A Fabulous Feast

— by Dakota Marine

This past Friday I had the opportunity to do something very special on campus. A couple of friends in my sorority house asked if I was interested in helping to cook a dinner for the organization Aish on campus. The normal hosts of Aish were out of town, but they still wanted to provide students with the weekly Friday night Shabbat dinner, so they needed help from us, the active members of Aish.

We arrived at the house at 1 and instantly jumped into Challah preparation — the hefty bag of Spelt (non-wheat) Flour was carried up from the downstairs and lifted onto the counter, along with the other ingredients. We cracked eggs, poured Spelt flour, dripped honey, sprinkled salt, scooped dry yeast, drizzled vegetable oil and began to mix the ingredients in a large bowl. After kneading the Challah with our hands, we let it sit for about 2 hours so it had time to rise. Next, came the “Thai Slaw” salad.

Making the salads after the jump.
This is one of my favorite salads because of the sweet and salty tastes from the dressing combined with the crunchiness of the cabbage, cucumbers and leaves of Cilantro. The rainbow array of cabbage was placed on the bottom of a large purple bowl, it was used as a base for the remainder of the salad. Then we chopped up long green English Cucumbers and tossed them into the mix of cabbage. I sneakily munched on the leftover pieces of Cucumber while no one was looking. Then it was time for dressing preparation: Olive Oil, Rice Wine Vinegar, Soy Sauce and Sesame seeds. Then I slowly drizzled the dressing over the salad. In an effort to spread it out throughout the entire bowl, I took the large salad tongs and scooped the cabbage from the bottom up, so every last piece was dressed.

For a crowd pleaser salad, we decided on a corn, avocado and tomato salad. About 20 miniature cobbs of corn were lined up in a tin-foil container and placed in the oven to defrost. As the corn was softening in the oven, I took on the liberty of slicing the tomatoes. Tomatoes are a difficult vegetable to cut and I struggled a bit as the juice poured out from the inside. After the four tomatoes were cut, the corn was taken out of the oven. I cut the kernels off the ears of corn and spooned both the tomatoes and corn into the large container. And it was time for the last ingredient… avocado! The brown and green circular vegetables were sliced in half and cut into small chunks for the salad. The bright yellow, red and green colors of the vegetables made the salad a sight to see. The salad was covered in a lime juice, salt and pepper dressing with a drop of olive oil.

Although it was a tiring day, the long hours of preparation were worth every second. I love to cook and this was the perfect opportunity.

Dakota Marine is the creator of Eat My Tailgate, where she takes us into her sorority’s kitchen.

No Oodles of Soup

— by Dakota Marine

Tonight for dinner at my sorority house we were having my all time favorite meal… salmon.  Okay, just kidding, I don’t like salmon, or any type of fish for that matter. I debated throughout the day of an alternative meal I could make for dinner and finally decided on a hearty soup. And lets be honest, soup is my favorite food.

Recipe and picture after the jump.
I pulled out the Vietnamese Pho Noodle soup box from my drawer and the cold package of No Oodles noodles from my fridge. The original noodles in the soup taste a bit like straw, so I decided to switch them out for the No Oodles pack of noodles. No Oodles are a new brand of noodles which are zero calorie and gluten free, made from sweet potatoes. They don’t taste like anything plain, but they work for mix-ins with already prepared meals. I carefully placed the handful of No Oodles onto the bottom of the white plastic Pho soup bowl and cut open the Pho soup spice packets and sprinkled them on top of the new noodles.

Then I moved into my sorority kitchen and searched for my mystery ingredients. I started with a small bowl from the kitchen filled with firm tofu and raw broccoli as well as a plate with vegetables from the salad bar — shredded carrots, chopped green peppers, sliced mushrooms and dark green beans. Tonight my sorority’s kitchen salad bar was going to take on a new meaning. The ingredients could hardly be contained in the small bowl, as I filled it to the line with water, I had to push the food back into the bowl so it wouldn’t fall out.

I placed my “homemade” soup into the microwave for two minutes and 30 seconds and out came a steaming hot bowl of flavors. I spooned the broth into my mouth and was instantly taken aback by how spicy it was, but it mixed well with the other plain vegetables. The broccoli was soft, the mushrooms were cooked and the peppers burst with crunchiness in my mouth. The spoonfuls and forkfuls were filled with noodles, vegetables, broth, the flavors were endless. The noodles, so long and clear, were a perfect addition in the bowl of goodness.

Dakota Marine is the creator of Eat My Tailgate, where she takes us into her sorority’s kitchen.