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July, 2012:

Fat Louie’s Food Truck Profile

The side of the Fat Louie's trailer that parks in the Rona parking lot near St. Clair and Keele.

In rural Texas and further south into Mexico it’s common for BBQ pit bosses to sell their food from stands at the sides of highways three levels down from the Interstate. In Toronto where even downtown parking lots are out-of-bounds for food trucks, operators need to be more creative.  I’m surprised that more haven’t followed the lead set by Fat Louie’s BBQ and set up in big box store parking lots that are free from this ban because they’re not licensed to charge hourly or daily parking fees.

To find Fat Louie’s trailer, look in the northeast corner of the Rona parking lot at 110 West Toronto St. (near St. Clair and Keele) or follow the delicious aroma of the hardwood smoke that the on-board Backwoods-clone smoker belches out.

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Cooler Corn: A Better Way to Corn on the Cob

Cobs of corn in a beer cooler ready for boiling water.

Update: You can find this recipe — along with about 75 other beer-related gems — in my new cookbook, The Canadian Craft Beer Cookbook.

Every summer vegetable has its season and devoted fans. But peas, asparagus, or zucchini don’t get nearly as much cooking technique attention as corn does. Whether it’s what goes in the water–salt, sugar, and milk are all called for in different recipes–to how long passes between picking the cobs and when they hit boiling water. My newest method simply involves immersing the corn in boiling water inside a standard cooler and that got my attention both because it’s more convenient and more delicious. (more…)

Grilled Cheese Napoletana

A grilled cheese sandwich featuring black olives and anchovies, plus tomatoes and basil in a supporting role.

Writing about grilled cheese sandwiches is a tense situation for me. On one hand I can’t fathom how some recipe bloggers think that two slices of Wonder bread, a Kraft single, and chicken doused in Frank’s hot sauce–a buffalo chicken sandwich, right?!?–constitutes a worthwhile post. On the other, grilled cheese was the first turn-the-stove-on dish I learned to make on my own. This grilled cheese napoletana with anchovies and black olives is perfect for those, like me, who count salty, briny food as their favourite indulgence. (more…)

Hogtown Smoke – Food Truck Profile

The suits line up for the Hogtown Smoke food truck at the Royal Bank Plaza across from Union Station.

The suits line up for the Hogtown Smoke food truck at the Royal Bank Plaza across from Union Station.

Update: As of August 17 it’s been several weeks since the Hogtown Smoke truck was seen at a public event. They announced last weekend on Twitter that they’d be missing Steam Whistle’s Craft Beer Festival due to problems with their truck.

Every sort of business in New York City, from tourist-attracting towers to neighbourhood dog groomers carry Gotham in their name so we really shouldn’t be surprised that within the past year a pub, brewery, and now the Hogtown Smoke food truck have opened and borrowed Toronto’s nickname. (more…)