Posts Tagged ‘pasta’

The Covid Cooking Club: Chapter 1: Pasta

Tuesday, March 9th, 2021

The Covid Cooking Club

Do cooks have to wear masks?
A very professional-looking chef, who is definitely not me.


With the current pandemic making venturing outside your room an act equivalent of walking across the street blindfolded, it is more important than ever that college students learn how to effectively prepare food on their own in order to decrease the possibility of getting permanent lung damage without even experiencing the questionable joy of nicotine. Ideally, this information would be given by a professional chef or at the very least someone with any sort of culinary talent. Instead you’re going to be getting it from a conked-out liberal arts student whose only knowledge of gastronomy comes from how far his head is up his own ass. God help you.

Chapter 1: Pasta

Homemade Marinara Sauce Recipe - Cooking Classy
A delicious and generic plate of pasta with red sauce, made by someone who also is not me.

Pasta. It’s the classic college food for a reason: that reason being most college students are deeply in debt and can’t actually afford anything else. (If only there was some sort of magazine that offered discounts on food products to help them out! But such a radical idea could never come to pass.) The humble cup of ramen has become an icon among undergraduates less for any inherent nutritional or taste value and more for being their best hope of avoiding complete bankruptcy long enough for their debt holders to be lined up against the wall and shot during the inevitable populist uprising. As someone who has the prospect of postgraduate financial stability through an accident of birth, I am not obligated to prostrate myself before the rapacious god that is instant ramen. This has the practical result of the pasta I make being named in Italian instead of Japanese. Pasta has a long and storied history, most of which can be condensed down into “it’s easy to make and tastes okay.” The cooking setup in my dorm consists of a microwave and a gas stove with two cookers with enough room for exactly 1.5 pots, so ease of preparation is appreciated. Also, I’m very lazy. All anyone needs to prepare pasta is a pot, some water, some salt, and a stirring implement. Put the water, salt, and pasta (preferably but technically not necessarily in that order) in the pot, and then boil until it is ready. After an amount of time totally unrelated to whatever it says on the packaging, the pasta will be ready. This can be tested by eating some of it and seeing if it triggers your gag reflex; other testing methods exist but they all sound as if they were dreamt up by lunatics. This will give you something that is edible. Making something good will require a lot more thought and I am not sure if I am actually up to the task. Sure, I enjoy a lot of the pasta I make, but that’s because I like my food to be as carbohydrate-dense as my writing is linguistically dense, not because I achieved any great success in preparing it. My most frequent failure occurs early. The pasta I prepare most commonly is spaghetti, because I have fond memories of eating it as a kid. I probably ate other pasta as a kid, but spaghetti is the only one I remember. It’s also a terrible choice since I inevitably put too much in, then stir too hard before it gets soft, causing the noodles to snap into pieces and defeat the entire point. I usually have better luck with tortellini and macaroni, yet I make them less because I apparently value nostalgia over competence. Fortunately, any pasta can be saved through use of a good sauce. Unfortunately, I am both too lethargic and too ill-informed to make any so I always use canned sauce from the store (or from my parents when I can swipe some off them). I eat mostly red sauce, which inevitably burns and creates an incredibly annoying brown crust on the pot whenever I try to heat it up. There are many instances where I nearly surrender to the dishes instead of cleaning them, and 75% of those come from red sauce. At least it usually tastes decent, though I somehow managed to always spill some on my shirt. Good pasta ultimately requires good sauce, and not having any saucing skill I am utterly unqualified to instruct anyone in its creation. And let’s be honest, you could figure out how to make it adequately without me telling you.

Click below to get access to and redeem all Campus Clipper Coupons; coupons are updated weekly

By: Alexander Rose

Alexander Rose studies satire at NYU Gallatin and wishes he was actually just Oscar Wilde. He is interested in writing, roleplaying games, and procrastination. Describing himself in the third person like this makes him feel weird.

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.


Rustic Food at Melani Pizzeria

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

Summer’s already here, but it’s always in season to get some delicious pizza or pasta!

I personally love to eat pizza and pasta, and so I couldn’t be more excited to try some of the delicious-looking food at Melani. The pizzeria was easy enough to find, located at 170 Rivington St. just a few blocks away from Delancey Station. With the cooler air of early evening, the open space in the pizzeria was welcoming and relaxing. I found some people standing around a table outside, gobbling up their pizza; others sat inside with their friends, chatting while finishing up their own food. There’s enough room to sit indoors with a friend or two, so this is definitely a place you can visit with people. The doors were wide open, letting in the open summer air and last rays of sunlight.

Like most pizzerias, you order at the counter. Food can be eaten in at the pizzeria, or if you’re in a hurry, you can even take your food to go. (And they even offer delivery, if you’re at home and feeling like staying in!) I found a stack of menus at the counter, so I was able to scan through all my possible options.

Full Menu at Melani Pizzeria!

There’s definitely a wide range of food at Melani. From pizza options to pasta to hand made ravioli, all your desires can be met in a single place! The calzone here is made fresh to order, and there are also gluten-free options and salads available. You can couple your meal up with some garlic knots or rolls, and quench your thirst with a wide option of beverages.

I asked for several recommendations, and I was told that the lasagna pizza is a solid choice. As for pasta, penne or spaghetti bolognese was said to be delicious. Since I was feeling like a pasta kind of day, I chose the spaghetti and chicken with parmesan since it looked like an interesting combination.

I sat down while I waited, and the wait was rather short. All the workers were very kind and helpful, and let me know that my food was almost done. When I got my food, just the smell of the pasta made my stomach impatient.

Spaghetti and Chicken with Parmesan

A delicious, moist piece of chicken covered by parmesan cheese sits on a large portion of spaghetti. Its flavor mixes well with the spaghetti and sauce, and the parmesan enhances the whole meal. I first took a bite out of the chicken, and immediately, I was pleasantly surprised. It was flavor-filled and well-cooked, and although it looked somewhat crispy on the outside, the inside was tender and moist. Mixed with a bite of spaghetti, it was the perfect combination. I couldn’t help but finish the entire piece of chicken, but I could not possibly finish the large portion of spaghetti I was given. I brought it home for my parents to try instead.

With coupon discounts at The Campus Clipper, Melani Pizzeria is a great place to try as a student for a cheap price. As a pizza and pasta lover, I was intrigued by the mix of spaghetti and chicken rather than the classic spaghetti and meatballs, and I may even say that I enjoyed this combination more. Melani Pizzeria is a great place for inexpensive, large portions, so grab your friends and family and make a visit here!


Nancy Ma, New York University ’15

Follow the Campus Clipper on Twitter and Like us on Facebook!

Interested in more deals for students? Sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter to get the latest in student discounts and promotions  and follow our Tumblr and Pinterest. For savings on-the-go, download our printable coupon e-book!