Monday, May 21, 2012

Medical, Reading Devices, Random Act, British Ship.

For thoDrug Trialsse of you who are interested, I ended up not having my echocardiogram once again, this time the technician had car trouble and we couldn’t wait until he turned up. Whilst there, I talked to the man who is heading the drug trials in which I have been asked to participate. A couple of things we sorted out, a) they will give me mileage for all the necessary visits to the doctor’s office [they figured 60 Kms there and back] and b) I can have my fasting blood tests done locally instead of having to fast until after I have visited their office. I still haven’t agreed, guess I am being somewhat indecisive. No big rush apparently.

People are always saying they really prefer a good old fashioned book to a Kindle reading Materialor other electronic reading device. I always read at lunchtime and right now I am reading a real book. The minute I took my hands away, it closed on me, if I hadn’t bookmarked it I would have lost my place. That doesn’t happen when I read my Kindle, so I have decided that I will opt for e reading every time. My Kindle holds my place for me however long I leave it, it might go into sleep mode, but the minute I wake it, there we are just where I stopped. Not only that, some books are so damned heavy you can get cramp in your hands from holding them. Of course I can carry 3,000 books with me too, if I want. My vote is for Kindle, how about you, any thoughts on the matter?

Just seen yet another of the Random Act of Culture videos which, like Flash Mobs, entertain unsuspecting people in different situations. This one was the Opera Company of Philadelphia treating the people at Geno’s Steaks a well know Philly hangout apparently. They were singing a song from Il Trovatore.  I think these flash mobs and random acts are absolutely fabulous and would love to be wherever one took place. I find them moving to watch on the computer, I cannot imagine how I would react to actually being there. I saw one the other day on an underground railway which was great. Can’t remember what they sang. Just Googled and found several of them. Guess I will never see one, I don’t hang about in the right places LOL

SS Great BritainI am constantly surprised at how little I knew of things that happened in the country where I was born (England) I recently discovered the S.S. Great Britain which is a ship designed by a well known British engineer, Isambard Kingdom  Brunel who conceived the idea of combining a screw propeller, an iron hull, and a massive 1000-horsepower steam engine. She was the first of her kind and was a verySSGB Painting successful ship. She was launched, in Bristol, in 1843 and on her maiden voyage easily broke the previous speed record. Sadly her time passed and she was scuttled in the Falkland Islands, I can’t imagine why, but eventually she was rescued, brought back to Bristol in the 1970’s and repaired. There she is a tourist attraction today. If you think about what ugly monstrosities cruise ships are today, it seems such a shame that she is no longer a working vessel.

I don’t think the picture for this recipe looks particularly appetising, however, the recipe looks delicious. I have cooked fish in foil or parchment many times and it always comes out tasting really good. You can add many different things to your packets and everything steams gently and becomes very moist and flavourful.

Mediterranean Fish in Foil Packets

By The Gluten Free Goddess
WebMD Recipe from

This easy as 1, 2, 3 recipe has been a summer family staple since I was a blushing bride, learning to grill fish. We won't talk about how many years ago that was, Dear Reader. I mean, the blushing bridal part. Let's just say my oldest son is 26 and leave it at that.

So, you may ask- if you're a blushing bride yourself- how do you grill a slab of fresh fish and veggies all at once and have it turn out so tender and flaky and savory that your newly minted partner for life will turn to you and whisper, I knew I married the right girl? Or boy (I make no assumptions around here, goddess forbid). Well, here's a little secret I learned way back when. Back before cooking blogs and Food TV and Jamie Oliver I learned it from a woman who liked my paintings. This is the only way to mediterranean_fish_in_foilmake fish, she told me. Trust me.

I trust you, I answered. Now tell me your secret.

Foil, she said-and onions, garlic and tomatoes. It's a Mediterranean style fish- not the typical butter and Ritz cracker crumbs you get around here (we were living on Cape Cod at the time). This is the real thing, she continued. Real food. Big flavor. You'll love it!

And she was right.

Here's my easy version of Mediterranean fish- grilled (or baked) with spinach, tomatoes, onions and garlic. I also added balsamic vinegar and fresh chopped herbs.

The fish I used this time was halibut. But any hefty white fish will do- cod, haddock, tilapia, or orange roughy would all be brilliant.


4 serving size fish fillets, rinsed and patted dry (about 1 1/2 pounds)
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice
Sea salt and fresh pepper
8 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
2 red or sweet yellow onions, cut into pieces
4 cups baby spinach leaves- or chopped spinach
8 plum or Italian tomatoes, roughly chopped
4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or cilantro
A sprinkle of red pepper flakes, to taste
Extra virgin olive oil, as needed


Fire up the grill to medium high heat.
If you are cooking indoors, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Tear off a large sheet of aluminum foil and place it on a large platter or tray.

Lay the fish fillets in the center, in a single layer. Squeeze a little lemon juice over the fillets. Season with sea salt and fresh pepper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the garlic, onion, baby spinach and tomatoes. Add the balsamic vinegar, fresh chopped herbs, red pepper flakes and toss to mix. Drizzle with enough extra virgin olive oil to moisten it all. Season the mixture with a little sea salt and pepper. Toss to coat.

Instructions continued...

Tear off a second sheet of foil the same size as the bottom sheet.

Turn up all the edges of the bottom sheet a bit to catch any liquid that runs to the edge.

Spoon the spinach-tomato mixture on top of the fish. Drizzle on any remaining olive oil left in the bowl.

Lay the second piece of foil on top of the fish and veggies and crimp the foil closed all around the edges to make a large packet.

Carry the packet with the platter or tray to the grill and carefully transfer the packet to the preheated grill. Cover the grill and cook until the fish is done- about 20 minutes or so- depending on the thickness of the fillet, and how hot your fire is. The fish should flake easily with a fork, and appear opaque.

Karina's Note for Gluten-Free Folks:

This is a safe way for those with celiac disease or food allergies to eat at pot luck barbecues and picnics. Bring your own packets! Make single individual packets for each person to make it easy to share the grill with no danger of cross contamination.

Total Servings: 4

Have a great day



  1. Love reading 'real' books but love my Kindle also! Some days I cannot hold a real book as my hands are arthritic. The Kindle is a lifesaver as well as having so many books so easily transported. There's a place for both and I'm happy to have both!

    1. Sorry about the arthritic hands. I would have thought you would prefer Kindle in that case. I still have lots of books which I wouldn't part with, but I find it so much easier to read electronically.

  2. I love my Kindle for reading novels but for text books where I have to go backwards and forwards and look at pictures and diagrams a real book is much easier to use.

    1. I can see that Lorna, I hadn't considered it before. Electronically that would work on the computer I guess, but not on a Kindle.

  3. I love both and read both regularly. I have quite a few books on my kindle.

    Take your time on making the decision for being part of the trials. Research what you can. The pharmaceutical company thinks it's okay now for people but you're still a guinea pig.

    Those lovely old ships. I think they could make money by booking some cruises on them. Sure, might not have all the amenities the new cruise ships have but there are those who would love the relaxed atmosphere of one. :-)


    1. You and me both Sia. I have well over 100.

      Apparently the drug is already approved in the States by the FDA, but this is a slightly different form, the approved drug is daily, this will be weekly. So its not like it isn't already approved somewhere. We'll see.

    2. PC jammed. I also was going to say I agreed with you about the ship. Would be wonderful to cruise on such a vessel.