Students cook together in new food club
By Micayela Konviser | Published Sept. 27, 2017
A new club on campus is bringing students together to cook. Sophomore, Mary Linen, 19, started Good Eats last semester hoping to help other students. Linen loves cooking and wants to share her skills.
“I started this club for other people because I really think that not a lot of people know how to cook and it’s really important,” she said. “We’re adults and after college we’re gonna be out on our own, if you aren’t already.”
Every other week members of the club meet at the kitchen in Rogers Hall and use teamwork to create new dishes.
“The way I do it is that I give everybody a certain piece of the recipe we’re doing and then we bring it together,” she said. “You need to work together to make the recipe work.”
Diana Espinal is Linen’s roommate and said when Linen cooked for her, she enjoyed it, so she joined the club to learn to cook like her. Espinal said her favorite thing about the club is making the dishes and eating them. Her favorite dish the group made together was pasta.
“It was so delicious and I was so excited when I got to eat the leftovers,” she said.
Good Eats meets weekly, alternating weeks between CAS 250 and Rogers Hall on Oct. 4, the club will be meeting in Rogers Hall.Linen got into cooking as a child.
“When I was little, as soon as I came home from school, I used to watch Rachael Ray all the time,” she said.
Linen said she taught herself how to cook, and draws inspiration from many different places including “a whole bunch of cookbooks” and watching her parents. She encourages everyone to join and is happy to accommodate any dietary restrictions.
“I always ask people if they’re vegetarian, or if they’re allergic to anything,” she said. “I’ll be more than happy to find alternatives to things, like to bread or anything, it doesn’t matter. The point of the club is to help people, you know.”
Linen says that members of the club all have different experiences with cooking. Some join because they love to cook, others do not know anything about cooking and join to learn.
“I feel good knowing I’m not the only one in the club who is trying to learn how to make food and I feel good knowing I’m learning to cook,” said Espinal.
No need to buy fancy cooking equipment or expensive ingredients to join, Linen ensures that everything cooked during club meetings is accessible to anyone at Kean.
“We’re all college students, we have budgets, so I’m not going to spend one hundred dollars on groceries because I know the average person isn’t going to do that,” she said. “I want it to be stuff that Kean students can realistically buy for themselves.”
The club currently has 35 members and got 93 new sign ups at Kean Day. Any student at Kean can join the club. Linen says that most people who join either want to learn how to cook, or love to cook and want to spend time cooking with others.
Linen hopes to become a funded group and has a few fundraisers she is hoping to conduct this semester. She plans to provide food for an event hosted with the film club on campus, and have a cook-off next semester.
“My goal is to become a funded group so that I can have a restaurant style soup kitchen for the homeless,” she said. “I want that to be our big event.”
She hopes to use the club to share her passion for cooking with others.
“I just really want people to learn how to cook because I love cooking and I’m just like passing it on to everyone else,” said Linen.
To find out more or to join Mary Linen’s Good Eats club, email Linen at email@example.com.