Research Tip of the Day 

By Natalia Sucre, Instruction and Digital Services Librarian 
Sometimes the best way to move research forward is to step back, away from the screen, away from all your screens (after you finish reading this). See below for an example. 

Staying Home in the Time COVID-19 

Those working from home during this crucial time of pause in New York City give deep thanks to those taking risks on the outside and keeping so many services running 
And, as so many know, staying inside in our close metro area quarters has its own challenges. There is a barrage of coping advice out there readily available in our new second home, the Internet; it can be overwhelming. Today, we present a colleague’s experience of those challenges and her own self-care strategies. 

COVID-19 Will Forever Change MLife (Our Lives): A Testimony 

By Blondel Francis-Pryce, Library Assistant – Circulation Specialist 

It’s been a whirlwind couple of days since I have not walked the streets or taken public transportation. I am working remotely from home.   
During the past few weeks, the Coronavirus COVID-19 has spread into our consciousness and our communitiesraising concern for all of us. Being isolated at home is no joke. Working from home is possible for me because my research doesn’t involve lab work. But the spread of the virus and rapidly raising death toll have weighed heavily on my mind. I found it difficult to sleep and have trouble focusing on work. One day last week, as I sat down at my computer in the basement intending to write a procedure, I developed a headache. All I could do was stare at the computer screen it invoked fear in me.       

Wow, in my life span I have never experienced anything of this magnitude before. I am so overwhelmed with this COVID-19 that I am getting headaches. I know I am not immune from this thing of a virus because my preexisting conditions make me particularly vulnerable. As a result, I am staying put in my house. Sometimes it is harder for me to control my anxiety.  It can be very stressful and scary at times not knowing what lies ahead. This is really an invisible virus and detrimental to our nation.  

During this uncertain time, it’s important to keep up ones self-care routine while working from home.  Most importantly, what truly matters are our health and safety, and the health and safety of those we love 

To reiterate what our Library Director said last week: I know that you each have big lives with lots of people and lots of things and lots of love, but your immediate MCNY circle– like our little library group – can be a source of strength and community and support for one another.    

 Self-Care in the Time of Covid-19: A Recipe 

Cooking can be both a form of comfort, but it is also a new everyday chore for many these days. Here are some favorite resources for cooking in these times Community Recipe Book and recipe finder that uses the ingredients you’ve got on hand. 

This recipe (Fungi) is some of my best memories of cooking when I used to cook with my mom growing up in Saint Thomas U.S.V.I.  Coming from a large family (eight siblings, mom, and dad) and learning how to cook was a delight. It was hard for me to do because of the amount that I have to cook and cooking other dishes was easier than cooking Fungi. Just the other day, I was so happy to be able to make the dish againI offer the recipe to you below: 

How to Make Fungi 

  • 2 Cups cornmeal 
  • 6 Cups Water 
  • 1 lb. okra 
  • 1 1/2Teaspoon of salt 
  • 3 Tablespoon butter (plus extra for buttering dish or cooking oil) 


  1. Soak cornmeal in 2 cups water 
  2. In a pot, add okra, 4 cups water and boil for 10 minutes. 
  3. Using a slotting spoon, remove okras, place them in a small pot with about 2 cups of the boiling liquid and reserve for later use but keep it on low heat. 
  4. With the rest of the hot liquid, turn heat to low, add the soaked cornmeal, salt, and stir with a whisk to avoid lumps and constantly stir mixture from scorching.  Once it begins to turn stiff, change from the whisk to a wooden spoon  This process takes about 35 minutes, which will be done in 15 minutes intervals to ensure no sticking 
  5. As the cornmeal begins to dry out, add 1 cup of the reserve liquidturn with a wooden spoon, and let it cook for 15 minutes. 
  6. Add ½ cup of the reserve liquid, stir and let cook for 15 minutes.
  7. As the mixture should looks like it is breaking away from the pot, use the wooden spoon to clear it from the side of the pot.   
  8. Add the remaining waterokrasstir to incorporate everything and cook for 15 minutes until it is firm but too stiff.  Add the 3 tablespoons of butter, turn the stove off and let sits for 10 minutes. 
  9. Generously buttered a small bowl, place a heaping cooking spoonful of Fungi in the bowl and swirl it around to shape a mold (or a nicely shaped little balls).  Invert onto a plate or place them into dish. 
  10. Serve with curry conch, stewed or boil fish, stewed pork, or whatever your heart’s desire.   

Bon Appétit!