Monday, July 23, 2012

Food Truck Friday (and Saturday)

Every First Friday, in Kansas City's Crossroads District, a food truck rally called The Truck Stop takes place. The Truck Stop started in 2011 with just a hand full of trucks. It has since outgrown its lot that maxes out at 15 trucks, meaning that you will be getting rotating cuisine each month. This is a sampling of some of the new trucks that I have tried and some new menu items from other trucks. They are all 100% awesome!

In honor of the hot dog carts in New York and the artisan dog scene in Chicago, there is a new hot dog truck in town, The Dogg House Grill. The artisan hot dog is completely in play right now, but has mostly been isolated to larger cities (and that chain drive-in that doesn't even require its carhops to wear skates). There have been a few brick and mortar hot dog joints pop up around KC, but there is something that just feels right about the mobility of a truck when it comes to serving hot dogs. In fact, the first street vendor that I ever got food from (aside from the ice cream man, of course) was a hot dog vendor across the street from Bartle Hall. The Dogg House does it right with giant Vienna all beef dogs. They offer the classic Chicago and New York dogs along with their own dogs with a KC spin. I had the KC Dog (pictured to the right), polish dog topped with sweet KC style BBQ sauce, bacon, and onions, it indeed screams KC. Next time I think I am going to give the Piggy Back Dog a shot, dog topped with BBQ pork and slaw. Dogg House Grill on Urbanspoon

The Funnel Cake Truck is around for all of your fair food needs. He does a great funnel cake that is surprisingly filling after a long day of hating cancer during Crawl for Cancer.
The Funnel Cake Truck on Urbanspoon

Lutfi's Fried Fish is an urban staple in KC for years and now has a food truck (and a new location in midtown). Lutfi's has wonderful fried catfish, perfectly flaky on the inside with a crispy cornmeal breading on the outside.
Lutfi's Fried Fish on Urbanspoon

El Tenedor is a new truck on the scene. The owner is the chef that made the paella Fridays (now weekends) at Lill's on 17th famous, this fact made the paella an obviously choice for me. Paella is a traditional Spanish dish made with saffron rice and assorted meats. This particular batch was made with chicken and chorizo (of the Spanish variety, which is different than the Mexican variety of chorizo), I am unaware if the alliteration was intended. This paella is incredible, fluffy, and also very reasonably priced given that saffron is the most expensive spice in the world. Looking forward to the seafood paella as soon as its offered. By all accounts the Spanish crepes at El Tenedor, are incredible too. El Tenedor KC Mobile Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Sadly, it has been a few months since I have been able to catch up with CoffeCakeKC and grab a Pablo from them. CoffeeCakeKC is exactly what it sounds like, a coffee and dessert food truck. It is some kind of wonderful with the homemade sweet treats and micro roasted coffee (that you can buy by the pound as well). But what is The Pablo you ask? The Pablo is single handedly, both, the best coffee drink and the best hot chocolate that I have ever consumed. It is a Mexican hot chocolate (think regular hot chocolate, add cinnamon) with a double shot of espresso. The creaminess of the hot chocolate, the tame fire of the cinnamon, and the perk of the micro-roasted espresso shot is like heaven in a cup. As I have said before, I am not a huge foo-foo coffee guy, but I would drink this in the middle of July on a day that the Commerce Bank sign read 105 (like today). Coffeecakekc on Urbanspoon

Cajun Cabin is owned by a New Orleans transplant who decided that the best way to cure his home sickness was to bring his delicious cajun food to the hungry folks in Kansas City. If you think about it, it is the perfect marriage: bringing the big bold flavours and large helpings at reasonable prices to a blue collar city that grew up on jazz. After sampling the jambalaya (made with chicken and sausage) and the shrimp and corn chowder in all of their deliciousness, I decided that I had to have the Cajun Dog (a foot long polish sausage smothered in the awesome jambalaya. This dog was extraordinary! The jambalaya was very thick and chunky (not runny at all, as all good jambalaya isn't), full of meat and wonderfully seasoned. This is not just a little bit of jambalaya on top of a cafeteria style hot dog, this is a bucket full of jambalaya dumped on a gigantic polish dog, as seen in the picture. I cannot say enough about this place and will definately be back for a full order of corn chowder. Cajun Cabin on Urbanspoon

P.W.A. Islanders offers up Hawaiian specialties. The pork bun was great, the bread was so soft! For those of you that have never had a pork bun, my wife likened it to a bierock (only a Hawaiian version, obviously). The bread was not like that of the King's Hawaiian brand, but that probably keys you in that this is authentic Pacific Island food, kind of like how real tacos taste nothing like Taco Bell.

Last, but certainly not least, an update on Indios Carbonsitos. The Chihuahua Dog! A Nathan's Famous dog topped with pinto beans, jalapenos, two strips of crispy bacon, Adrian's homemade garlic/jalapeno mayo, and (most importantly) cotija cheese. I am sure I am forgetting a few toppings on there because this thing was loaded, the poor bun never had a chance to hold it all. I had never had the cotija cheese before, and to a newbie it looks like a really finely crumbled queso fresco. Adrian educated me and let me know that this is because it is a dryer cheese, making it more accepting of the fine crumbling. The saltiness of the cotija, spiciness of the jalapenos, the creaminess of the pinto beans, crunchiness of the bacon, all thrown on top of a hot dog is a perfect storm of intense flavours. Lets just say that I had to finish it with a fork after the bun threw in the towel. Another great menu item from Indios!
Indios Carbonsitos on Urbanspoon

3 comments:

  1. Do you know of a way to get info on PWA Islanders food truck? I want to go to this place again after being to Hawaii and there food was really close. But I can't find any info.

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  2. Christopher, I wish I could tell you. They are not on Twitter or on Urbanspoon. I have seen them at multiple rallys, but never got a phone number or email address. Perhaps you could contact @kctruckstop or @jvergara on Twitter and they may have some info for you. Pass any information that you get back on to me please.

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