rose cake

Cooking is necessary for everyday life, but for most college students’ cooking doesn’t stop with Ramen Noodles. Surprisingly, there are students who actually love cooking.

For senior business major Aby Alvarez, cooking is cheaper and healthier than eating out.

Alvarez prepared her famous Chicken Stir Fry for a dinner party last Monday. She sliced the chicken into little pieces, which she cooked over medium heat. While the chicken cooked, she started preparing the vegetables and cooking the rice.

“I really like stir fry,” Alvarez says. “It’s a lot healthier for you; actually, anything homemade is better for you than take out.”

The stir fry took 20 minutes to cook and less than five minutes for the food to be completely gone. The chicken was mixed with peas, carrots, mushrooms and Spanish rice.

Freshman Andy Montero used family recipes to prepare authentic Chilean food. Montero’s parents emigrated from Chile before he was born, but the family retained Chilean traditions.

Montero cooks Bistec al Pobre, a Chilean farmer’s dish. He explains that during the winter, the cattle would be too young to eat, so the family was forced to eat eggs as a main source of protein. In the spring, when the cattle were old enough to eat, Chilean farmers would celebrate by making steak with a fried egg on top.

“My mom taught me how to cook when I was little, but I didn’t really pay attention until I had to learn after she started working,” Montero said. “I had to cook for my family.”

The dish, served with fried sliced potatoes, took about 25 minutes to complete and had everyone begging for seconds.

A meal is not complete without dessert, and freshman Lauren Rishel is the person to turn to for delicious sweets. Rishel has been baking for as long as she can remember; there are not box tricks for this girl.

“I love baking,” Rishel says. “I usually make cakes and cupcakes, and everything I cook comes from scratch.”

Lauren made her own special chocolate chip cookies that have taken years for her to perfect. She mixed all the ingredients and baked them at 350 degrees for eight minutes. The cookies were crumbly, but the gooey chocolate chips made the perfect combination.

Rishel made a name for herself in high school when she started a fake business for her economics class. She made unusually shaped cakes for her customers: a volleyball, Africa and a piano. The beautiful cakes won her the title “Most Likely to be the Next Cake Boss.”

Living on campus makes cooking a bit of a challenge for Rishel and Montero.. Lauren goes to the Chaparral community center, and Andy basically lives in Chisholm’s kitchen.

Cooking can be a healthier, cheaper option and a great way to express yourself or remind yourself of home. So go out there and get cooking.

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