Dinner is Served
In the apartment of Brighton Sandt, a myriad of smells mixed together and coalesced into a miasma of Italian flavors. The dish itself was nothing too complicated: fettuccine Alfredo.
But upon seeing the ingredients neatly set up on the counter, utensils ready for use, it was immediately clear that Sandt had a passion for a culinary art that, while partially owed to the necessity of college life, is bred out of a love for well-made food.
“I knew I was about to go off to college, so I was like, ‘I better learn how to make food so it tastes good, and I don’t have to go to the MAX,’” Sandt said.
Sandt has been cooking for himself since high school, but even before then, he had gained experience by helping his mother prepare dishes.
“For the most part, I’ve learned on my own, and I do my own research for the dishes that I make,” Sandt said. “But I would say my mom probably gave me a little foundation.”
A mass communication major and junior, Brighton Sandt has been making food for himself the majority of his time attending GC.
“I also sometimes make the food for my roommates, especially last year,” Sandt said. “They would buy the ingredients, and then I would make them dinner. Sometimes I’ll make more complicated stuff, but other times I just want to make something simple like pasta with Alfredo and just share that with somebody.”
As we walked into the kitchen, Sandt laid everything out in the order of his recipe and worked quickly. He dropped the pasta into a pot of boiling water and seasoned with salt, creating a steamy atmosphere within the kitchen. Next was the butter and garlic for the sauce.
“Most of the recipes say, ‘Oh, just throw the recipes into a pot and boil them,’” Sandt said with a laugh. “I like having the base for a recipe but turning it into my own. Like for the Alfredo, putting the butter in and then the garlic, then the cream to bring all the flavors. You get more flavor development that way.”
His intuitions proved true: he knew the exact amount of butter to add, and the garlic seemed to melt away into the pan. He added the cream and cheese shortly after, the mixing of aromas rising with the steam from the bowls.
“The thing about getting the best taste, that extra bit of flavor in food, is that you have to do those extra steps to develop it,” Sandt said. “And on top of that I just love food because you can share it with people so easily.”
Once the pasta and the Alfredo sauce were nished, Brighton put them in a bowl and mixed his creation. He garnished the dish with parsley and put a fork in the bowl to finish. While the dish itself was simple on the surface, it came together wonderfully, and there was plenty to go around.
“[The] fondest memories that I’ve ever had were sharing a meal with friends or having a nice meal with the family,” Sandt said. “I think food in the kitchen, for me, is like the heart of the home. That’s where you do stuff; you do it in the kitchen.”