Come Dine with Me: Student Edition

Chelsey Wilken

Four Rhodes University second year students are hosting their own student version of Come Dine with Me as a solution to boring residence food and digs' dinners consisting of baked beans on toast and two minute noodles. 

Come Dine with Me, is a British show where five acquaintances fill a week with exorbitant dinner parties in an attempt to win £1000. Contestants produce three course meals and supply entertainment for their guests usually with a theme for each evening.

Ané Becker, Dominique van Lienden, Sacha Barrow and Michal Dahan are all friends who live in St Mary Hall. Ané, Dominique and Sacha are moving into digs next year and found that this was a way that they could still have quality time together even though they no longer live in the same hall.

One thing students look forward to when moving out of university residences is better food. The reality - often as a result of poor budgeting - is either baked beans on toast or two minute noodles. It doesn’t have to be this way.  

“Some of our best laughs and memories have been shared over horrible food in the dining hall. We can continue that tradition. I can’t promise that the food won’t still be horrible though,” says Dominique.

Dominique is barely able to boil two minute noodles but is enthusiastic about hosting a dinner party and being part of the fun.

The friends take turns cooking for one another using a budget of R150 for three courses to feed four people.

“It saves money and it’s an opportunity to be inventive in the kitchen” says Ané.

Ané believes their Dine with Me concept is a great alternative to the student routine of bulk cooking on Sundays or developing a timetable of who cooks on a specific day in her apartment.

The girls ensure that their sarcastic comments will do Dave Lamb’s voiceover’s justice.

“Instead of throwing it all into one week like they do on the television show” says Sacha “we’ll split it up so it’s one a week, this is easier because we aren’t free every evening.”

The girls decided to forgo the cash prize and score cards, they decide amongst themselves and the winner at the end of the month gets a bottle of their favourite wine.

“It’s an opportunity to showcase your best dish or a traditional recipe in your family or something the guests may have never tried before” Says Michal, “I can’t wait to share some of my own Israeli recipes with my friends, it’s a nice reminder of home.”

The girls shared their favourite themes, recipes and form of entertainment:

Dominique “Summer time”
Starter: Stuffed mushrooms and crispy spinach
Main: Sticky lemon chicken and potato wedges
Dessert: chocolate dipped strawberries
Entertainment: 30 Seconds

Ané “A night in Venice”:
Starter: Mozzerella and tomato salad with olive oil and basil leaves
Main: traditional Italian tomato pasta
Dessert: Italian crepes
Entertainment: Poker

Michal “American Idol”:
Starter: Cheesy Nachos
Main: All American cheese burgers
Dessert:  Cheesecake
Entertainment: karaoke

Sacha “Oriental”:
Starter: samosas
Main:  Butter chicken and rice
Dessert: chilli chocolate mousse
Entertainment: Cluedo

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