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My Top 5 Best Meals from Conn’s Dining Halls: 2017-2021

Each week, I will contribute an article to my food column: College Cooking, where I will share recipes and opinions on food trends and culture. To see more of what I like to cook and bake, check out my personal food Instagram at @healthy_eclair.

As I approach the last few days of my academic career at Connecticut College, waves of nostalgia have crashed over me at greater frequencies than ever seen in the Thames River. Becoming a Conn alumna, as well as a Her Campus alumna, is such a bizarre near future that my mind can’t even rationalize what this means. That being said, I have been thinking a lot about my past years at Conn, as well as leaning into those comfort foods to cope with the scary reality that I will be graduating in just a few weeks. So, here are my top five all-time favorite meal moments that I have experienced while at Conn.

Tofu stir fry

Once upon a time, Freeman had a dining hall that would serve DIY dinners Monday through Thursday. My personal favorite was Tuesday Stir Fry where I would make tofu, broccoli, snap pea, bok choy, and bean sprout stir fry with soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. Placed on top of brown or white rice, this dinner was often the highlight of my week and I have many memories of racing to get there right at six o’clock so we had enough time to cook and eat before our seven o’clock art class.

Brie and raspberry grilled cheese

So, hot take, I am team stir fry over team grilled cheese, but I cannot deny the deliciousness of brie and raspberry grilled cheese on a ciabatta roll. My friends and I often made this combo on Monday grilled cheese nights also at Freeman, although these DIY nights stopped our junior year. Conveniently at the same time I went dairy-free…

 Cranberry walnut bread

UGH, perhaps one of the lunches I have missed most this year is Tuesday and Thursday Soup and Bread at JA, although by my junior year there was almost always fresh bread available. My favorite is the cranberry walnut bread, which when toasted and paired with turkey, honey mustard, lettuce, and tomato is simply divine. But I am also partial to sourdough which is the best base for avocado toast or a panini.

Roasted sweet potato

Okay, so I know that the dining halls have been serving sweet potatoes this year, but there is a certain nostalgia of grabbing a whole roasted sweet potato from Harris on Thursday nights and sliding into a booth with my friends. I would often pair one or two halves of a sweet potato with quinoa, spinach, tomatoes, and an avocado if I had one, but the secret to this meal is sharing it with others *cries*.

Festivus dinner 2019

In a typical year, the dining staff would prepare a special dinner to celebrate Festivus. My junior year Festivus, which also happened to be my last (again *cries*), was filled with savory roasted potatoes, chunks of that delightful cranberry walnut bread, fresh melon, and special salads. Filling your plate with (in my opinion) the best roasted potatoes ever prepared in Harris, sitting at a table with your friends, and going over what you are going to wear to that night’s Cro dance, is something I hope picks up again in December 2021.

Am I crying right now? Perhaps. But mostly I am feeling grateful for the wonderful food, friends, and dining staff who have made my four years at Conn special, COVID or no COVID. I am also grateful for Her Campus being not only a platform to write about what interests me, but also being a community that has supported me along my academic journey.

Elizabeth Berry

Conn Coll '21

Elizabeth Berry is an English and Italian Studies double major at Connecticut College with a passion for journalism. She enjoys overnight oats, traveling to new cities, and reading the night away.
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