Friday, 26 June 2009

How a fig seed made me eat miso soup

There I was, eating the last piece of my favourite orange and fig chocolate, and one of the teeny, tiny fig seeds got stuck in a tooth. I poked my tooth with a fingernail and out popped the seed, but also a filling.
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"Oh!" I shrieked, and started scrabbling around on the floor to find the filling. As if the dentist might be able to re-attach it like a lost limb.
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As I searched through the dust and lint on the floor, it slowly dawned on me that this was not good news. I was going to have to go to the dentist.
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I am very, very frightened of dentists. When I was a child, our family dentist had a great big alsatian that used to sit in the corner of the surgery, growling mennacingly at the patients. I've never liked dogs. Then when I was at University, the dentist there took one of my teeth out without anaesthetic and managed to accidently remove part of my jaw bone along with it. How do you accidentally remove a piece of someone's jaw??
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After that butchering it was ten years before I visited a dentist again, and it is now nearly nine years since that last visit. Two visits in nearly twenty years. The dentist's Receptionist was appalled when I confessed this over the phone to her earlier in the week.
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"Nine years is a VERY long time!" she scolded.
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"But I bring my children for ALL their appointments," I said, with middle-class parenting angst. "They have ALWAYS been to the dentist. Very regularly."
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The receptionist could not have cared less. "We'll see you on Friday at 11:30," she said flatly.
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So this is how a fig seed is responsible for me eating lots of miso soup this week, as I try not to damage my tooth any more than it already is. Miso soup is basically Japanese bovril, but none the worse for that. I like it. It is comfort food that also feels healthy. And with a visit to the dentist looming over me, I need some comfort food.
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My favourite way to eat miso soup is with noodles and green vegetables. With broad beans in season I thought some of those would be a good addition. I kept them raw, which probably isn't the best thing for a broken tooth, but they taste greener and fresher than cooked beans in a way that very much suits the soup.

And when I don't need to be brave any more, and my tooth is all fixed later today, I have a more luxurious treat waiting for me...

...these honey buns, made from a recipe in Rachel Allen's Bake.

3 comments:

  1. oh poor you, I hope it all goes ok for you, and your cakes look so delicious xox

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  2. Good luck - hope all goes well. It sounds like you've had some awful dentists in the past, and that's such a shame. My dad used to be my dentist and it did a lot for my confidence in the surgery - so much so that I did a stint as his dental nurse in my early 20s.

    Enjoy the cakes - you will have earned them! Must dig out my miso soup too ...

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  3. I've never tried that, but now I feel I NEED TO.

    Hope the tooth is better.

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