The lack of variety in campus cafeterias gave a college grad the idea to create a website full of recipes that students can make in minutes in their dorm room.
CollegiateCook.com is a website that includes fun and easy-to-make meals in your dorm room, like vegan french toast, sweet potato fries and pizza. The website also includes video demonstrations of how to make meals and how to use an iron as a cooking appliance. Students can participate by submitting their recipes and stories to the website. It also includes a “freebies” section where the website’s creator, Candace Braun, highlights restaurants that are offering cheap deals.
Braun, a University of South Florida alumna, said she began making meals in her dorm kitchen as a freshman after two weeks of eating the same cafeteria meals. She said she and her friends started brainstorming ideas about how they could make meals on their own after having limited access to a full kitchen and missing their parents’ home-cooked meals.
Braun and her friends began developing recipes through trial and error and numerous Sunday potluck dinners with her friends in the dorms, eliminating meals that didn’t make the “edible” cut.
She began working on her undergrad thesis a year ago on transitioning into college and developed a guidebook. In the process of creating the guidebook, she realized other students were having the same food issues of wanting more than what the McDonalds “dollar menu” and cafeteria had to offer. She developed collegiatecook.com July 2009, the beginning of her senior year.
Braun graduated in May and is currently interning in New York and said she still tries out recipes and adds them to the website. In New York, she said she has to be even more creative with her cooking because of the limited access in New York living spaces.
Eating in is also more affordable, she said.
“If you just made one dish, you would almost always have leftovers and we would have lunch for the next two days and it would cost just a couple of dollars and we would have this awesome meal with multiple courses, which is so much better than a cheeseburger or some leftover pizza,” Braun said.
So check out this recipe below for a “Turkey Panini, straight off the iron.”
Turkey Panini, straight off the iron (each step goes with a photo)
STEP 1: Gather your materials
You will need: 2 slices of bread, shredded cheese (mozzarella mix is best), a couple slices of turkey (or chicken), diced sun dried tomato, fresh cilantro, olive oil, pepper, foil and an iron.
STEP 2: Sandwich Construction
Turn the iron on the hottest setting. Oil the outsides of both slices of bread. On one slice, layer cheese, meat, sun dried tomatoes, cliantro, pepper and more cheese. Top with the other piece of bread, oil side out.
STEP 3: Wrap and Iron
Wrap the sandwich in foil and set the iron on top of it. Let it sit for about two minutes and flip it over, repeating on the other side.
STEP 4: Unwrap and dig in
Remove the iron and turn it off. Unwrap the sandwich, being careful of the hot foil. Cut the sandwich in half and allow to cool for a minute. Then scarf in and eat it!