Eating is one aspect patients will always care about. And you'd be surprised how little things like food can really make their day.
Ms. N was so withdrawn, she was practically catatonic and refused to speak. One day, a nursing note commented that a "friend" brought her a sandwich. We pondered who that mystery person was - the patient had absolutely no friends and family, and we'd been struggling with social work to contact anyone who might know her. Well, the "friend" turned out to be our intern, who thought she might like a McDonald's sandwich. That transformed her into a much more manageable person, and she adored the intern. (And, she once said "thank you" to the team on rounds. Even the attending was impressed.)
As the days went by, Mr T deteriorated rapidly and couldn't eat solid foods anymore, but really wanted fudgesicles. Food is one pleasure I think everyone should have, so I went to the grocery that night and bought a box of fudgesicles for him. He died not long after, but at least he had one little comfort.
Ok, I know hospital food isn't always the best, but I guess it's a low when the sandwich wrapper is tastier.
So the moral is, it's a blessing to enjoy food, so eat each meal with deliberation. Good food make everyone happy. And Local Foods, a really delicious sandwich place near my apartment, makes me super happy. Their curry cauliflower roast beef sandwich (alas, I think it rotated off the menu) is my favorite sandwich from any restaurant ever. Their kale side is pretty awesome too, so I've shared my copycat recipe for both.
I'd take that over eating grass, paper, wrappers, or hospital food any day!
Recipe originally posted 3/2014
1/2 cauliflower head, torn
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
6 slices roast beef
2 sharp cheddar slices
2 slices wheat bread
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Toss the cauliflower with olive oil, curry powder, cumin, and red pepper flakes. Place in a tray and roast for 25 min, or until desired doneness.
To make the sandwich, spread horseradish on each bread slice. Layer curry cauliflower, roast beef, and cheese. Add olive oil to a pan and heat sandwich on both sides until cheese is melted and bread is golden and toasted.
Local Food's Kale Side Salad
1 1/2 cups kale
1 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup golden raisins, plumped in red wine vinegar (or water, wine, or fruit juice)
2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 oz parmesan cheese, grated
pepper, to taste
Soak the raisins in a small bowl with red wine vinegar (just enough to to cover all the raisins) until plump for several hours or overnight.
Mix kale with olive oil, red wine vinegar, honey, and olive oil. Toss with pine nuts and cheese. Add pepper. Adjust flavors to desired taste if necessary. Marinate the salad for an hour to let the flavor develop before eating.