Though many businesses and restaurants have closed their doors or introduced limited hours due to COVID-19, most grocery stores remain open across America, restocking every evening. Some would say this is the perfect opportunity to become a master chef. Harding students across the nation are grabbing their aprons, gathering ingredients and using their time to master cooking and baking skills in the kitchen.
Senior Julia Hensley said she recognizes the opportunity that comes with a change in her regular schedule. Though Hensley has enjoyed cooking for a while, the demands of classes, work and a social life normally rule out the possibility of baking fresh lemon bars or cooking spicy fajitas. Now, she’s not letting the unexpected free time go to waste.
“I never [had] time to just take my time to cook something new, and, though in unfortunate circumstances, I have the time now,” Hensley said. “I don’t have control of all the chaos around me, but I do have control over my hobbies that keep me happy. All in all, cook something new, take over a meal for your family and cook for them, or get your family involved and make a meal together.”
Junior Allie Lightfoot said she has tried her hand at cooking different recipes, like elderberry soup and goulash, with her husband and family. Lightfoot encouraged students to limit waste and use the ingredients they already have in the cupboards if they take on cooking as a new hobby.
“My mom and I made potato soup one night and beef/vegetable goulash another night with things we already had,” Lightfoot said. “Both were super easy and yummy to make.”
Another student is using time in the kitchen to get closer with the family around her. Senior Caroline Nesbitt said she has discovered a love for baking her family’s secret chocolate chip cookie recipe.
“The most fun part for me, though, is sharing it with my family,” Nesbitt said. “They’re very complimentary.”
When baking, Nesbitt said she recommends avoiding stress by setting out all of the ingredients and pre-measuring before beginning.
No matter what ends up getting whipped up in the kitchen, the hobbies of cooking and baking are a great way to spend free time with some, hopefully, delicious results.
Interested in furthering your culinary skills? Junior Paige King shared her secret cinnamon roll muffin recipe.
For the muffins:
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 egg
- 1 cup milk
For the icing:
- 3 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3 teaspoons melted butter
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and put cupcake liners in a cupcake pan.
2. For the muffins: Mix together dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together wet ingredients. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients to add the wet ingredients and mix well.
3. For the icing: Mix together the icing ingredients in a separate bowl.
4. Spoon muffin mixture into the cupcake pan, filling each cup about a quarter full.
5. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
6. Top with icing and enjoy!