Medical school can be quite challenging and often times stressful. Being second-year medical students ourselves, we face the same trials and tribulations that other students face all over the country. Between the countless hours of lecture that you are still catching up on from the past week and the many textbooks that you are thumbing through just to make sense of your lecturer, we find ourselves not knowing how to exist outside of medical school.
We have decided to start this column in in-Training as a way to reach out to medical students and to remind them of the life that exists outside of the bubble that is medical school. We hope to cover a wide range of topics from recipes and fashion ideas to sharing some of our experiences in medical school and how we deal with them. One of the ways that we deal with the stresses of medical school is through our “Instagramming” and “PicStitching”, so we hope to incorporate a lot of our creations into the articles that we write to make it more fun for our readers.
No one has time to cook in med school — we have all made that excuse. But after eating at , our hospital cafeteria Choices Cafe for the umpteenth time and looking at student loans piling up from eating out all the time, cooking at home does not seem like such a bad idea. Cooking does not have to be complicated or time-consuming; it can be a moment of relaxation, a good study break, and it yields great (read: mouth-wateringly delicious) results. So with some motivation and influence from Pinterest, get cooking!
Not too long ago, I was craving gobi manchurian, an Indo-Chinese spicy cauliflower street dish found in restaurants and street stalls across India. My roommates and I decided to attempt it in our humble abode. Typically, gobi manchurian refers to deep-fried battered cauliflower slathered in a spicy, sweet and tangy sauce, but we made a slightly healthier baked version. Beware: the dish is slightly on the spicy side, so cut back on the chili powder and jalapeño if necessary.
1 16-oz bag of frozen cauliflower florets
½ cup corn meal
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
1 tbsp soya sauce
1 tsp chili powder (paprika can suffice)
½ tsp pepper
salt to taste
1 onion, finely julienned (aka cut into long, thin strips)
1 bell pepper, julienned
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsp tomato chili sauce (find in the international aisle)
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp vegetable or canola oil
salt to taste
1. Steam the cauliflower (word of advice: buy the cauliflower easy steamer bags so you can just pop it in the microwave and heat according to the directions). Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. While the cauliflower is steaming in the microwave, prepare the batter. Combine the ingredients and then keep adding water until it is a cake batter like consistency (not too thick or too runny).
3. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking oil or Pam.
4. Take the steamed cauliflower and dip it into the batter. Place each battered cauliflower floret on the baking sheet and place in the oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Check on it intermittently.
5. While the cauliflower is baking in the oven, start preparing the sauce. Put oil into a pan and add garlic. Let the garlic get a little brown and then add the onion. After the onion starts to caramelize, add the bell pepper and jalapeño. The bell pepper should be cooked “al dente.”
6. Add the soy sauce, tomato chili sauce, ketchup, chili powder and salt.
7. Take the cauliflower out of the oven and combine it with the sauce in a bowl.
8. Serve, top off with sriracha and enjoy!
As medical students, we often find ourselves attending countless hours of lecture, studying late at night in the library, and eating junk from the hospital cafeteria. We forget that there is a life outside of the bubble that is medical school! Read our column to take a break from the work and exist outside of medical school.