my life is more fiber?

Whatever.  This genuinely looks tasty.

Final verdict:  These suckas is dense, but in a delicious sort of way.  I have a pretty heavy hand with the add-ins, so they're riddled with cranberries and pecans (the walnut's less-healthy but infinitely-superior cousin.  To quote my secret internet girlfriend Lauren, walnuts have been wasting my time).  One of them isn't going to fill me up, but two of them might do just fine.  I should be sick to death of them in about six days, at which point it'll be time to make...I don't know...iodine-free pitas, or something.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Dear Cantaloupe,

Seriously, why are you not a cookie?  Become a cookie.  You will be fired immediately if I do not see some rapid cookie-becoming.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Pursuit of saltlessness

Ok so, a life without bagels is essentially a life not worth living, but any commercially-prepared bagels are bound to have salt in them, and salt is my kryptonite.  But bagels can't be that hard to make, right?

RIGHT!!  You thought I was setting you up for some big catastrophe there, but it turns out that bagels are surprisingly easy.

Make dough, as with bread.

Make balls and empoken balls with hole.

Leave alone, until fatter.


Warning; boiled bread looks, as my Foods 11 cooking partner Jovan used to say of everything we made with dough, like fat people.

To cure of fat-people look, bake!  The end.  Some of them are a little rustic-looking.

Some of them are very rustic-looking.

But they are chewy and good, toasted up nicely and spread well with some salt-free peanut butter (bless its beautiful hide).

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Welcome to my saltless hell

Ok so on the one hand, we finally have a date for radiation so wooooooooooooo!  Getting this done!

On the other hand, it is exactly one month from today which means that between now and then I'll be on a low-iodine diet in order to starve any rogue thyroid cells so that when I go on the radioactive iodine they'll hork it down without thinking.  And then a-splode.

So, iodine.  Most salt is iodized, but I have a big happy box of non-iodized salt for my use in the next month.  The PROBLEM is that almost EVERYTHING ELSE IN THE WORLD is made with iodized salt.

Bread.  Pasta.  Everything that is canned.  Everything that comes in a box.  Everything that is ordered in a restaurant.  EVERYTHING THAT I WILL WANT TO EAT EVER!!!!!  Also dairy, because cow teats are cleaned with an iodine solution.

So.  This blog for the next month will probably devolve into a chronicle of the various things I tried to make myself without using butter or eggs (both verboten) before I give up and just eat platefuls of boiled broccoli and chicken (which I have to buy fresh, because frozen chicken is packaged with salt).  UnTIL then, here are some things I have been eating WITH A RELISH for the last week:

Mr Noodle With An Egg.  A childhood staple and my go-to lazy-man's lunch.  The noodles, broth, and egg yolk are all off-limits.  I can still have the egg whites and the hot water, though.

Steak with broccoli salad and sweet potatoes.  Not the steak, broccoli or potatoes per se, just the salty crust or mayonnaisey dressing that makes them all worth eating.

Pickles.  Pickes are made entirely of salt.  I ate an entire jar yesterday, and then wished I hadn't.

This was my 'last meal' yesterday.  Salty fries with a salty burger on a salty bun with salty onion straws and salty bbq sauce.  The lettuce was probably not salty.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Intratubulettes!  Did I ever tell you about my life list?  Right, so, one of my non-quantifiable life resolutions is to Use The Things That I Have to Make My Life More Fun.  Joel and I got a raclette set for our wedding and *shhh* haven't used it yet, so one of my quantifaible-and-check-off-able life resolutions was to have a raclette party.
A raclette set is a tiny indoor grill with little trays on the bottom.

Ours are itty-bitty, we were trying to feed seven people, so even though our set came with two, Morgan and Shannon brought over their massive one.  The main deterrent in raclette is all the prep work, because you literally have to chop a thousand things. 

It's really no more work than, say, making a massive stir-fry, except that you end up dirtying every bowl in your house.  Do not attempt this if you don't have a dishwasher.

All the usual suspects were present: peppers, onions, mushrooms, broccoli.  This being our first hosted raclette, I thought we'd play a game called Will It Grill (that being a misnomer, becasue of course it will grill.  The real question is whether it will taste good afterwards).  To that end, I threw in a few rogue vegetables like leeks, edamame beans, and eggplant.  All were surprisingly tasty (full points go to the grilled leeks), which may or may not have had something to do with the roasted garlic and herbed butters that ended up everywhere.
So!  Grilling.  We accidentally kept the teeny ones quasi-segregated into vegetables

and meat.

The large one was omnivoricious.

But what of the teeny trays on the bottom?  That is where you throw some cheese to melt so that you can pour it over your...whatever.  Or you take your grilled whatever and put it on a slice of bread with some cheese, and put that in the teeny tray and roast it.  There are no pictures of the teeny trays because I was eating what was in them.
The other problem with raclette, related to the myriad of bowls, is space.  There will almost be no room on your table for your plates.  You will have to relocate your beverage station to a side table, and if someone brings a leetle gasoline pump to mix cosmos in, so much the better.

In keeping with the spirit of Using Things Because I Have Them, I busted out the napkins that Gnoe sent me from the Netherlands. 

My instinct is to totally hang on to these and hoard them forever, because when will I have such terrifically Dutch napkins again?  But life is for living and napkins are for using, and raclette is a Swiss dish and while I KNOW THAT SWITZERLAND IS NOT THE NETHERLANDS, it's near enough.

So!  With all the grilling and melting and more grilling and prodding, raclette takes hours to eat.  Make sure you have plenty of time, and excellent company.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Neither rain nor sleet nor snow nor hail...

Bonne 2010, mes amis.  Welcome to the new year.  I have many things to say re: Christmas break and caramel squares and that one run I took which totally justified bringing my sports bra all the way to the  mainland, because I felt fantastic afterwards (ok, I felt horrible, but that is because I ran with a belly full of eggs and sauce.  Maybe two hours later I felt fantastic), but for now all you need to know is that I've found my mail.


Because we stopped getting mail round about the time the construction on the moat started OVER A MONTH AGO.  Apparently the mail carrier won't come to your door if your door is blocked by eight hulking neanderthals who (despite being construction-workers-for-hire) suck at tools, and even after those neaderthals have vacated the premises, the mail carrier won't come if your front walkway was removed and replaced with a sea of mud and gravel and mud and mud.  Not even if you try to lure him with a make-shift plank path.

So before Christmas Joel and I trekked out to the Big Post Office Downtown to see if they had our mail, but all they had was a security guard who went to go talk to a guy who said there was a note in our file which meant either that our mail was either being held or re-routed, but if it was being held, they didn't have it, and if it was being re-routed, they didn't know where to.

We put it out of our minds for the next 12 days because Christmas is not a time for fretting, and we were on the mainland and couldn't do anything about anything.  So.  We got home on Saturday night, and as we're approaching the house Joel is all, I expect a huge mess, and I'm all, I EXPECT STEPS!  They spent that whole WEEK before we left saying things like, Only a few more days until STEPS, so I expect STEPS to have been procured in our absence.

No steps.

It turns out that the construction crew quit the day after we left, for reasons I will not get into here.  So it doesn't look like we'll be getting any steps in the near future, which means that all of my shoes are ruined every time I leave the house, and also my MAIL!  My free books!  My ebay purchases!  And our heating bill still comes to us through the door and not through the intrawebs.

So.  We headed back down to the Big Post Office this morning and talked to the security guard who talked to the guy who got us our mail (wheeeee!  But also without asking for any ID which, yikes) and who told us to install a mailbox on the driveway.  I'm wondering if we can't just put out a tupperware container and write 'Mailbox' on it?  Maybe I will make for it one of those little red flags.

Aaaanyhoodle, that's about the only thing we can do re: Our Wacky House.  For the rest, we can just go back to being inconvenienced while our landlords try to sort things out.  This whole thing will be hilarious in retrospect, I'm sure.