Healthy Homemade: The Meat Lover’s Veggie Burger

September 26th, 2012

Photo by Tricia White

I wasn’t always a believer in veggie burgers. I usually scoffed at my friends who opted for Boca Burgers at cookouts and have never shied from eating meat. When I was little, my parents thought it fitting to nickname me “Little Carnivore,” a nickname I’ve since grown out of but that sometimes comes back to haunt me at dinner parties. When I finally let down my stubborn guard for a moment and tried one, I fell for veggie burgers’ charm instantly.

Veggie burgers are championed for their health benefits, having all the fiber and vitamins of veggies and none of the fat and post-beef burger bloated feeling. I’ve come to realize that they can taste great too. Veggie burgers leave me feeling satisfied and healthy, not stuffed and wanting to lie down on the couch. After weeks of perusing Pinterest, searching through cookbooks and making several test batches, I think I’ve finally got the perfect recipe, and an easy one, too. They can even be made in our tiny college kitchens.

Essentially, all you need to do is chop some veggies (or toss in a food processor), and mix them together with a few extras. There’s no grill necessary– just a frying pan, and the veggies are as basic as carrots, red pepper and zucchini. You can refrigerate the extras, and microwave them for about 20 seconds for a quick and easy meal. They’re even good to eat cold with a piece of cheese in a sandwich for a great on-the-go lunch.

I like to take some time on Sunday afternoons to make a batch, and then I’m stocked with good and quick lunch or dinner solutions for the week. I’ve perfected this recipe to my taste, but that’s the beauty of veggie burgers– you can take liberties with the veggies and spices you put in, and they still come out tasty. With veggie burgers, you just can’t go wrong.

Happy cooking!

Emily Dias is an SKC guest contributor.


The Meat Lover’s Veggie Burger
Makes about 12-15 burgers

1/2 cup dry bulgur wheat
One 14oz can garbanzo beans
1 zucchini, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
2 carrots or 8-10 baby carrots, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic (depending on your personal garlic preference!), minced
4 scallions, chopped
2 eggs
1 cup oats
½ cup plain breadcrumbs
½ cup Asiago or other variety cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper

To prepare the bulgur wheat, boil 1 cup of water in a medium-sized pot. When water starts to boil, put bulgur wheat in the pot and turn off the stove. Let it sit on the stove for 30 minutes to soften.

In a large bowl, mix together beans, zucchini, pepper, carrots, garlic and scallions. Add eggs, cheese, oats and breadcrumbs.

When bulgur has softened with just a little chunky texture, drain into a sieve. Place bulgur between a few layers of paper towel and gently press out excess moisture. Add bulgur to other ingredients in bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

In a large frying pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Form veggie mixture into patties of whatever size you’d like, keeping in mind that the thinner or smaller the patty is, the less time they will take to cook.

Arrange as many patties as will comfortably fit in the pan and lightly spray tops with non-stick cooking spray, about ___ minutes per side. Replenish pan with oil between batches.

Serve hot or cold with your favorite toppings, and keep leftover burgers refrigerated or even frozen. Reheat in the microwave for about 20 seconds. Enjoy!

Posted in Healthy Recipes | 5 Comments »

Review: Veggies for Carnivores

September 25th, 2012

Lora Krulak is a vegetable expert and nutritional muse who embraces a veggie-centric lifestyle. She gathered her recipes while traveling around the world and her professional background includes training at the ICE Culinary Cooking School. I was lucky enough to review Lora about her awesome new cookbook, Veggies for Carnivores. I was also able to ask her more questions specifically directed at college students and recent grads.

Zoe McKinnell recently graduated from Brown University and moved to Cambridge, Mass. to work at a hospital in the area.  She is getting used to living in a studio apartment and trying to figure out ways to contain cooking smells to the kitchen. 

Lora uses a combination of coconut oil and olive oil in her recipes. While the health benefits of olive oil are widely known, I was curious as to why she also used coconut oil.

According to Lora, olive oil actually doesn’t heat well because it has a low burning point so it is better used in salads or to sprinkle on vegetables that are already cooked. For cooking, it is better to use an oil that has a higher burning point like coconut oil or organic butter because these fats don’t change when they are heated. Apparently, coconut oil is extraordinary for you. It has anti-microbial properties that will help to boost your immune system. It can also help to increase your metabolism and boost your thyroid.

As a vegetarian cookbook author, I asked Lora about her thoughts on meat.

Lora does not consider herself to be a ‘preaching vegetarian’ and she often gives a ‘carnivore’s choice’ that explains how to incorporate meat and fish into her recipes. Instead of eliminating meat all together, Lora wants to flip the ratio from a protein-heavy approach to a veggie-centric approach to eating.

Lora admits that she actually eats fish from time to time and tries to stick to salmon and oily fish because of the omegas and the astaxanthin to help your skin and bones.

In terms of choosing which seafoods to eat, Lora highly recommends an App called Sea Food Watch which tells you exactly what is safe to eat and what is not. Even Whole Foods uses their information.

I tried Lora’s beet, jicama and cabbage slaw and thought it was fantastic. I have always been confused about what jicama actually is, so I asked Lora.

Jicama is a Mexican root vegetable that is very watery and slightly sweet. Lora likes to eat it raw and use it in crudités because it is an excellent dipper. Lora adds that this particular coleslaw recipes is also fantastic with fennel or turnip if you can’t find jicama.

I asked Lora which recipes she recommends for college students and recent grads with limited time and resources.

Lora recommends the broccoli soup because its easy to prepare and highly convertible. It has only 3 ingredients and one of them is water. Lora admits that this recipe has become a staple in most of my friends fridge – it can also be used as a sauce for fish or even a plate of veggies or pasta.

She also recommends trying any of the dressings because they can be used not only on salads but as pasta sauces, dips or again on your favorite carnivorous choice!

Finally I asked Lora for suggestions on how to reduce stress, improve skin and increase concentration. She had great suggestions for each.

For stress, Lora recommends an amino acid called L-Theanine. It is completely natural and comes in drops from Herbs-a-way. Lora says that she always have a bottle at my desk. Yogi teas are also superb for stress reduction – especially “stress relief” or “relax mind” tea.

For improved skin, Lora suggests drinking at least 2 liters of good water every day. By good water, she means not tap water unless it’s filtered with a pinch of Himalayan salt or Celtic sea salt. She also recommends trying a veggie juice every day and try to get some greens in there. This will bring color to your skin, give you energy and flood your body with nutrients. Finally, try an avocado a day! Either in a smoothie or eat it for breakfast! Avocados have good fat that help the oils in your skin.

And for concentration, Lora suggest breathing. Deep breathing really helps concentration. When your mind is scattered, go back to the breath. A few deep breaths re-sets the mind and re-focuses you. Peppermint oil is also excellent for focus and concentration. A few drops on your forehead, between the eyes calms you down and can help a lot.


Broccoli Broth with Roasted Vegetables 


1 or 2 large heads of broccoli
1/2 to 1 bag spinach
Salt (the water needs to be salty as this is your “broth”)
4 to 5 cups water
1/2 cup olive oil, plus more to drizzle on top for finishing
A handful of chopped olives

1. Bring a large potful of very salty water to a rapid boil.

2. Cut the florets off the head of the broccoli and put in the water.

3. Cover and let cook for about 4 to 5 minutes – the broccoli should be tender, but not too soft.

4. Drain the broccoli but reserve the cooking water.

5. Place broccoli florets in a blender with about 1/4 of the cooking water and puree until smooth and to desired thickness.  Add spinach and blend.

6. (Optional) If you would like to add olive oil to your broth, now is the time.  Blend in 1/2 to 1/4 of a cup olive oil.

7. Pour into bowls and season to taste with salt and a pinch of crushed red pepper (optional), a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of black olives.

Posted in Blog | 2 Comments »

Beyond the Juice Cleanse: Best Ways to DIY Detox

September 24th, 2012

I went through a bizarre health kick my senior year of high school. I became vegan, binged on yoga, and cut back on coffee. And to round out my salad stint, I decided to try a cleanse. I spent an absurd amount of money on fresh produce to make juice and spent five days of my life blending, straining, and drinking ground-up fruits and vegetables. I was promised nirvana – isn’t that what all those “enlightened” yoga-toned, manicured mommies at my studio claimed?

The only sort of liberation I felt was a sort of hunger-induced delirium. But my stomach was flatter than ever!

I’m not trying to knock a juice fast. It was sort of nice to think of all the toxins literally flushed out of my body. I definitely felt a sense of well-being, but food is meant to be eaten! That’s why you read articles from Small Kitchen College. You like to cook and savor food. Not just suck back kale juice with a wince and a promise for glowing skin.

Good news folks! You can have your cleanse and eat it too. Over the summer I read an encouraging piece by Jennifer Reilly, a plant-based dietician in Washington, DC. She recommends a very user-friendly cleanse that can be used as a health overhaul or as weekly maintenance. It’s really what you make of it.

Ready to jump in? The best part about this little regimen is its versatility. You can choose to eat this way once a week , three days a week every other week, or for a whole week once a month. Or if you have a ridiculous amount of willpower, maybe try this detox for a month once a year. I really like the idea of a subtle cleanse once a week to stay balanced and renew my body on a regular basis. I’ve treated Monday as my wellness day to kick off the week and get rid of the weekend nasties, but maybe you’re more of a humpday kind of person.

**Best Ways to DIY Detox**

1. Begin the day with a large glass of filtered water with the juice of half a lemon. This aids digestion and stimulates the liver to begin the day’s detoxification process. Add a dash of cayenne pepper to balance out your blood sugar.

2. Only consume liquids (smoothies, fresh juices, herbal tea, water) until noon. Snack on raw fruits and veggies if necessary.

3. Drink at least half your body weight in ounces of filtered water each day. For example, if you weigh 120 lbs. you should drink at least 60 oz. of water. This is a good rule of thumb for overall health!

4. Eat as many raw fruits and vegetables as possible. Go for organic, especially for the dirty dozen.

5. Enjoy 1/2 cup raw nuts and and seeds per day.

6. Fill up on 2 cups of cooked whole grains throughout the afternoon and evening. But! Avoid gluten (whole wheat, barley, rye).

7. Follow the 80/20 Rule: at least 80% of your cleanse should include raw foods, and 20% can be cooked vegetables, grains, and beans.

8. Take a daily multivitamin.

9. Eliminate: dairy, eggs, meat, fish, sugar, gluten, and alcohol. Cut out caffeine if you can, but this is where I cheat. A small cup of coffee or tea in the morning is actually good for you!

See? Not so painful. If you’d like a little more guidance, Jennifer provides a sample day in the life of a cleanse:

7:00 a.m. – Large glass of filtered water with cucumber slices and a dash of cayenne.
8:00 a.m. – Green smoothie: 1 banana, a few handfuls of spinach or kale, nondairy milk, ice, stevia, cinnamon, raw almond butter
10:00 a.m. – Herbal tea; 1 cup raspberries.
11:00 a.m. – Large glass of filtered water with cucumber slices.
Noon – Large green salad with: sliced veggies, ¼ cup raw cashews, olive oil and fresh lemon juice dressing; 1 cup brown rice.
2:00 p.m. – Large glass of filtered water with lemon wedge; hummus with sliced veggies.
4:00 p.m. – Herbal tea; 15 raw almonds.
6:00 p.m. – 3 cups mildly steamed broccoli, ½ cup quinoa, ½ cup lentils; filtered water to drink.
8:00 p.m. – Chamomile tea.

Bonus points awarded for exercise, meditation, laughter, and writing in a journal.

Remember that a cleanse isn’t about perfection. It’s about taking a conscious break from everyday indulgences to give your body a rest. This is especially important as we approach the holiday season! And if you’re looking for more wellness information, check out Kris Carr. She’s a fun, inspirational, and realistic health guru.

Suzannah Schneider is a junior at Tulane University. She strives to follow a vibrant vegan diet despite her undying love for chocolate cake.

Posted in Nutrition and Health | 206 Comments »

5 Ways to Get Your Roommate to Stop Eating Your Food

September 22nd, 2012

I must confess that I have never had a problem with my roommates eating my food. Ever. (I’m knocking on wood as I write this) So, needless to say, I had little idea what to suggest. The only thing that comes to mind is to label everything and have each person have their own shelf. If that fails, give them food poisoning. The latter option seemed a little extreme, so I turned to my friends and asked them for some tried and true advice.

1. Psychoanalyze. Liz, the psychologist of the group and budding nurse, had to contend with this problem for her entire freshman year, and her roommate didn’t stop at the food. She “borrowed” everything, and it plagued their relationship. In her experience, these borrowing types have problems with boundaries, and therefore, you need to have a conversation to set some. It is best to have this conversation before you move in, but if that ship has sailed don’t be afraid to have it now. Make sure to explain to them what you’re okay with (i.e. something like: “I have no problem with you borrowing my food just as long as you ask first and replace what you took if necessary”) and what you’re not (taking whatever they like whenever they like) and make sure to ask them when you are done if they have similar concerns. That way it doesn’t look like you’re attacking or accusing them.

2. Go Label Crazy. If the conversation didn’t put a stop to the antics then its time to bust out the label maker. Label your food and create separate shelves in the fridge, freezer, and pantry. That way there can be no confusion about whose food is whose.

3. Get Inquisitive. The most recommended remedy was to start asking questions. For example, “I can’t find my [insert stolen thing]. Has anyone seen it?” Or, “Did my [insert stolen thing] fall on your shelf?” Another possibility is to ask them flat out, “Hey, when did you get your own [insert stolen thing]?

4. Gross ‘Em Out. Liz’s boyfriend, Nick, was kind enough suggest method(s) four. He says he makes it a point to let his roommates watch him lick the milk jug all over and cough on his other food. Typical guy—using the gross out method. He also said, “(you’ve) got to turn the laziness that drives them to steal food rather than get their own against them.” Translation: hide it! Put your food underneath less attractive food, hide it behind bigger things, or way in the back where they have to bend over more than slightly to get it. Or you could take Liz’s approach and put it in a box, underneath your bed, underneath a pile of dirty clothes and hope for the best. Can you see why they are dating?

5. (Pad) Lock It Down. If you can do this, buy or rent a mini fridge and put it in your room or buy a lock for the one you have. My friend Carolyn ended up having to do that after she had a guest literally eat her out of her apartment–repeatedly. This girl got would get totally stoned and eat all of her new groceries, including an entire package of cream cheese, in a single night. After that, my only suggestion is to give them some negative reinforcement and give them food poisoning. Just kidding!

Food Stealing

Emily is a recent grad of Colgate University, where she studied International Relations and Art History and volunteered at the Friendship Inn and with the Colgate Hunger Outreach Program. She loves to bake cookies.

Posted in Campus Cooking, Campus Life, Dorm and Dining Hall | 33 Comments »

Study Break Snacks: PB&J Smoothie, A Tribute

September 21st, 2012

PB&J Smoothie

Snack: PB&J Smoothie
Brain Booster Rating: 9 out of 10. High in protein and no added sugar, this smoothie is also a great recovery shake post-workout. The berries have antioxidants which have a number of health benefits.
Equipment: blender, bullet or food processor
Ingredients: peanut butter, frozen or fresh mix of berries (I use frozen for a thicker smoothie), skim milk, protein powder (optional), ice

With Black History Month right around the corner, and New Year’s resolutions in the distant past, I thought of no better time than now to pay tribute to one of my favorite black inventors, George Washington Carver, with a healthy, nostalgic smoothie.

Most famously known for discovering over three hundred uses for peanuts, he was also the brain behind instant coffee, the meat tenderizer, buttermilk, adhesives, axel grease and shaving cream. Though axel grease and instant coffee should never be used in the same sentence, G.W. Carver’s contribution to agricultural chemistry was vast. Oddly enough, the inventor only patented three of his agricultural creations, saying, “God gave them to me, how could I sell them to someone else?”

So, in honor of Mr. Carver (does that mean his first name was George Washington?), I whipped up this healthy, protein-rich smoothie after my morning workout. Instantly, my mind took me back to grade school lunches of peanut butter and Smuckers jelly sandwiches on white bread with the crusts cut off – too bad my mom didn’t actually let us have white bread, or cut off the crusts to our sandwiches, but it’s a happy thought. The inspiration for this smoothie came from the smoothie shop at my gym. So what if I ordered it from the kids menu?


PB&J Smoothie
Yields 8 ounces

1 cup loosely packed mixed berries (fresh or frozen)
1 heaping tablespoon peanut butter
1/4 cup skim milk
1 scoop protein powder (optional)

Put berries, peanut butter, milk and protein powder into food processor, blender or bullet and puree for at least 2 minutes until smooth. If the consistency is too runny, add ice until it is the consistency you like. They key is blending the smoothie for a long enough time so that it is smooth and evenly flavored.

Alexia Detweiler is a freelance food blogger living in Lancaster, PA with her new husband and two little dogs, Charlotte and Cinder.

Posted in Blog, Snacktime | No Comments »

Look Ma, No Oven! Sweet Potato with Parmesan and Herb Butter

September 14th, 2012

A sweet potato is a regular potato’s sassy older sister. She wants to dye its hair orange, will throw a little bit of her opinion in everything anyone says or does, but she’s one of the coolest girls anyone has ever met. That’s a sweet potato. You can fill it up with delicious toppings and flavors, but its true personality always shows and it’s just a little bit different.

These orange spuds have a natural sweetness about them that makes cooking interesting. It’s best to keep your ingredients simple so the potato’s true flavor is still present and all of the nutrients (it’s an excellent source of fiber, potassium, vitamins A & C) are not lost. While they require a bit more attention compared to a Yukon Gold or red potato, a sweet potato can be slow roasted, sauteed, boiled, and yes, even microwaved. Quick vegetable recipes don’t have to be boring, and, most importantly, they don’t have to require a hot oven or stove, messy clean up or olive oil-splattered countertops. Microwaves are the way to go!

Give this quick and delicious recipe a whirl. With its heavenly herb aroma and melt-in-your-mouth texture, no one would ever have a clue you prepared it without an oven. It’s perfect for a no-fuss, vegetarian dinner for yourself or a snack to split with your roommate. Just remember to keep it simple and let the sweet potato’s personality come through.

Sarah Cunningham writes about food for Small Kitchen College. She’s a senior at SCAD, where she studies fashion and spends too much money on thrift store knick knacks & tries her best to experiment successfully in the kitchen. Read More…


Sweet Potato with Parmesan and Herb Butter
Serves 1

1 sweet potato
1 tablespoon of butter
2 cloves chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
1 pinch salt
freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese

Prick one well-rinsed sweet potato several times witha fork. Wrap it in a paper towel and place in the microwave for eight minutes, checking and turning occasionally.

Once the eight minutes are up, start chopping your garlic and gather all of your other ingredients as the potato is cooling off.

In a microwave-safe small mixing bowl, add butter, chopped garlic, oregano, parsley, basil and lemon juice. Stir the mixture and put in the microwave for 30 seconds. Once the mixture is melted, stir it all together with a fork and add in the parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.

Slice open the sweet potato and divide it into two. Place on a microwave safe plate with the fleshy orange part facing upward. Take a fork and slightly mash up the potatoes with the outer skin still intact.

With a spoon, evenly distribute the butter and herb mixture all over each the potatoes. Feel free to mash it up more with a fork so that every crevice gets filled with the flavor. Place in the microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, to melt the cheese. Let it cool and enjoy.

Posted in Campus Cooking, Dorm and Dining Hall, Featured, Healthy Recipes | 13 Comments »

This Week at College: Learning Greek

September 14th, 2012

Every week we give you the latest in college news, trends, and lifestyle tips. If you have anything juicy, make sure to post it here on the Small Kitchen College facebook page, and we’ll include it in next week’s edition.

–Alexia Detweiler, Small Kitchen College Contributor.

**SKC Picks**

If you’re thinking about pledging a sorority, make sure you consider a few things first. Namely, why? If you’re doing it because you feel pressured to, or you feel like that’s just what college students do, you might want to reconsider.

So you’ve made the decision and you’re going to dive into greek life head first. Here are some things you should know about pledging a sorority.

Not all sororities are like ZBZ from the ABC Family dramedy, Greek (nor are any frat houses I have ever been to as clean as Omega Chi). If you’re rushing a sorority, make sure you have your facts straight; don’t believe these stereotypes about sorority life.

Greek life has been a tradition at many universities for decades. Some universities take that tradition more seriously than other. See if your school is on the list of the top ten schools for greek life. (Note: My alma mater ranks at number 4.)

Posted in Blog, On the Web, What's New | No Comments »

Recipe Round Up: Snacking on the Go

September 14th, 2012

Peanut Butter Strawberry Bread2

Now that you’ve nailed your class schedule, (after dropping that boring 8 a.m. and picking up a much easier afternoon gen ed) you probably feel pretty good about yourself. Everything seems to be under control…except for your eating schedule. It’s hard to plan your meals when you have homework to do, club meetings to go to, and frat parties to attend. Sometimes you might not even get to eat dinner until late at night. That’s why it’s important to keep some healthy snacks in your backpack, if you happen to get cravings throughout the day. These snacks can be made ahead and last for a couple days. So make a batch,  pack them, and avoid those embarrassing stomach grumbling moments in class.

Alexia Detweiler is a freelance food writer based in Lancaster, Pa. She married her high school sweetheart in June 2011 and has been using him as a guinea pig for her cooking since.

**SKC Picks**

Granola bars are the obvious choice for a healthy after school snack. TheKitchn has granola bar making down to a science. Use this base recipe and add your own combination of oats, dried cereal, nuts, dried fruits and anything else that sounds good. Also check out their flavor combinations at the end of the recipe.

If you don’t have time bake your own snacks, here’s a list of some healthy options from the grocery store. Here’s a hint: Avoid the snack aisle. It may seem counterintuitive, but the healthier options are found in the organic section of the grocery store.

For a more communal snack, check out this updated zucchini bread with rosemary and orange. Bake it in the morning, set it out for your roommates to enjoy, and I guarantee it will be gone by that night.

If scones are the love child of a cake and a biscuit, then what are those rock hard sugar-crusted snacks they sell at Starbucks? Do yourself a favor, and bake your own sugar plum scones–vegan or regular. Your body, and your wallet, will thank you.

If your snacking style is more of a constant grazing, you might be looking for something like these maple-bacon-spiced nuts. Just make sure to exclude the bacon if it’s going to be in your backpack for longer than 12 hours.

Posted in Blog, On the Web, What's New | 1 Comment »

5 Fun Ways to Finish Your Keg

September 13th, 2012

With a standard one containing 15.5 gallons of beer (and costing around $80), a keg is one of the most cost effective and fun ways to mix up your party. After all, with a keg, no one’s stashing their case of Bud Light in the corner, or having to carry around their half-full bottle of wine; it’s much more communal. You just never know what attractive party-goer you’ll meet while you’re pouring your crew some refills. 15.5 gallons, depending on the party size, could be an awful lot of alcohol…or, your party could be like the one I attended last Valentine’s Day (where I had the added bonus of watching one of my friends run out to charge a third keg to her Grandma’s credit card…), where it’s the fourth keg that you’re having trouble finishing. Either way, you want to take a look at these fun ways to finish your keg.

**Activities, Concoctions, and Games**

Activity. Everyone has heard of a keg stand, which is certainly a popular way to begin finishing off your keg, but a lesser-known option is the gargoyle, pictured above. With the gargoyle, as exemplified by my identity-protected friends, you simply hop atop the keg, and pose, wings in the air, like a gargoyle. I warn you, this may start a trend.

Concoction. Something about a keg just screams outdoor afternoon drinking to me, and for that, there’s nothing better than Summer Brew. Simply mix one can lemonade concentrate, a can’s worth (about 12 oz.) of a vodka of your choice, and 3 or so beers to taste and you’ll be left with a refreshing (and somewhat dangerous) treat. This can also be made with lemonade powder, which you’ll just have to add to taste–This variation is sometimes called “Strip and Go Naked” …not quite sure why…

The C and S Game. This game is an easy one to start in almost any situation as you don’t need chairs, tables, or supplies of any kind beside yourselves and your drinks. To start, someone will say a word. Let’s use “dog” as an example. The biggest rule of the game, and the reason for its name, is that you can’t say words that begin with a C or an S. Every word must relate to the word said before it, so if I say dog, my neighbor (who can’t say cat) could say retriever, bowl, house, etc. And the next player could say a word that relates to that word but does not necessarily relate to the original word, dog. When someone messes up, as I guarantee they quickly will, they must…drink, duh.

More Games. Check out SKC’s list of fun, lesser-known drinking games here.

Keg Races. Lastly, I would be remiss if I did not say that as I polled my friends on their favorite ways to finish a keg, by far the top answer was “keg races.” So if that’s your cup of, er, beer, get at it. Cheers!

Shannon Kelley is a graduate student at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, and admittedly had entirely too much material to use for this post.

Posted in Beer: What's on Tap, Blog, Drinking | 3 Comments »

One-Pot Stop: Cauliflower-Parsnip Soup

September 13th, 2012

Once the mercury dips even the tiniest bit and a cool breeze flutters across my face, I want absolutely nothing to do with the crisp, refreshing salads and tart, juicy berries of summer. All I want is something warm and cozy to snuggle up with against the chilly winds of fall. While the change in diet may be delicious, it isn’t exactly waistline-friendly.

I tend to gravitate toward greasy sandwiches, cheesy pastas, and hearty meat dishes. Anything that can be whipped up easily and can be stretched across a few meals is ok in my book. I no longer have patience for kale salad or healthy grilled shrimp.

Luckily, fall and winter clothes are a little more forgiving. It’s much easier to cover up that muffin top or belly bulge with a flowy sweater or a fitted blazer, but honestly, who wants to have to cover anything up? I know I don’t. So that’s where this soup fits in.

It fills all of my requirements for a dinner rotation staple. It’s easy. It’s filling. It’s healthy. It’s cheap. And it freezes well. Really, what more could you ask for?

Hayley Daen is a sophomore at the University of St Andrews, where she lives in a dinky apartment right across from Tesco, which makes throwing impromptu tea parties a snap.


Cauliflower-Parsnip Soup
Adapted from Blue Eggs and Yellow Tomatoes
Serves 6-8

For the soup:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 head cauliflower florets, stems removed and roughly chopped
1 pound parsnips, peeled and roughly chopped
1 bay leaf, preferably fresh
8 cups vegetable stock
Salt and pepper, to taste

For the garnish:
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/4 cup currants
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste

To make the soup: Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add onion, cover, and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add cauliflower, parsnips, bay leaf, and vegetable stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 30 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Remove bay leaf. Purée using an immersion blender or regular blender. Season with salt and pepper.

To make the garnish: Mix pine nuts, currants, olive oil, and thyme in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

To serve: Ladle soup into large bowls. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon garnish in each bowl. Serve with crusty bread.

Posted in Budget, Campus Cooking, Dinner Parties, Featured | 16 Comments »