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New smaller appliances mean dorms won't stop your cooking

By Jessica Suarez
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Tuesday August 27, 2002

If your most complicated recipe for dorm cuisine requires one plastic credit card and a liberal sprinkling of delivery driver, then Marilyn Davison, a Certified Culinary Professional and an instructor at Culinary Concepts, 2930 N. Swan Rd. Suite 126, has a few tips for making dorm food taste just like homemade.

Davison, who taught a class on cooking for small apartments and dorm rooms in July, says the cooking options available to students are much better than when she went to college.

"It's been a long time since I've cooked in a dorm. When I went to school we weren't even allowed to bring popcorn makers. Schools seems much more receptive now."

Some appliances are still off-limits to student in dorms, such as George Foreman Grills and toaster ovens, said Pam Obando, an associate director for Residence Life. The list of approved cooking appliances includes hot air poppers, hot-water makers, crock- pots, electric woks and coffee makers.

As for appliance overload, Obando says that hasn't been an issue yet.

"It can be somewhat of a problem. So far we haven't limited people, and I hope that doesn't happen," said Obando, who added that some dorm rooms look more like Best Buy showrooms than student living spaces.

Of the approved appliances, Davison says an electric wok is the most versatile. Her Dorm Cooking class steam-cooked pear-gingerbread upside-down cake in one, as well as stir-fried vegetables. She also provided recipes for steamed fish and chili that can be prepared in an electric wok.

"It can be used for steaming, stir-fry and soups. It's probably one of the most versatile appliances you can buy," she said.

Davison also recommended slow cookers and hot water makers for making things like hot chocolate and ramen. Pre-cut and cleaned vegetables, available at most supermarkets, can be eaten steamed or raw, and make convenient snacks and meals, she said.

She also recommends students purchase plastic cutting boards and remember to keep cooked and raw foods separate. There are lots of things that make your freshman year memorable, but food-born illness doesn't have to be one of them.

Davison, who got the idea for the class from a student in another class who was sending a student off to school, said the class went "really well" and plans to offer it again sometime before the next semester.

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