15 March 2009

Warning: This post contains images that may upset the weak.

This week was not a very normal London week, the sun shone basically everyday. But other than that, my schedule was somewhat off. 

Monday I was in Inverness, Scotland and got home around 6 ish. 

Tuesday I did nothing. I rested myself from the weekend, caught everything up with blogging and journaling, and studied for my upcoming final. I was craving something sweet today and decided to candy the only apple I had. It was a very delicious decision. 

Wednesday I went for a lame run, for some reason I could not get into stride today and I was having a lot of difficulties. This scares me since Prague is in 17 days! For the rest of the day I studied, took my written final (it wasn't too bad) and then hung out at Angus' house watching stuff. I'll miss hanging out with them. We started this movie called 'Brazil'. I really liked it but had to leave early to prepare for my early morning, so I didn't get to finish it. 

Thursday I had a demo in the morning and then nothing. So, I decided that I wanted to try my hand at cooking rabbit. After class I went to three butchers around my neighborhood looking for rabbit. Finally I found one that had some, and though I only needed a couple joints, I had to buy the whole rabbit because that is how they sold them... The butcher took it out, chopped off the head, removed the liver and quartered the poor thing. I kept a strong stomach, not allowing myself to be grossed out. 

I look awful in this photo, but it's supposed to demonstrate my hesitation to begin cooking. 

Chopped up rabbit bits. Mmm, delicious. 

So I took out the rabbit joints, washed them and dredged them in seasoned flour. I browned them in a sauce pan with some butter and then added onions. I cooked that for a bit and added some chicken stock, marmite, sugar, a bay leaf, and some salt. I boiled up the rabbit for 10 minutes in the stock to make sure it was cooked through. Then I added some chopped carrots and covered it and baked it in the oven at 300 F for approximately 2 hours. 

When I was cleaning the joints, guess what I found... 

Yes, those are rabbit lungs.

This is a rabbit heart.

This is a rabbit trachea connected to the bronchial tubes going into the lungs. 

I know that this seems quite dantesque to be playing with the internal organs of an animal that I was about to eat, but hear me out. I took AP Biology and we dissected animals a few times. However, these animals were all soaked in formaldehyde. (spelled that right on the first go!) And while the preserved animals allow to you see how the internal organs look, you don't really get to feel the strength of the muscle of the heart, or feel the fragility of the membrane around the lungs. My mom has a lung problem where her lungs have collapsed several times due to holes in the lung. After examining these little lungs I was able to see just what a problem that is. The lungs only operate properly because of the pressure inside holding everything just so. I can't imagine how difficult it would be to try to fix the problem my mom has while keeping her body in tact. It was a really great learning experience for me. I opened up one of the lungs to see the tubes coming from the trachea. It was really neat to see what I learned about, and examine the tiny bronchioles. The body is amazing. 

This is my finished rabbit stew. It was very very good. The meat was so beyond tender it just slid from the bones. Plus, the rabbit meat went really well with the rosemary that I added. I was very proud of myself and very satisfied. I told my mom that I made rabbit and she nearly threw up. I guess in this respect I really am my father's daughter. 

Thursday night at institute we talked about the armor of God. And then we played with really heavy armor. 
Friday I had my cooking final. I was a bit nervous, though I knew that I knew the recipes, so I also knew that I would be fine. When the time came I had that wonderful anxious adrenaline filled pressure in my chest, and the chef called us in. We drew numbers from a bowl to see which dessert we would make: Eclairs, Lemon Tart, or Genoise Sponge Cake. I pulled number 5 and got the easiest of the three: Lemon Tart. I was really happy. I knew this recipe the best. We were given a sheet of paper on which to write out the recipe and the method for making the dessert we had chosen. easy. Then we were given the correct recipe (not the method) and told to have at it. We had 2.5 hours. Everything went smoothly. No problems. I tried hard to make the crust as perfect as possible, but in the end it was just a bit misshapen. My piping of the meringue was also sub par, but overall I did well. And I finished quite early. 

To finish off the evening I went to buy the presents promised to my friends and brother. I spent forever on Oxford street getting everything. I ran home to drop it off, and then back up to Angus' house. We watched some random stuff and hung out for a bit with everyone, then we watched Taken. It was quite frightening. It featured an ex CIA dad fighting to find his daughter who had been abducted and sold to a prostitution/drug ring. Luckily the boys let me stay over, I think I would have been too scared to go home late at night. I never want my mom to watch this movie, she'll never let me leave the house again! To lighten the mood we watched some Woody Allen stuff before I fell asleep on their couch. 

Saturday was a long day. I woke up around 11, and headed home. I attempted to top up my phone, but by some stupid mistake on my part lost the activation code and thus my £5 as well. I was planning on running the full 13 miles to prepare for Prague, but had another rough time of it. After 7 miles of much longer than it should have been, I realized that I had not taken the proper turn and was on 'Shoot-up Hill.' I wonder if this place derived its name from a bunch of heroin addicts... Anyway, I walked to the nearest tube and wimped out. I stayed home for most of the rest of the day, then was invited to have dinner with my favorite boys at Nandos. 

Jake didn't want these photos to make it online. He says he works hard to maintain his image on the internet. Sorry Jake. I chronicle my life here in London to share with the ones I love. Plus, you don't look bad in either of these photos! 

I ended up staying over again. We watched some Arrested Development and then 12 Monkeys (which I fell asleep during! So sad, because it was really great!) But luckily my friends are so wonderful that they are always willing to accommodate me. I'm getting lazy about having to traverse London in the middle of the night. I'd rather just sleep on their couch. 

I love these boys so much. Angus, Seb, Jake, Rob, Rash. All of them. I am so happy to have made their acquaintances so early on. They have made my time here in London quite pleasant, and I think that I will miss London so much because of them. I feel like I should do something to show them how much I appreciate and care for them. Any suggestions guys? 

Sunday was bright and shiny. Spring is definitely coming and I am mentally preparing myself to go home. 

Paige, Lauren and Becky: These are the cardigans I bought for you lot. I hope you love them. 




And here I am in my cute cardigan. I'm really looking forward to spring. 


Lauren said...

The Lana-in-a-helmet picture is my favorite part of this post.

I'm so excited to see you!!

Sebastian Dick said...

What, Angus' caveman-inspired chicken-devouring antics didn't make the cut?

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to see you upon your next visit home.

I haven't had rabbit stew in at least 6 years. It sounded delicious. I hunt it well enough but I think my own stews and spit cooking recipes aren't quite as developed as your own. :/

wik love,
Moose Daniel Hayes

ijoyce said...

Um your rabbit findings are hilarious. Rabbit is very good. I had it this weekend. But it's just weird because it's rabbit. Anyway, we've already talked about this. Have a good trip home! You should come to Europe again before July 2010 and visit me in Paris this time. Bisous

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