Lately I've been reminding myself of what I probably will be like as an 85 year-old woman.
I shuffle around the place dressed in a faded jogging suit, its pockets and sleeves stuffed with Kleenex, and smelling like Vic's Vapor Rub. I'm perpetually cold, and wear two pairs of socks, even when I go to bed (which is around 8:30).
I can't concentrate for two minutes on anything; guaranteed time-wasters like Twitter or Facebook hold no interest for me and I find myself wishing I had a good knitting project.
The kicker, though, amid all this depressing evidence, is that I re-used a teabag today. Ugh.
In my defense, our household has been sick for almost two weeks with colds & the flu and it tends to suck the life right out of you after a while. Not to be down or anything, but you should know it's not always all rainbows and sunshine around here. There are Kleenex boxes stashed at one meter intervals around the house and my stomach muscles ache from coughing. I'm at the point where I have to complain to someone and it may as well be you! Sorry.
It's strange to not have an appetite, especially for me, still the family has to eat and so we've been enjoying our fair share of comfort food.
Take this hearty soup and batter bread, for example. The chorizo give off enough heat to clear the sinuses a bit and the bold flavors of cilantro, lime and garlic can awaken even the most desensitized taste buds. There's no doubt a good soup does wonders for the soul; I'm even cheering up just writing about it.
Oh, and it's high time I shared my favorite corn bread recipe. Moist and rich, it's a cinch to make and always comes out like a dream. We eat ours drenched in honey.
Chorizo & Black Bean Soup
1 chorizo sausage (about 150g)
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 green onions
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon whole cumin
2 cups cooked black beans
1 large fresh tomato, chopped
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup corn
garnish: fresh cilantro, lime wedges, sour cream
In a small, heavy skillet set over medium heat, gently toast the cumin until the aromas begin to be released and seeds are lightly colored. Set aside to cool, then grind to a powder in a mortar and pestle.
Slice chorizo lengthwise and lay the flat, cut side down on your cutting board. Slice entire sausage in 1/4 inch pieces. Heat a heavy, medium sized pot and add chorizo. Cook for about five minutes, until the pieces start to color a bit. Remove from pan and reserve.
Slice white parts of onions, reserving the green for later, and add to the pot along with olive oil, garlic, and cumin. Saute gently, combining everything well together. Add black beans, tomato, stock, and corn to the pot and mix well.
Simmer on low for about 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. Ladle into bowls, add chorizo pieces, and squeeze some lime over. Slice green onions and toss over the soup. Top with fresh cilantro and serve with sour cream.
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
3 teaspoon baking powder
3 eggs, well beaten
1 cup milk
1/4 cup cream
1/3 cup butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 400F.
Butter an 8-1/2 x 11-inch baking pan. Sift the flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar, and baking powder into a large bowl. Mix thoroughly. Beat eggs and milk together until well mixed, add to cornmeal mixture and combine well. Beat in the cream, and lastly, the butter.
Pour batter into the buttered pan and bake for 18-20 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean. Slice into triangles and serve warm.