A recipe for living with cancer.

Posts tagged ‘sugar’

But I Feel Good

Two weeks ago I chipped two teeth and visited the dentist. Then I woke up with liquid coming out of my ear and ended up at urgent care and the next day at the ENT. I had a hole in my eardrum and had lost some hearing.  They had no clue how it had happened, maybe it had to do with chemo, radiation, or all the coughing -allergies gone wild-who knows?  Falling apart bit by bit  but I felt good.
I finally stopped coughing (about six weeks), my allergies were better but still there– but keep in mind I felt  pretty GOOD.  I had my annual physical Tuesday with full blood work to check my lipids (everything looked good she said), and my Herceptin infusion and visit with the Oncologist on Wednesday. I see the plastic surgeon next Thursday and the breast surgeon the week after that for a general check and to measure my arms for lymphadema, and then just for sh-its and grins my colonoscopy in two weeks.  I feel great but to look at what’s happened in the last few weeks and all the appointments one would think I am falling apart piece by piece.
Finishing chemo was huge, radiation even better, but I am not done yet–but I feel good.
I am now taking the Arimadex (estrogen sucking drug for 5 years)  and have to watch for side effects: aching (apparently bad enough the Oncologist said CALL me immediately if this happens); menopause side effects may return, please no; increase lipid levels which I thought would be no problem until my blood work came back. Oh and bone demineralization which I will now be on fosimax to counter.  The side effects from that…I won’t go into those.
But I feel GOOD physically,mentally though I am a little annoyed, concerned and ferclemped and fa–mished.. Here’s a topic, fracking in southwestern Pennsylvania, talk amongst yourselves.  For all you SNL fans.
What is upsetting me is my lipid levels, they are HIGH.  After two years of being a vegan and bringing my cholesterol down 55 points to healthy and LDL to normal range…I am now 85 up on cholesterol and in the high range for LDL.  I have not been a vegan for the last year but didn’t think I’d been so bad,  For how high it is I should have been eating red meat, all meat, cheese, butter, ice cream, lobster, sugar, alcohol and a Big Mac once a week!  The annoying part in all this…Arimadex causes an increase in, you guessed it, lipid levels. I have six months to try my vegan diet to decrease my numbers again, get retested and see what’s what.  The caveat is — if they do not go down, then the question will be is it the Arimadex?
Then I will have to….oh never mind
I do feel GOOD!

Sometimes Life is Just Vanilla

I have been making vanilla cupcakes for 45 years, I’ve used the “Hurry Up Cake” recipe from the Joy of Cooking with my variations. I use organic all-purpose flour,  vegan smart balance, organic non fat milk, organic eggs and vegan or organic cane sugar.  The “organic” label has been within the last five years, before that it was regular everything.  I use organic in the hope  I am helping the environment in some small way from the dumping of more pesticides and herbicides on the already battered earth, maybe prevent a few toxic ingredients from creeping into our bodies and cause more wildly divided cells and as a message to the big corporate machine that I will not support their dirty, greedy ways anymore. I know organic is becoming part of the greedy machine, but I need to believe in something.

I have deviated from my recipe and tried the “best vanilla cupcake”, the “lightest vanilla cupcake”,  the “perfect vanilla cupcake”,  a “white cupcake”, a “yellow cupcake”, made it with butter, cake flour, full fat milk, egg whites, but my family always comes back to me and says “we like the old recipe better.” I know the ingredients by heart, but always turn to the page in my cookbook to have it visible like a comfort or reassurance that I am doing it correctly.  I will make chocolate cupcakes, pumpkin, carrot, raspberry, cupcakes with fillings, hostess cupcakes…but they always say “we like the old recipe better.” So here is my recipe, because sometimes life is just VANILLA!

Barb’s Hurry Up Cupcakes     Preheat oven to 350

  • 1 3/4 cup organic all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup vegan or organic sugar
  • 1 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt (I use Kosher)
  • 1/2 cup smart balance-room temp
  • 1/2 cup organic non fat milk-room temp
  • 2 organic eggs-room temp
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Place flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in bowl of mixer.  Break eggs into bowl, add milk and vanilla and whisk.  Add smart balance to flour mixture and with paddle attachment blend on low until well blended no chunks of fat appear.  Add liquid ingredients scraping down sides of bowl.  If doesn’t look smooth not to worry, crank mixer up to medium and let mix 2-3 minutes until smooth and well blended.

Place paper cups in muffin tin and fill two-thirds with batter.  Bake at 350 16-18 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean.

I can get 12-16 cupcakes out of this recipe depending on how high I fill them.  I have ice cream scoops, one of which gives me 12 cupcakes, the smaller 16.  I do not know the scoop sizes.  I also have three different muffin pans, each slightly different size then the next.  So try this with your pans, your scoops, your methods.

Changes you can make to this recipe, for a richer cupcake, use butter, use full fat milk.  For a lighter cupcake use cake flour.

Icing:  In the top of a double boiler place two handfuls of a really good dark chocolate, I use El Rey 70%.  Heat slowly until chocolate melts, remove from heat and add a third hand full of chocolate.  Stir until melted.  I turn the cupcake upside down and dip it in the chocolate and voila it’s iced.  I freeze the cupcakes and according to my hubbie, 20 seconds in a high-powered microwave and you are good to go! If you have chocolate leftover, dip some pretzels in it for a snack, or apricots, or pour it over a cut up banana for a treat.  Chocolate never goes to waste in our house.

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