I never tire of sandwiches. How could you with all the endless possibilities? They can be as "boring" or as unique and interesting as you desire, and regardless what end of the spectrum, they all taste good if you use quality ingredients. Well, unless they're a soggy mess, but that's a different story. Before I get into my new fav addition - artichoke and basil spread - I thought I'd give you an update on how my dietetic internship is going.
I'm already a month into the clinical rotations of my dietetic internship! Time sure flies. 1 down, 9 more to go. Ok. Never mind...I still have a long way to go. As I've mentioned, I was just the slightest bit terrified at the fact I'd be starting with clinicals. While I can't say that I love it at this point, it definitely is a unique and stimulating experience. I feel extremely fortunate to have Audrey as my preceptor, a.k.a "The Rockstar." She is extremely knowledgeable and up-to-date on current research and practice, she makes sure she is visible and available to the other health professionals (so important!), and she deeply cares for her patients. In other words, the perfect embodiment of what a clinical dietitian should be. I'll be saying my farewell to her today (I'm preparing myself for the inevitable) and onto the next site for my ICU rotation...
In summary, these are the major lessons I've learned so far:
- Don't be afraid to ask the preceptor questions even if I think they are dumb. There were so many times I refrained from asking bc I felt that I had to already know everything. I didn't want to look incompetent. This is a big no no! I'm NOT supposed to know everything and the only way I can learn is by asking. Not to mention, the preceptor is a wealth of knowledge and it'd be a shame not to gain some of it ;).
- Dig deep and understand the big picture. At first, the only things I concerned myself with were basic anthropometrics, lab values, chief complaint, etc. However, I'm learning the importance of piecing together the puzzle, that is the patient's condition, in implementing the best intervention. Now I'm looking at all the doctor's orders (still having a hard time deciphering some of the handwriting), progress notes, nurse's notes, and as available, surgical, wound care, PT notes...it's kind of fun playing detective ;).
- Look up medical terminology, abbreviations, etc. and familiarize myself with them ASAP, as chances are, they'll appear over and over again. It's like learning a new lingo and the sooner I get a grasp on it, the better I will be at communicating with other health professionals.
- The most important lesson happens to be the one I struggle with the most. Have more confidence in myself! This I'm still working on. After being buried in textbooks for so long, it's quite different when trying to convey all your knowledge to a real human being. I get so easily flustered and timid. I tell myself to calm my nerves bc I got this!
While I plan our weekday meals in advance, it's not a perfect science. When we run out of food sooner than I had anticipated, rather than yelling at the Hungryman for eating more than he should (yup..he's always the culprit..it can NEVER be me ;)), I will make sandwiches bc we always have bread. I wouldn't mind packing myself a PB & J all the time, but it's always fun to mix things up. So when I saw the recipe for artichoke basil spread in Everyday Food (affiliate link) I was all over it. I have more basil than I know what to do with...it's a problem..
The spread is SUPER simple to make and oh so flavorful! The tanginess from the artichokes truly enriches the fresh and aromatic basil. And as usual, I couldn't resist squirting some sriracha in. It's super versatile too. Dip some veggies or chips (mmm...it'd be perfect w/ pita chips), spread it on top of chicken or fish, add it to salads... Have I convinced you to try it yet? If not, I shall take a bite for ya.
Yup, you gotta try it for yourself!
If you have any recipes for quick & easy sandwiches, please do let me know on my facebook page! I'll be sure to share them on my page for everyone to see.
Artichoke Basil Spread
- 1 can 14 oz artichoke hearts in water, drained and quartered
- ⅓ cup fresh basil leaves
- 1 Tbs mayonnaise
- 1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
- season with salt & pepper
- 8 slices of hearty bread I used multigrain
- 4 slices provolone cheese
- Baby spinach
- 8 slices all-natural chicken deli meat
- For the spread: In a food processor, combine artichokes, basil, mayonnaise, lemon juice, and sriracha; pulse until smooth. Season with salt & pepper. Pulse just to combine. The spread can be refrigerated up to 3 days in an airtight container.
- Assembly: Coat one side of half the slices of bread with a generous amount of spread. On the other halves layer the spinach, cheese, and chicken. Put the two halves together and enjoy!