Comfort Foods

I'm shouting this from the mountaintop: (ok, actually just from under my red down bedspread littered with crumpled tissues, a notebook, two nutrition books and some magazines) - I hate being sick!

No longer is the sick day a fun way to skip school or work. No longer do I enjoy perusing TV channels, lounging with mugs of tea or cocoa, reading and reading until my eyelids droop and drowsy dreams take over. No one to talk to, nothing to do that doesn't require significant exertion or concern, and no taste buds to enjoy anything I consume.

It's enough to actually make me wish I was at work or had a class to even go to.
Luckily, Scott came by for lunch and brought me hot tea and minestrone soup. I joked with him that we're getting far too good at this, as he was sick the better part of last week and I played nurse for him.

As the weather turns colder, Scott's taking on a new role as "soup/stew/chili chef." He made minestrone last night and also introduced me to Skyline Chili. Straight out of Cincinnati, Scott's
city of birth, Skyline is what happens when Greek cooks add cinnamon, nutmeg and chocolate (!) to good ol' fashioned meat sauce. They've done it since 1949 and you can read all about its history here.
I didn't expect to really like it, but over pasta with a little shredded cheese, it was tasty. Almost comforting.
Tonight I think we will make Pho, as I need to use those mung bean sprouts before they rot. You really have to be quick on the draw with those things before they get too slimy to use.
On a sidenote, Scott and I went to Kien Giang, a Vietnamese place, on Saturday before we picked out our Christmas Tree. My thought was that a piping hot bowl of Pho could really help out Scott's sinus issues. Well, it worked, but not in the way that you'd think. When the server brings out your soup bowl, it also comes with a side dish of add-ins, like hot peppers, Thai basil leaves and lime.
In Scott's case, a squeezed jalapeno became anguish after he wiped his nose with his "jalapeno fingers." He really freaked me out in the car, squirming and grabbing at his nose, sniffing deeply and intermittently like a tweaked out druggie or something. It was crazy.
He won't like that I am saying all this but, as a lesson to all, it's just not a good idea to handle hot chiles and then blow your nose.
I had a scary reaction with some last summer when I tried to de-seed some jalapenos with just a knife and my bare hands. Had I known that simple handling of raw peppers and seeds can cause severe skin burns, I would have saved myself from a LOT of pain. It hurt for nearly two days.
In Googling "jalapenos and nasal passages" while Scott did a post-lunch nose flushing, I discovered that we're not the only ones who have learned the hard way. Some interesting video out there too about hot chile handling and bathroom visits, if you catch my drift.
Okay, so it's obvious I have way too much time on my hands. Damn this cold!
Off to find some mint tea and some silly celebrity gossip - my cure-all for this holiday cold season!