Posts Tagged ‘homecooking’

Eating Around the World in Quarantine

Monday, July 19th, 2021

By day 14 of quarantining in my childhood home I was sick of it. By day 200 I was all but losing my mind. I missed the world: the crowded stink of a foreign bar, the fuzzy 4 AM feeling at the end of an all-nighter in the library, even the gross wave of heat the subway emits all summer for God Knows What Reason. I missed, more than anything, newness. Each day was blurring into the next, through naps and Zoom calls and another glass of wine staring at the evening news. During the months I spent inside, cooking quickly became my way to try something new. The only way for me to travel in a year when I couldn’t leave my home was in the kitchen. So, with all of my new free time, I started cooking. I started experimenting with new ingredients, sometimes spending a whole afternoon perfecting a lemon tart or rolling out pasta dough with a wine bottle.

Home rolled sushi (makes for a delicious meal and a fun at-home project–try inviting a couple people over and have everyone roll their own!)

Food is magic to me because of what it can do for people. It’s so much more than the sum of its parts, and it’s no secret that a home cooked meal tastes better because it feels better. I want to taste where the dish is from, taste the story of the person who made it. I want to know where they learned the recipe and why their mother really makes the best version of this dish in the world. A lovingly cooked meal is my favorite gift to give or receive. So, while locked away from the world and all of its juicy ingredients, I was determined to keep our pallets alive. My parents were generous to be my cooking guinea pigs; I made zucchini buns, vegan scones, curry too spicy for any of us to eat, lamb meatballs, hummus 1,000 different ways…I did it all! And the adventure of all of it kept us happy and engaged through the quietest parts of the pandemic. Our favorite meal was bibimbap; I hope it can bring you the same joy it did for us. Whether you’re back to life-as-almost-normal or not, try something new in your kitchen!

Tempura fried avocado, broccoli, and zucchini with a homemade soy ginger dipping sauce!

Bibimbap is a Korean dish that is to die for–trust me. I was determined to cook it because of how much I missed going out and eating it. It’s a rice dish with veggies and proteins (beef is my favorite), and best served in a hot stone bowl with a runny fried egg on top. My go-to recipe is Sue’s from My Korean Kitchen. She breaks down the steps so easily, offers ideas for side dishes, and makes this dish easy even for beginners. This isn’t for the faint of heart; it sometimes takes me two or three hours to make bibimbap for four people. It involves separate preparations for a lot of different veggies, but I promise it’s worth it! And so easy to adjust for dietary restrictions. My parents loved it and have since requested it several times. And, thanks to Sue’s recipe, it’s become a part of my repertoire in the kitchen. With each new recipe I try, I learn new techniques and flavor combinations that I can use in other meals.

My first ever bibimbap–look at all those veggies! And the sauce is killer.

Whether bibimbap is your thing or not, the internet is an amazing resource for finding recipes. When you’re a student in the city figuring out how to cook on your own for the first time can be daunting, but online recipes are a real life saver. And in a year that has been so difficult and isolating, we could all use a little more joy and spice. I challenge you to look up one completely new recipe this week; make something you love eating, and find someone you care about to share it with! You can use this as a little gateway into another part of the world, pairing your hard earned meal with a drink from that place or just reading a bit about the culture the food is coming from. Chef’s kiss!

Lamb chops over polenta and garlic fried spinach with a feta vinaigrette
You can find all these recipes (and millions more!) through a quick Google search. Start with a dish or ingredient you love, and see what recipes pop up!

Cora Enterline is a senior at NYU studying law, ethics, and religion. She’s studied and worked in Paris and Tel Aviv, where she loved biking, traveling, dancing, and teaching English. She has a love for foreign languages, sad novels, themed dinner parties, and red wine by candlelight. This summer, follow her blog to learn easy, student-friendly recipes and find inspiration from around the world for your own dinners, picnics, and culinary adventures at home!

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.