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The Scarlet & Black

Classy Mistry keeps his classic cuisine cool

As we near the end of the year, our days left in the Dining Hall sadly shrink in number. However, leaving the dining hall for our own kitchens does not mean leaving our creative food endeavors behind. Baking and cooking your own food is not only healthy and fun, it costs significantly less compared to going out to eat. Cooking is both a skill and an art constantly improved upon with practice. Summer is an excellent opportunity to expand your culinary boundaries and develop a useful skill.

We’ve explored the many Dining Hall creations pasta makes possible, and its cuisine-creating capabilities increase exponentially with a fully stocked kitchen. Pasta is a cheap base for many meals, and always adds a classy touch to a dinner, especially with combined with grilled meat. Many simple sauces can be whipped up with less than five ingredients, and adorning some freshly cooked pasta with a delicious Alfredo sauce topped with grilled chicken and some seasoning is sure to be delicious. Pasta can also be made into pasta salads or pasta bakes, or combined into other dishes. It is extremely versatile and very tasty.

Another great, simple and adaptable food item is eggs. Not just for breakfast, this one ingredient is necessary in everyone’s kitchen. Eggs can feature prominently into any meal of the day. Try your hand at an at-home version of eggs to order, and stuff your eggs with some chopped peppers, onions, tomatoes, hot sauce and cheese on top of hash browns for a great start to any day! For lunch, some hard-boiled eggs sprinkled on salad or eaten as deviled eggs will add some great protein and keep you full longer. Dinnertime gives you many egg options, as you can not only eat a perennial Dining Hall favorite, Breakfast-For-Dinner, but you can also cook some eggs in easy-to-make, delicious fried rice or stir-fry. No matter what you choose, adding eggs will make your meal egg-cellent. (I couldn’t resist the pun, apologies).

While the above may expand your foundation for cooking, nothing will push your flavors to new heights like an influx of vegetables and spices. Vegetables can add some important vitamins to a meal while infusing your food with amazing textures and flavors. Sandwiches filled with meat and/or cheese, and then layered with alfalfa sprouts, chopped avocados, fresh tomatoes, tangy onions, and more will make the simple ham and cheese sandwich a thing of the past. Summer is when many of the best vegetables are in season, so stop by your local farmers’ markets or supermarkets and stock your kitchen.

I’ll suggest a few final dishes for these last weeks of school. Take a slice of pizza, cut off the crust, place your favorite veggies on top and roll it into a cylinder to make a sushi-style calzone. For dessert, try slicing a banana in half down its length, leaving two crescent-shaped pieces, spread peanut butter on top, sprinkle crushed frosted flakes on top, accent with some caramel and chocolate sauce, and eat with a fork and knife. Finally, for an interesting summer drink, combine equal amounts of root beer and Dr Pepper to form a delicious, smooth soda. Keep being creative!

This summer, experiment with your food. Enjoy the thrill of crafting a culinary masterpiece. Try new foods, take a risk on a new combination or an exotic sounding recipe. Bake your own bread, and enjoy the fresh taste only homemade can deliver. Take this opportunity to expand your food horizons, and bring back your ideas to the Dining Hall. Eat, enjoy and have an amazing summer. It’s been great sharing fun food ideas with all of you.

You stay classy, Grinnell.

-Eric Mistry ’14

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