Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sugarbomb's worst enemy

WIthout a doubt: the dentist.

Let's be honest here… I haven't been exactly, um, diligent when it comes to going to the dentist recently. Since I'm going to officially be unemployed on September 1st, I've been turning over a new leaf and making appointments at all sorts of doctors before my health insurance runs out -- I have no clue when I'll have insurance again, so I might as well go crazy and soak up as much healthcare as possible.

ANYWAY, six cavities later, and I'm here to tell you that eating desserts all day is bad for your teeth. Shocking! My dentist actually told me that he treats several chefs and they all have the worst teeth, probably because they are tasting food all day without brushing their teeth in between bites. Apparently I'm in for a world of hurt. And by "hurt" I mean "crowns and route canals".  Meep.  I failed to disclose the gallons of coffee and wine that I drink on a daily basis…the poor guy seemed horrified enough without the gory details.

Though we are natural born enemies, I actually like my dentist. After my third appointment this week, we still had plenty of things to talk about while my mouth was filled with 800 pieces of equipment. He's a fan of that show Cupcake Wars, which I've actually never seen.

I did notice a big bowl of lollipops on his windowsill and found this highly ironic. Sugar is what got me into this mess in the first place!  He didn't offer me a lollipop though. Maybe you only get them if you have no cavities, or if you are under the age of seven.

Anyway, to celebrate my journey to a decay-free mouth, I'm presenting a NON-DESSERT post. (gasp).


My house had a new year's resolution to eat more vegetables, and to boost this goal, we decided to join a CSA. If you're not familiar with the concept (Community Sustained Agriculture), you basically get a box of produce from a farm once a week. It's definitely a grab bag. I've eaten more kale and chard in the past four months than  I have in my entire life. Also, eggplant. Oh, the eggplant.

I usually hate eggplant because of its mushy texture, but I've been on a ratatouille kick lately. Ratatouille is my "oh crap - this giant box of vegetables is going bad at exactly the same time" dinner. It's a great way to use up summer produce - zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes, basil, onions, and peppers.

After it chills out in the pan for about 30 minutes, you're left with this:

Yum. It's really good served over egg noodles. I loosely used a recipe that I found on epicurious, but the basic gist was: sauté everything in a bunch of olive oil with a ton of garlic. Let it mellow. If it's looking dry, add some more olive oil or some (plain) tomato sauce.

Another plus about ratatouille: it's easy to eat when your jaw is numb from excessive amounts of dental work.


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