Hacking Harris: COVID-19 Edition

- The Experience, Samirah Jaigirdar '22 

A takeout container full of veggies, white rice, and sweet and sour chicken laid out on a table with a bottle of tropicana.
The sweet and sour chicken is an all-time favorite of mine from the dining halls!

A year and a half ago, I wrote a guide on how to hack the dining hall at Conn. Today, I will explore how to hack Harris in the age of hand sanitizers, take-out containers, and temperature scanners. Here are some quick tips and tricks I learned.

  • All the available dining halls (Harris, JA, 1962) have a collection of different sandwiches and wraps available at both lunch and dinner. However, eating the same ones every day can get boring. So spice it up! In the fridges, you will find feta, jalapenos, spicy mayo, and hummus. Mix and match the condiments and extras with the different sandwiches available. I have meticulously deconstructed and then remade a sandwich while lounging on Tempel Green. And the sandwich tasted amazing! Although, I do NOT recommend mixing hummus and banana peppers.
  • You’re right. Nothing can replace the grill, a pre-COVID staple of Harris Refectory where students could request made-to-order items. But until we get it back, we need to make our own breakfast sandwiches. Piling cheese, scrambled eggs, and some salsa on a bagel can make an alternative sandwich that will last you through your morning classes.
  • Creative Snack Combos:
    • Baked Classic Lays + Spicy Mayo. This might be the best chips and dip combination I have ever had. You get salty and spicy together.
    • Doritos + Salsa. There’s Doritos and there is salsa in the sides fridge. What else can I say?
    • Yogurt bowl. Take a lot of yogurt from the fridge and get fruit from the baskets. Put them in a bowl in your room and voila! You have a yogurt bowl. You can also do this with the instant oatmeal cups available.
    • Your own nachos. This will work if you have a microwave in your room or if you use one of the microwaves in the fishbowl of the plex. Get Doritos, salsa, jalapenos, and a cheese of your choice. Put them on a plate and into the microwave.
    • Hummus + Vegetables. The dining halls have pre-cut raw vegetables packaged and ready to be eaten with hummus.
    • Orange Juice + Orange Bubbly Water. This is a weird combination I stumbled upon last semester. The orange juice and bubbly orange water make a refreshing thirst quencher!
    • Chocolate Milk + Granola. If you want something uber-sweet, this combo is for you. I admit it hits the sweet tooth if you want a break from cookies and ice-cream.  

While I dearly miss the wok station, pizza bar, and the grill, I have sadly accepted that I need to get creative with what the dining staff can offer us while keeping health guidelines in mind. Although it’s been a little harder to get creative, the dining staff have greatly made being at college during a pandemic easier.