THE TRUCK FOOD COOKBOOK



It’s the best of street food: bold, delicious, surprising, over-the-top goodness to eat on the run. And the best part is now you can make it at home. Obsessively researched by food authority John T. Edge, The Truck Food Cookbook delivers 150 recipes from America’s best restaurants on wheels, from L.A. and New York to the truck food scenes in Portland, Austin, Minneapolis, and more.

It’s the best of street food: bold, delicious, surprising, over-the-top goodness to eat on the run. And the best part is now you can make it at home. Obsessively researched by food authority John T. Edge, The Truck Food Cookbook delivers 150 recipes from America’s best restaurants on wheels, from L.A. and New York to the truck food scenes in Portland, Austin, Minneapolis, and more.

 

John T. Edge shares the recipes, special tips, and techniques. And what a menu-board: Tamarind-Glazed Fried Chicken Drummettes. Kalbi Beef Sliders. Porchetta. The lily-gilding Grilled Cheese Cheeseburger. A whole chapter’s worth of tacos—Mexican, Korean, Chinese fusion. Plus sweets, from Sweet Potato Cupcakes to an easy-to-make Cheater Soft-Serve Ice Cream. Hundreds of full-color photographs capture the lively street food gestalt and its hip and funky aesthetic, making this both an insider’s cookbook and a document of the hottest trend in American food.

 

Website: http://truckfoodcookbook.tumblr.com

John T. Edge, a five-time James Beard Award nominee, writes the monthly “United Tastes” for The New York Times. His work for Saveur and other magazines has been featured in seven editions of the Best Food Writing compilations. He runs the Southern Foodways Alliance at the University of Mississippi. His last book was Algonquin’s Southern Belly: The Ultimate Food Lover’s Companion to the South. Mr. Edge lives with his wife and son in Oxford, Mississippi.

John T. Edge talks to us about his appreciation of food trucks and chasing down random women with shopping carts.

 

How did this project come about?
I was traveling in Vietnam, falling hard for their street food especially cha gio. And I asked myself, “Hey, why don’t we have great street food in the US?” I was lucky to ask that question at a time when the American street food renaissance was gaining momentum. Suzanne Rafer, my editor at Workman saw merit in the idea. Bless her.

 

What is the charm or appeal the food truck seem to have?
Truck food offers intimacy. The cook and the eater look each other in the eye.

 

How did you find so many interesting trucks from all over the country?
I beat the pavement. Seriously, I’d show up in a city, spend a week, work the streets, take lots of chances, and make lots of mistakes. I can remember chasing down a woman pushing a shopping cart in San Francisco, because I thought she had some tamales in a cooler under those blankets. I was wrong.

  

Was it hard to narrow down the selection?
Yes, really hard. In the end, I narrowed down the cities to 12. And that helped me with the sort.

 

Did the talent and creativity that come from some of these trucks ever surprise you?
Always. But not in a show-offy kind of way. One of my favorite eats during the research was a green bean and scrambled egg taco that I ate in Texas. It takes a talented and creative cook to make a dish like that sing. She did.

  

What‘s next?
A narrative and personal history of modern Southern food culture, tentatively titled The Potlikker Papers.