Credit: Matt Chan/Flickr
Dorm life has much to recommend it: The camaraderie of communal living, flashes of semi-public nudity and, at the very least, some interesting fights. One downside? The food. University dining halls are getting better (though, still largely nasty) and delivery options abound, but there are still gaps -- late-night cravings, stretches of broke-ness, mornings too hungover to make an appearance at brunch -- that need to be filled.
If you're used to meals prepared with care and love, then runny mac and cheese and water-fountain ramen will leave you feelin' greasy and queasy. Let us save the day with these easy recipes for gourmet food that you can make with the meager provisions provided by the average dorm. Call it "dormuet," or don't, but follow these instructions to avoid an iron deficiency that will have your leg hair falling out by Thanksgiving.
Eggs are microwave friendly, so follow this recipe for "Coffee Mug Quiche" from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
Ground black pepper
1/4 of a bagel (or similar amount of French bread, etc.)
2 teaspoons cream cheese
1/2 slice prosciutto or ham
Fresh thyme leaves or fresh chopped chives
1. Beat egg and milk together with a fork in a coffee cup, adding salt and pepper to taste. Tear bread into dime-size pieces; stir in. Add cream cheese; stir in. Tear or cut prosciutto into small pieces; add to mixture. Sprinkle with thyme.
2. Microwave on high until done, about 1 minute 10 seconds. Garnish with mustard and fresh thyme or chives.
We're guessing you don't have thyme leaves and chives around the dorm, but who needs garnishes anyway? Just add more ham, we figure.
After the weekend, the dining hall is sure to be thick with social awkwardness. If you royally embarrassed yourself at a party, stay in the dorm and prepare this easy mid-day microwavable "Veggie Pita Pizza" from Betty Crocker:
1 pita bread (6 inches in diameter)
2 to 4 tablespoons pizza sauce or pasta sauce
1 small zucchini, chopped (1 cup)
2 tablespoons chopped onion
2 roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped (1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons sliced ripe olives
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (1 ounce)
1. Split pita bread around edge with knife to make 2 rounds. Spread pizza sauce on bread halves; place on small microwavable plates.
2. Place zucchini and onion in 2-cup microwavable casserole. Microwave uncovered on High 2 minutes 30 seconds to 3 minutes or until tender. Stir in tomatoes, olives, salt and basil.
3. Spoon vegetables onto bread halves; top with cheese. Microwave uncovered on High 45 to 60 seconds or until hot. Cut into wedges.
In lieu of vegetables, add meats (obviously vastly preferable) to taste.
Now, this one might fill up all remaining space in the mini-fridge but it'll be worth it, especially if you need to make friends fast after setting off a midnight fire alarm or getting busted with a keg in the handicap shower. Quick solution: Invite the hall over for dorm-made "Meat Loaf In A Mug" from Taste Of Home...
2 tablespoons 2% milk
1 tablespoon ketchup
2 tablespoons quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon onion soup mix
1/4 pound 90% Lean Ground Beef
Additional ketchup, optional
1. In a small bowl, combine the milk, ketchup, oats and soup mix. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Pat into a microwave-safe mug or custard cup coated with cooking spray.
2. Cover and microwave on high for 3 minutes or until meat is no longer pink and a thermometer reads 160°; drain.
3. Let stand for 3 minutes. Serve with additional ketchup if desired. Yield: 1 serving.
Does your special lady friend have a sweet tooth? What about her roommate? Charm both with this baller "5 Minute Chocolate Fudge S'mores Mug Cake" from the Food Network:
4 tablespoons flour (cake flour)
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder, any kind
1/8 teaspoon baking powder (a pinch!)
1/8 teaspoon salt (a pinch!!)
1 egg, beaten
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons oil
2 -3 drops vanilla (optional)
1. In a small bowl, mix the flour, sugar, cocoa, tiny pinch baking powder and tiny pinch salt. (This can also be mixed directly into a large mug).
2. Add egg and mix into dry mixture.
3. Add oil and milk and mix well.
4. Grease a tall, large mug, and pour in this mixture, scraping out with a spatula.
5. Place in microwave on High for 2 1/2 - 3 minutes.
6. (Best slightly undercooked, so be careful).
Those should cover most any situation, from high-protein breakfasts to high-sugar munchies. Congratulations, you're a foodie. Just don't forget to keep hitting the gym, or your mom won't recognize you at the airport.