Every Tuesday and Thursday night, six or seven food trucks park in a lot that’s a about a half-mile from our place. We’ve been driving by this mini culinary camp for months, nearly every time saying something like, “We’ve got to go there.”
Only problem is, we’re in the left lane at the time, and “going there” would require being in the right lane and missing the turn to our place. And at that time of the day, with so many crazy drivers on the road, all we want to do is get home. So, Tuesday after Tuesday, Thursday after Thursday, we repeat the refrain: “We’ve got to go there.”
This week, we went there.
And it was so much fun.
While many people parked their cars and made beelines for specific trucks, we, being newbies, strolled from truck to truck to check out the menus.
One featured Barcelona-style tapas. Another offered Mediterranean (mostly Greek) fare. One specialized in gourmet hot dogs. Multiple iterations of sliders were featured at another. Still another offered sushi. The choices seemed endless, and the three of us ended up patronizing three different trucks for our “main courses.”
Rather than eating while standing up, and because we lived so close, we decided to take our meals-in-cardboard-containers home. All of the purveyors were happy to provide a piece of aluminum foil with which to cover the containers and keep the food warm.
With that, we walked back to the car, cushioned the food safely in the back seat… and headed back to the trucks.
Had we forgotten a wallet or a purse? Had we accidentally left one of the cardboard containers at one of the trucks?
No. We went back to visit another truck — the dessert truck.
Michelle’s daughter had noticed a big sign (complete with big picture) promoting cream puffs. I had seen a list of cupcakes that included one with two of my favorite flavors: lemon and blueberry. Michelle had smelled the chocolate chip cookies baking and wanted to have one while it was still warm. (You know what they say about life being short and eating dessert first.)
With those sweet additions in hand, we returned to the car and headed home. I’m happy to report that each of our selections was delightful; not one disappointed. I couldn’t identify what kind of cheese they used for my veggie quesadilla, but whatever it was, it held the gooey concoction of zucchini, bell pepper and mushroom slices together perfectly between the warm flour tortillas.
As for dessert, I had a plan for that lemon and blueberry cupcake. When we’d gotten home, I’d put of bottle of light and sweet Riesling — very similar to this one — in the refrigerator to give it just a little bit of a chill. After chowing down on the quesadilla, I took a break and caught up on some of the Olympic Games competition and American swimmers’ soap opera.
After the Riesling had been in the refrigerator for about an hour, I opened the bottle, poured a glass, unpeeled the cupcake’s baking cup, placed the cupcake on a plate and grabbed a fork.
The cake part of the cupcake was lemon-flavored. It was slathered with a swath of cream cheese icing, which was topped with a spoonful of juicy blueberry compote.
I took a small bite of the cupcake, making sure to get some of the cake, some of the frosting and some of the blueberry topping in my mouth at the same time. I let it sit on my tongue for a moment before slowly chewing it and allowing all of the flavors to meld into a single sweet (and slightly sinful) presentation.
Without really realizing it, a grin must have crossed my face because Michelle looked over at me and said, “Are you enjoying yourself?”
I was. But the best was yet to come.
After swallowing that bite of cupcake, I took a sip of the light and sweet Riesling. This time, that grin must have turned into a big smile because Michelle said, “Okay, it’s my turn.”
Unfortunately, she had already finished her chocolate chip cookie and had nothing to offer in trade. So I had to decline her request — with a promise that we would return to that food truck next week so she could get her own wine-friendly cupcake.
I was able to get away with that because I also told Michelle, who prefers sweeter wines in general, that we would make good use of the Riesling the next night with our dinner — not dessert… dinner.
I’ll tell you about that food-and-wine pairing… and a few others involving light and sweet wines… on Monday. Meanwhile, if you have yet to experience “food truck cuisine,” you owe it to yourself to give it a try… perhaps this weekend?