Budgeting each bite

Meet the Basted Crew

Katie Casey 

     I’m a cooking savvy college student at James Madison University located in Harrisonburg, Virginia. As a student I find myself attempting to minimize my grocery bills by only buying the necessities. Luckily for me, and you, I have taught myself how to prepare delicious meals with few groceries. With little time and few ingredients it is still possible to eat well on a college budget, I do it every day. Being independent and away from home I have had to teach myself how to cook in a frugal manner.

   I’m currently a junior studying public relations, writing and media at JMU. Being a third year student I have had plenty of time to master the kitchen and expand my palate. Other than being a student I am involved with PRSSA and Phi Sigma Pi coed national honors fraternity. I am excited to begin this journey along with my team members!

   This semester I decided to steer away from the college meal plan trend and try preparing every meal myself. Five weeks into the semester I have learned new skills, stayed under budget and even treated myself on a few occasions. Join this foodie journey with me to becoming an independent master chef of the college style kitchen. No ramen noodles allowed!

Sarah Hayes

            Being an avid food network watcher with no cooking experience at all but watching my mom and dad in the kitchen while growing up, I am slowly but surely learning how to cook and getting a better idea of what types of foods that interest me.  I’m a student at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and have been on a meal plan since freshman year with living on campus but want to have more experience with food before graduating next year when I am on my own for meals and expenses.  Although I am on a meal plan with the University, I want to try to cook more meals for myself when the campus food gets boring.

  I am studying to have a double major in Communications with a concentration in Public Relations and Spanish.  I am also working on a minor in Writing and Rhetoric.  Besides being a full-time student, I am involved in Delta Gamma Fraternity and I am currently the Vice President Finance which is teaching me to have a budget and this experience will help me when I graduate.  Knowing how to keep within a budget is important for purchasing food and especially for a college student who has limited money.

Food has really become an interest to me after studying abroad in Spain for a semester where I was able to have the opportunity to experience different food in various cultures.  I have had several internships in Washington D.C. that has significantly improved my Public Relations and writing skills. My experiences during my internships will provide me with the knowledge of writing a great blog and being able to reach audiences through social media. While sitting at my desk for lunch each day during the summer, I realized I needed to trash the ready-made salads and vending machine soda for something more delicious yet still inexpensive. I’m excited to begin this food-filled semester with my team!

Ryan Cosgrove

Hi, My name is Ryan and I am a senior at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia.  Over the past 4 years I have been studying communications, public relations, writing and rhetoric.  I love communicating and working with others in everything I do!

I currently have a meal plan that I use on campus for food, but it only really covers my lunches during the school week.  The rest of the time I’m on my own when it comes to food.  Going out to eat with my friends can be quick, easy and fun but it just takes too much of a toll on my wallet so more often than not I find myself in my apartment kitchen whipping up something.  I would describe myself as a mad scientist in the kitchen; I’m always doing some type of experiment with food.  Luckily for you, my experiments always seem to turn out surprisingly good.  As my friends usually say, “don’t question his food just try it.” I never have any complaints about what I’ve made and I can’t complain either because I save so much money preparing food instead of eating out.

As a senior whose tight on money, but yet also about to be in the real world where I won’t have college meal plans, it only seems proper that I am able to prepare meals for myself and for others. So come join me in experimenting in the kitchen.  You’ll love what you invented and will save money doing it!

Kelsey Mohring

As a self-proclaimed foodie, I enjoy cooking, entertaining and especially eating. Currently, I am a senior at James Madison University (JMU) in Harrisonburg, Virginia, where I am studying public relations and Spanish. In college I have had various opportunities to express my love of food though party hosting, cooking family meals for my roommates and most importantly, blogging about it.

I discovered my love of cooking in high school through completing a senior project in which I took gourmet cooking classes, research various recipes and techniques, mainly through watching The Food Network, and held a seven course Italian dinner party for my teachers. But, have no fear; gourmet isn’t the only thing I can do. Although I love experimenting with the epicurean cooking style, I am most comfortable with boiling pasta and cooking eggs, so we will be on this foodie journey together. I still spend many nights watching The Food Network, even though the research is over, which may make my college life sound boring, but will be of great benefit to you as a reader.

As a world traveler, I love experiencing other cultures and specifically other foods. Traveling in places like Spain and South Africa and trying foods from chicken feet to fish croquettes, I learned to step out of my comfort zone and try new cuisines, so I may ask you to do the same. Trust me, it usually pays off (minus the chicken feet, which I don’t recommend.)

When I am not cooking, I work as an intern at the JMU Office of Public Affairs, writing feature articles and working with the media. I also act as the Director of Events for the Public Relations Student Society of America chapter at JMU, expressing my interest in entertaining in a different form. After the Triscuits and Babybel cheese I usually eat at my desk, a nice home-cooked dinner is always a treat.

Join me on this foodie adventure and we can navigate the kitchen together. We may not always get it right, but we will have fun doing it.

3 thoughts on “Meet the Basted Crew

  1. Hi Guys! Got an invite from Katie on my FaceBook page to check you out. Good luck on your studies and kitchen adventures. I’ll follow along and maybe pick up some new frugal ideas. 🙂

  2. Hi guys!

    I cannot believe I just found out about your blog! Awesome stuff, love the concept, and it’s absolutely perfect for us college kids on a budget. I currently have my own college cooking blog that I write with a friend of mine– we’ll definitely be visiting to check out your recipes and tips 🙂

    — Nicole

  3. Maggie on said:

    Hi Dukes! I am Maggie from Maggie Monday on the Rantings of an Amateur Chef blog. Small world but I work at JMU as the Director of Residence Life. I hope you had a great dorm experience and look forward to your posts. If you ever want to do a dorm cooking program let me know! Happy Cooking!

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