Take Each Day One Step at a Time and a Smoked Duck Fried Rice Recipe

I thought by preparing for the worst in my health situation, it would probably lessen the impact should any bad news come my way. I had really tried looking at the brighter side of things and wished that the big lump on my neck was probably just an infection of the thyroid gland and that the ‘swelling’ would go away with some medication. It wasn’t the case. And on top of that, my ultrasound scan results showed that there were 5 other growths in my thyroid with 2 of them showing signs of malignancy (vascularity/blood vessels and calcification). I expected not-so-good news but I didn’t think it would hit me that hard in real time. I really dread the thought of going under the knife and the risks involved. The fact that the doctor had initially classified my case as non-urgent yet I had to keep going back to hospital every week for consultation and tests and then he suddenly dropped the bomb saying I had growths in my neck that might be cancerous. Thank you very much.

I’m so hating the public route now – the whole process really sucked. I discovered the lump in mid-June but till today, I still couldn’t get a definite answer. But when it comes to the charges and costs for every test I have to undergo, the hospital is always on top of things. SERIOUSLY? All I want to know is whether I have cancer and if I do, what’s the next step?

I decided to seek a second opinion from a private senior consultant yesterday and finally did my FNA biopsy for the two ‘potentially-cancerous’ growths. Results will be out on Friday. Had to do a chest X-ray too cos’ my windpipe might be displaced due to the large growth. Well, there’s no doubt, I still have to go under the knife cos’ my lump is just too big to be ignored but at least I’m feeling more confident cos’ I’m in the good hands of a renowned expert in thyroid surgery and thyroid cancer.

Very low in positive energy recently because the grief from losing a loved one to breast cancer just a few weeks ago has kind of weighed on me. Uncle S who is a lymphoma survivor visited me a couple of days ago and while he made sense with his words of encouragement, I couldn’t help but feel even more scared and depressed. All I can do is to take each day one step at a time.

I just want to keep this post simple with a homey recipe of fried rice with smoked duck breast and kai-lan – smokiness, saltiness and crunch, all in one. There are smokers available in the market that are great for beginners if it’s your first time trying to make smoked dishes at home. You can read all about it here.

Smoked Duck Fried Rice Recipe

Smoked Duck Fried Rice Recipe

Ingredients (serves 2-3)
4 cups cooked brown rice (preferably kept overnight in fridge)
1 piece smoked duck breast, skin removed & diced
220g kai-lan (or Chinese broccoli/kale), chopped
100g anchovies, fried or oven-baked to crisp
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp vegetable oil

1. Heat oil in pan and pan-fry duck breast till lightly golden brown. Remove and set aside.
2. In the same pan, saute garlic till fragrant. Stir fry the kai-lan briefly for about a minute till the leaves start to wilt.
3. Add the rice and break apart any lumps with the spatula. Season with light soy sauce.
4. Add the crispy anchovies and return the duck breast to the pan. Stir fry till well combined.


  • Sad to hear you are unwell. Take care Geri and wishing you a speedy recovery!

  • Linda says:

    Geri – I am saddened by your news…I hope the second opinion is better news..but just in case I have you on a prayer list and I am constantly thinking of you..having a positive attitude and good spirits always helps with recovery and I send you all the best wishes in the world…xoxo Linda~

    • Geri Tan says:

      Thank you so much, Linda 🙂 I’m just a little overwhelmed by the possible risks of the operation while waiting for results for the biopsy. I’m trying to stay positive for what’s to come cos’ I’d need all that strength to get me through this.

  • C Steen says:

    praying for you

  • Jessica says:

    Hi Geri, I really enjoy reading your blog and have even tried out some of your recipes. I hope your surgery will be a success and that you’ll be up on your feet and doing the things you enjoy in no time!

  • RebeccaP says:

    That sounds really scary! I hope it goes well. Wishing you all the best!

  • Sabrina says:

    I really hope you get through this and feel better soon!

  • Samm says:

    Hi I have thoroughly enjoyed your blog. I was in your position too last year and had gone the public route. However, they had never given me a definite answer except to keep going back for monitoring and I eventually went the private route. Though the answer from the private route were similar it was quite a while before I decided to do a biopsy and results came out unsatisfactory. It was a difficult year for me in 2014 having to undergo 3 surgeries in a span of 1.5 months that I told my GA doctor that I need to break out with him. Our relationship was really unhealthy! But now 1 year on I realised that despite it being a difficult period, it has made me treasure life more and know that whatever comes now I can overcome it. Have faith and everything will turn out well. For myself, another 4 years to go before the all clear!

    • Geri Tan says:

      Hello Samm, thanks so much for sharing your story. You have had such a difficult time but it’s really great to know you have approached this with a positive mind and have also amassed tremendous strength to overcome it. Every morning when I wake up, I just feel a great sense of relief and contentment that I still have a brand new day ahead of me so likewise, I also want to treasure my life as much as I can. I hope everything goes well for you and feel free to share your thoughts and feelings anytime. Take good care!

  • dosirakbento says:

    hi, so sorry to read this. Hope that all will go well, take care of yourself!

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