By Bovey Rao ‘19
As reported by Eater, the Harvard Square Tatte Bakery & Café is projected to open on October 4th, 2016. While opening much later than originally anticipated, the store will be the largest of the Tatte Bakery & Café chain that is present throughout Boston. With the wood paneling finally dismantled, we are given a glimpse of the storefront as it is being painted. It is beginning to resemble the other branches of Tatte with clean, white paneling and a modern, industrial café vibe. Armed with a new Bongard oven and two floors of space, Tatte looks to fill the void of Panera Bread and then some.
The first floor will house the kitchen and have numerous seating areas from a communal dining space to a banquette and lounges. This may appeal to students seeking a place to relax or have casual conversations while they enjoy coffee and pastries. Otherwise, this may be a new destination for business coffee chats in a well-lit, comfortable environment. On the second floor, there will be a coffee bar and an open kitchen space. The owner and founder of Tatte, Tzurit Or, mentioned that cooking and baking classes will be offered a few times a month. Therefore, the opportunity to learn how to make their excellent pear tarts or savory moussaka may be coming in the future.
While I may be patiently waiting for Tatte to open, the large delay in projected opening date has been unfortunate and has deprived Harvard students from dining outside of the D-Hall.
by Audrey Thorne ’19
There are a lot of reasons I wanted to try the new Oatmeal-Coffee craze – it solves the problem of not drinking coffee on an empty stomach, it might add flavour to otherwise dreary oatmeal, it is cheap, easy, and quick to make – but the number one reason why I wanted to try oatmeal-coffee is how absolutely strange it sounds. I am not an adventurous eater, but I am a curious one. I wonder what drew people to try replacing the water in oatmeal with coffee, and what led them to keep doing it. Here are the three D-Hall coffee substitutions of oatmeal.
Seattle’s Best Coffee Signature Blend No 4 Decaf Medium-Dark Rich and Quaker Oats
Bitter from the first time the spoon touched my palate, decaffeinated Oatmeal – Coffee is definitely for people who enjoy the taste of coffee. Not my cup of tea (or coffee) but definitely the perfect oatmeal for a coffee lover.
Personal rating: B-
Seattle’s Best Coffee Signature Blend No 4 Medium-Dark Rich and Quaker Oats
When swallowed quickly, it tastes like normal oatmeal. The longer it sits in my mouth, the more bitter it is. Still, every time I finish a spoonful I want another bite. I do not understand what the draw is, but I cannot stop eating it. I definitely had both more oatmeal and coffee together than I would have of either on their own.
Personal rating: B +
Seattle’s Best Coffee Vanilla and Quaker Oats
Sweet with only slight undertones of coffee flavoring. Vanilla Oatmeal-Coffee tastes almost identical to lightly sweetened oatmeal.
by Bovey Rao ‘19
Oh, Panera, you never really meant that much to me… While for some students Panera is a staple, I’ve never been the biggest fan of ‘commercialized’ foods. My friends can attest to the fact that I frequently voice my distaste for chains like Chipotle, Panera, and Au Bon Pain. Ok, you might think this is all a bunch of food snobbery, but for me, the problem is not the flavor of the food, but the principle of it.
While these businesses advertise non-GMO, pesticide and antibiotic free food, what does that really mean? Are we not falling for the same trap of the previous generation that was promised fast, convenient, and cheap food? We are becoming numb to what is out there in the world of food, and falling into the trap of buzzwords and catchphrases. I’ll be honest: when Panera closed, I smiled. When I found out what replaced it, my smile only widened.
Tatte Bakery and Café is a homegrown Boston bakery and café with numerous branches throughout the city from Kendall Square to Brookline. They serve a wide range of Middle Eastern dishes and pastries as well as the more traditional café fare. From a small stand at Boston farmer’s markets to five established and beloved bakeries, Tatte has proven to be a Boston success story. And it all started with one person, owner Tzurit Or.
Tzurit grew up in Israel and learned traditional baking techniques from her mother. After years of working as a film producer, she realized her true calling in life was baking. She picked up her belongings and moved to Boston, where she started baking from her kitchen. Starting at local farmer’s markets, her carefully crafted pastries received rave reviews. The rest is history.
As you probably guessed, a new Tatte Bakery and Café location will be opening in the space previously occupied by Panera Bread. I could barely contain my excitement when I heard this news. A locally-operated business replacing a national chain? It was music to my ears. However, I do humbly applaud Panera for their business model and their care for the customer.
In early February, Panera Bread purchased a majority stake in Tatte Bakery and Café, but will allow them to run independently. This funding allowed Tatte Bakery to fill the Panera space and reach a new audience of (I hope at least) excited and hungry Harvard students. While construction may take some time (it opens in summer according to a manager at the Main Street Tatte Bakery and Café), it is an addition that is sorely needed. As I sip my café au lait and enjoy my pistachio-filled, baklava-esque croissant, I cannot help but think:
Goodbye Panera; Welcome home Tatte.
A selection of tasteful shots from Tatte Bakery and Café on Main Street and all the ‘yum’ that is to come:
*Note: The straight croissant is a sign that means it was made with butter. Curved croissants usually have margarine or an alternative form of fat.
Update: Eater provided exciting information with an email from Tzurit Or.
by Allison Yan ’19
Veritaffles are a staple of the Harvard student diet – there’s nothing like a warm, carbohydrate – infused start to another long day of problem sets, and club meetings, and all of the other delightful things an overbooked undergraduate has to look forward to.
But sometimes, you need to spice up your Veritaffle. A plain waffle is just not enough. That’s where the amazing oatmeal peanut butter Veritaffle comes in. It’s a quick and easy d-hall hack to make your breakfast and brunches heartier than ever.
- 1 medium size bowl of the waffle mix
- 2-3 scoops of oatmeal
- 2-3 spoonfuls of peanut butter
These are very straightforward: all you need to do is throw in a couple extra ingredients into the pre-made waffle batter!
1. Obtain the bowl of waffle batter. (If anyone who looks at you strangely while you’re pouring the waffle mix into a bowl, just tell them that you eat your waffles nice and raw.)
2. Add the oatmeal, and mix thoroughly so there are no clumps of batter or oatmeal.
3. Add the peanut butter, and mix thoroughly once more so the peanut butter is evenly mixed into the batter.
4. Pour into waffle maker, wait those anxious 2.5 minutes, and enjoy!
Optional Waffle Toppings:
- Sliced banana and honey
- The tried-and-true whipped cream and syrup combination
A quick breakfast is often necessary for a college student before early morning class. I have always searched for a delicious gluten-free food that I can quickly consume for breakfast. Fortunately for all gluten-free eaters, five new flavors of gluten-free Cheerios are now available: Apple Cinnamon, Frosted, Original, Honey Nut, and Multi Grain. The Cheerios can be found at CVS in Harvard Square. Several of my friends who do not eat gluten-free have not been able to taste the difference between regular Cheerios and gluten-free Cheerios. I enjoy eating the Honey Nut Cheerios with lactose-free milk and bananas, but the Cheerios can also be topped with several other types of fruit. Many of my friends like the Apple Cinnamon flavor the best. Additionally, the gluten-free Cheerios are a great snack for in between classes.
The process of how the gluten-free Cheerios are made is quite interesting. Wheat, rye, and barley grains are removed from the regular oat supply to make the Cheerios gluten-free. First, the oats are harvested. Normally, many farmers who grow oats rotate their crops, meaning they also grow grains like wheat, barley, and rye. These other grains normally get mixed in with the oats during harvesting and transport. To make the Cheerios gluten-free, wheat, barley, and rye are separated from the oats by a sifter. Each batch of oats is tested to make sure that on average, for every 15,000 grains of oats, there can be no more than 1 grain of wheat, barley, or rye. The oats then go to a mill that makes gluten-free flour. The flour is then checked to make sure it is gluten-free. The flour travels in dedicated gluten-free trucks, and finally the oat flour is puffed and toasted into gluten-free Cheerios. The finished Cheerios are tested to ensure they are gluten-free (http://www.cheerios.com/ourgfprocess.aspx).
Gluten-free food lovers should definitely try these five new flavors of gluten-free Cheerios. Whether you are looking for an easy and tasty breakfast or a yummy on-the-go snack, these gluten-free Cheerios are the perfect option!
Photo 1 taken from glutenfreehomemaker.com; photo 2 taken from bringmethenews.com.
Below are our best submissions to the second annual dining hall hack competition. Until Friday, November 20th, vote here for your favorite entry! The winner will get to pick a recipe off the blog to be made and delivered to their dorm after Thanksgiving break.
Chicken, Egg, and Cheese Breakfast Burrito (by Nolan Hellickson):
1 chicken breast
2 fried over easy eggs
2 slices of swiss cheese
blue cheese dressing
veggie of choice (onions and mushrooms)
1. Order a chicken breast and 2 fried over easy eggs from the grill with swiss cheese
2. Slice the chicken into small pieces, put in the wrap with the eggs and cheese
3. Add veggies and drizzle with blue cheese dressing
4. Add oregano and pepper
5. Wrap the burrito and place in the sandwich press
6. Enjoy a perfect burrito
Chicken Teriyaki Bowl (by Amanda Heffernan):
Get a plastic cup 2/3 full of batter and add one big spoonful of blueberries (without much liquid), then mix it up well with a spoon. Spray the waffle iron and pour in the batter, starting in the center and then making sure it spreads to the edges. Cook for about 15 seconds longer than called for, then top with whip cream and enjoy
by Michelle Chiang ’19
While Annenberg’s exquisite stained-glass windows never fail to impress, the dining hall breakfast can get old very quickly – especially for those looking for healthier options. After all, how many days can one eat oatmeal before it gets boring?
A lot, actually. It just takes a little creative mixing and matching. Here are a few oatmeal-based confections to dazzle up your morning:
Peary Delicious: pear, Greek yogurt, and honey
Bowl of Sunshine: banana, raisins, peanut butter
The Classic: apple, peanut butter
The Adventure: peanut butter, cinnamon, yogurt, Sriracha sauce (courtesy of Jennifer Tu ’16)
You’re probably making a face right now. But wait – if you like Thai food, give this one a try! The ingredients mingle together and create a savory, sweet sensation with just the right amount of kick. (Author’s note: be wary of adding too much cinnamon or Sriracha sauce.)
By Victoria Piccione ’16
One of the best meals I had in Italy this summer was not what I or most people would think of as typical, delicious Italian food. It wasn’t a bowl of beautifully crafted pasta tossed in just the right amount of mouthwatering sauce. It wasn’t a perfectly crisped and topped pizza. In fact, there weren’t many carbs at all.
Maybe if we went back five centuries or so, this would’ve been standard fare (it was, after all, a medieval restaurant). If this is the case, take me back to the 1500s. Because arguably the best dish I had during eight weeks in Italy (excluding the daily gelato, of course) was a simple plate of warmed and slightly melted pecorino fresco, served with lightly baked pears, all drizzled with honey and sprinkled with cinnamon.
Maybe it sounds weird. Maybe you’re thinking Italians should’ve stuck to what they do best: pasta. But I, and my even-now-watering mouth beg to differ. There was something about the combined creaminess of the pecorino with the sweetness of the pear and honey and the warmth of the cinnamon that made this simply divine. The disappointment was audible as everyone scraped their plates clean with perfectly-spiced bread, wishing that they had made it last just the slightest bit longer.
So now as I sit in lecture, daydreaming of all the food I ate and asking if this summer was even real, my mind is running, thinking of ways I can transport this simple dish forward through time and across the Atlantic. And I think I have an idea that might just satisfy my longing and hopefully satisfy your taste buds.
Italians have little concept of breakfast: colazione is often nothing more than a cappuccino or espresso at a bar, perhaps paired with a simple brioche. Though I would rarely make it to breakfast during college, even I somehow felt the absence of this “most important meal of the day.” So when I finally started going to breakfast this year, I realized peanut butter oatmeal can get pretty boring pretty fast and decided to draw inspiration from the Italians. Pears and cheese, but now for breakfast – as toast. It’s the tiniest bit indulgent, but perfectly filling and the much-needed pick-me-up to get me ready for the day.
1.) Toast two slices of multigrain bread to your liking. Spread a thin layer of cream cheese on each slice.
2.) Cut a pear into thin slices and arrange on top of toast.
3.) Drizzle with honey and warm slightly in the microwave.
Feeling fancy? Grab a nice baguette and a soft cheese. Lightly toast the bread, then immediately place thin slices of cheese on top so that the cheese melts slightly. Top with pear slices and lightly dust with cinnamon. Drizzle with honey and the slightest bit of balsamic vinegar (the more aged, the better!). Enjoy. You’ll never need Crema sandwiches again!
by Danielle Leavitt ’17
8 am class? No time for breakfast? One class after another? Vending machines not an option? Then it’s time to enter into the world of bars!! I’m not talking about heading out to Queenshead Pub for breakfast, but hitting up one of the stores on campus and stocking up on protein bars! After all, breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
This year, I have an early morning class. If you are anything like me, then you know how hard it is to wake up early enough to eat breakfast in the dining hall. At the beginning of the semester, I faced a dilemma: I wanted to sleep in as late as possible, but also not have to skip breakfast and be hungry the rest of the morning. I needed a quick and tasty meal to satisfy my hunger. Since I eat gluten-free, this made that task much more difficult. This is when I started looking at protein bars as a meal replacement.
I have always been a proponent of snacking on protein bars after sports and exercise, but it wasn’t until recently that I could find several bars that I really liked. Finding a protein bar that is gluten-free, low in sugar and carbs, and still tastes delicious can be very difficult.
On a recent trip to the Mass Avenue CVS, I found that the store carried various types of protein bars. On closer examination, there were many differences in the number of calories and the protein/carb/fat breakdown, and in some of the ingredients used. The one thing these bars had in common was that they were all GLUTEN-FREE. They had between 15-20 grams of protein and boasted only 200-250 calories, which could substitute for a meal or a snack.
According to WebMD, in choosing the best meal replacement bars, you have to rank your priorities. If taste is the most important, there is usually an increased amount of sugar in the bar. If watching your carbs is important, some bars compensate by increasing the amount of fat. Bars should also contain at least 5 or more grams of protein. Because breakfast is early in the day, you need a balance of protein, carbs, and fat. The Pure Protein bar has the most grams of protein (20), the Clif and Power Bar have the most carbohydrates (44), and the Kind Bar contains the most grams of fat (13). All seven of these bars provide an excellent ratio of protein to carbohydrate to fat that will satisfy hunger and sustain energy.
Do gluten-free protein bars really taste good? I purchased seven protein bars from CVS: Zone Perfect Chocolate Peanut Butter, Balance Yogurt Honey Peanut, Atkins Chocolate Peanut Butter, Power Bar Performance Energy Peanut Butter, Pure Protein Chocolate Peanut Butter, CLIF Chocolate Chip, and Kind Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate. A random blind taste test was performed on 10 students at Harvard. None of the students were told that the protein bars were gluten-free in order to avoid hesitancy in tasting them. After each of the 10 students tasted the seven different protein bars, the overwhelming winner was the Kind Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate bar. This bar is all natural, non-GMO, low sugar, and a good source of fiber. If you have a sweet tooth, but don’t want too caloric of a snack, this is the protein bar for you. The combination of the salty peanut butter with the sweet chocolate is heaven on your taste buds. The response to the Kind Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate bar was amazing. No student thought that the bar was gluten-free. The cost for the bar at CVS is around $3.00. Not only can these bars be purchased at CVS, but they can also be found at Broadway Market. In addition to the vast enjoyment of the Kind bar, each brand of protein bar appealed to specific students, and there are several different varieties to choose from at stores across campus.
So, if you’re ever in a rush in the morning, reach inside your backpack for a protein-filled, gluten-free bar to satisfy your hunger until your next meal!