November 22, 1994 |
This should have been a success story. Last year, Manuel and Marisol Polanco - both born in the Dominican Republic - left their crime-ridden New York neighborhood in search of a better, safer life for their children. They landed in a new city, bought a small home, and worked exhausting, 20-hour days. Marisol Polanco rose at 5 a.m. to cook heaping platters of arroz con gandules, chuletas, tostones y pollo (rice with pigeon peas, pork chops, fried plaintains and chicken). Then, the couple stood near parks and busy intersections, selling the appetizing Latino-style dishes to passersby.
May 3, 2013
What is it? Philly's first Hawaiian-themed food truck, operated by island expat Kiki Aranita and her partner, Chris Vacca. The duo took the lessons they learned while slinging hash at Foo Truck and added a Pacific twist, plating delicacies hard to find outside the 50th state. Aloha, lunch crowd: The food cart, named after a now-extinct breed of dog native to Hawaii, debuted early last month, setting up an exclusive residency at 13th and Montgomery, smack dab in the heart of Temple's campus.
April 18, 2013
SEXY GREEN TRUCK What is it? Before it was "Sexy," it was just Selim and Emina Zeka's Green Truck. But soon after they parked it on Montgomery Avenue near 13th in 2009 and began serving seductive pitas, paninis, sandwiches and salads stuffed with lip-smacking local veggies and love-me-tender meats, Temple students dubbed it the Sexy Green Truck. Passionate pita: Hug me! I'm a Hummus! (with cucumber, mozzarella and vinaigrette). Pucker-up panini: Fresh spinach, garlic, mushrooms, mozzarella.
August 23, 2012
What to eat: In a city long underserved by Thai cuisine, Robert Zapata has taken the food truck world by storm with a Thai and Mexican lunch fusion. There may not be a more original dish in Philadelphia than Cucina Zapata's Cap'n Crunch-crusted tilapia burrito. If you aren't a fan of the flaky white fish for its texture, the Cap'n makes it crunch with an unmistakable childhood flavor before it is piled with avocado, a mild pico de gallo and a tangy peanut sauce. Insane value: Two juicy Thai short rib tacos ($6)
February 7, 2013
What is it? Homestyle comfort food, served up by charismatic chef Verna Swerdlow: "We make stuff we have hankerings for, nothing too over the top. " Expect sandwiches, mac n' cheese and other classics straight from mom's kitchen. What to eat: Verna's menu rotates seasonally, and this winter's top dishes are the tender and juicy flank steak sandwich with chipotle mayo, and the pulled-pork grilled cheese. Come summer, the truck will switch to jambalaya and banh mi - the Vietnamese equivalent of hoagies, yo. Not a carnivore?
February 4, 2013 |
Jaeden Lieberher is a South Philly kid at heart, but lately, he's gone Hollywood. He has a starring role in a Super Bowl ad, playing a kid who uses a Hyundai Santa Fe to recruit a team to beat the neighborhood bullies at football. "It was a really fun commercial to film," Jaeden, 10, said from his home in Los Angeles, where he moved two years ago, after his father began operating a food truck there. In the spot, a bully pushes Jaeden off the football field and tells him to come back when he has a team.
April 18, 2013
Here is an excerpt from Craig LaBan's online chat of April 16, 2013: Craig LaBan: Saturday night I was drafted by my daughter to be pizza chef for her birthday sleepover party. So, a field trip to South Philly (Faragalli's for dough, Claudio's and Di Bruno's for cheese, pesto, and meats) then I FIRED UP THE BIG GREEN EGG! Yeah, I'm a little enthusiastic. Here's my fave, an admittedly free-form round topped with prosciutto, mozz, and some organic tomato puree that went from tart and bright (when raw)
August 11, 2011
"DUDE, YOU KNOW what would be so rad? A food truck. We should totally start a food truck. " If I had a dollar for every time I've heard that one over the years, I could probably . . . start my own food truck, dude! The first time I heard the idea was years ago in a smoky, hazy dorm room at the University of Vermont. The patchouli-smelling guy who uttered it eventually did go on to nominal food truck success, selling grilled-cheese sandwiches at Grateful Dead and Phish shows. The last time I heard the sentiment was a few weeks ago, when a friend told me her dream was to quit her job and sell organic pancakes from an Airstream trailer.
November 29, 2012
What is it?: This imaginative food truck offers up unique dishes comprising fresh produce, meats, and cheeses from sustainable Philadelphia area farms. On the menu are soups, salads and sandwiches for $4 - $8, and desserts for less than $5. Menu: Being more of a grilled cheese and french fries person, I have to be convinced, cajoled, sometimes even tricked into sampling more healthy fare than is typically found on the kids menu at a local diner. But as soon as I rolled up on Yumtown I was sold.