Yesterday I came home early from work with a stomach flu. I haven’t had a stomach flu in years -probably not since leaving the farm, to be honest. Anyway, I seemed to remember my mom giving my brothers and me some sort of magic liquid that made the flu go away, so naturally I called her yesterday to ask for “you know, that magic liquid that made the flu go away?” recipe. I remember it having a raw egg in it. My mom, wise one that she is, said she has no recollection of serving us raw eggs ever. Says it was probably some recipe grandma gave her that she doesn’t remember. So…I didn’t get the recipe I was looking for.
Somewhat disappointed about not getting the magic recipe, I consoled myself by thinking of how being sick wasn’t all that bad. The following thoughts ran through my head:
“At least I didn’t have any meetings or have to miss class today.”
“At least my back doesn’t seem to be hurting anymore.”
“At least I can breathe again because the cold I had last week seems to be gone.”
“At least I don’t have to chase cows.”
Wait. What’s that last one? “At least I don’t have to chase cows?!?”
I’m all for looking on the bright side of things but the fact that “At least I don’t have to chase cows” ran through my head as something normally associated with the flu scared even me! Who chases cows when they have the flu?
Umm, oh that’s right – me. Once upon a time, maybe in junior high, I was home sick with the stomach flu. My dad came in from outside and said to me, “What are you up to?”
“I’m sick. That’s why I’m not at school.”
“Huh. How bad are you? Want to chase cows?” (I’m sure there was a wink to go with that question.)
“Not really. I’m sick. That’s why I’m not —”
“Can you make it 20 minutes?”
“I don’t know, Dad. I don’t feel —-”
“Ok, see you out there!”
Next thing I know I’m out in the pasture helping my dad chase cows. Actually, I don’t think I did much chasing because I had the flu and couldn’t really run anywhere except to the bathroom.
Anyway, turns out I didn’t need that magic liquid recipe yesterday because as they say, laughter is the best medicine. Really – how can you not laugh at the absurdity of thanking your lucky stars that you don’t have to chase cows as a consolation for being sick?! Guess chasing cows cured me, one way or another.
Today I’m back on solid foods and decided to make this spinach risotto. It’s much more appealing than the cinnamon-sugar toast I was eating yesterday.
Spinach Risotto with Roquefort
In a 2 to 3 quart pan over medium-high heat, stir 1 c. chopped onion and 1 tsp. minced garlic in 1 Tbsp olive oil until onion is barely limp. Add 3 cups packed rinsed spinach leaves and stir until wilted, about 1 minute. Add 4 cups vegetable stock. Puree mixture, one half at a time. Return to pan and bring to a simmer. Add about 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Makes about 4 1/2 cups.
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 tsp. olive oil
1 c. arborio rice
3 – 4 c. hot spinach broth (see above)
1 Tbsp Roquefort or other blue cheese (I always use just a wee bit more)
In a 2 – 3 quart nonstick pan over medium-high heat, mix onion, garlic and olive oil. Add rice and stir until onion is barely limp, 2 – 3 minutes.
Stir 1 c. spinach broth and bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to maintain simmer and stir until liquid is absorbed, 2 – 3 minutes. Add 2 more cups broth, 1/2 c. at a time, stirring after each addition until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender but still has a slight bite, 20 – 25 minute total. If rice isn’t done, add more broth and stir until risotto is creamy.
Crumble cheese into risotto and stir until blended. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Makes about 3 1/2 cups.
Photo from Michael Diener‘s awesome iPhone.