Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Hospital, Mapmaking for D Day

Monday night I ended up spending in hospital. Chest pains and high BPblood pressure. They sent Matt home. However, in the end they said I hadn’t had a heart attack. Only trouble is, on the way in, the ambulance paramedic had given me 5 sprays of nitroglycerine and some shots of morphine all of which made me feel much worse and later pushed my BP up even higher. When they came in and said I could go home, I assured them I couldn’t as I was feeling so lousy. The doctor finally decided it was because of the amount of nitro and morphine and having given me the same BP medication as I had at home, they sent me home. I spent the rest of the day in zombie like conditions and slept a lot of it away. I am typing this in between sleeps LOL.

I’m glad it didn’t happen last night, I wouldn’t have been up to bowling today which we are planning to do. I was so doped I didn't even post this properly.

Before this nonsense started, there was a programme on PBS which I didn’t write down the name of, but was all about making suitable maps during WWII for use on D-Day, not something I had ever thought about. It was very interesting. They needed comprehensive D Day Mapinformation about the Normandy coast so they could decide where to land and also know what defences were present and where. It was incredible the details required, but more incredible was the way these details were acquired. One guy managed to steal some blueprints from a German headquarters in Caen and pass them on to the French Resistance. This was a major triumph as it contained all the information about the wall being built in the area. The resistance themselves were being asked to find out certain information in their areas, they used pigeons for a while which were dropped in cannisters, but the Germans cottoned on and shot all the homing pigeons as well as releasing hawks. They had reconnaissance planes flying the coasts, although there were dummy planes too, a lot of the planes were shot down. The pilots who landed behind enemy lines wore silk scarves on which were printed maps of the area they were flying over. They even sent over divers to check the strength of the beaches for landing craft. It was an incredible operation. Millions of pictures were taken and masses of bits of information were threaded into one giant map in Churchill’s underground bunker. Who knew, I certainly didn’t. It took them two years to prepare the maps for the D-Day invasion. I am annoyed I don’t remember the name of the programme, but I was busy worrying about my health and didn’t think of it at the time. I would love to watch it again, maybe I will contact our local PBS station.

Wish I had come across this recipe during asparagus season, will have to make a note of it for next year. This is another recipe from the LCBO Food and Drink and I even left the wine recommendation in, the first time I came across Fat Bastard wine I had to buy it just because of the name, it is quite a pleasant French white wine.

Asparagus-Stuffed Chicken with White Wine-Shallot Sauce 
Spring 2010
By: Nicole Young

Leaving the skin on the chicken helps keep it moist and succulent. Ask the butcher to keep the wing bone attached for an elegFnD_Spr10_P084E_290818.inddant presentation.

1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
½ cup (125 mL) minced shallots
1 clove garlic, minced
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut in half crosswise
½ cup (125 mL) crumbled goat cheese
1 tbsp (15 mL) fresh chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tsp (10 mL) grated lemon zest
½ tsp (2 mL) each sea salt and freshly cracked pepper

4 boneless, skin-on chicken breasts
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
1 tsp (5 mL) each sea salt and freshly cracked
1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
½ cup (125 mL) minced shallots
1 cup (250 mL) white wine
1 cup (250 mL) chicken broth
2 egg yolks
1 tbsp (15 mL) roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp (5 mL) finely chopped tarragon

1. In a skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté until tender and translucent but not browned, about 6 minutes. Stir in garlic and asparagus and cook 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl and let cool. Mix in goat cheese, parsley, lemon zest, salt and pepper.
2. With knife held horizontally, slice through chicken breasts, starting at the thinner side, about two-thirds of the way through, so chicken breasts can open like a book. Spread one-quarter of the filling over the inside of each breast leaving a ½-inch (1-cm) border uncovered. Close each breast to enclose filling, securing with a toothpick if desired.
3. Heat oven to 400°F (200°C).
4. In a large ovenproof nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the chicken breasts with half of the salt and pepper. Arrange chicken, skin-side down, and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Gently turn chicken over and cook 3 minutes more.
5. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until chicken is cooked through, about 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer chicken to a platter to keep warm.
6. In same skillet, melt butter over medium/high heat. Add shallots and cook until tender but not browned, about 6 minutes. Stir in wine and chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer for 3 minutes. Whisk yolks and remaining salt and pepper in a small bowl. Pour about ¼ cup (50 mL) of the sauce into the yolks and whisk to combine. Whisk yolk mixture back into skillet and continue whisking, without letting it boil, until sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 3 minutes. Stir in parsley and tarragon and serve over chicken.

Makes 4 servings


Have a great day


  1. If you find out the name of the map making program, please share it. It sounds so interesting. Glad you are well enough to bowl.

    1. I will Louise, it was a good programme.

      Thanks. I sure couldn't have yesterday.

  2. Glad you feeling better.... we never know , so best to be safe and go to hospital. Chkn recipe looks delicious!

    1. As you say, always better to be safe, no fun hanging around in a hospital though.

  3. Glad to hear you are okay. Best to sleep off things like this.

    I love any show WWII related and watch them all the time. Its mu second favorite after wormholes and other science related stuff on TV.

    1. I certainly slept it off, spent most of yesterday asleep and then slept like a log all night.

      You would have loved this programme Stephen. Best I can see from my friend Sue is that it was a British programme, I cannot seem to trace it here, even called WNED in Buffalo - they phoned back but I can't hear what was being said. Not my system, next message was fine.

  4. Glad you're back home and feeling better Jo.
    The programme you described is the sort that appeals to David so I had a quick search of the net to see if it will be screened in the UK.

    I think it may have been the three part series 'The Mapmakers' ?

    Part 1 The Waldseemuller Map (1507) - newly discovered hemisphere
    Part 2 The Mercator Atlas (1572) - plot to overthrow Elizabeth 1 using an invasion map ordered by the French
    Part 3 D Day Invasion Maps.

    Sadly this series was shown here in 2004 and it seems there are no plans to repeat it!

    1. What a pity. I can't seem to find it here, even phoned the station, she replied whilst we were bowling and I can hardly hear anything. Have her phone number so will try tomorrow.

      Got a stress test tomorrow.

  5. Jo-Glad you're better. The medical professionals don't take any chances when it could be a heart attack. I'm glad it wasn't and that they let you stay in so they could monitor you.

    Dan watches a lot of WWII documentaries too, and loves them. Other than a few shows he's very much a non-fiction viewer and some of them are very interesting.

    Take care of yourself!


    1. Thanks Sia. Slept real well last night as well.

      English friend seems to have identified the programme, will try WNED again tomorrow.

  6. Sorry you were in the hospital! Sounded like the cure was worse than the disease so to speak.

    1. Thanks and I think you are right. I didn't feel that bad when the ambulance picked me up.

  7. I hope all turns out all right! Take care, any chest pain call the ambulance, don't fool around! I am surprised they sent you home before checking things out thoroughly. But giving morphine before arrival at the hospital - odd, truly odd.

    Please take care!

    1. Morphine in the ambulance was a new one on me too. They did give me two lots of blood tests Yolanda and today I have been in for a stress test.