So I absolutely loved psychiatry. It was my favorite shelf exam to study for because of questions like: “A nun is found in a distant city working in a cabaret. She is unable to remember anything about her previous life.” No joke, a real question stem.
Don’t you want to know this ex-nun? The problem is, I don’t feel at all inclined to “fix” her. Although the right answer is to check the multiple choice box “dissociative identity disorder” or “dissociative fugue,” I am more content to enjoy her idiosyncrasy—her “neurodiversity”—rather than pathologize her wild life choices. I’d rather meet her for coffee and possibly write a short story about her rather than see her in a clinic office. I’ve got psych on the brain because this recipe is what I made for my patients and staff team on my last day with them in the psych hospital. This is the most psychologically complicated recipe I could muster. I meant to take more than this one picture, but it disappeared too quickly for me to capture it on film (not because of that bulldog licking her chops).
Mexican Mocha Zucchini Bread
adapted from Kelly Almon’s killer recipe
1 cup of olive oil
2 cups sugar
3 tsp vanilla (mix)
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
4-8 tsp cinnamon (I love a lot of cinnamon)
2 tbsp cocoa powder
½ tsp chili powder (from Santa Fe if possible)
1 tsp instant espresso (Starbucks VIAs work nicely, do NOT use nescafe)
¼ tsp baking powder
2 cups of grated zucchini (water pressed or otherwise drained out)
Cook at 350 for 1 hour, makes two loafs. Also, sometimes I put them in cupcake holders and make zucchinicakes.
This is the perfect weekend breakfast, so get cooking. The mark of greatest success for this bread was that in the hospital, the aroma was so powerful, I got my attending, who is paleo (!) to eat three slices. On the way home I felt like the woman from Chocolat, fluttering away in a red hood, but admittedly this is how I have felt for most of third year—stealing into and out of people’s lives like a gypsy woman blown on the wind—with really only food and earnest conversation to offer.