First Things First, Checking Policy

OK. So, the first step toward creating a fully functioning dorm kitchen is finding out what your school allows you to have. Most dorms permit microwaves and minifridges. Some campuses allow you to use your own, others supply them in each dorm room/suite, and others still make you rent them from the campus store. So, check out your dorm’s policy on appliances (the information I found was listed in the move-in guide), and if you can buy your own, make sure they meet the requirements listed by your school. No mater what your school’s policy, these things are dead useful, and they are essentials if permitted.

If you’re really lucky, your dorm will allow some other appliances. These include hot-pots, popcorn poppers, coffee pots, blenders, slow cookers, and even, the George Foreman Grill. Hot-pots, which are mainly used to cook rice, and popcorn poppers aren’t really necessary, since both rice and popcorn are easily made in the microwave. The others can be useful, though. A coffee pot is, for you caffeine addicts, useful for making coffee. Less obviously, it can be used to heat any liquid, like canned soup. It is, after all, essentially a hot-plate with a water dispenser. A blender is useful for making last minute breakfasts before dashing out the door to class. Just pop some frozen fruit and yogurt into it, give it a whirl, and voila, instant smoothie. This is what you will probably make in the blender most of the time, but it is useful in some recipes. Slow cookers can make a nice, effort free casserole, but as their name implies, there is a lot of waiting involved. And finally, there’s the George Foreman grill. This will probably be the most useful small appliance in your small kitchen. It is great for grilling chicken, cooking hamburgers, and toasting buns. Definitely worth the investment if it is allowed.

You might also want to look into your school’s policy on knives. A lot of dorms don’t allow them, especially if they’re longer than four inches. That being said, you might want to buy a few extra pairs of scissors (at least one for raw meat and one for everything else). Also, if it is allowed, a mini chopper comes in very handy. A plastic knife will only work for soft things, like apples and pears. (It works for cheese, too, but a cheese grater or a cheese wire is easier, though certainly not necessary).

Well, those are the basics, so get researching.

…until next time!

99 Things About Me And Why I Started This Blog:

I feel like I should give you, anyone who decides to read my blog, some insight into who I am. I've seen a few blogs out there where the blogger posts 100 random facts about themselves. I'm not gonna get too personal, but here is my tribute to them:

  1. My name is Kim.
  2. I am a senior in high school.
  3. I finally got the last of my college applications finished on New Years Day.
  4. The day it was due (the others were the same way).
  5. I did a little happy dance when I hit the submit button.
  6. I feel a lot lighter now that everything’s done.
  7. I‘m nervous about the results, though.
  8. But, I’ve already been accepted to a school I love, so it doesn’t really matter.
  9. Nevertheless, I’m not a fan of rejection.
  10. I only started researching for college the summer after junior year.
  11. As you can probably tell, I’m a procrastinator.
  12. I don’t like change.
  13. That’s why I put off the college search for so long.
  14. I even procrastinated over the summer.
  15. Instead of researching schools, I searched for recipes.
  16. It was fun and sort of stress relieving.
  17. During the research that I did do, I was appalled by the high prices of the meal plans.
  18. I don’t come from a wealthy family .
  19. Spending thousands on food, when I can easily feed myself for a fraction of the cost is disconcerting.
  20. I researched dorm cooking...
  21. ...Especially microwave recipes
  22. (and looked into dorm policies on microwaves, hot pots, and mini fridges, all of the essentials).
  23. is a godsend.
  24. My sister works at the local library.
  25. I did too, over the summer.
  26. I shelved the books in the children's section.
  27. ...And read a few, too (but never when on the clock).
  28. Anyway, she helped me find books about microwaving.
  29. Some of them were actually really helpful.
  30. My mother has an immense collection of cook books.
  31. Her collection helped me in the research process, too.
  32. She uses the microwave all the time for rice and vegetables.
  33. I was still skeptical about cooking entire meals in the microwave.
  34. My sister wasn’t.
  35. Microwave Wednesday was her idea.
  36. (We cook an entire dinner in the microwave every Wednesday night, so that I can practice.)
  37. My family is really great
  38. They got on board with the Microwave Wednesday thing right away,
  39. Even though my dad didn’t have confidence in microwaving meats either.
  40. I was completely wrong about the microwave.
  41. The results were good!
  42. Except for pork, that does not microwave well.
  43. ...At least, I haven't been able to master it yet.
  44. I come from a family with Polish, German, and Puerto Rican roots.
  45. These are all cultures where food is important.
  46. So, my family likes to eat.
  47. I hate Onions,...
  48. ...Fish,...
  49. ...Mushrooms,...
  50. ...Asparagus,...
  51. ...And a bunch of other things.
  52. You won’t see any fish recipes on my blog, but the other things are good for flavoring.
  53. I do like Onion powder though, go figure.
  54. Oh yeah, I spent eight years of my life in Texas.
  55. So, I really like Mexican food,...
  56. ...And Tex-mex,...
  57. ...And good Barbecue.
  58. You can’t really get those things in New Jersey
  59. But you can get good Italian…
  60. …and hoagies.
  61. This is my first independently-run blog.
  62. I do have one that I run with my sister, but we only post fun things.
  63. If we didn’t bust a gut laughing when we saw it, we don’t post it.
  64. I believe that a blog should be fun.
  65. Life is already too serious.
  66. Back to blogging, I don’t really get PHP.
  67. The HTML part I can understand, but the PHP part is confusing.
  68. I have grandiose ideas about how this blog will end up looking...
  69. ...But we’ll see.
  70. Hopefully I can conquer the gods of the code and figure it out.
  71. I have had some success adjusting wrapper size so far.
  72. My sister was a big help here, as well.
  73. She is a code genius.
  74. She helped my father run his web-based business for a long time.
  75. I love science...
  76. ...Especially Physics.
  77. I hope to someday be able to understand and explain how microwaves work.
  78. I learned a little in my Physics class last year.
  79. Apparently water vibrates on the same frequency as microwaves.
  80. Who knew? I’m still not sure I do.
  81. I think It’s funny that they’re called microwaves,
  82. They have some of the longest wavelengths in the spectrum.
  83. It’s more stupid than funny, but it still makes me giggle.
  84. I really like math, too.
  85. That’s why, right now, the dream is architecture.
  86. We’ll see what happens.
  87. When I was really little, I dreamed of becoming a pastry chef.
  88. I watched the food channel and cooking shows on PBS all the time.
  89. I really like Bobby Flay, Alton Brown, and Lidia Bastianich.
  90. …but my favorite show is America’s Test Kitchen
  91. No wonder, they combine science and cooking!
  92. I wanted my own cooking show when I was younger.
  93. It’s kinda funny, since I can’t stand speaking in public
  94. My mouth gets all dry and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth.
  95. (But, you probably didn’t need to know that.)
  96. I wanted to go to cooking school.
  97. I am really annoyed by people like Emeril and Rachel Ray.
  98. I hate their catch-phrases.
  99. You will never see me type something like BAM!, Yum-o, or EVOO ever again, I hope.

…So now you know