Tuesday, September 11, 2012

keep on foodtruckin': the food dudes/tiff 2012 edition

I have way more well-written, well-hashed-out future posts in the works than this... but I just thought I should letcha know about the Food Dudes' TIFF foodtruck. Because it was pretty awesome and you can absolutely find it in one spot tonight.

Food trucks, I think, are just really awesome in general. I love that they're mysterious and you have to chase them around the city (well, in Toronto, at least). I love that most of the time they serve up pretty fantastic food for pretty meagre prices and that they sometimes lead to people sitting on curbs and stuffing their faces in public (nothing like sharing that experience with a bunch of strangers). 

This Sunday, my roommates and I were feeling pretty lazy and pretty hungry. So we spent the day horizontally reading menus of various TIFF food trucks. (If that sounds like a great day to you - which I can't see why it wouldn't - you can check out the schedule of food trucks for the festival here).

The Food Dudes menu caught the eyes of all of us. In particular, I couldn't stop talking/thinking about the fried mac 'n' cheese arancini balls I'd read about. Eventually we got tired of chit-chatting about what we would eat if we only had the energy to move, and piled our sorry bodies in a car to head down to the Bloor Theatre.

With our eyes on the prize, we found a crowd gathering around the three trucks that were staked up there for the evening. The Food Dudes, Hogtown Smoke and Per Se Mobile. Deciding to stick with the menu I'd been creeping all day, I chose the Food Dudes and didn't look back. 

Their chalkboard menu featured a few offerings, but sadly, no mac 'n' cheese balls. I survived. 

Lo went with the captain crunch cod tacos with spicy guac, smoked sour cream and lime spiked slaw (above). Yes, they're apparently really coated in captain crunch. Awesome. While I was too scared to ask for a bite (I know when to draw the line), it smelled delicious.

Josh ordered a BBQ pork shoulder 'sambo' on a cheddar jalapeno biscuit with southwest slaw and smoked garlic mayo. You can tell by my shaky camera-work that I really wanted to ask for a bite, but refrained. I may or may not have been seen eating miniscule crumbs from this paper tray once Josh was done. Shame? Zero.

If you can't decipher from this awful picture, this thing was pretty darn stacked with soft, tender-looking, steaming BBQ pork. Almost too big to fit into one bite. Always a plus, for me.

Because I'm broke trying to practice money management, I opted for one $10 box of Bangkok slaw. It was very much so ten dollars well spent.

Crispy calamari pieces, triple seared steak, peanut vinaigrette and citrus ponzu on a bed of crunchy cabbage, carrots, and matchstick yellow peppers, among other random veggie goodness.


This little box, while seemingly way too healthy for my usual taste (OK, ignore the calamari) was far from a boring salad. The citrus vinaigrette was a bold flavour that really brought its game to the table. But the standout for me, by far, was the textures that the crispy calamari and triple-seared beef added. Never before had I considered the pairing, but man, was it heavenly. 

First of all, I want to eat these delicate, melt-in-your-mouth slices of tender, perfectly-marinated triple-seared beef every day for the rest of my life. Cool?

Secondly, I'm never going to turn down a piece of crispy calamari - which balanced the beef's texture perfectly and added another layer of depth to the dish. Genius stuff here.

Probably will be going back tomorrow to get some more. And you should too because it's the last day these guys will be doing the TIFF foodtruck thing. Don't be a fool. Git yers!

The Food Dudes
Tuesday, Sept 11, 7:00 - 11:30 a.m.
Bloor Theatre, 506 Bloor St. West, Toronto

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