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ELA student soufflés meal tips

Emerson College Los Angeles students gathered at a workshop led by Resident Assistant Eleanor Calhoun ’15 on October 8 to learn how to cook on a budget.

“I wanted to not only utilize the large kitchen space more, but also a lot of students are moving out here when they graduate,” said Calhoun. “I wanted to provide some LA-specific ways to cook on a budget.”

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Emerson Los Angeles Resident Assistant Eleanor Calhoun '15 with Emily Smith '15, Alex Hoder '14, and Sara Smith '15 at a cooking class on October 8. (Photo by Daryl Paranada)

Armed with about $16 worth of groceries, Calhoun and a group of students set out to create a spicy Asian noodle salad. Quickly, they learned how to improvise without typical kitchen gear such as mixing spoons and cutting boards.

“That’s part of the fun,” said Calhoun. “You only learn by experimenting.”

Wednesday’s workshop was the first time Calhoun and any of the other students had used the Emerson College Los Angeles kitchen, which consists of two large wings: One features family-style seating and is designed for a cooking show, so it is equipped with grid lighting; the other wing, where Calhoun held the workshop, has more individual-style seating and contains lockers for students to store their cookware.

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Food being prepared in Emerson LA's kitchen. (Photo by Daryl Paranada)

With a meal plan, plenty of dining options around the center, and little time, Calhoun said students don’t use the kitchen much. That’s something she hopes will change over time.

Sara Smith ’15, who describes herself as a good cook, shared a few shopping tips at the workshop.

“Fresh produce is always a good way to go because it's healthy and cheaper than ready-made meals,” said Smith. “Make big meals at once and have leftovers at lunch, too.”

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Alex Hoder '14 and Eleanor Calhoun '15 at the Cooking on a Budget class at Emerson Los Angeles on October 8. (Photo by Daryl Paranada)

As for the spicy Asian noodle salad, Calhoun said she would try to make the recipe again.

“I would give it another shot now that I know what it needs,” said Calhoun. “Less pasta, more sauce.”

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