Food for Thought

On Fridays, Rosie serves a mixed stew of New Jersey food and dining information. Today, read about a new cookbook, Food Truck Road Trip, which has wonderful recipes from food trucks throughout the United States.

FOOD TRUCK ROAD TRIP
By Kim Pham & Philip Shen with Terri Phillips

Do you follow Food Trucks? I am not talking about roach coaches, but the ones that sell gourmet food for extremely reasonable prices and usually specialize in a few items. These trucks are all over New Jersey, often at food events. Most trucks have a Facebook presence, where they post their schedules. There have been Jersey Shore Food Truck Wars at Monmouth Park for the last few years. There is even a reality show, The Great Food Truck Race, on the Food Network. Now there is a cookbook The Food Truck Road Trip by Kim Pham and Philip Shen with Terri Phillips, which gives us favorite food truck recipes from across the country. Pham and Shen write the food blog, BehindtheFoodCarts.com, which was named the Best Culinary Travel Blog by Saveur magazine.

There are more than 100 recipes ranging from American comfort food to soups, Latin American and Asian dishes, desserts and much more. The book includes the chefs’ stories, their food concepts and recipes and photos of them and their trucks.

Here is a recipe to try:

PAD THAI TACO

THE PEACHED TORTILLA—ERIC SILVERSTEIN—AUSTIN, TX
MAKES 4 OR 5 TACOS

Eric Silverstein got this recipe from a line cook who briefly worked for The Peached Tortilla. “He was a really talented guy,” he says. “Insane, but talented and obsessed with Asian food.” It was his idea to take the basic elements of pad Thai, with its nutty sauce and bright flavors of green onion and lime, and trade the rice noodles for soft corn tortillas. It’s a Peached Tortilla twist on a Thai favorite.

CHICKEN MARINADE
3 to 4 lb (1.4 to 1.8kg) boneless, skinless chicken thighs
¼ cup (59ml) rice wine vinegar
¼ cup (40g) minced garlic
¼ cup (59ml) light soy sauce
2 tbsp (31g) chili paste
¼ cup (48g) sugar

PAD THAI VEGGIE MIX

1 cup (66g) sliced mushrooms
1 bunch scallions, chopped
¼ cup (63ml) pad Thai sauce
1 tbsp (26ml) cooking oil
4 eggs
20 (5" [12.5cm]) white corn tortillas

TOPPINGS
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 bunch scallions, chopped
¼ cup (40g) chopped peanuts
2 limes, cut into wedges

To make the chicken marinade, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and let rest overnight in the refrigerator. Cook the chicken on an open-flame grill or on the stove for 8 to 10 minutes, until cooked through. Once the chicken is done and has cooled, dice the meat.

To make the veggie mix, combine the mushrooms, scallions, pad Thai sauce and oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Let the mushrooms and scallions cook through for 2 to 3 minutes, then add the eggs. Scramble the eggs with the veggie mix until the eggs are cooked. After another 2 to 3 minutes, add the diced chicken and stir to combine.

Heat the tortillas up on a griddle or stovetop for 1 minute on each side, then add the pad Thai mix (double up the tortillas if you prefer). Garnish with the cilantro, scallions and peanuts and serve with a lime wedge.


Recipe from FOOD TRUCK ROAD TRIP—A COOKBOOK by Kim Pham, Philip Shen, Terri Phillips.
Page Street Publishing/November 2014

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