Friday, July 21, 2017

Italian Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey + wearFIGS Giveaway!

I've partnered with wearFIGS for this awesome giveaway! One lucky winner will get a set of scrubs or medical outerwear. Get it for family/friends/yourself - no better way to show love and appreciation for those in the medical field saving lives and helping patients. Because after 28 hr call, you just want to be in pajamas :)

I started off 2nd year with the emergency room. Since I ended the last 2 weeks of intern year on VA nights, this means I basically spent 1 month in scrubs.
Italian Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Being a second year in the emergency room is way better than starting off as a brand new intern because I actually know how to order things, and you get to see more complex patients.

It's weird saying I'm a 2nd year. An ob-gyn consult for a vaginal bleed literally asked if I was really an intern since I seemed to know a lot for a July intern ("um, just so you know, your signature says you're a 1st year still.") Whoops - gotta change my signature. 
Italian Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I am not and never will be an emergency room person - if you like a fast pace, tons of action, seeing people quickly then sending them inpatient or home, and making up the plan as you go, then emergency medicine is for you. 

I prefer to have time to sit and think, round for hours in my patients, deliberate on plans, see the same patients day after day, and write super long notes - hence I'm too "internal medicine."
Italian Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
The upside about ER though is not ever worrying about what to wear. Scrubs, scrubs, scrubs, vests, jackets, scrubs is your uniform.

Scrubs look great if you're muscular, 6 ft 2 in, and fit in them like B. They don't look great when you're 5ft and petite and swimming in them.  Especially when I wear my Texas county hospital scrubs (where an XS there somehow = women's size L for tall people), and I have to roll the waist four times over.  

So while B looks like a surgery attending, I look like a high school kid wearing clothes 2x too big (which doesn't instill a lot of confidence when you have a huge 300 lb aggressive male patient with alcohol and drug intoxication in the ER).
Luckily that's what wearFIGs is here to fix. I'm loving the women's vest from them - it's versatile enough for when I wear scrubs on 28 hr call / night shifts (plus it's fitted so you can see I do have a waist), yet stylish enough that I can pair it with my Internal Medicine work clothes for daytime. It's thin, light, and has 5 pockets to hold all my patient's notes.

Anyways, I'm sharing this wonderful cheesecake I made for an "after 4th of July" party (since I had to work the A side/trauma side 4th of July night!) and to celebrate finishing the ER forever (whoohoo!). It's an Italian ricotta cheesecake adapted from Billy Parisi, topped with delicious honey and figs. It's easy to make and super classy!
Italian Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
GIVEAWAY: wearFIGS and I have partnered up to for an amazing raffle - one lucky winner will get a set of scrubs or outerwear (any gender)! You just need a shipping address in the US.  Giveaway ends July 24th, 2017 midnight - winner will be chosen randomly! Best of luck to all! 

[UPDATE: Congrats to Gail T for being the lucky winner! I will contact you shortly. Thanks for entering everyone!] 

Italian Ricotta Cheesecake with Figs and Honey

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 8oz package of cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
2 eggs
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon cornstarch

sliced fresh figs
1/4 cup toasted pistachios
honey, to drizzle

CRUST:  Preheat the oven to 350°.

Crush the graham crackers in a food processor until finely ground. Mix the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon together in medium bowl until combined. Press onto the bottom of your spring form pan to make a thick crust (I used a 6 inch). Bake for about 8 min, until golden brown.  Set aside to cool.

CHEESECAKE: In a large bowl with an electric eggbeater, beat the cream cheese, ricotta, and sugar until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add your eggs and beat to fully mix. Add lemon juice and cornstarch and mix until combined.

Pour the batter over top of the crust. (Optional: make a water bath by placing the springform inside a baking pan filled without 1 inch of water so the cheesecake bakes evenly to avoid cracks in your cheesecake.) Bake for 40 minutes or until the center is slightly loose.

TOPPING: Cool to room temperature on a rack and then cool completely into the refrigerator. Garnish the top of the cheesecake with fresh sliced figs, toasted pistachios, and honey.
Read More »

Monday, July 17, 2017

Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini + wearFIGS Giveaway!

We have a guest post by B, who has a few words to share on this awesome giveaway by wearFIGS (and on being the patient husband of a food blogger)! 

Being a husband of a food blogger leads to lots of delayed gratification - like not being allowed to ever eat anything unless there’s daylight and the arrangement is perfect even if I'm hangry. It makes Natalie happy so I put up with it. 

Although I prefer to be "The Mysterious B" and never write/post for the blog, my wife has compelled me to write a post because I know way more about scrubs and comfort than her.
Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini + wearFIGS Giveaway! | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
One of the perks of being a surgical resident is not having to wear clinic clothes. Seeing my wife dress up in nice clothes and go to the hospital makes me cringe. I’m sorry, honey, but you chose the wrong specialty.
Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini + wearFIGS Giveaway! | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I consider myself very fortunate to be able to wear scrubs all day, everyday— they’re light and if I get blood on them who cares? The hospital will wash them. 

Attendings at my hospital in NYC are required to wear suits. My surgery attending said, "I thought the perk of being an attending is wearing what you want. If I wanted to wear suits instead of scrubs, I would have been a banker."
Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini + wearFIGS Giveaway! | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I am a creature of comfort. I wore basketball shorts and T-shirts in college, sweats pants during med school, and now I wear scrubs all the time, even as pajamas (Natalie makes sure they're clean). 

Attire-wise, its been a very comfortable decade for me and I’ll continue it forever (or as long as I can).
Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini + wearFIGS Giveaway! | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Helping me continue that trend of comfort is wearFIGS and their awesome vest.  The vest is form fitting, comfortable (obviously), has many pockets to carry all my crap - tape, scissors, betadine sticks, gauze, antibiotic ointments, and blades. 

It's also stylish, which my wife wishes upon more of my clothes (too bad, she's locked in!).

Any guy looking for something to wear in the hospital when it gets cold will be had pressed to do better (or wives/girlfriends wishing their parters to be more stylish). Or the vest can be used for everyday wear. 

What are you waiting for? Go get it!
Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini + wearFIGS Giveaway! | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
GIVEAWAY: wearFIGS and I have partnered up to for an amazing raffle - one lucky winner will get a set of scrubs or outerwear (any gender)! You just need a shipping address in the US. Giveaway ends July 24th, 2017 midnight - winner will be chosen randomly! Best of luck to all! 

[UPDATE: Congrats to Gail T for being the lucky winner! I will contact you shortly. Thanks for entering everyone!] 

Fig, Prosciutto, and Gruyère Panini

1-2 fresh figs, stems removed and sliced
3-4 slices of prosciutto
1-2 slcies gruyère cheese
handful spinach
2 slices bread (I'm using Trader Joe's multigrain bread)
Olive oil

Heat your panini press or stovetop for your pan. Brush your bread slices with olive oil.

Layer the gruyère cheese, prosciutto, greens, and figs onto the bread. Press in the panini or sear on stovetop until the crust is golden brown. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Read More »

Friday, July 14, 2017

Nutella Banana French Toast

We recently had a family reunion where everyone went to Canada! Because of work, B and I could only catch the tail end over the weekend (only Montreal) but better late than never! It's so close to us now we have no excuse for not visiting. 

Plus we caught the 150th birthday of Canada - pretty neat!
Nutella Banana French Toast | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Anyone who is related to me enjoys eating, so no surprise we spent a lot of time around food.  I'll be sharing a post of the foods we ate later on in another travel / Instagram series  :)
Nutella Banana French Toast | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
The entire side from my mom all stayed at an enormous Airbnb with a fabulous kitchen right next to the Notre Dame cathedral. My family had bought the most massive loaf of bread I had ever seen, which was like a pillow. My family all flew out a day earlier than us, and thus, we were left with an entire loaf of this fluffy bread.

I instantly thought of french toast, especially given all the Canada maple syrup everywhere. I knew I had to carry this bread back to the US to make delicious french toast.

I told B, "We are taking this bread back to the US!" He gave me the one eyebrow raised look, but he's been a food blogger husband long enough to accept my oddities.
Nutella Banana French Toast | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Also, at airport security, we found out my small maple jelly jar was contained too much liquid for our carry on. I begged the security to let us bring it if we reduced the liquid (maple products are not cheap!) and so B and I drank pure maple jelly right in front of the security man til it hit the right liquid limit.

This is when B gave me the two eyebrow raised look. Hey, I'm proving this maple syrup is perfectly harmless (except maybe to my pancreas).
Nutella Banana French Toast | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
B and I both love brunch but neither of us had made french toast before, so it took me a couple tries to get the hang of it. 

- toast your bread beforehand so it stays firm while frying 
- the more eggs in your egg milk mixture, the firmer the toast
- let the bread soak up the egg milk mixture completely by seeping it for a minute (not just a quick dip) for maximum flavor.
- I add minimal sugar to the egg milk mixture since I add powdered sugar and syrup after

Once I perfected my frying technique, I literally ate French toast 5 days in a row (we had a lot of fluffy bread to be finished!). French Toast recipe adapted from Simply Recipes

Nutella Banana French Toast

3 eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons of cinnamon
4 thick slices of old bread (or toasted)

1/3 cup nutella
1-2 bananas
whipped cream
chocolate chips
maple syrup

If your bread is fresh, toast for about 5 min. In a bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, and cinnamon until combined and pour into a shallow bowl/plate with rims for dipping. Place each slice of bread into the milk egg mixture, allowing the bread to soak in the liquid.

Melt some butter in a large pan over medium high heat. Lay the bread slices onto the pan. Cook the french toast until browned on one side, then flip and brown the other side.

Spread nutella on the french toast, top with bananas, and layer as many slices as you wish. When ready to serve, add whipped cream and chocolate chips and maple syrup. Enjoy!
Read More »

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Mini Coconut Cream Pie

Although I'm a 2nd year resident, I don't get to work with the interns for quite a long time - 2.5 months because of how my rotations are set up (this is super atypical).

While I'm bummed not to get to know the new interns as well, they have time to learn the computer system/pagers and re-learn some medicine that may have been forgotten during 4th year medical school vacation (at least, before I take them under my wing hehe).
Mini Coconut Cream Pie | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I made these mini coconut cream pies a while back, during one of my last rotations, the Fitkin floor, as an intern (I used many of the same ingredients from my Chocolate Cake with Coconut Frosting). Fitkin is general medicine rotation which pairs up interns and 3rd years together on a month of 28 hr call - it's designed to give us a lot of independence to prep the interns to be residents and to prep the 3rd years to be attendings.
Mini Coconut Cream Pie | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Since I had this rotation at the end of the year, it was great practice for me, as my 3rd years let me take the lead in managing patients and carrying the admission pagers.

They say that jumping from 1st to 2nd year is the hardest transition... surprisingly harder than going from med student to intern/1st year of residency (even though that's when you change from "student" to "doctor with an MD which means your orders and prescriptions are real now.")
Mini Coconut Cream Pie | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I do enjoy teaching and we had an excellent medical student who was eager to learn. Although just a fresh 2nd year, she did a great job with her patients. A good medical student is a boon to a tired intern, as they can help with filing paperwork, making phone calls, and setting up appointments. Although I do try very hard to not give any scut work to students (they are paying a lot of Yale tuition to learn after all), the last 4 hours of your 28 hr hour is generally a haze which any help is gladly appreciated.
Mini Coconut Cream Pie | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Plus, medical students are cute and charming. There is a very entertaining (if somewhat dark) satire on the difference between medical students and residents on Gomerblog. Some of my favorite excerpts from that post are:

medical student knows anatomy, biochemistry, microbiology, pathophysiology, and pharmacology, but knows nothing about clinical medicine.  
resident knows clinical medicine and is only too happy to have forgotten everything else.

A medical student is motivated by the quest for knowledge and a hope for a better tomorrow. 
A resident is motivated only by coffee and sleep.

medical student loves to ask and be asked questions: why? where? what? when? how?  
resident asks only two questions: (1) can the patient go home? and (2) can I go home?  
Mini Coconut Cream Pie | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I'm sharing this Mini Coconut Cream Pie (recipe adapted from Bobby Flay and Allrecipes), which I brought to my team to eat during one of our 28 hr call days. It kept quite well in the room, although it was all gone by early afternoon. Glucose is needed for brain power on call days! 

Mini Coconut Cream Pie

1 1/2 cups finely ground graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup white sugar
6 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 large egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream.
4-5 tablespoons sugar
coconut flakes, toasted

GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST: Mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, melted butter or margarine, and cinnamon in a bowl. Press mixture into your mini tart tins (made 3 mini tarts for me). Bake at 375 degrees F for 7 minutes. Let it cool. 

COCONUT CUSTARD: In a medium saucepan and combine coconut milk and 1/2 cup of heavy cream and bring to a simmer. In another bowl, whisk egg yolks, sugar and cornstarch. Slowly pour the warm milk into the egg mixture, stirring frequently, to temper the eggs.  Pour the mixture back into the saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil, whisking constantly, until thickened. Add almond extract. Cool to room temperature then chill at least an hour in the refrigerator.

WHIPPED CREAM: While custard is chilling, make the whipped cream. Chill a metal mixing bowl with a refrigerator or freezer prior. Combine sugar and heavy whipping cream in your mixing bowl. With an electric mixer, beat until the cream reaches stiff peaks, about 5 min. 

Once the coconut custard is chilled, gently fold 1/2 cup of the whipped cream with the custard. Reserve the remainder of the whipped cream for the topping.

ASSEMBLY: Spoon your coconut custard into your cooled tarts. With a pipping bag, swirl the shipped cream on top of the custard. Sprinkle the toasted coconut flakes on top. Chill until ready to serve.

Read More »

Friday, June 30, 2017

Strawberry Rhubarb Galette

I've been wanting to make strawberry rhubarb pie/galette forever, but finding rhubarb has been elusive for me.
Strawberry Rhubarb Galette | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
My friend lives in a neighborhood of New Haven called Wooster Square, which has a cute farmer's market every Saturday, which she, her husband, and her adorable corgi frequently visit. I've had a very bad case of what B called "puppy fever," and I even contemplated moving there when I was looking for apartments a few months ago (my friend and her husband literally moved there for their corgi, like how parents move for their kids' schools lol - it's a very dog friendly place).
Strawberry Rhubarb Galette | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
However, laziness prevailed since I just could not deal with having to drive to work everyday in residency, even just a 10 min drive (you get spoiled by living within walking distance).
Strawberry Rhubarb Galette | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
While at the market, I found the most stunning giant red rhubarb and had to have it. Of course, once I bought it, I was suddenly able to find rhubarb everywhere in the groceries ... but there's something to be said for locally grown produce.
Strawberry Rhubarb Galette | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
This galette (adapted from NY Times Cooking) is easy to make if you have pre-made pie crust since the filling is simply rhubarb and strawberries tossed with sugar and pecans. I personally prefer to make my own crust, and have included the link to my go-to Pate Brisee pastry crust. Galettes can be messy, which is part of their charm, although I like to make mine neat and round.
Strawberry Rhubarb Galette | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
This galette is perfect for your summer parties (4th of July is right around the corner). Sadly, I won't have any 4th of July parties since I'm working the night shift in the emergency room (no fireworks accidents in New Haven, please!).

Strawberry Rhubarb Galette

1 pastry crust (see my Pâte Brisée recipe I use)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups rhubarb, sliced
1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
1 egg, for pastry crust wash
mint and powdered sugar, for garnish

Make your pastry crust beforehand and chill in the refrigerator 1 hr or overnight. When ready to make your galette, preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Remove the pastry crust from the fridge and roll into a thin disc (about 1/8 inch) keeping the edges even. Sprinkle flour or water as needed to work with it.

Slice your rhubarb (I slice vertically into 1 inch pieces to keep them small) and toss with pecans and 1/2 the sugar. Layer the rhubarb on the pastry disc, leave 1 inch of the edge. Toss the strawberries with the remaining sugar and layer on top the the rhubarb, arranging a circular design if you wish.

Fold in the one-inch border of the pastry, partially covering the edge of the filling. Beat 1 egg is a small bowl and brush over the pastry crust so it bakes to a golden brown. Chill in the freezer for about 5 min to firm the dough (cold butter makes a flakey crust). Bake 35-40 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Top with powered sugar and mint sprigs. Serve warm or cool, with whipped cream, ice cream  or Greek yogurt.

Read More »

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Blackberry Chia Parfait

Hi everyone, I'm officially done with intern year! Yay!
Blackberry Chia Parfait | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
I finished off intern year with VA hospital nights which can be exhausting - if you've never been jolted awake from pages at 3am (or worse, hammer pages, which is non stop back to back paging), you're not missing out on anything. Sometimes you'll even get 2 or 3 pagers going off simultaneously ("Oh nice, they're harmonizing" - my med school surgeon attending).
Blackberry Chia Parfait | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
While finishing intern year is always a cause for celebration (goodbye waking up earlier to pre-round on patients, endless note-writing, and answering constant pages), I can't help but have mixed feelings about stepping up to second year, since now I'll be in charge of the team when it comes to running the team, making decision and handling emergencies. 

I'm going to miss the ability of saying, "Wait, let me ask my senior..." 
Blackberry Chia Parfait | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Although I'm know I've learned so much intern year, I still feel like there's so much I don't know (I have no idea how doctors managed without internet -all of our medical resources are there, from looking up medication doses for patients with kidney disease to finding possible diagnosis for a a strange case).
Blackberry Chia Parfait | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
During my year end meeting (bleary eyed after a rough sleepless 14 hr night shift), I told my advisor, Dr. S, my concerns, and he said "Great! You should be a little nervous - I always worry about the interns who aren't anxious about becoming the resident!"

"That anxiety means you understand how serious your responsibilities are, which will drive you to be the best doctor you can be. Knowledge can always be gained by simply ready; that's easy. Apathy and arrogance are harder to treat. While knowing this won't make your nervousness go away (sorry), at least you'll know there's a purpose for this stress." - Dr S.

He's right, I still feel anxious. But I can live with it for the sake of my patients.
Blackberry Chia Parfait | Obsessive Cooking Disorder
Anyways, I do look forward to meeting the new batch of interns. With my schedule, I happen to have a few rotations (emergency room, clinic) before I work the wards with interns, so they'll have time to learn the basics. In the meantime, I'll continue celebrating completing 1/3 of residency training!

Sharing this gorgeous 3 layer Blackberry Chia Parfait (recipe from The Feed Feed). One layer for each year of residency, haha.

Blackberry Chia Parfait

1 cup frozen blackberries (and/or mixed berries)
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup ice

1/2 cup chia seeds
1 cup coconut milk (extra to adjust thickness as needed)

vanilla Greek yogurt
fresh blackberries
toasted coconut flakes

Combine the ingredients for the chia layer in a jar, then stir well to combine. Set in the fridge for at least 30 min.

In a blender, blend the ingredients for the smoothie layer and divide evenly in the glasses. Place in the freezer to chill (about 30 min) while the chia layer is thickening.

When the smoothie layer is semi-frozen,  top with the chia layer.  Place in the freezer again to chill (about 30 min)  for the chia layer to become semi-frozen. Top with yogurt, fresh blackberries and toasted coconut. Drizzle with honey. Enjoy!

* you do not have to chill  each layer in the freezer to enjoy this, however, the layers will not be defined unless it's slightly more solid (in my experience).
Read More »

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Orange, Mint, and Blueberry Infused Water

Some exciting news - I've officially moved into my new apartment, and this is the first recipe from my new kitchen! My kitchen is disproportionately large (it's literally the same size as my entire living room), but I can live with that.
Moving was not easy - it was towards the end of my q4 28 hour call month (which means 28 hours straight in the hospital every 4 days), so I was already fatigued at baseline, but with the help of many wonderful friends and, of course B, we did it!
B had a golden weekend thank goodness, so he could come up to Connecticut and move things while I was at work. Fortunately, I married a very tall, strong man to make up for my rather petite size (and also my equally, if not even more petite friends whom I had recruited, as B pointed out with a facepalm).

B wanted to pay for packers/movers 100% but I'm more of a DIY person, especially since we're moving my studio just a few blocks over, so we compromised with paying for movers only for the heavy furniture.
B and I had started moving a few smaller items during the week, but we really moved everything over the weekend. Unfortunately, the elevators in the new apartment broke the day before we started the heavy moving (and of course got fixed the day after we moved), so we were forced to carry everything up 4 flights of stairs.

My friends, despite being on equally difficult rotations ranging from VA, medical ICU, cardiac ICU and despite working 80+ hours, came after work to help out (that's the Yale family, indeed). We drove back and forth, dropping off boxes, and carrying everything over many trips up and down 4 flights of stairs for hours and hours. It wasn't fun, but they definitely made it waaay more enjoyable, and we celebrated with buying everyone dinner and hanging out afterwards.
The next day we had movers; despite their best effort, we had to go over time because one can carry beds and tables and sofas up the stairs only so quickly. Importantly, I had a bed to sleep on, since I had a 28 hr call the very next day >_<

We probably spent >40 hours packing, moving, and cleaning, unpacking, so we were super exhausted at the end. B and I each went up and down >100 flights of stairs, which is crazy. I'm happy to not have to move for at least a few more years.

B says thank goodness it's over, because if I move again while we're working residency hours, he's going to look for a new wife lol!
Even typing about my move is making me hot and tired again, so I'm sharing my infused water recipe, with oranges, fresh mint, and blueberries. The summer heat is coming and this is a great way to stay cool!

Orange, Mint, and Blueberry Infused Water

6 cups water
2 oranges, sliced into circles
1/2 cup blueberries
handful of mint
tray of ice

Combine orange, blueberries, and mint in a pitcher of water and put in the fridge for at least an hour to allow the water to infuse. When ready to serve, add ice. Serve cold and enjoy!
Read More »