Food for some is sustenance; for others it is a passion. For the Brass sisters, however, it is an art. In a world filled with ready-to-eat two-minute pasta packs available in the market, Marilynn and Sheila Brass make their “Billionaire’s Macaroni and Cheese” with about 15 ingredients. The sisters have written two cookbooks together and even had a show of their own on WGBH TV. They came to Northeastern University’s Xhibition Kitchen, giving the students a taste of their exotic food and sharing their culinary tips and tricks.
The audience were mainly students of the new course Food, Food Policy, and Health, started by John Auerbach, of the Institute on Urban Health Research and Practice, and Corby Kummer, a restaurant critic and editor. The course is an interesting survey of the various kinds of food across the country and the various policies and public opinions that go into the determination of food habits of the people. As a part of the course, the students were also taken on a tour of the Legal Sea Food’s Quality Control Center to learn how companies tested the food before they were sent to the market, to ensure that it was safe to eat. They would also visit the Haley House Bakery Café in Roxbury, which has the unique motto of bringing people together through food.
The cooking demo by the Brass sisters helped the students taste various kinds of macaroni and cheese, and understand how the food has evolved over the ages. The students, who were used to eating homemade pasta, described the Brass sisters’ special as “rich in flavour”. What food is and how it is seen by people has changed over the years. How our foods will continue to be reinvented and innovated only the future can show us.
N Malavika Mohan