Rachel Hurley ’23, Anna Radcliff ’23 and Kellie Kottman ’23 sit on a couch behind a table filled with food at the Global Foods House in the Monroe Neighbhorhood.

Rachel Hurley ’23 (L-R), Anna Radcliff ’23 and Kellie Kottman ’23

By Swati Pandey ’23

Food has always been an important connection between individuals and their culture, and who would understand this better than the members of the Global Food House—Kellie Kottman ’23, Anna Radcliff ’23, and Rachel Hurley ’23?

How have the residents of 621 Monroe Street managed to socialize in their new neighborhood during this time of physical distancing? Kellie replies with a grin, “Chalked obstacle course and cookies!”

None of these track athletes had imagined that their friendship would brew off-field in the Ruef common room kitchen as they bonded over food and The Bachelorette. What started as a Monday night indulgence has now transformed into a purpose: “to teach ourselves and others more about food.”

Kellie Kottmann holds a bowl in the kitchen and stirs.Kellie, who connects to her Chinese roots via food, and Anna, who enjoys traveling to places with her family as they navigate the culture through food, both nod to the utility of food in building connections.

“I do not speak Chinese, but that’s the thing with food—there is no language specific to it,” Kellie says. “I can enjoy the recipes of the Chinese side of my family, and that is how I bond with them.”

This act of celebrating food has helped them bond with their neighbors, especially residents of the Cycling House.

As Anna recalls, “It was a fine day when the guys next door decided to cook chicken. Well, attempt to cook. Kellie told them the recipe through the window. To all our surprise, the chicken turned out to be quite delicious.”

Global Foods House residents made crepes based on Rachel’s grandmother’s recipe as their first house program.

“Given the remote nature of things, we were able to share only the photos of the crepes,” says Anna.

Their second program for the semester was Korean BBQ. Kellie explains, “Although I am not Korean, Korean barbecue is one of my favorite family meals. The recipe that we used was given to my mother by a family friend.” The barbecue was savored as they watched Street Food: Korea on Netflix.

A table set with food in a dish.“Given the unprecedented remote learning atmosphere, we were able to explore other creative ways of sharing our love for food,” says Kellie. “We look forward to next semester, as we will hopefully begin to resume normalcy. We are planning on hosting food trivia, inviting other people to cook with us, and trying out different family recipes. One shouldn’t hesitate to join us just because they’re not great cooks. This is a learning process. We’re all learning together!”

“I am also learning. Kellie is a great cook, and I am learning so much from her. I’ve not eaten so much homemade food even at my own house,” adds Anna with a smile.

Living in the Monroe Neighborhood has been a wonderful experience, Kellie notes.

The three women in Global Foods House at the dinner table with plates, food, and smiles“It was relatively simple for us to start a house with a new theme, and we are so grateful that Lafayette provides such a residential experience. It is truly a learning experience,” she says. “And also it is super fun to conduct different programs which are mandatory for the houses. That being said, for our last program this semester, we’ll be making cheese raclette, which Anna’s family enjoys at this time every year.”

Follow Global Foods House on Instagram @lafglobalfoods to be a part of its journey in “taking on the culinary world around the globe.”

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