Tuesday, December 26, 2006

An awful day saved by a delicious dinner...

Thank you for all of the well wishes after the emergency room trip yesterday! I had some upper back/chest pain which had made it difficult to breathe since Sunday morning. They did all sorts of scans and tests, but in the end did not come up with much! Boo! While I'm glad they didn't find anything serious, it makes me wonder what they missed. We did learn one tidbit though... apparently I have a low resting heart rate, as every nurse/doctor pointed out. The resting rate was around 40 the entire time and I gather it is because they consider me "athletic" from the weight lifting, cardio exercise and general healthy lifestyle we live. Interesting enough I guess!

After I rested a bit, I did actually get dinner together last night. I had picked out a recipe from a new cookbook I received (thanks so much Gail and Mike) and glad I got back in the kitchen to make it! There was not much prep work to do for the recipe, Becker Barbecued Shrimp, so Jeff was happy to hear he didn't have to do anything! A spice mixture composed of rosemary, oregano, crushed red pepper, sweet paprika, black peppercorns and salt first ground in our handy spice grinder - if you don't have one, feel free to mash it together with a mortar and pestle. We toasted these spices with a few cloves of garlic in a skillet of plain ol' melted butter until the spices let off a sweet aromatic fragrance. Shrimp are then slipped into the dark bubbling pool, stained from the variety of spices, to gently cook until they turn a light pink and are almost done. The shrimp are then picked out of their juicy playground to allow for the addition of chicken broth and amber ale. This boils and reduces to intensify the glistening liquid to create a sauce worthy of a few hunks of toasted sourdough bread to dip. The sauce is finished off with fresh parsley and brightened up with a splash of lemon juice. The tender juicy shrimp were just spicy enough for us - however, the sauce was almost the star of the dish and we had to fight over who got to mop up any leftover drops.


  1. Hi Joe. So glad to hear everything is okay.

    I had similar symptoms this past spring - shortness of breath, chest pain, sweating, palpitations, etc. - and after extensive testing over several weeks (they took it very seriously due to a family history of heart disease) they didn't turn up anything.

    I can only conclude that it was stress - but I resisted accepting that as an explanation for a long time. I've never experienced stress in that way - even when DH was so ill a couple of years ago! Still, nothing else seems to make sense and I haven't had any symptoms since the move. What an eye opener.

    And like you, even though I was happy the tests didn't turn up anything, I wasn't happy that there was no apparent explanation!

    Anyway, I can sympathize. But maybe you need to cut back on the holiday baking! ;-)

  2. I'm glad you're doing better. Take it easy, rest and tell Jeff when you're not feeling well that you get all the extra sauce from the shrimp!!
    The shrimp look quite delish too.

  3. That trip to the emergency room does sound scary. I'm glad to hear you're feeling better and hope that you're over it for good. (I agree, it can be scary when they don't find anything, but much better than if they do find something!)

    Now try to enjoy the rest of the holiday.

  4. Hey Joe, beautiful work on the blog and congratulations on the low resting HR, I'm a certified personal trainer...that's an admirable rate to be at! Sorry it was under such stressful circumstances.

  5. Glad to hear that you're feeling better! 40 huh? That IS very low. Under 60 is considered slow. WOW! This shrimp looks great. I want to have shrimp sometime this week with my parents but I don't know if that will happen.

  6. Glad you are on the mend. Take care and get some rest.

  7. Joe - Holy Cow! What a way to spend X-mas. I hope that you don't experience those symptoms again any time soon. It sounds absolutely painful! Yet, I'm glad it didn't completely ruin your holiday.

  8. Joe - so glad you're feeling better! And I'm sure it was nice to hear that your body is reaping the benefits of your healthy lifestyle.

  9. Joe,
    I rarely comment on your blog, but saw your Christmas entry. I didn't know your name was Schreiber! So is mine! Small world. :) Are you related to anyone in the New Jersey area? That's where my entire family is from...

    I made the latkes you recommended for our Christmas Eve party and they were fabulous! Thanks for the excellent recommendation.

  10. So glad to hear you are feeling better. I spent one Thanksgiving in the ER and it wasn't much fun. Same type of thing- pain and fever, lots of test, but nothing.

    Can't wait to see what you've got in store for us in '07!!

  11. Alysha - It could very well have been stress, but who knows! I just hope I don't go through it again!

    Tammy - I'll make sure to relay that to Jeff... hee hee!

    Kalyn - Thank you!

    G - they kept asking me what my normal HR was and I didn't have a clue so I was just as surprised. Good to know all the work did something right?

    Claire - We don't often have shrimp, so it is a nice change of pace!

    la vida - Thanks!

    Ed - It was and I had a hard time describing it to the docs... thankfully we got out before the ER got slammed with a lot more people! When we left they had people sitting on beds in the hallway. Ick!

    Mebeth - Thanks!

    Ariella - Small world! That is pretty cool as I have not come across many people with the same name. I don't know the answer to your question, but I will ask around and see what the family knows!

    Tokyoastrogirl - Me too, I can't wait for the New Year!

  12. Hey Joe- I'm glad everything turned out okay! Nonetheless, that's very scary. Have a better new year's!

  13. Joe, I had very similar symptoms that occurred sporatically over a number of weeks last summer. The pain was excrutiating, and my pulmonologist had me see a cardiologist immediately. After all the tests, both were stumped and could not say what was wrong. I mentioned it to my internist several weeks later, who suggested trying to treat it as if it were an acid reflux type of thing, even though I had no reason to think that acid was the problem. She gave me a prescription for Aciphex, and I haven't had a bit of pain since. Just wanted to pass that on in case you have a recurrence, so you can mention it to your doctor!

  14. Joe,

    Glad you're ok. It is a bummer to have no explanation, though.

    I had BAD chest pains a few years ago. They couldn't find anything at the ER, making me feel rather foolish. Later it turned out to be my gallbladder. I eventually had it removed -- a nuisance but hardly the end of the world.

    Hope it was a fluke.


  15. Glad to know you're doing ok. Try to have a less eventful New Year's Eve. :)

  16. s'kat - Thanks! We're hoping for a good one too!

    Cjsmama - I will remember that - thanks!

    Tracy - me too, so far so good!

    Barbara - hee hee... we will try!