Cranberry Beans Vs. My Life

Which is more exciting? Read on to find out…

Previously on the “Betsy Cooks Healthy Food” show, I left you with news of a broken toe and the looming GREs. I was planning on taking the GREs on the 4th and get back to blogging again right after. That didn’t happen so much. The week before, I realized I was in no state to take an incredibly important and LONG standardized test…my toe was still hurting, bleeding (yeah-2 weeks after the fact) and I was pretty sure they weren’t going to give me a chair to put my foot up while taking the test. So, I made an executive decision…pushing them back 2 weeks. As much as I really really really really (really) wanted to get them over with, I had no choice, so the 18th was my day-exactly 1 month after the toe incident as a matter of fact. But wait…wasn’t the 18th yesterday? Why yes it was. But Betsy…does that mean you’re done with the GREs and can make a bonfire with flashcards to heat all of Manhattan? Why yes it does! That’s right folks…The GREs are out of my life. We’re through. Ciao. Behold my study materials.
Yeah…that’s a lot of flashcards and I don’t think that’s all of them. (I learned a billion words-well worth it I must say-and decided I’m going to write a post all in GRE hard words. Keep an eye out.) And I’m missing two books. I think it’s safe to say that they took over my life.

Regardless, it feels pretty amazing to be done. I’ve been thinking about them for a year and a half now and every time I was being lazy or watching TV, I felt guilty for not studying flashcards or learning math. No more GRE guilt. Now I’m going to have grad school app guilt! Yep-the next step has already started. But, this step is a lot different than studying for the GREs, and I’m more looking forward to it cause it’s totally focussed on what I’ll be doing at grad school, something I’m totally excited for!

And my toe? Oy. Well, like I said before, it took 2 weeks to stop bleeding! It was one intense cut (which was more severe than the actual break) and because it’s on my foot, it just makes everything worse. However, I got the stitches out (after a very desperate attempt to find a doctor when my orthopedist canceled and I was sure it was infected), I only have a bandage around my toe, not my entire foot and I can exercise again! That’s such a relief…true, it’s only lots of time on the recumbant bike but it’s better than nothing. I’m very ready, however, for it to be all better and to get running again! I’m looking at spring marathons, so hopefully I will be running soon. I’m still a gimp with a limp for now though!

And about those cranberry beans. What’s a cranberry bean you might ask? This is a cranberry bean.

Isn’t it gorgeous? It’s like a long flat green bean but it isn’t green and it isn’t flat. It’s brilliantly colored with magenta and green and it’s full of fresh beans. I’ve never ever cooked one before or eaten one, so this was a new experience for me, as well as, I’m assuming, my readers. I had seen them around the Farmer’s Market so I decided to take a risk (whoa-living on the edge) and buy a big ‘ol bag. They’re just too pretty to pass up! Oh, FYI, I did this a long time ago-I remember eating them sometime during the Olympics, so I’m going to do my best to remember exactly how I made this. Ok…when I got home I did a little research online about how to cook them. Shell them and boil until tender (about 45 minutes). I, uh, kinda did that. I decided to play around a little.

So I shelled them and was hoping for something gorgeous on the inside. This is what I got:

Meh. I was hoping that they were going to be all swirly and colorful like their shells, not so much. They were very smooth though and shiny and had a soft green color-think of them like the fresh version of dried beans. I’m not saying they were ugly, they just weren’t POW like the shells. To cook them up, I wanted to infuse them with flavor to make them taste as exciting as they looked (pre-shelling), so I first sauteed some onion and garlic in a saute pan and added the beans along dried thyme, a bay leaf and enough water to cover the beans and then topping it off with a lid. I “boiled” the beans in the pan, and continually added water till I decided they were done.

How long that was? I don’t really remember. Maybe 25 minutes? Gosh-who knows. Remember this was back when was sleep deprived because I had to stay up to see if Michael Phelps was going to lose. Let’s go with 25. And this is what I got:

Again…not the prettiest. But that’s okay, because beauty isn’t everything (well, maybe if you’re the shell to a cranberry bean). However, it smelled good with all that thyme and bay and garlic and onions…and cranberry beans. And the taste? Another meh. Just like the women’s olympic marathon. Underwhelming. Bland. Boring. I don’t really know what I was excepting, but they had no flavor and the herbs and such I added didn’t do anything. Sure, I ate it all, cause that’s how I roll, but cranberry beans were not a winner and they didn’t live up to their outer shell. At least this time around. Maybe I need to try a different method and follow an actual recipe. Has anyone made cranberry beans before? Until then, I’ll just keep staring at the shells. They’re so pretty. Well, just the picture, cause those shells are now decomposing somewhere.

So, which is more exciting? The cranberry beans or my life? As mundane as it is, I’ve got to say my life. The prospect of grad school and the ongoing drama of my life are keeping things exciting and unpredictable. All the cranberry beans have going for them is some impressive makeup.


6 Responses to “Cranberry Beans Vs. My Life”

  1. 1 maggiescamera October 19, 2008 at 11:28 pm

    YAY! You finally updated. The bean shell looks very pretty.

  2. 2 Erin October 20, 2008 at 12:48 am

    Hi! You’ve been missed! I am BEYOND thrilled that the GRE is over for you. What an incredible feeling, right?!

  3. 3 VeggieGirl October 20, 2008 at 7:42 am

    Ahh!!! I’ve terribly missed the “Betsy Cooks Healthy Food” show (haha!! love it 😀 ).

    Congratulations for surviving the GRE!!

    Please “show more episodes” again soon!! 🙂

  4. 4 Kelly October 20, 2008 at 8:37 am

    Wow. That is an impressive amount of studying! Based on that picture and your confidence I am sure you did well.

  5. 5 glidingcalm October 20, 2008 at 9:32 am

    congrats to be finished!! that’s a TON of flashcards! I bet it feels amazing to be done!!!

    and wow.. not sure I’ve ever seen a cranberry bean. do you have to shell them? I don’t shell green beans…could you just steam it?

    regardless, your food always looks delicious Betsy!!

    take it easyyyyyyy!

  6. 6 Lindsay October 20, 2008 at 7:47 pm

    congrats on completing the GRE’s! good luck w/ the grad school apps 😉 so happy your are back & good luck w/ that toe 😦

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