Food trucks truck owners often tell me how fast paced their days are. Now matter how slow it can be at times, there always seems to be part of a shift that is utterly nuts. So how do they keep their lines moving and tickets processed without losing their mind?
Here are few simple steps to take to make sure you and your food truck staff can stay cool when the pressure increases:
Mise en place
This French phrase means to put things in place, to prepare. Whether you are a classically trained chef or learned your cooking technique in your home kitchen, every successful food truck vendor understands the importance of having everything in its right place. Without proper attention to mis en place, things can get chaotic very quickly; and chaos in a food truck kitchen results inunhappy customers in a long food truck line.
You know the old woodworking adage “measure twice, cut once”? That applies to food prep as well, so be sure to double check the conversion rates of your ingredients.
It may feel redundant, as you may unnecessarily dirty a bowl for just holding ingredients, but organization is key. For example, you might have an ice-bath landing zone for chilled items such as blanched asparagus or hard-boiled eggs, or a warming zone for hot items.
Keep the end result in mind
Otherwise, you can get hung up one task while other ingredients continue to cook. This is important but easy to forget.
Divide and conquer
Divide tasks, and refine them until you’re food truck staff is a model of efficiency.
Clean as you go
A clean work zone at every station in a food truck is a healthy and efficient work zone. This is good to do in between each major task or prep work.
Take good notes
When the dust finally settles and your line is empty, take stock. What worked? What caused problems? What steps can you skip in the future? Don’t assume you’ll remember the next time you’re service window seems to have and endless stream of customers. Take good notes so you don’t have to keep learning the same lessons over and over.
How to you keep your head when the lines are long? We’d love to hear how you do it?