Perhaps it’s fate that State College, Pennsylvania, home of my alma mater PSU, will see Its first Trader Joe’s StoreLater in the year. Maybe it’s no coincidence that this blog, fueled by a love of Trader Joe’s food, is helmed by a duo of proud Nittany Lions. It’s possible that it wasn’t an accident that this innovative cookbook, written by a professional chef/food writer, was created. Andrea LynnPenn Staters and all other college students across the country can now access, in order to possibly save them from the food-crimes that I was a victim to 10 years ago in Happy Valley.
In college, I lived with five other Penn State students in a large Beaver Avenue house. To put it mildly, our house could have used an interior decorator’s touch. But as a wise film professor once told me, “Your budget is your aesthetic.” This statement is not just applicable to filmmaking but can also be applied to almost every aspect of life. We, the residents of 622 W. Beaver Ave., took this idea to heart and decorated our home as our budget allowed. The shelves were filled with lights-up Santas and vinyl records of unknown bands, as well as a few mannequin heads. We also had a Chi-Chi’s five-foot-tall styrofoam-cactus. We did our best to get what we could, and made it look good. InteressantThis is aesthetically, at least. Our aesthetic was indeed our budget.
No exception was our eating habits. Our cupboards were a collection of college-fare clichés. The shelves were adorned with Spam and tuna cans, as well as rows of easy mac and ramen noodles and loaves semi-stale bread. We were frightened of cooking and intimidated by grocery shopping. Taco Bell’s 49¢ taco night was the sole representation of “international cuisine” in our diets. We were poor and we ate poorly.
However, today’s collegian need not suffer such culinary woes—not even one who’s strapped for cash—not so long as he or she has a Trader Joe’s store nearby and The I Love Trader Joe’s College Cookbook in hand. With incredible full-color photos and easy-to-follow instructions, the book guides readers through 160 pages of cheap and painless recipes. Even the most novice cook can create dishes such as these Thai Red Curry Deviled Eggs.
Are you not confident in your culinary abilities? You don’t have to be a professional chef to make these “dishes.” These recipes are extremely easy to prepare. There’s a system of icons indicating things like which recipes require no cooking, which ones take less than five minutes to prep, and which ones can be made using only a microwave. Most of the recipes only list 3 or 4 steps of instructions! It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Even non-alcoholic drink recipes are included (for college students over 21). While I did graduate from PSU a decade before, I don’t like spending too much time in the cooking kitchen. It isn’t just for university students. You can think of college students, but also think of bachelors, lazy people and fans of Trader Joe’s.
That pulled pork sandwich photo is making me hungry. And yeah, you guessed it—you can make it with a recipe in The I Love Trader Joe’s College CookbookAvailable now at Amazon:
Stay tuned for the next contest, where you can win Andrea Lynn’s book.I Love the Trader Joe’s College CookbookIn the meantime, Check it out on FacebookAnd click “Like”!