Entertainment

Look out, here comes the food truck

Look out, here comes the food truck

The fast-paced culture of a mobile kitchen offering restaurant style food-to-go in any location remote or not has become a kind of foodie revolution in Durban. We went along to discover what the food truck fuss is all about.

Experienced food truck owner and passionate chef behind Fudart strEATERY, Nardia Adams, is a huge fan of food trucking and her excitement and passion for serving up quality food in this contemporary style is catching. For Nardia, it all comes down to quality ingredients, the creativity behind an enticing menu, and the endless possibilities the future holds.

From gourmet burgers to fine dining, Fudart screams colour, fun and food. Wrapped in its bright orange skin with fonts in shades of purple and blue, this big 1978 customised Bedford Bus, which regularly features at events and shows around Durban, is an iconic and fun talking piece that can be seen a mile away before being heard. For anyone hungry and within aroma-wafting distance, the smells that come from the food truck’s kitchen are simply heavenly – regardless of whether you have a savoury or sweet palate.

 

With solid local and international experience in the culinary field, including top positions at five-star hotel restaurants around South Africa, serving as a member on the National Board for the Chaine des Rotisseurs, as a personal chef to the deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy and cooking at a gala dinner for former American President George W Bush, Nardia loves nothing more than having the creativity and freedom to experiment. From compiling menus to finally getting a dish onto a plate, using diverse flavours, colours, textures and cooking techniques, she continues to extend herself in her profession.

“If you are passionate about cooking food, making people happy and also want to be your own boss, then this is an ideal industry. I prefer to be creative and different and I thought Durban needed a change, something different, so I thought I would bring this change to our city’s streets. I was inspired to open a food truck by the excitement of designing it and its capabilities.  I was excited to know that I could drive into any venue and prepare a great meal. I also noticed a gap in the market for mobile kitchens needed at functions venues, exhibitions and festivals.”

Armed with an eight-metre temperature controlled stainless steel kitchen, the Fudart strEATERY bus is self-sufficient with built in plumbing, electricity and gas. The type of equipment installed allows Nardia and her team to cater for various styles of cuisine and function-related food solutions from casual platters and upmarket street food to finer plated meals for exclusive private functions.

“From kerbside serving to queues of regular and new customers, to the capable hands of a professional team that can set up and serve your meal at your chosen venue or discreetly deliver to the kitchen door, it’s quite a ride I’m on when I’m working in the food truck, and it’s all about the food. From grilled items to fresh vegetables, our menu reflects a desire for fun, colourful, healthy and let’s not forget delicious dining, eating, snacking, food trucking… whatever you’d like to call it.”

And since variety is the spice of life, there’s no doubt you’ll love what’s on the menu at Fudart. Picture this… a Harvest Table with jars of fresh salad greens and micro herbs, artisanal breads, Italian braised chicken, phyllo triangles and roasted seasonal vegetables , or a High Tea Table featuring dark couverture chocolate brownies, mini granadilla and lemon tarts, lavender and rose dressed doughnuts and Gorgonzola, spinach and caramelised onion quiches. There’s the Food Truck menu featuring popular favourites such as the gourmet burgers, risotto and open tacos; a Canape Menu with Asian inspired roasted tomato and basil shots, roasted garlic and herb scented tomato and chevin tart tatin, and rose and cardamom pannacotta; and a Street Food Canape Menu featuring Thai prawn spring rolls dressed with a lemon and basil emulsion, a gourmet beef slider, designer dog and hand crafted ice creams topped with street sweets. If that’s not enough, there’s a menu full of AmazeBOWLS – mini bowls of warm meals like butternut and leek risotto or puttanesca served as an alternative to canapes and buffets; as well as a healthy School Menu of fresh sandwiches on brown bread, wraps, rolls and salads.

If you’re on the lookout for that beeeeeg orange bus, you’re most likely to find it at the exhibitions at the Durban Exhibition Centre, local markets, music festivals at Greyville Racecourse, Moses Mabhida stadium, the Botanical Gardens and Nardia’s favourite venue, the ICC in Durban, because of the innovative events they host featuring both local and international visitors.

When she chose the name Fudart – it was based around Nardia’s values for the culinary world, the art of food and everything about it.

“By now, I’m sure most people are aware of the fantastic foodtruck phenomenon that’s growing in Durban. I just can’t believe how quickly it’s taken off and how much I love it! Whether it be simple or contemporary – it’s the respect and love I have for food and it’s ‘eaters’ that excites me… the idea of good food, the adventure of serving upmarket food on the kerb. It goes without saying that fresh, good food is best for us. I wanted people to know that food can be brilliant, that there was something special to expect from us. Recipes made from scratch, from fresh ingredients and cooked well using passionate hearts and hands. Like any good product, the most important ingredient is always love.”

For more info on where you can find this awesome food truck in the future, visit www.fudart.co.za  or call Nardia on 0832528885.

 

 

RECIPES

 

Smoked Salmon, Lemon Cream Cheese and Herbed Crumpets

 

Lemon Cream Cheese filling

 

Ingredients

250g cream cheese

1 lemon squeezed

Handful of chopped chives

Mix the items and season if necessary

 

Crumpets

 

Ingredients

500ml cake flour

45 ml sugar

Pinch of salt to taste

2 Eggs

250ml milk

125 ml water

20 ml baking powder

10 ml coriander chopped

10 ml chives chopped

 

All dry ingredients can be placed into a bowl. Separately beat all the liquid ingredients including the eggs. Mix the two bowls into one and fold in baking powder and herbs.

Fry the crumpets in a hot pan. 15ml will give you a small crumpet as in the pic.

Once you start to see the air bubbles, turn over to cook on the other side.

 

Method

Once cooled completely, top with 10ml Cream cheese, 10g smoked salmon and a micro herb garnish.

 

Notes: You can always add on Fudart’s Chilli Onion Jam, Wasabi Caviar, toasted Sesame, Herbed Pestos or marinated Peppers for garnish.

 

Poached Prawns and Thai Tomato Shots

 

Ingredients

Prawns – 12 queen sized, cleaned with the tail tip on

Water in a pot to poach with the following ingredients placed inside:

3 garlic cloves peeled

1 bay leaf

Salt and pepper to taste

Half a lemon

50g butter

 

Method

Bring the poaching liquid to a boil and reduce right down to simmer when there is only a slight steam coming off the top.

Place the prawns inside until the skin becomes firm and pink.

Remove and place in a bowl of iced water to stop the cooking process

 

Thai Tomato Soup

 

Ingredients

1 onion Chopped

2 cloves of garlic peeled and crushed

15ml of Thai green curry paste – shop bought from the Chinese supe market is fine

10ml sugar

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 tin of Whole Peeled Tomatoes 400g-

Fresh coriander – handful, chopped and kept aside until the end

In a pot, heat the oil and sauté off the onions until translucent.

Add the garlic, sugar and seasoning.

After 2 minutes, add the curry paste and cook for a further 2 min.

Add the tin of tomatoes and cook down until well flavoured.

Blend until smooth. Season if necessary with sugar, salt or pepper.

Add fresh coriander and a squeeze of fresh lemon wedge

Serve in small Tot glasses.

 

Method

Garnish with prawn tails as per pic and garnish with micro basil for presentation and extra flavour

 

Tomato and Goats Cheese Tartlets

 

Pastry

 

Ingredients

250g cake flour

150g butter

1 egg yolk

10ml icing sugar

Pinch of salt

60ml cold water

Pinch of thyme flowers

Pinch of white pepper

 

Method

Place butter into a bowl. Sift flour and sugar in and blend with your fingertips. Separately – beat the egg, water, seasoning and thyme. Add the liquid into the blended mix and using a butter knife, cut the liquid into the dough. Trick is not to use your warm hands too much. Final bits can be brought together using your hands – wrap and rest in the refrigerator for 1 hour and 45 minutes or longer. Only once rested, roll out the pastry on a cool surface and line the 12 mini tartlets. Allow to rest in the fridge for 20 min.

In an oven of 200 degrees Celsius – bake  blind by placing grease proof paper and baking beans on top of each tart. Remove, and fill with the following ingredients

 

Filling

 

Ingredients

1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved and tossed with 10ml olive oil, pinch of salt, pinch of sugar and freshly ground black pepper

2 mini loaves goats cheese cubed

Handful fresh basil leaves

3 eggs

250ml cream

125ml milk

50g Parmesan

 

Method

In a bowl, beat the cream, milk and eggs. In each tart, place the 3 cubes of hoats feta, basil leaves and 3 tomato halves. Top with Parmesan and bake for approx. 15-20 min. The egg mix should be firm and lightly golden when removing.

 

So, this is a recipe for a Handcrafted Herbed Beef Burger – 200g Beef Patty layered with Balsamic Onion Marmalade, fresh seasonal greens and Lemon and Rosemary Potato Wedges.

 

Handcrafted Herbed Beef Patties

Ingredients

600g ground beef mince

200g onions, peeled and finely chopped

20g rosemary finely chopped

30g flat leaf parsley finely chopped

2 garlic cloves

pinch of salt

pinch of sugar

pinch of white pepper

1tsp paprika

1tsp cumin powder

 

Method

Mix through the patty mix in a bowl, test a small teaspoon of the mix by frying in a pan. Season if necessary and then shape into 4 equal rounds. Grill or braai the patty until desired doneness. Approx.  six minutes on either side, on a medium heat will take it to medium.

For the burger

 

Ingredients

1 burger bun

20ml mayonnaise of your choice

10g lettuce, washed

2 slices of salad tomatoes, seasoned with salt and pepper

Cucumber ribbons

1 beef patty (recipe attached)

30g Fudart balsamic onion marmalade

20g Danish feta, cubed

20ml mayonnaise of your choice

Sweet Pea shoots

 

Method

Slice rolls in half. Spread a thin layer of salted butter on both sides. On the bottom, add a thin spread of mayonnaise. Place the lettuce, cucumber ribbons and sliced tomatoes on and top with the grilled beef patty. On top, add the balsamic onion marmalade, feta and garnish with the sweet pea shoots

 

 

Rosemary and Lemon Potato Wedges

(This is to serve a few servings)

 

Ingredients

1kg potatoes, washed and cut into even size wedges with skin on

2 lemons, cut into wedges

6 cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped

4 stalks of rosemary

100ml oil

100ml water

 

Method

In a baking pan, place potatoes in with a drizzle of the oil and water. Season with salt, pepper and two stalks of rosemary. Squeeze the lemons onto the potatoes, toss and roast in the oven covered in foil until tender. Remove foil and roast for a further 10 min to provide colour.  Remove the pan from the oven. Squeeze out the remaining juices of the roasted lemon wedges onto the potatoes and toss in the remainder of the rosemary

 

Photo credits: James Howard-Davies.

Canapes – Credits go to Shirley Berko.

 

 

 

 

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