SFC: Evolution of a Green Veggie

                The one good thing about all these co-op veggies my fridge is being dominated by every other week, besides the healthier(ish) eating it encourages, is all the little things it forces me to try out so that I can actually eat all of it. And as such quite a few more recipe-related post ideas come across my way to better fill the time between Trucks (I really need to make another foray down somewhere… try and get a couple more reviews in).

                For instance! I was lucky enough to come across This Blog Post by the bake-loving 350 Degrees on a Paula Deen (yeah yeah, racist political conflict, whatever; the recipes are still tasty) Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread. And right as I still had a Zucchini and Yellow Squash that needed using too! I myself still hadn’t actually had zucchini bread yet, but I love banana bread and thought it’d be fun to try.

                I’d list down the recipe before or after I began, but it’s a pure Paula Deen thing, I deviated from it somewhat based on availability, and there’s already a link (which is actually inside of the link… Link-ception! Sorta sounds like a Zelda movie with Dicaprio actually) in the previous paragraph. 

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                Gotta start off by sifting all those dry ingredients of course.

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                Before we get to the wet, gotta shred our produce fine; press those summer squash to the fine edge on the grater and work! Thank god this was so much easier than trying to do it for carrot cake… though boy that yellow squash had quite a bit of moisture (as such, I actually ended up adding a little more flour than the recipe called in hopes of balancing it out).

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                Get those eggs in a bowl and beat it like a… ummm… Polaroid picture? No that doesn’t make sense… just beat them until pale; shouldn’t need an electric mixy, whisk’ll work fine.

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                NOW we add the sugar; the recipe really calls for attention to these particular tasks to better improve the structure, with the later oil and other wet products really destabilizing what one has easily. Beat this now until it’s well-integrated, pale canary, and thick; a proper “ribbon stage.”

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                We can add all the other ingredients now other than the dry. With mine, I ended up not having an orange, so I used some lime zest instead (it actually came out really nice with the zucchini).

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                Besides that, I didn’t really feel like using the original-recipe nut addition, but purely chocolate chips like 350. Was probably gonna do Hershey’s, but found this interesting bag called “Guittard” in the store, though I’d try it out. They taste good btw.

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                Mix in the wet, add all the dry, bada-bing bada-boom, we have batter. Lube up whatever pan one wants to use (calls for a single Loaf, the previous blogger used a Bundt, and I just used a few smaller loaves), or if you’re smart and able just line it with parchment paper, and pop into a 350 oven (only raise temperature to 375 if using REALLY small pans, like muffin or whatever).

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                Mmmm, nice brown crust; should take about 50 minutes to cook, a little bit under if divided (way under if small and cooked at 375). Toothpick test of course; SHOULD note, when getting close one should make sure to really look at the toothpick even if wet. I had little pearls of the squash still sticking to some of it, despite it being fully cooked.

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                Now we just let cool and flip. Whiiiiich didn’t actually come too easy for me… you see the previous pic where I’m pouring the batter into pans? Notice how the chocolate chips sorta collected to the bottom of the bowl. Weeeellll… seems they did the same thing in the pan.

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                Yeah. Not a single one came out completely clean. I mean hey, they’re still fully cooked and VERY delicious; not to mention the outside crust was nice and crispy! Just the bottom wasn’t all that clean… and it sort of looked like a plain zucchini cake with a special lower layer vs the beautiful “studding” effect.

                If you’re looking to avoid this pitfall, I have a few main suggestions. 1: ensure your batter is thick enough to hold the chips in suspension. 2: use much smaller chocolate pieces. Or 3: try saving the chips on the side and sprinkling on top of the batter-filled loaf pan RIGHT before going in the oven. Hopefully you have better luck than I do, haha.

                So I’ve got a whole bunch of broken up, bottom-separated zucchini bread now, of which I can only eat so much as-is. What should I do with this moist bundle of goodness to turn it into something street food-reminiscent? Why, turn it into Fritters of course!

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                It’s already broke up, so why not just chop it up a bit more and squeeze it into balls of moist cake and chocolate chips. And I mean SQUEEZE; these things did NOT want to hang together too easily (which is sorta surprising, considering how moist they were, figured they’d just wanna fuse).

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                Got my itty bitty eanie-mini pot of oil up to temp, dusted the little balls in some flour, a little bit of cinnamon-sugar on the side to toss over afterward, and we good. Guess I forgot to take a pic of the actual frying process, but the results sorta speak for themselves…

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                Yeah, didn’t wanna stick together too much before, REALLY didn’t wanna stick together in the fryer. Only last a couple seconds too to get that brown crust, so it wasn’t really all that crunchy either. Though it still tasted like a donut of sorts, so potential is there. Maybe next time I’ll use a batter-covering to fry, less direct… maybe use a simple bread with no chips either, keep it to moist pieces of the cooked dough (I wonder if just using the batter itself, if thick enough, could make a nice fritter…).

                Well, a couple more veggies used, another post up, and more food in my stomach; overall it was a pretty good experiment. Thanks to 350 for the post that inspired me! To all you rest, Good Luck and Good Eating.

2013’s First River Day and some updating Reviews

            The first Lunch by the River has come and gone, and though I can safely say it was a fun and eventful time for myself, sadly I was one of the few to show up and experience this. As we all were able to see, the weather Thursday was grey and sprinkly, so not the best weather for these little events we thus love. I half expect it’s my fault for going, considering how many times this happens with the plans I make (though I’m now considering this may simply be a side effect of living in Minnesota…).

            As mentioned in a previous post, the particular Trucks stationed consisted of Home Street Home, Neato’s, Cupcake Social, and Café Racer, who mentioned a couple interesting things during a little back-n-forth rapport. Unlike previous years, this particular set of Trucks may no longer be a random group decided week by week. This is because of plans and discussions in the works of adding two more “River Lunch” Truck gatherings to the week, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from what I hear. Due to this extension, more Trucks have an opportunity to take part in the gatherings; and with the larger selection, one brings in the possibility of scheduling specific Trucks as certainties on the Weekly schedule without infringing on other Trucks’ chances of taking part. With this, we can now officially have set Truck Gatherings on given days of the week, giving us some fantastic certainties in schedule. It’s really great for those who work nearby and aren’t able to stay abreast of daily Truck-stops, allowing them days to go out and say “Oh hey, ‘these guys’ are gonna be by Robert Wednesdays.”

            I am very excited at this new idea, particularly in how much of a sign it is at not only the growing interest and culture, but organization that our Trucks have been able to form this season (thank you Food Truck Association!).

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            Back to the actual Trucks of the day, update time; I was also able to overhear that Racer will offer samples of many a menu item (definitely something unique compared to the others). But more importantly, they were out with a Full Menu, and I finally got the chance to try their Street Dog! Really one of the main, hell I still think it’s THE, highlight of the entire menu.

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            Isn’t that just one of the most beautiful hot dogs you’ve seen? Sure it takes a bit longer than other dogs in Trucks, but it’s worth the extra couple minutes. All the flavors had that perfect, subtle balance between them, making for very happy bites! I’d say it was sort of sad ruining that picturesque food, but it tasted too good for me to give a crap.

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            On another positive note, my Re-Review of Neato’s(Menu also pictured, look at those Burger options!) Duck Fat Fries has now been completed. For those who haven’t read yet, my first experience was not so positive compared to most people’s, which I later found to be due to issues with their Potato Distributor. Now having a new distributor, and set brand of potatoes, they’ve been able to crank out a more consistent product, so I can finally re-do my report on this particular item.

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            Though there’s no reason to do my report purely on them. Since I was there, I figured I’d also try one of their chocolate malts alongside; it IS a Truck based off a Diner, gotta have a Malt. Of which, though it is tasty and enjoyable like other malts, I find there’s no real special quality to it; if anything, the malt is sorta thin, a little too much milk or whatever else they add to it. As for the fries, I can happily say that I SHALL be changing Neato’s Food score for the positive. These fries were clearly better than my previous experience, and the subtle flavor of the duck fat DID come through. The texture WAS soft, but I found the pieces that had some of the potato skin still attached offered little, interesting pieces of crispiness here and there. Overall, it’s not a perfect fry, but it does succeed in differentiating itself, and in a POSITIVE way; I hold no qualms in suggesting it as a buy (oh, and don’t forget that Aioli; boy that garlic is STRONG, and it goes very well with the particular flavor transferred from the Duck Fat).

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            It’s not a Truck Day without dessert of some kind, and there was a certain little Cupcake vehicle to my right. Grabbed myself a Tres Leches, Dulce Leche frosting of course, which didn’t quite fill my leche expectations. Overall, definitely better than the “Guinness Cupcake” I had from Fork, the milk-caramel icing was smooth and delicious, but if one is going to base something off of Tres Leches, they REALLY need to get that thing soaked and infused. There was a little bit of squishy, milky cake in the middle, but they could have done more; I understand needing it to not be sticky in the hand, but they held off a little too much for my liking (I’ll admit, I have developed very high standards on certain things).

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            On a more positive note (again, the cupcake IS good, just… MORE, GIMME!), I’ve discovered a really fun, fantastic opportunity on their menu! They apparently offer a “Cupcake Sunday” made from whichever cake+cream combo you want. “For the Hot Weather,” as they said, which sadly did not come through on this trip. However, think of this: You head to Thursday’s River Lunch, greeted by two Burger trucks (one old-fashioned Diner themed) right next to a Cupcake Sunday. That, my friends, is the making of that oh-so unique Full-on Food Truck Meal. This is what so many of us Foodies look for in our searches, that amazing little something that just can’t be found elsewhere, and creates that special feeling of amazement and nostalgia.

            Or something like that, not always that good at describing these things, even through text. Anyways, that ultimately rounded out MY Lunch-by-the-River experience; if anyone else has an interesting tale (either from this or previous years) feel free to share. I myself did have one more stop at Hibachi Daruma, but that’s another post.

SFC: Mexican Joe

           Been a while since I’ve done one of my cooking posts, even my last one 8 days ago was only two paragraphs.

            Well, had a nice night in yesterday, and with my cousin coming over for another one of our special anime-movie binges it was up to me for dinner. Since I still had almost a whole pack of hamburger buns leftover, but no hamburger patties, that little craving for Sloppy Joe’s decided to crawl up. Luckily I was going to the store anyways, so I could get whatever I still needed.

            You know me, I rarely like doing things normally (at least not for this blog), so I was thinking of how to change my Joe up (funny thing is, I didn’t even think about doing a post about it until after starting cooking; really shows how long it’s been right?), and dropped by that fantastic, super fresh, plastic-wrapped variety meat isle for my beef. In my search, I found a little tube of chorizo which, to my surprise, actually cost less than ground beef. Now, that’s probably a noted indication of the actual quality, but as I was penny pinching a bit, really wanted it, and didn’t have the time to make my chorizo, a plastic tube it is.

            Ultimately, I always suggest, as with any quality product, that one either make their own or ensure they buy a decent-enough version from a good store. To that end I found a post online which details the steps to the home chorizo process pretty well; would love to go through it myself, but as I didn’t actually do it I don’t have any pictures to back it up.

             http://userealbutter.com/2012/07/25/mexican-chorizo-recipe/

            One thing I’d like to add; make sure you wait at least a day before using your chorizo, that way you let the meat “cure” a little bit in the salt/spice mix, as well as allowing the flavors time to blend and settle.

            Now, back to my Joe. Start off with my onion, which I chop large a-la Rick Bayless when he makes his chorizo-onion taco filling. Add to a HOT pan (don’t forget that butter!) – these we are not caramelizing, nor are we sweating; the plan is to get them cooked but keep a little more of that nice little bit of onion texture in the final product.

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            (Excuse the foggy picture, lotta steam in the room, haha) Chorizo is added, in my case squeezed out like a spicy, meaty toothpaste. Sorta creeped me out a bit, but I was prepared for weird-textured chorizo, so long as it cooked up to a tasty final.

            Didn’t want to do just a chorizo, so I grabbed a bag of diced, cubed chicken meat. If you’ve seen these things, in the same isle as the packaged and canned tuna, you open it up and it smells like cat food. This isn’t of course the chicken, but the weird liquid they decide to “preserve” it with. Definitely don’t use it if you have a choice, cook your own or get a better quality. But the parents like keeping it around to put on top of nachos, so I took advantage. Poured it in a strainer and washed thoroughly, the resulting is very plain diced of dried chicken, which I then chopped to a nice shred.

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            Add this to the chorizo, which is now fried completely. At this point, one could easily stop and use this to fill whatever tortilla one has lying around for a nice lunch. However, we’re going for Joes, so more steps it is!

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            I also had a really nice can of diced tomatoes and green chilies, so that went in as my sauce base. For some reason we didn’t have any of those “tomato sauce” cans (surprised me), and I needed more liquid to better allow things to “stew.” Quick fix; put some water in the empty can, swirl to get any leftover bits of tomato, and add. Gonna reduce almost all of it anyway. In the ideal world, would either puree a nice can of whole, peeled tomatoes, maybe add a bit of flavorful stock/broth and some Spanish wine to deglaze the pan.

            I wanna take a little break right now and talk about canned tomatoes. Some people reading at the moment may still be at the point of wondering “why would you choose canned tomatoes, shouldn’t you be suggesting we use fresh?” (For those who aren’t, just skip this, save the 10 seconds and do something fun!) And to a point the question is true; who wouldn’t want to use the freshest, richest flavored tomato that one can get?

            The thing is, we can’t get that tomato (at least not easily). Most store tomatoes, though good, aren’t at this heightened level of freshness and quality, especially since they’re gotten out of season. Canning, in opposition, gets a very bad rap as low-quality produce, which is only exacerbated by those bowls of horrible del monte green beans, peas, and beets we were forced to eat as children. True canning, though, was ultimately developed as a technique for preservation, and when it comes to tomatoes this aspect shines. Real canned tomatoes hold a lot of quality in them; they’re peeled/diced/crushed (depending on style) soon after being picked, and canned immediately. Like this, they still hold almost all of their flavors, while at the same time creating this flavorful little tomato-liquid we can use in our cookings. This as opposed to a stem of out-of-season picked tomatoes that have been sitting in a box for who knows how long.

            If one looks, one can find even higher quality, organically made canned tomatoes. So unless one has their own garden of this little vegetable-turned-fruit, and doesn’t need it in a purely raw sense, don’t be remiss to take a pause in the tomato section of the canned veggies.

            Alright, that’s another ramble done, I still need to finish this sandwich. Remember, even if one has a quality-made chorizo, and especially if they don’t, taste the Joe after it’s been stewing for a bit. I’m glad I did, as I found the spices quite lacking where I wanted them to be, so a quick trip to the spice pantry and I fixed that up nicely. Not to mention one always need to adjust their basic Salt-Pepper seasonings.

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            Tomatoes and onions are soft, everything is blended to that fine “Sloppy Joe smudge,” and the liquid is reduced enough, dinner was finally ready. As with all Joe’s, we don’t bother with toasting the bun, as the true height of the Joe is that LACK of textural components. We savor in the uniform softness, taking our joy in how the simple white bread soaks up the flavorful meat-sauce.

            Top it with shredded cheese (Mexican Mix, of course), and we now have our “Mexican Sloppy Joe w/ Chorizo and Chicken.” I think it turned out good overall, very tasty final product. If I were to think of the “ideal” method for making this again, though, think I’d stick with pure Beef Chorizo and onions, and for the sauce use a really good, spicy Red Mole, some Queso Fresco for the cheese. That would just be awesome I think.

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            Though it’s not a true Mexican meal without some Mexican, Glass-bottled, pure-sugar Coke. A side of tortilla chips to pick up all the Joe that fell out.

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            And for later on in the night, to better celebrate the warmth after the December-reminiscent snowfall, a bit of Mexican Hot Coco. Not sure how proud Rick Bayless would be at the night, but I think he’d at least appreciate the effort.

Street Food and Cacao Beans

          With the recent seasonal pause between Food Trucks, alongside a bout of writer’s block surrounding my random rambles, my blog posts have become somewhat slow in their uploads. As such, I’ve come to start thinking about some other things which I can do during the wait between Reviews.

          That said, I would like to officially introduce my new Blog Segment, “Street Food Corner.” Here I will be cooking food inspired by our various, wonderful Food Truck offerings. Whether I’m trying to copy, pay an homage to, or just cook something I think would be a good Street Food item, I will document my experience and post pictures and recipe online.

          If anything it’ll give me an excuse to cook more.

          About a week ago, I got a very special delivery shipped from a friend on the East Coast; whole roasted Cacao Beans! I had no idea how to use them, but I was excited. With my new foray into street-food-reproduction, I thought I’d take the chance to do a from-scratch homage to my favorite Twin City Truck Drink: Mexican Hot Coco from Cruzn Café. Not to mention it was the only recipe online for using the beans I could find…

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          Either way!  But before I get to the actual Coco, I need to go over how exactly we transform these lovely beans into a useable product. They may be tasty to eat raw, but you can’t make Coco without Powder (or Chocolate bars, but I’m not going through that crazy process).

          So, much like a Japanese Fisherman or an Irate Italian making Pistachio Gelato, we start with the long and annoying process of skinning. I’m sure there’s a much easier process of doing this other than by hand, but I want to ensure I lose as little bean as possible, not to mention lose the risk of skin in my drink. It’s a pain in the thumb, but after a couple hours I was rewarded with a little pile of brown lumps that sort of looked like…. well, I’ll just let your imagination run wild on its own.

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         Now we chop! Any method works, from using a knife, crushing between fingers, putting in a Ziploc and repeatedly throwing against the nearest wall, or the Slap Chop (You’re gonna love my nuts!). I used my handy-dandy, pretty little portable nut grinder and container; it’s actually nice since there’s no mess, can keep inside the base to store.

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          Nice and chopped, one could stop at this step to use as simple Coacoa Nibs; great for sprinkling over desserts, mixing into salads, or other garnish-related uses. The taste sort of reminds me of those chocolate-covered cherries, just not as sweet and a little more bitter. But to continue, we now move to the slow, many-stepped process of grinding.

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           Before I continue, something very important must be discussed. Proper chocolate manipulation revolves around the consideration of the cacao butter and various “crystals” within the bean’s structure, which are all very sensitive to temperature change, such as the heat generated by grinders. If the chocolate gets too warm in this rough stage, one can end up clumping the ground pieces into something unusable, like below (it still taste good, and could be used in infusing, but can’t use it like a proper powder). As such, we must remember one very important thing when grinding: SHORT BURSTS. This is why it takes so long; when one gets to the spice grinder, we can only grind for 10-15 seconds at the MOST. After which, take the chocolate out and leave to cool a little on the counter before grinding again.

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           Alright, that out of the way, we go through the first grind. This is simple, just getting the nibs smaller; if you have a food processor, that works best (as you can see, I have the smallest processor known to man; it’s my baby). Do this in smaller batches that grind quicker, reduce the risk of heat, for about 20-30 seconds maybe.  Otherwise one could work on simply hammering in a bag until it looks like what you see below; an even smaller Nib.

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             After cooling, we start the first of our many runs through the Spice Grinder (or Coffee Grinder, whatever one has). I only ground a couple spoonfuls at a time, with around 10 seconds of pulsing; I went over once, and the result is as you see below.

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           The number of times one grinds is up to you, what final product is desired and how comfortable you feel with the higher risk of structure destruction as it gets smaller. I ended up doing three separates for a nice powder, and I would suggest the same; the first round of pulsing gets it really good, but it’s sort of like sand.

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              Second worked it even better, but still not at the real “powderiness.” If you wanted to stop here, either of the first or second pulses could easily be used the same way one would any “spice.” I myself think the first would be great for crusting meats, like a pork loin.

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             Finally at the third grind; hard to tell from the picture, but one can see how the third grind in the bowl is different than the second grind in the spoon. We can now use this for our Hot Coco!

Mexican Hot Coco

1¼ C Water or 1½ C Milk/Cream Mix

1 Tb Quality Coco Powder

2 Tb Sugar

Tb Vanilla (I like the Mexican for this)

2 Large Pinches Cinnamon

1 Large Pinch Chili Powder

SMALL Pinch Cayenne (Optional)

Salt for seasoning (important even in desserts)

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  1. Combine all ingredients in sauce-pan
  2. Heat, whisking occasionally to combine, until simmering
  3. Simmer about 2 minutes, whisking constantly. The added air can improve creaminess of texture.
  4. Ladle into cup, give a couple minutes to cool (NO DRINKING BOILING LIQUID!!!)

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           I used water, as that’s how traditional Mexican-style is made, but if you’re going for the nostalgic, comfort-drink, milk and cream always tastes good (Fat adds Flavor as my old instructor says). I also had just finished dehydrating some sliced kumquats, so I put those in to infuse at the end; created a nice little fresh note in the nose. Overall, a nice, spicy-cinnamony version of coco to warm the bones.

            Well, I hope you all learned something interesting and fun about the Cacao bean!  I can’t wait to use my leftover powder for something else; maybe I’ll post the recipe up here too. For now, have yourself a nice day, and look forward to more recipe-related posts in the future.

            How do you like your Hot Chocolate? What sort of Food do you think I should cook? What kind of Food Truck-like recipes do you make at home?

Cruzn Cafe

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www.cruzncafemn.com/

https://twitter.com/CruznCafe

Main Location: Events?

            A phoenix rising from its flames, Cruzn Café returned to the streets last year with new, unique food items and special drinks. Starting out in the Downtown Minneapolis area, Cruzn left their main haunting ground after the first year, switching their focus to special local events. The sudden disappearance puzzled me, depriving me of my favorite Mexican Cocoa for which I cuddled in the cold Minneapolis mornings on my way to class.

            Highlighting themselves with a focus on drinks, Cruzn advertises Italian espressos, Smoothies, and Mexican Cocoa (a wonderfully sinful blend of cocoa, cinnamon, and ancho chiles). With their recent menu change, Lemon/Lime-aids and Sun Brewed Ice Tea join the team as refreshing additions in our hot summer days.

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            The change mostly deals with additions, so most other previously served items still remain. These involve a few simple options of oven roasted pulled pork/chicken, a couple hot dogs, and nachos, some of which also have pulled pork or chicken (your choice) on top.

            Though I haven’t seen or tried the new menu myself, rumors and pictures showcase the use of smoked and other meats. Dishes include a spring roll, some sort of corn dog (I wanna try), tacos, and garlic roast beef to name a few. What I CAN tell, in regards of flavor, is that every picture I’ve seen looks scrumptious.

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            Note: the rating that follows is purely based around my experience with the truck before the change, with slight consideration to what I have heard. I plan on, and can’t wait to find the truck again this coming year to fully sample and understand their new approach. Upon which I shall make any changes necessary.

Food: 8

            I’ll level with you; the ballpark-style food they serve is decent, but it’s only mediocre in the wide variety of Food Truck-offered selections. The new menu is quite set to change this, though, so expect a possible upgrade in the near future.

            Again, the real focus here are the drinks. All well done, the smoothies are delightful, the espresso is dark and rich, and the Mexican Cocoa… ohhhhhhhh the Mexican Cocoa… I still have dreams about this. So rich, with that drier, really COCOA flavor (not chocolate, cocoa, there’s a difference), sliding down your tongue with those noticeable hints of spices dancing along with it.

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            You will have an option to have it made with water or milk; DON’T DO MILK!! This is a very traditional drink, and should be enjoyed that way, with hot water. You can have a milky-creamy hot chocolate from any old pre-made powder, treat this one special. Oh, and don’t do whipped cream on the top unless you’ve already had it plain and want a little more fun on the second or third go-round.

Holdability: 7.5-9.5

            This is a bit of a change for me (guess I’m being influenced by the truck, haha), and this is probably the only time I’ll ever put a score like this. I was originally thinking of scoring this higher; drinks are quite obviously one of the easiest walk n’ enjoy items, and any food they serve only needs two hands with little mess. But then I realized that, for those going that full experience, it can be hard to get food without getting any of their drinks, and vice versa (especially now with the new menu additions). As such, finding a place to sit can be imperative; if you’re lucky to get two items that both require only one hand, you’re made, but those are much limited.

            Because this is the only truck where both drinks and food are such an integral part to the experience, I’m placing a small score range instead of the usual. The final score then is dependent on how you yourself would order from here.

Price: 10

            Very good prices, the food range from $2.50-$7 options, and all drinks will be only $4 at the very most, and those are for the large (which I still haven’t had much of a need to get anyways). Cost-friendly is a definite.

Speed: 8.5

            It’s only one person behind the window, so be wary of crowds, but all-in all orders don’t take too long. Food items are the simple kind and made quickly, while most good drinks need a minute or so to create. Many of the newer good ones are easy-pour, though.

The TOE: 8

            For me, ballpark food just never really screamed “Food Truck” in that special sense. Very good street food it can be, but there’s that slight generic-ness that can bring the special feeling a bit down (unless of course one’s able to really unique-it out). Word of the new Change gives me a lot of hope, though, and a lot of props I think should go to Cruzn Café for continuing to try and improve and grow. There are many Food Trucks that just stick to the same menu items and dishes since they’re successful and have no “need” to keep striving for new; it’s a little refreshing to see one making new risks like this.

           I might have scored this a little lower, but Cruzn really does have quite a Toe Ring on their feet, that Mexican Cocoa. Always worth a visit.

                         Tally: 42-44/50

Final Thoughts

            Always get one of their drinks when you visit, especially the Mexican Cocoa. Do that on your first trip there, then if you want to sample others, save its purchase for the cooler months. Of their older menu items, I would simply just avoid as-is, though the Dirty Dog and Nachos look like they could be quite fun, especially if you’re looking for that ballpark-type lunch item with a twist.

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            Definitely try the new menu; a lot of good things that I’ve seen and heard, and I need more feedback as it is, haha.