RECIPE: Spicy colorful coleslaw
July marks two years of cancer remission for me. (Hooray!) I measure the passage of time by the length of my hair. And so does everyone around me. There are plenty of sentences like this: ‘I can’t believe how long your hair is!’ But can you blame them?
(Pics: 2009. 2011.)
Along with this remission anniversary, I undergo cancer screening tests, too, which I realize is tricky to balance the hooray-glee and did-it-return?-worry in tandem. But the great news? My oncologist called last night and the scans are CLEAR. No cancer. Yippee!
I had taken a day off work for a PET scan this week (which is the result I just got back). And I took that second photo, above, in the cancer center, after I was injected with a radioactive tracer.
A little background: a PET scan uses nuclear technology to take a 3D picture — not of how my body looks, like a CT scan, but how it functions. In the image, any cancer cells (ideally) light up with the tracer.
Fascinating science, really. And it’s what could help detect my cancer’s return.
So I’ve had this scan 6 times now. It’s really not that terrible; although being radioactive is a drag, early detection is worth the risk.
Beyond that, being hungry is the worst part. I can’t eat before the scan. So it was perfect timing that some of my apartment neighbors decided to have a dinner party that evening. Summer potluck! My assignment? Salad.
Luckily I had just read this fantastic coleslaw recipe posted by Everybody Likes Sandwiches, which she found in this cookbook. Without (yea!) the sweet, gloppy mayo, it had carrot, red pepper, onion and a sauce of vinegar, hot sauce, mustard and smoked paprika. Ooh. Perfect.
And it’s super healthy and colorful. Which I’m a sucker for.
I assembled it before riding the bus to the cancer center and let the salad marinate/pickle in my fridge all day. Then I added even more paprika and pepper – because it’s apparently never enough spice for me. By dinner? YUM. And I had a small container left for lunch the next day, too. Awesome.
So I celebrated remission with great people. Red wine. And spicy salad. I plan on continuing celebrations all week.
And I encourage each of you to take a moment, raise a glass and think: what are the things in your world worth celebrating?
Rating: 5 of 5 glasses of red wine. Clink.