Feeding an army

If the virgins were amazed by how many people it took to make 14/48 happen, they might be even more surprised by how much food it takes to feed them.

This weekend, Jessica Stepka and Alber Sucupira are the kitchen leads. Earlier this week, they met to try to figure out how to keep the staff, artists and volunteers fed for the entire weekend. That means breakfast, lunch, dinner, and of course, snacks, for people who won’t leave the college except to sleep or maybe pick up props.

In the planning meeting, they look at what’s worked in the past, what new ideas they can try, and what eating restrictions they need to accommodate.

Jessica said she enjoyed making the vegetarian meals, since it let her try new recipes and “break out of my meat eater comfort zone.”

They also try to take the facilities and season into account. North Seattle has less of a kitchen than the ACT theater, but it’s also summer, so the kitchen had already been planning on leaning into the fresh vegetables and fruit that can cut through the summer heat.

Like everything in 14/48, the hardest part of running the kitchen is time. “Lunch to dinner is a real quick turnaround,” Jessica said, and actors with dinner time obligations need to find time to eat something between rehearsals and tech. The band, who has to be around all through tech, usually get a doggie bag delivery from the kitchen.

“Everyone has so much more they need to be doing than shoving food in their face, so food service needs to be quick.”

In ten minutes, lunch is going to start and the army of 14/48 are going to descend on the kitchen. The kitchen is more than up to the task.

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