Humboldt State University
Letter from Humboldt

November 2011

Traditional Thanksgiving Meal

Traditional Thanksgiving Meal – If your student isn’t coming home for the Thanksgiving holiday, you might worry that they’re missing out on that traditional Thanksgiving meal, too. But with these recipes submitted by HSU parents and families, your student will be able to whip up a satisfying, student-friendly Thanksgiving meal of his or her own.

In this issue

Stirring up Student-Friendly Thanksgiving Recipes

Desiree Perez

Thanksgiving break is upon us. While some students are traveling home to be with family for the holiday, many others aren’t. We wanted to make sure that those students staying in Humboldt for the holiday had a chance to have some home-style cooking too.

We put a call out to parents and family like you to help provide some recipes for students making their own Thanksgiving dinners and you really came through.

Below, you’ll find a full Thanksgiving dinner’s worth of food straight from our network of parents and family. Turkey can be both expensive and hard to find if you’re not buying a whole bird, so we opted for a great chicken recipe submitted by parent Julie Nagel.

You can find a lot more at my Student Recipes blog.

Share these recipes with your student to help them perk up their first Thanksgiving away from home, or just diversify their weekly food-routine. After all, a student can’t survive on pizza alone.


Greek Salad: From Julie Nagel – “My daughter found she can make a simple Greek salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives and feta cheese. Very filling.”

Serves 4


  • 1 cucumber, chopped
  • 2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted
  • 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled

How To

  • 1) Rinse and chop cucumber and tomato.
  • 2) In a large bowl, toss together cucumber, tomato and olives.
  • 3) Top with crumbled feta cheese and serve.

Parent Jacqueline Duboux also suggests Larrupin’ Mustard Dill as an “All-Purpose Student Sauce,” to top the Greek salad – or any number of things.

“My daughter swears by it as a salad dressing, stir fry sauce, sandwiches, bagels, burgers, tofu, pasta. Hmmm, I wonder if she’s ever tried it on ice cream?”

Main Course

Poached Chicken Breast: From Julie Nagel – “While my daughter was home this summer I showed her how to poach boneless chicken breasts.”

Serves 4, 30-40 minutes


  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

How To

  • 1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • 2) Place chicken breasts in oven-safe container. Fill with 1/2 inch of water.
  • 3) Season chicken breasts generously with salt and pepper.
  • 4) Cover dish tightly with foil.
  • 5) Cook for 30 to 40 minutes. The USDA recommends that all poultry be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If you do not have a food thermometer, you can test your chicken by inserting a fork into it. It should go in with ease and the juices should run clear.

Left overs can be refrigerated and used for sandwiches, wraps or salads.

Is your student a vegan or vegetarian like me? Check out the Pasta & Broccoli recipe on my Student-Friendly Recipe Blog!

Side Dish

Green Onion Mashed Potatoes: From Anja Wenrick – “For Thanksgiving or any time.”

Serves 4, 30 minutes


  • 2 lbs. russet potatoes, unpeeled, cut in chunks
  • 1/2 pkg. (4 oz.) Neufchatel (light cream cheese)
  • 2/3 cup reduced sodium chicken broth*
  • 2/3 cup chopped green onions
  • Salt to taste

How To

  • 1) Cover potatoes with water in a large pot and boil until tender when pierced (about 20 min.)
  • 2) Drain and return to pot.
  • 3) Mix potatoes with a hand mixer – or a fork and a lot of elbow grease – just to break up.
  • 4) Add cheese, broth, salt and green onions and mix until blended.

(*Non-meat-eating students can use a vegetable broth instead of a chicken broth.)


Chocolate Mug Cake: From K.D. – “This is a microwave recipe that my daughter makes in her dorm. Good for a chocolate-craving moment. Best not to microwave too hot—it gets dry and burnt. Less power or less time is best.”

Serves 1, unless you expect me to share…


  • 4 Tbsp. sugar
  • 4 Tbsp. flour
  • 3 Tbsp. milk
  • 3 Tbsp. oil
  • 2 Tbsp. cocoa
  • Splash of vanilla
  • Pinch of salt
  • Optional: chocolate chips

How To

  • 1) Spray inside of large coffee mug with non stick cooking/baking spray.
  • 2) Sift your dry ingredients to avoid clumps, and pour into mug.
  • 4) Stir in milk and oil.
  • 5) Add vanilla and salt (and chocolate chips, if desired) and stir some more.
  • 6) Pop in the microwave for 2:40 on power setting 8 (adjust time or power depending on your microwave).
  • Let cool and enjoy!

And if you have any more student-friendly recipes you’d like to share, send them my way. Your recipe could still become someone’s favorite, easy-to-make meal. Keep in mind that students often don’t have full kitchens—perhaps just a hot plate and a microwave—or a lot of money to spend on ingredients.

Post your ideas on my Student Recipes blog or send them to me directly at

Overheard on the Network

“Lots of students drive to southern Cal for winter break. If you haven’t already purchased the plane ticket, your son might want to check the ride board. Thanksgiving is a different matter.”

» Join the conversation
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Important Dates

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  • Nov. 21-25
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    Spring semester begins
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    Martin Luther King Jr. Day—Campus closed

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