Monday, January 21, 2008

Gravol and Rare Meat

If this doesn't make any sense, forgive me, I'm whacked out on Gravol. For those of you south of the border, Gravol is this wonderful over the counter drug for nausea. It can cause drowsiness which means it knocks me out. Oddly enough, it never touched me when I used to fly international and wanted to be knocked out for the journey in cattle class... Go figure.

Why did I take Gravol you ask? Well I think I may have gotten a bit of food poisoning. See I'm not so delusional to think it's a "touch of the stomach flu" because true stomach flu is rare. Speaking of 'rare', I think that's how I got sick. Food poisoning or ingesting food bacteria results in symptoms very flu like. I have had a headache, abdominal discomfort, body aches and of course, nausea. There was also cheap homemade wine involved, which always does somethng funky to my digestive system, and potato chips, something I never eat so my system is seriously revolting. Let me tell you about the rare meat.

I brought home a beautiful, inexpensive, lean roast of beef Friday from the grocery store.

This is how I get steaks. I trim the fat (the dogs enjoyed the treat of beef fat - dogs don't have issues with cholesterol).
Then I cut the roast into pieces that become steaks. We had the 2 large piece on the left for dinner Friday night. They were 7 oz each which is actually a huge serving of beef. The ones on the right area proper serving size and what I would normally serve. But I was having a craving and had been eating healthy all week so we had the big ones. The odd shaped piece in back will go into a stir fry at a later date.
When cooking such lean steaks it is vital not to overcook them or they will be tough. I go by touch to make sure the steaks are done. You poke the steak with you finger and see how spongy it is. You want it to stay fairly spongy so you don't end up with a well done steak. I cooked these for about 4 minutes a side then took them off the heat, covered them in foil and let them rest for 15 minutes.

The problem was that the sides showed a ring of red, uncooked meat. These were so thick that I should have seared around all the sides. And the meat inside was blue rare which is a little rare for my liking but I ate it anyway. I'm not sure I really got food poisoning off of it or if it is just the combination of bad eating, bad wine and a complete lack of healthly foods but a couple of times over the last couple of days I've felt like I was seriously going to toss my cookies, hence the Gravol. Moral of the story - sear your meat, any that is exposed to air can carry bacteria. Also, don't eat crap all weekend when you are used to eating healthy. Lastly, even professionals can screw up. I can't tell you how many times I have gotten food poisoning in restaurants. I'd say I'm pretty luck this time because when I get a good solid case of food poisoning, Gravol isn't going to stop the food from making a repeat performance. Maybe it's just stress... Either way, I think I'll stay away from red meat, red wine and chips for a while. Something green might be good.

I also bought a piece of salmon at the grocery store.

And divided it into 4 servings of about 4 oz each. I love my scale. If you find you are carrying a few extra pounds get a scale and you'll see how large your portions really are.

Note the different cutting board. I change boards whenever I change meat or fish to avoid any cross contamination. I also wash them immediately and then I put them through the dishwasher for a final cleaning. Better safe than sorry.

Now if you'll excuse me I must go lie down.

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