Soft or Hard Shells? Let’s Taco ‘Bout It

Soft or Hard Shells? Let's Taco 'Bout It

Alexander Yagoda, Staff Writer

As with any developed nation, the United States is a broiling pan of different ethnicities and cultures, especially so in Miami. One of the most well known of these cultures, especially where food is concerned, is the Mexican culture. The most popular food item of that culture, at least in the U.S., is the taco. However, there isn’t only one kind of taco. There are tacos of varying sizes with different meats and- most importantly- coverings. All tacos, by definition, have an outer shell- either soft or hard- filled with ingredients such as meat, cheese, sauces, salsas and vegetables. Although, there has been a constant contest between soft and hard shelled tacos- an ongoing debate over each one’s supposed superiority over the other is taking place at all times. Here, it shall be put to rest.

Soft Shells

Our Rating: A

Soft shelled tacos are like weak willed people: you can make them do whatever you want, be it anything from eating them in a u-shape, to rolling them tightly to make a glorified, meat filled and limp bread stick. Yet, unlike weak willed people, they are good at everything they aim to be. They can take the form of a hard shelled taco when pinched at the top for easy holding, or they can be made into a wrap so that they resemble a burrito. They can even be made with the filling being placed in the center, and then the corners pinched together so it ultimately looks like a dumpling. As you can see, the possibilities are endless, and in a contest where the filling doesn’t count, the possibilities are what matter.

On the other hand, some might say that biting into one end of a soft shelled taco makes things spill out the other end and therefore ruins the taco. While soft shell tacos do often spill out, you can use what falls out to make another, better taco. Or, if you just want one mess-free taco, you can fold over the back end to make it like a half-burrito.

Alexander Yagoda
Everyone once they realize the one true taco.

Hard Shells

Our Rating: B+

Hard shelled tacos are like strong willed people: it’s mostly good, but you can’t change any of the bad. While hard shelled tacos do offer more structural rigidity than their soft-shelled counterparts, that isn’t always a good thing. Spilling from the other end is less likely, but it comes at the cost of customization. Since the shell has been baked until hardened, it will keep its shape if you put it down, but there is very little to choose from in regards to the amount and dispersion of filling. The amount depends entirely on the length of the shell, as making one layer too high means that the higher parts of the inner ingredients are likely to tumble off the taco and onto your hands, arms, pants, shirt and/or plate, which is a wholly unpleasant outcome. Sadly, unlike soft shelled tacos, you cant pinch the end to close it if you want the shell to remain whole and un-cracked.

Natalia Rodriguez
Compromise is for chumps, but you can do it anyways.

To conclude, from an analytical standpoint, soft shelled tacos are clearly superior to hard shelled tacos, but regardless of what has been written, it’s all about personal preference. It’s okay to like inferior products; you like what you like, and nobody gets to convince you otherwise.