First Post! It’s about a 9 pound taco!

Now if that didn't get your attention, I don't know what could.

Hey, by the way, I'm Erik Kennedy. This is my first post on the Olinsider, and I'm pretty pumped to be writing for it. I'm a senior at Olin doing ECE, and you can read my short Olinsider bio here.

Now to stay honest to the headline, I need to talk about a nine pound taco that some friends and I recently made and devoured at Olin.

First of all, neither the idea nor the recipe are original. They're actually from an SNL skit called "Taco Town", which is essentially a mock Taco Bell commercial with a shockingly large and complicated taco. I recommend watching it to comprehend the magnitude of this project. Anyhow, with the inspiration and the recipe, all we really needed was a.) cash, b.) time and c.) kitchen space.

Fortunately, one of these is easy to come by at Olin.
Each dorm has a well-equipped communal kitchen, and so we were able to coordinate baking, frying, scrambling, and whatever you call making crepes all in a single room. We also made a grocery store run to buy all of the ingredients (a rather massive list) and a few trips later, we were ready to go. Here are most of the ingredients laid out on the kitchen counter:

If you watch the video, you will find that the first few layers involved ground beef, cheese, lettuce, tomato, a hard taco shell, a corn tortilla, a flour tortilla, refried beans, guacomole, and Monterrey Jack cheese. That's from memory, so I may have missed a few items, but the point is, we had quite the ingredients list to assemble. Here Meryl ('11) and I put together the first few layers.

At Olin, I've been pleasantly surprised to spend so much time around a "hey, yeah, let's do it!" sort of crowd. In high school, my friends and I did a lot of talking about the crazy sorts of things we would like to do. But Oliners follow through more frequently, and I really have enjoyed that. Making absolutely enormous tacos is just a tip of that iceberg!

Here's a profile of the taco (lacking only the blueberry pancake layer) and Greg ('10) holding the taco, covered in frying batter and ready for action. Yes, to be clear, one of the layers was a thick crust meat lover's pizza.


And finally, we served it in a festive Southwestern-looking dish. The entire thing set 8 people back 40 bucks and 3 hours, but I think we can all agree it was worth it. When it was ready, we headed over to a West Hall lounge, sent out a quick e-mail to Olin's event e-mail list "Carpe Diem" and waited for people to come eat it. When we had a sizeable crowd-- maybe 20 to 25-- we carved it up and served it. All in all, it tasted way better than anyone could have imagined. I'm not entirely sure why, though the deep-frying probably helped.

In any case, this was pretty great for an otherwise mundane Sunday afternoon. I hope to be involved in lots of fun, small(-ish) projects such as this one this year, and I'll share what might be entertaining or useful on the Olinsider as well.

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