Things to Come

“Great things are in store for you.”

This statement has been running through my mind constantly…when my eyes open to daylight, when I throw off the covers, when I eat, when I tuck myself to bed at night…Great things are in store for me. And I truly believe it. I have to believe it. Otherwise I wouldn’t be able to survive.

I’ve never been a very optimistic girl. I used to wake up every morning with a blasé attitude, thinking: Blegh, yet another day I need to endure. Unless there was some special event going on that day, each day was just a boring routine. Wake up, go to school, eat, poop, sleep. Over and over again. Blah blah blah.

When I had my ED, it only got worse. I woke up with dread smothering me, thinking: Shit. Am I still freaking alive? And all I could foresee for that day was yet another struggle with food and weight.

But these days…I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I seemed to have flipped over to a whole new page. I wake up with a huge smile on my face, excited to start the day. Oh, I’m not a total grinning idiot. I know there are lots of challenges ahead. I still have to wrestle with the ED devil, and a few nasty surprises and conflicts here and there…

But I also believe that great things are in store for me. And when I commence my day with that faith, suddenly everything is seen in a whole new light. Even when I’m faced with challenges, I meet it with a fighting spirit. Like a track hurdler, I view it as just a hurdle I need to leap over to reach my goal. And as I sprint over, I relish the rush of sweet triumph, feeling the muscles on my “legs” flex and ripple.

It’s freaking amazing how a little change of attitude and perspective can do to your life. A single day, even when riddled with problems and “misfortunes”, can instantly be turned into a good day when viewed with optimism, hope and expectations. Whatever and whenever, just remind yourself: “Great things are in store for me.” I am once again slapping myself across the head for only recently starting to realize this awesome truth. Damn, I’m slow.

I was also slow in realizing how awesome marmite can be when used for cooking. Anyone know this infamous food product?

MARMITE: Love or hate? They say there’s always two extreme reaction to this sticky, dark brown paste. You either find it extremely tasty and addictive, or find it pukingly-disgusting. I bought this (rather pricey) bottle of marmite out of curiosity. I so desperately wanted to love it, because all those British toasts with marmite and butter sounded sooo well, British and cool.

Anyway, I dug excitedly into it and spread the brown stuff on some toast. But sadly, I found myself puckering my face with disgust at the strong, yeasty taste.

So. It’s been sitting in my pantry for more than 7 months. While reorganizing my pantry last week, I came across this neglected bottle of marmite glaring accusingly at me. I felt guilty, so I decided to give it another try, but tone the bold taste down a bit by using it in my “mix-it-up” bowl. This is what I came up with:

Marmite-Glazed Kabocha with Poached Egg

The base: 2 cups pre-roasted kabocha cubes

The mix-ins/dressing: Marmite-glazed onions, sun-dried tomatoes, and dried cranberries (recipe below) and chopped scallions

The topping: 1 soft-poached egg

Marmite-glazed onions, sun-dried tomatoes, and dried cranberries

1/3 cup chicken broth
1 tsp marmite
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/2 sliced onion
2 chopped sun-dried tomatoes
handful dried cranberries

Cook the onion, sun-dried tomatoes, and dried cranberries in the chicken broth until the onion turns soft. Stir in the marmite and maple syrup, cook and simmer until sticky and thickened.

After making the mix-ins/dressing, just stir it all together with the kabocha and scallions. Then top with the poached egg.

First of all, it’s got kabocha. Kabocha can do no wrong.

Second, it’s topped with a runny poached egg. My motto is: When in doubt, just top it with runny yolk, and all will be nice and golden.

Third, how can anything so shiny and sticky be bad? The marmite made the sauce really super-sticky in a good way, and tasted like a deglazed steak pan. And with a hint of sweetness, from the maple syrup, it was a hit.

The bites of chewy sun-dried tomatoes and cranberries were really nice and sweet, too. Next time, I’ll add some nuts for extra crunch.

Okay, time for a little announcement: there will be some great challenges ahead for me soon: