Got my first ever parking ticket this week. And second. Yikes. The first was for parking in an (unmarked) street sweeping zone next to a park. The other was for parking overnight on property that I thought Caltech owned (obviously they did not). Either way that wasn’t exactly a fun start to the week.

Anyways, to assuage my ticketed woes, I decided to go and cook instead of doing my homework. Again. This actually is starting to be a bit of a trend, me cooking that is. It’s very nice to have that manual labor release to experience flavors, and to escape the monotony of Caltech sets as a whole. Especially when I was in the middle of what ended up being a 16-hour math set, cooking was a much-needed release. This time around we made foods from Philadelphia. Obviously, we made Philly cheesesteaks, but that’s not the real point of this blog post.

We made soft pretzels! This was actually very exciting for me as I had just recently watched every single competitor on the Great British Baking Show mess up their soft pretzels. And you know that I had a strong desire to one-up whatever mediocrity was left over from their technical challenge. Luckily the dough was fairly easy to make – that’s a real perk of having a bread-maker. But the folding pretzels was a little rough. We started off without doing a twist in the middle, as amateurs and Great British Baking Show people both do, but them I remembered the lessons of my dear boy Paul Hollywood. And I remembered that pretzels were defined by their signature twist. So, my ex-roommate and I started rolling out our pretzels a bit thinner and twisting them like the pros.

I’d say they turned out pretty well, but I’d be lying. They turned out REALLY well. And they went over very well too. This was for the Women’s soccer orange out game (which they won, by a lot!!!) and yeah, it was a good time all around. Cooking, and baking especially, is a very rewarding process. And the cooking crew went out for hot pot later that evening. Tom Mannion is truly a god when it comes to hot pot broth preparation.

And luckily, CDS pays me enough to cover those pesky tickets and then some ahaha. And we’re blending our own tea. But more on that later.

Find yourself a job like Caltech dining services!

– Chandrew