Will Work for Food: Fresh Cheese

With the threat of nuclear war looming over us once again, it might be a good time to learn some new skills and become more self sufficient. Learning how to scavenge food and collect potable water are obviously important, sure; but knowing how to produce luxury goods is also important. While hunkered down in the sewers at night, between your day trips to the surface-world to scavenge for canned goods and “fresh” meat, wouldn’t it just be nice to settle in with a canteen full of toilet wine? Well, what good is toilet wine without my favorite luxury item – cheese.

I get all kinds of disgusting with cheese, which you may already know if you caught my beer cheese recipe in a prior issue. While the cheese I’m going to explain how to make, a simple ricotta, shouldn’t really be your first choice when it comes to making a sauce or fondu, it’s a great starting point for an aspiring caseiculturist.

Ricotta is what is known as a fresh cheese, as in, “you can eat it fresh without having to wait for it to age like a plebe.” It has a light, fluffy texture, and a mild, adaptable taste. It’s great for salads or whatever post-apocalyptic version of the salad will exist by the time 2020 rolls around. It is also often used in lasagna recipes.
What you’ll need:

  • 4 cups whole milk
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ tbsp salt
  • 2 lemons
  • honey

You will also need a clean (preferably never before used) dishcloth, or if you are some kind of fancy lad a cheesecloth made specifically for this kind of thing.

Prepare your lemons in advance by juicing 1 ½ of them into a bowl. I know I said above that you will need 2 lemons, but you can’t buy ½ a lemon.

Begin by adding the milk, heavy cream, and salt to a pot over high heat. Stir it constantly, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the pot with your spoon, until the mixture begins to boil (it will look kind of like marshmallow fluff, or something else that looks like marshmallow fluff). Once that happens, bring the temperature down to low (if you are using an electric stovetop you might want to switch burners) and stir in the lemon juice that you were smart enough to prepare in advance so that you didn’t have to stop stirring. Keep stirring until it looks kind of like grits in yellow water, or baby spit-up, then remove it from the heat.

Place a strainer over a large bowl, and line it with the dishcloth (or a cheesecloth if, again, you are a fancy lad). Slowly pour the contents of your pot onto the cloth. Make sure you get all of the curds out of there with your spoon. Let it sit and drain for a while before gently folding the cloth over and pressing down very, very lightly. The goal here is to get out all the liquid without upsetting the poor cheese. If you are clever, like I am, and you have a health conscious roommate, like I do, you might be able to convince them to save the whey that has drained into the bowl below your cheese for future protein smoothies or whatever. Upcycle your runoff and all that for environmental reasons.

That’s pretty much it. Transfer the contents from your cloth into a serving bowl, mix in honey and more salt to taste. If you want to get real crazy, add some nuts or something.

We served our cheese over some fresh bread that my girlfriend made, some sliced peaches, and then drizzled it with more honey.

Steak and ale pie

steak&ale4_CMYK

By the time this paper is printed and distributed around campus, St. Patrick’s Day will have come and gone. At the time of writing this column, however, this special day hasn’t quite arrived; which is why I’ve decided to feature a uniquely Irish sounding dish that is best enjoyed while ignoring the subtle distinction between cultural appropriation and cultural exchange.

What you’ll need:

  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Potatoes
  • Onions
  • Mushrooms
  • A pad of butter
  • Breadcrumbs
  • ¾ cup of milk (or buttermilk if you’re fancy)
  • Pie crust
  • An egg (beaten)
  • 1 ½ lbs of stew meat
  • Pepper jack and gouda cheese
  • Kitchen bouquet meat browning sauce
  • One can of cheap or Irish sounding beer
  • Garlic salt

First, prepare the stew meat by dumping it into a large bowl, along with half your can of beer and a few dashes of the browning sauce. Kitchen Bouquet browning sauce is pretty great for hamburgers and meatloaf as well, so don’t feel bad if you are forced to buy it because your kitchen is lacking. I’m sure there’s a generic brand that’s half a cent or two cheaper, but I’m not sure what that would be called. All you need to know is that it has a yellow label and comes in a strange shaped brown plastic vial.

While your meat is marinating in beer and browning sauce, slice up enough of the vegetables to fill up a large pan, and begin cooking it in butter on medium heat. Add a healthy amount of garlic salt and give it a stir every once and a while, but let it cook till the mushrooms get kinda wilty and there is a little bit of liquid forming in the bottom of the pan. Now, there are a lot of people who think mushrooms are gross, but those people are wrong. Every once in a while, a journalist has to take a stance that might jeopardize readership, and this is one of those moments. Include mushrooms because mushrooms are actually really great and they make everything better.

Once the vegetables are cooked down to an appropriate degree (you will know, this isn’t rocket surgery), dump them into a bowl – now it is time for the meat. You want to get the meat into the pan without all the gross meat-beer it’s been soaking in, so use tongs or a fork or your hands to transfer the little chunks into the pan, but be careful not to burn yourself. You are all adults, and you can make your own decisions on how you like your beef cooked, but this isn’t a beautiful steak that needs to be taken care of like a rare Chinese panda; this is stew meat that is going to be thrown into a pie with gravy and then baked. Cook it till it’s not bloody anymore and then transfer it to a dish. You want to leave the drippings in the pan though; so, again, use tongs or a fork or your hands, but probably not your hands because this time the meat is going to be hot.

Once you’ve got a pan full of hot beer-meat drippings, turn up the heat to medium-high and add the rest of your beer to the pan. Same as with the beer cheese, you want to see the beer do that strange yeast reaction thing where it froths up a crazy amount. Before it gets too crazy, turn off the heat (remove it from the burner if you don’t have a gas stove), add the milk, and stir the Irish evil out of it with a whisk. The milk will have cooled the contents of your pan enough to now add a little of both kinds of cheese. I like this to be more gravy than cheese, but do what makes you happy. I won’t ever fault someone for using extra cheese. Stir it till it’s fully melted (and I can’t stress this enough: if you need to use heat while adding the cheese to get it to melt, make it very low heat so it doesn’t break), and get your oven preheated to 425°F.

I’m only gonna say this once: who are you trying to impress? Buy your pie crusts. They come in packs of two where I get them, and you’re gonna have enough filling to make two of these bad boys. Nobody will know the difference because, in my experience, everyone will have been drinking. Add an equal amount of all the fillings to both pie pans, or pans that you are baking your pies in, and then top with the cheesy beer gravy stuff. Top with the pie crust, brush the top of them with a well beaten egg, and wait for the oven to finish preheating. Once it is, stick it in the oven until the juices begin bubbling up and the crust is sufficiently browned.

 

Photos by Kyle Fierstien

Incoming VP of SEB plans for two year term

vlad1_EDITEDVladislav Borisenko has plans for his new term.

Vladislav Borisenko, a 26 year old sophomore at UB, is the incoming Vice President of the Student Events Board. While his term doesn’t start until May 1, he has already begun planning his two year strategy, as well as specific events he has in mind. “My term doesn’t start until the first,” said Borisenko, “I am moving quick and making sure that everybody I spoke to and is on stand-by is ready to move, because I only have two years on my term.”

Although he is studying Simulation and Digital Entertainment, he has a background in event planning for local radio station 92Q, and brings a unique set of skills and connections to the SEB which he plans to leverage in order to bring in bigger artists.

“Before block party, I want to bring in an artist from 92Q. They mentioned giving them radio time so the fee would be less, and I think it would be really good for the school [to] bring in a really big name to perform. Somebody that everybody would enjoy, not just one age group.”

His time at 92Q began as a videographer, filming hip hop and EDM shows. He soon began hosting his own events. “The goal of our marketing was to bring an artist that had never been to Baltimore, so that you could only see them at one of our shows.”

Borisenko admits that it can be hard to draw crowds of UB students to events, calling it a “sleeping campus,” but wants to streamline events put on by SEB, student organizations, and faculty, so that attendance of students might increase. “I want to unify everybody. If I’m throwing a video game event, and there is a similar one coming up being held by a teacher, I want to put them together so they are under one house.” He believes that by coordinating events across all departments on campus, and working together to cross promote, attendance of such events might increase.

Acknowledging that his fellow SDE majors are one of the groups who are frequently on campus, he wants to create more events that might interest them, such as a two tiered video game tournament with one tier for UB students awarding better prizes than the other tier, which would be filled with nonstudents. “I want our students to be able to say, ‘because I’m a student here I have access to better rewards, and maybe if you were a student here you could have access to these too.’”

Many of his planned events, from video game tournaments to concerts are built around catering to not only UB students, but the surrounding community as well. Borisenko believes that by increasing interest, and possibly revenue through these events, UB’s presence will increase beyond the campus. “I want to push the school in that direction, and have other colleges hear about us. I want to generate talk.”

“What I want to instill in students is that they can do anything through the SEB and the SGA. You could really create anything.”

 

Photo by Kyle Fierstien

Alyx McClelland: president of UB Improv

When I was growing up one of my favorite television shows was “Whose Line is it Anyway?”, an improv comedy show starring such talents as Colin Mochrie, Ryan Stiles, Wayne Brady, Greg Proops, hosted by Drew Carey (at the time), and featuring several rotating comedians and guest stars.  I was intrigued by the idea of improvisational comedy, and mesmerized by the quick wittedness of the comedians.  

I was excited to learn a few weeks into my first semester that there is an improv club here at the University of Baltimore, and quickly joined up – hoping to hone my ability to perform in front of others and improve my wits.  While I can’t speak for myself on my own progress, seeing the other members of the group improve during my time with them has been a wonderful experience, and I attribute much of that to the excellent leadership of the club.

I was lucky enough to get UB Improv’s current president, Alyxandra McClelland, on the phone for an interview in order to help spread awareness of this club, and to gain some insight into her experiences as a member and president.

Tell me a little bit about how you got involved with improv

Well I started improv in high school.  We had a drama club and we also had a drama class.  I took that for three years and I did drama [club] for four years.  When I came to the University of Baltimore, I found out they had an improv club my freshman year.

How did you end up being the president of UB Improv?

First, I was the treasurer of the improv club – three years ago, and when the president and vice president told me they were graduating they asked me if I would consider the idea of being a president in the club since I was already a treasurer.  I said sure, and it kind of happened from there.

Was it kind of a weird transition moving from member to the president of the club?

It is harder because I didn’t know what you were supposed to do when you are president.  I didn’t know what that entailed.  I just wanted people to have fun.

What sorts of extra duties did you have to take on that you were unsure about?

One of the things was trying to delegate – trying to figure out what roles to give to everyone else: so what roles do you give to the vice president, what roles do you give to the treasurer aside from balancing the bank account, what roles does your marketing department play.  That and ensuring everyone knows where your meetings are, what times they are, and making sure everyone enjoys themselves while they are there.

One of the things that improv club likes to highlight about themselves is that improv isn’t just for having fun, there are also some skills you can gain by doing it

Improv improves your public speaking skills, it improves your ability to have posture and presence on stage, which is important for if you are giving a speech or doing an interview.  It also teaches you how to work with a dynamic group of people.  There are people from the digital design majors, people who are accountant majors, people who are history majors and English majors, and they kind of all come together and you have to figure out, A: how to work with them, and then B: how to interact with them so you are not offending them with your jokes or making them feel bad because they are not doing something the way you are doing it.  

I think it really ultimately gets people to look outside of the group of people that they are in, because when you are in a major you often stay around the same people because they are taking the same classes as you, where in improv you meet a bunch of people from different majors and you find out you have more in common than just this major.

This is your last semester as president, correct?

Currently, yes, I believe so.  It depends on where I end up for law school.

What would be the biggest take away for you during your time at improv here?

I think watching it grow and develop from just a little club that people could come to, to a club where you see people actually develop these skills – because there were a lot of people at improv who started out not being able to talk to people, not being able to carry a scene, not really making up their own ideas to them creating these amazing characters and situations that seem like they just fall out of the sky.

When does the improv group meet and what events are coming up

The improv club meets every Tuesday and Friday from 5:30 to 7.  We have two improv shows coming up: one on April 5th from 7-9, and we have another show on April 19th from 7-9.  both shows are in the wright theater on the student center 5th floor.  And there will be Pizza and drinks.

Is there anything else you’d like the readers to know about the improv club?

Improv is something that you can learn, it’s for everyone, it’s not as intimidating as people try to make it sound, and it’s all about enjoying yourself and having fun.  It’s like a little piece of happiness from the daily struggles of having to complete 7 assignments in 2 days.  We are always accepting new members, and if anyone ever has an idea for something they would like to collaborate with the improv club you can go to UB Improv at orgsync and shoot [us] a message.  They can also go to orgsync and find me and send me an email.  We are looking to get other clubs or people to collaborate with us for our show on the 19th.

Alyxandra McClelland is a senior, majoring in jurisprudence and holding a philosophy minor.  She is going to be attending law school after her graduation in July, possibly continuing on here at UB.

Maryland basketball teams in top 10 entering heart of B1G schedule

By Andrew R. Koch

Business Manager

Maryland’s men’s and women’s basketball teams started the season ranked in the top 10 in the media and coaches’ polls. After a school-record 28 win season and an appearance in the Round of 32 in last year’s NCAA tournament, the men’s team added three new pieces in two graduate transfers and one of the highest-rated freshmen in the country, and are a popular pick to win not only the Big Ten, but also make a deep run this year’s NCAA tournament. Meanwhile, head coach Brenda Frese’s squad is looking to get back to the Final Four in the women’s tournament for a third straight year. Both teams are showing that they’re still legitimate contenders, despite early losses in their conference schedules.

Men Score Major Conference Win

During the last offseason, forward Diamond Stone of Milwaukee stunned the college basketball world by announcing that he’d accepted a scholarship offer from Maryland, saying “I want to be a national champion,” and he felt that head coach Mark Turgeon’s team gave him the best chance to reach that goal. Stone, who was a top-five forward prospect in his senior season of high school, chose Maryland over Wisconsin, which was also recruiting him and would’ve given him a chance to stay close to home. Stone has adapted very well to the college game, averaging 13 points (third on the Terrapins) and 5.4 rebounds (second on the team) per game. He’s regularly imposing his will in the low post and frequently scoring in double figures coming off the bench.

Two other additions to the Terrapins have also been key contributors throughout the season. Rasheed Sulaimon, a 6-foot-4 shooting guard, joined as a senior graduate transfer from Duke. Last season, Sulaimon became the only player to ever be dismissed from a Mike Krzyzewski-coached team. Sulaimon has proven to be an adept ball-handler when sophomore point guard Melo Trimble has needed a rest, and can spread the floor with his long-range shooting ability. Sulaimon is averaging 10.6 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game, and is in the top 5 for the Terps in all three categories. The other senior graduate transfer who’s been contributing in a big way to Maryland is Robert Carter, Jr., who transferred from Georgia Tech. Carter has given Maryland depth along the front line, and is second on the team in scoring (13.4 points per game) while leading in rebounding (6.9 rebounds per game).

Maryland scored its biggest win of the season in its last home game. The eighth-ranked Terps welcomed the third-ranked Iowa Hawkeyes to Xfinity Center on Jan. 28, and in a close game for all 40 minutes, pulled out a 74-68 win. Carter and Sulaimon each scored 17 points, and Maryland overcame poor shooting in the second half to give Iowa its first loss in conference play and snap the Hawkeyes’ nine-game winning streak. The Terps bounced back from a 74-65 loss at Michigan State on Jan. 23. Maryland is currently 19-3 overall (8-2, third in Big Ten), and still hasn’t lost a home conference game.

Maryland Women Continue Domination of B1G

After fading late in an 80-71 loss to then ninth-ranked Ohio State on Jan. 2, capping a stretch of two losses in three games in six days, the Lady Terps have picked up right where they left off last season. Maryland has reeled off six straight wins, and are currently 19-2 overall (8-1 Big Ten). The only thing that seems to have slowed Frese’s team down is the weather, as games against Michigan State and Penn State were postponed by the historic blizzard that buried the Mid-Atlantic between Jan. 22 and Jan. 24. During Maryland’s current winning streak, the closest game was a 74-67 win by Maryland at Michigan on Jan. 14. Only one other game has been decided by less than 20 points in favor of the Terps.

Coming Up

The Maryland men will have a rematch against Michigan in College Park on Feb. 21. The Terps lost at Michigan 70-67 on Jan. 12. Maryland will also play number 18 Purdue at home on Feb. 6, and then travel to West Lafayette, Indiana on Feb. 18. Both games are scheduled to be aired on ESPN. Senior Night in College Park will be on March 3. The Big Ten Tournament will be at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis March 9-13.

The women’s game against Michigan State has been rescheduled for Feb. 5. The Lady Terps have rematches against number seven Ohio State on Feb. 8, Northwestern on Feb. 14 and Michigan on Feb. 17. Senior Day will be on Feb. 28 against Minnesota. The Big Ten Women’s Tournament will also be at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse March 2-6.