In response to “popular demand,” UChicago Dining has released a book of its 300 most popular recipes for dining hall chicken. The press release accompanying the cookbook’s announcement boasts that “300 chicken preparations have been gathered from all of the exquisite dining halls across campus.”
The highly-anticipated cookbook is rumored to contain never-before-seen methods to slightly overcook a chicken breast. Head of UChicago Dining, Christopher Toote, lauds the recipes as “technically edible.” Toote also took pains to specify that “the recipes in this book are tried-and-true success stories: we regularly see students choose them over our other offerings, including the day-old pizzas and the ‘Oops! All lettuce’ salad bars.”
Recipes from the cookbook, which will hit bookstores this May, reportedly include “boiled chicken,” “boiled chicken with paprika,” “middling-to-fair potato-inspired chicken,” and “just a raw hunk of breast,” among many others, as well as one “legitimately good Shaoxing-marinated chicken” recipe they seem to only produce on Chinese New Year.
The cookbook is gathering decidedly mixed reviews. “I was worried that moving off campus would mean that I’d be free from dining hall food forever,” said nostalgic third-year Brie Kitchener. “Now that I’m forced to feed myself, it’s comforting to know that I can slap together the same unremarkable dishes in my own kitchen.” Bite Magazine agreed, praising the cookbook’s “bold stance” on not splurging on expensive meats. However, Bite rejected the cookbook’s advice on the acceptability of “if the chicken falls on the floor once or twice — or even like a dozen times — as long as it’s overcooked enough.”