Cooking up Efficiently: How Chef Dev Is Helping Students, One Meal at a Time

By: Dustin Petridge | Lifestyle Editor

On Sept. 29, Jaguar Productions hosted a cooking show with Chef Devin Epps with a goal to help college students make healthy, affordable meals that would impress even the best of culinary experts.

Devin Epps, or “Chef Dev,” as he prefers to be called, is a South graduate and was a student athlete in the Mitchell College of Business. After graduating from South, Epps moved to New York City to work with the Food Network on television and has since been splitting his time between the Big Apple and Memphis with occasional stops in Mobile. 

Throughout the night, Epps presented gems about the culinary world, from notes on why seasoning is so important and clarifying the misconception that blackened salmon is a dish meant to be burned. 

The show began with Epps introducing the meal of the night: blackened salmon with coconut rice. He described this as a basic meal that many top chefs would ask new employees to cook to test their “culinary prowess.” 

After making the salmon and rice dish, Epps proceeded to make a dessert plate: Rice Krispie Treat snickerdoodles. Epps stated that this was a perfect treat to make in a college environment because it can be made in the microwave. 

An understated moment of the night was Epps’ universal advice on using butter in meals; he suggested not using butter with “hydrogenated oils” as they don’t provide a decent consistency for most foods. When asked about his best advice for students trying to cook in college, Epps suggested to “invest in a pepper grinder” and that the difference in ground pepper and pepper kernels is very significant. 

On his own experience in college, Epps added, “I know college is hard, I’ve been there, and sometimes I still feel like I’m there.”

Overall, Epps provided an insightful experience about the culinary world that gave students useful advice on cooking efficiently while in college, using his own experience as a relatable baseline. To book private culinary sessions with Epps’, you can visit his website. For more information on attending future events with Jaguar Productions, check out their website.