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Causes

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Movember

It’s Movember, time to grow a mo or a support a bro as “a gentleman is, after all, still a man no matter how gentle he is.”  The Movember movement started 7 years ago by 30 mates in Australia and the phenomena has grown worldwide; now 9 other countries are on board including New Zealand, USA & Canada.

Participate or Donate

Last year over 128 000 Mo Bro & Mo Sistas participated in earning 21 million dollars for men’s health charities.  Participants begin clean shaven on November 1st then proceed to grow a Mo until the campaign closes on 10th December, using this as an opportunity to promote the cause and acquire nominee sponsorship.

The face of men’s health in terms of public awareness and charitable funding is pale in comparison to that of women’s health, though the moustache symbol is becoming iconic, easily recognizable as a cause worthy of donation.  This is especially the case in Australia, though fund raising endeavors are now occurring throughout November across the globe.

Sporting the Stash for Cash & the Cause

Movember 2010 Campaign’s slogan is “Every Man Deserves a Bit of Luxury” and their official Australian Foundation site explains, “As a result of a lack of awareness around men’s health issues in the past, many men today do not fully understand or know about the risks they face.”  The luxury of awareness, education and funding is being afforded to men with this effective campaign.

It is a fact that cancer occurs more frequently in men and research shows men require resources in identifying issues, seeking treatment and looking out for one another in terms of health.  The moustache symbol is a comedic spin and a humorous catalyst for behavioural change regarding serious matters.  Part of the intention of this campaign is to “give men the opportunity and confidence to talk about their health.”

The Movember Foundation Register

The premise behind Movember is simple in that participants begin with an online registration: If you’re back for 2010, you login and reactivate your account or if you’re new to Movember you sign up and begin.   From there participants campaign either individually or on a team, earning support through nominations and the possibility of receiving some prestige such as Man of Movember, Miss Movember or Team Mo, meaning the campaign is open for everyone to participate, including women in support of their men.

The moustache is now iconic with this international campaign aiming in large part to break down the barriers and taboos surrounding the men’s health movement. Movember United States is a distinguished foundation and the iconic moustache is held in high esteem.  The international organization originated in Australia which speaks to the campaign’s cleverly designed nature whereby public awareness and funding is raised for serious men’s health issues addressed with a vital sense of humor; therein lies the secret of this greatly successful, ever growing campaign.

Do your part today, sign up for Team Mobile Cuisine and donate to this great cause. If you are already a member and belong to another team, feel free to just donate.

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Mobile Cuisine Magazine is proud to provide our readers with another article designed to inform them about a multifaceted program that is spreading throughout the country. We have designated our Monday features to help promote the Meatless Monday’s program which not only do we support on the website, but our staff actually has adopted in our Monday dietary lifestyle.

In today’s article we will focus on some of the fallacies that most vegetarians or vegans have to deal with every day of their lives. When someone decides to make this dietary leap they are normally questioned by friends and family as to how healthy giving up meat actually is.  The critics (usually only informed by propaganda the meat industry has hand fed them over the years), usually come up with the same questions and they are typically centered on protein intake.

We want to dispel a number of myths related to protein, since this argument seems to be always brought up when trying to dissuade people from eliminating meat from their diet, even if the program only promotes giving up meat on a single day of the week.

During the 6 months I spent as a full time vegetarian the word on the street about vegetarians was that we didn’t get enough protein. If I didn’t eat meat how in the world was I getting the amount I needed? According to those who questioned me, meat is the ONLY viable source of protein. This may be the most commonly held misconception about a vegetarian diet. People fail to realize that meat is not the only source of protein in nature and today, we are going to prove it.

What exactly is protein?

  • Protein is an important building block for your hair, skin, nails, muscles, hormones, blood, and immunity. You cannot survive without proteins
  • Proteins are polypeptides (i.e. amino acid chains) which are essential for cellular health. Your body already produces most amino acids, but there are 9 amino acids that are essential and must be sought out.
  • Protein, along with fats and carbohydrates, are considered macronutrients, meaning your body needs large quantities of them to function.
  • Every gram of protein has 4 calories
  • Proteins are classified as either “complete” or “incomplete” based on whether all 9 essential amino acids are present.

Two Common Protein Myths

  • You can only get protein from animal sources. The only way this statement we’re true is if we modified the word protein with the word “complete”. And that’s where we believe this myth comes from, people associating complete protein as the only true protein.
  • You need to eat a lot of protein daily. People have been misled to think that they need to load up on protein to be healthy, the more protein the better. Well, this is false. Americans actually consume MORE than the necessary amount of daily protein. While there is no agreed amount for required daily protein intake, some scientific bodies have put it around 10%-20% of daily calorie intake (given that you take the recommended calorie intake). And some have suggested that you eat half a gram of protein for every kilogram of body weight.

Sources of protein

Legumes - also called dried beans are edible seeds that grow in pods. Examples are chickpeas, split peas, haricot, lentils (red, green or brown), kidney beans etc.

Nuts & seeds - Nuts are fruits that have a hard outer shell that encloses a kernel, which is also called a nut. Seeds are contained in fruits of plants and are capable of reproducing a new plant. Many nuts and seeds are available both in and out of the shell, whole, halved, sliced, chopped, raw, or roasted example are cashew, peanuts, walnuts, almonds.

Dairy products - Dairy foods are products made from milk, the liquid secreted by female mammals for suckling their young. Choose nonfat or low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese for daily consumption. Save high-fat cheeses and ice cream for occasional treats.

Cereals & food grains - Grains are the seeds or fruit of cereal plants, used as food by humans and animals. Choose whole grain flours, cereals, wheat & rye breads, buckwheat pancakes, muffins & scones, noodles and pasta. Check the nutritional facts panel on the label for fat, sugar, and additives. Eat grain with complementary protein. Experiment with high quality grains, such as amaranth and quinoa.

Soyabean – A versatile bean use extensively in cooking, the soybean also serves as the basis for a wide variety of soya foods consumed. Soybeans are the richest plant source of high-quality protein. The most common soya form is still tofu, but today, the soybean takes on many other forms, including burgers, dogs, bacon, sausage, and many other meat substitutes.

Seitan – has been used in Asia as a protein source and meat substitute for hundreds of years. Seitan can be prepared from scratch using whole-wheat flour. The flour is mixed with enough water to make into a dough that is then kneaded in water and rinsed to remove the starch and the bran. The protein, or gluten, remains and is then simmered in a broth flavored with soya sauce to become seitan. The longer the gluten simmers, the firmer it becomes. Seitan can then be sliced for sautés or stir-fries, diced into stews, soups, or casseroles, or formed into roasts. People who are allergic to wheat or wheat gluten should avoid seitan. Do not use if you are gluten-sensitive. A good source of protein delivering 23g/30 gms of Seitan.

Vegetables - are loaded with vitamins and minerals essential for varied body processes and have been shown to provide protection against a variety of illnesses. Textured vegetable protein is also a good substitute for ground beef in dishes such as tacos, chilli, and stews.

Eggs - Brown or white? Either and both is a source of complete protein. The color of the egg’s shell is simply an indicator of the breed of hen that laid the egg. Eggs yolks are among the few foods that contain vitamin D. Eggs are the centerpiece of a range of foods. Many egg dishes, such as omelets and frittatas, can be prepared quickly with many interesting fillings, such as peppers, tomatoes, or zucchini.

We hope that those of you that have avoided joining this movement because of the protein fallacies you’ve been taught over the years, can take the information from this article, to help yourself take a healthy step the next time you are planning to find a food truck on Monday, In an earlier article, we suggested some and provided a list of vegetarian and vegan food trucks if you would like to follow them. We hope this list helps you in finding a truck in your area.

Please do your part today and join the Meatless Monday movement? Signing up is fast and easy! Follow them on Twittter.

Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to continued coverage of Meatless Monday for our readers!

 

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How food trucks/carts can show their support.

According to CDC figures, over 200,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and about 40,000 will die from this disease this year. Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in women, after non-melanoma skin cancer. Although progress has been made over the years and mortality is decreasing, the goal of Breast Cancer Awareness Month is to promote efforts toward more research and efforts to get women screened and treated earlier, particularly lower income women.

2011 marks the 26th anniversary of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We at Mobile Cuisine Magazine have created a list of things you as a mobile vendor can do to help support this noble cause. Do your part and hop on the fundraising bandwagon to help in the fight.

  • If you have a website or blog, join in on the Pink for October campaign.
  • Use your daily special to promote a pink food item or a specialty menu item created specifically for cancer awareness and donate all or a portion of the proceeds to Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
  • If you sell pre-packaged goods, find food producers that are donating a portion of their sales to the cause. (YoplaitLuna BarsOdwalla’s Pink Poetry drink…)
  • Use pink ribbons, graphics, on your trucks.
  • Include something pink in your uniform policy.
  • Find local fundraising events, contact their organizers, and bring your truck. A portion or all of your sales could be donated to the event’s organization.
One such event is taking place in Southern Florida, Food Cart USA will host a food truck rally on Friday, October 7th, 5:00pm – 9:00pm to benefit two great organizations: Angels & Warriors Foundation fighting Childhood Cancer, and Pink Heals bringing Breast Cancer awareness to the community with their Pink Fire Trucks. For more information on this event.

The food tuck line-up is as follows:

  • Chamos on Wheels
  • Che Grill
  • Cheese Steak Gourmet
  • Chef on Wheels 1
  • Coldstone Creamery
  • Daddy’s Grill
  • Divan Bakery
  • Dog Eat Dog
  • Gastropod
  • Guiseppe’s Italian Sausage
  • Kona Ice
  • Latin Burger
  • Latin House Grill
  • Marly’s Café
  • Mexzican Gourmet
  • Monster Burgers
  • Mr. Good Stuff
  • Ms. Cheezious
  • Nacho Mama
  • Perros Express
  • Red Koi
  • Slow Food
  • Snow Caps
  • Sugar Rush
  • Sugar Yummy Mama
  • The Red Truck
  • Yellow Submarine

Help make a difference, be part of the movement.

How are you planning to participate in Breast Cancer Awareness Month?

 

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This article is much more than just another article on the mobile food industry; it’s the start of a petition. Mobile Cuisine Magazine wants to show our support for the industry we cover by starting a campaign to create a National Mobile Food Vendor Day in the United States. The question “why we should or should not have a Mobile Food Vendor Day” has been on our minds for some time now.

The goal of this article is to launch this campaign and begin spreading the word to get as much support as possible. Take a few minutes to read through, we truly appreciate your time and support.

In US (and the rest of the world), there are so many Federal and State holidays commemorating distinct cultural and political events. We have holidays for teachers, mothers, fathers, grandparents, martyrs, workers… so, our question is: why don’t we have a national day for these culinary entrepreneurs? A national day isn’t really about who gets to skip work for a day and relax or go on a parade; it’s about recognition and respect.

[emailpetition id="1"]

 

A national day named after one of the most hardworking segments of the country’s population would be a step in the right direction – and here are our five top reasons why it is:

Mobile food vendors are part of the backbone of the economy

While these small businesses may not generate billions of dollars of revenue per year individually, their contribution to the economy, employment and helping those looking for different avenues to get fresh, local, gourmet food has been growing. Doesn’t this fact alone deserve recognition, on a national scale?

Entrepreneurs need a day off, too

Though many of these small business owners would still be working even if a national day was proclaimed in their name, at least they would be encouraged to take a break, at least for one day. These culinary professional are known for burning the candle from both ends. That’s a hard fact, and none of these mobile vendors will tell you that setting up a small business and maintaining his start-up was an easy task. With a National Mobile Food Vendors Day, these entrepreneurs can take a guilt-free break from the streets. They can take a break because they deserve a day’s worth of guilt-free rest.

Other professionals are recognized, nationally

There’s Teacher’s Day to pay homage to the tireless educators of the country, Labor’s Day to recognize the pride of the working people… why isn’t there a National Mobile Food Vendor Day to recognize the unmatched sacrifices that chefs make to survive and thrive month after month and year after year? Every type of labor has the same kind of dignity – and one’s dignity in his own labor should be recognized and remembered by all. Call it “monument-making”, but it’s far better than being forgotten completely. This day will promote and support the mobile food vendor and help people realize that there is an alternative to a traditional nine to five job.

Recognition equates representation

Once mobile food vendors are recognized nationally as significant contributors to Local, State and National economies, they would have more cultural capital and hence a stronger and better representation.

Why not?!

Seriously, after everything that the mobile food vendors have done to add a new avenue for the people of the country to taste fresh gourmet food of nearly every cuisine imaginable, can you really think of a reason why we should not recognize them?

So, please support this petition for a National Mobile Food Vendors day on March 5th. One brief moment is all it will take you to sign.

Once you sign the petition and confirm your signature (if you do not see a confirmation email shortly after submission, check your spam mail box to make sure it is there), you’ll be given an option to link to Twitter and Facebook which will allow you to get your friends, family, and followers to sign it. Share it with as many people as you like, tweet about it, post on your Facebook wall, Digg it, StumbleUpon it, blog about it, email it, our initial goal is 10,000 signatures but if we can, let’s get a million signatures and make sure that on next March 5th, we will be able to wish ‘Happy Mobile Food Vendors Day’ to every mobile culinary entrepreneur.

Power and success to all of you in the mobile food industry!

 

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Since we have started coving the Meatless Monday program on Mobile Cuisine Magazine, we have received numerous messages from our readers asking for more information on veganism for those who have decided that one meatless day a week wasn’t enough for them. Today’s article will assist individuals on how to convert menu items into selections any vegan would feel comfortable purchasing from their food truck or cart.

If you are a mobile food vendor who is wondering if it is possible to “veganize” some of your existing recipe, the answer is clearly YES. Your menu items and even recipe books with meat and fish recipes can be easily converted to a vegan recipe with some imagination and some know-how. Here are some ways to help you to achieve this.

Look through your menu recipes and choose a recipe that is popular.

Check off all the items in the ingredients list that are not vegan, for example, meat or fish, dairy, gelatin etc.

Start substituting the ingredients. For example, you can substitute most items as follows:

  • Cheese – vegan cheese (soy or rice based)
  • Beef – veggie mock beef strips (usually seitan-based)
  • Chicken – veggie mock chicken (usually gluten-based)
  • Pork/bacon – veggie mock pork/bacon (usually soy-based)
  • Sausages – there are many mock sausage versions on the market
  • Sliced sandwich meat – a variety of mock veggie sandwich meats exist
  • Butter – substitute oils or vegan margarine. For baking, solid coconut fat is a great choice and it is good for you in small quantities owing to its vitamin E content.
  • Ice cream – try soy or rice substitutes
  • Milk – try soy, rice, nut or oat substitutes. Water or juice will often substitute in baking.
  • Eggs – there are many egg-substitutes on the market. Other ideas include pectin (for example, use pureed apple in cakes).
  • Honey – try agave nectar or brown rice syrup.
  • Gelatin – agar agar and pectin are good choices; sometimes banana or apple can substitute.

Try other alternatives if you detest meat substitutes. For some vegans, anything resembling meat is off-putting and undesirable. There are still choices! Try chunky cuts of vegetables in stews and stir-frys, try tofu or seitan for substance and texture.

Experiment. It will take a while to get the ingredients right and also the measurements. It is a good idea to try and start out with keeping the measurements in the recipe as close as possible but you will find that you need to make adjustments with practice over time. Some of the hardest things to convert are in the area of baking, so it is very prudent to borrow some books on vegan baking to give you a good idea.

Read up. Use the internet, the library and your local bookstore to browse through vegan cookbooks and recipes. Get as many ideas as you can and start trusting your own instincts for what textures, flavors and substitutes work well together. It takes some patience and some experimentation but within a few months you should be starting to cook confidently with substitutes and remembering without having to check what can be quickly substituted for your non-vegan recipes.

We hope this article will help those of you wishing to “veganize” your menu, or at least a portion of your menu. If you have any additional tips, please feel free to add them in the comments section below.

Please do your part today and join the Meatless Monday movement? Signing up is fast and easy! Follow them on Twittter.

Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to continued coverage of Meatless Monday for our readers!

 

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For the last two years Miss Vegan, founded by Meghan, has brought delicious vegan food to people at local farmers markets and on ETSY where the goods get rave reviews. Now, Meghan along with her partner Tom, are looking to expand into the food truck business, but they need some help.

Miss Vegan is ready to move from its online dessert store to the next level. Miss Vegan is becoming a mobile food truck! The menu will be filled with healthier alternatives to diner style foods and desserts. The truck will be supportive of local farmers, the environment, a healthier way of living, and of course the lives of animals. Miss Vegan believes that food is more than just a belly filler. Food is a way to bring a community together and put smiles on people’s faces.

With the help of kickstarter.com, Miss Vegan is aiming to raise $14,000 to go towards buying the food truck, cash register and initial inventory. At this point, they have been able to raise $4,300. You can visit their kickstarter page and make a donation. Depending on the amount of your donation, in return you may receive some baked goods, Miss Vegan pins or tee shirts, or if you are local to Providence, RI, you can even score yourself a hug.

$1 OR MORE – A hug when you visit the Miss Vegan truck and everlasting thankfulness.

$5 OR MORE – Above and an awesome Miss Vegan pin.

$10 OR MORE – Above and an invite to the VIP only Miss Vegan launch party. Come hangout with us!

$25 OR MORE – Above and a voucher for a tasty cupcake!!!!!! Also, an awesome one of a kind picture drawn by us!

$50 OR MORE – Above and a dozen yummy cupcakes. You choose the flavor! Can be shipped or delivered.

$75 OR MORE – Above, a Free Meal Voucher and a Miss Vegan t-shirt! How cool?!?!?!

$100 OR MORE – Above and an awesome Miss Vegan goodie basket, filled with all kind of surprises.

$250 OR MORE – Above and a cupcake designed and named after you. Also, your pic posted on our website.

$375 OR MORE – Above and 2 dozens cupcakes for YOU and 2 dozens cupcakes DONATED to the food bank or an animal shelter. ( we can make doggie safe treats too) Woohoo! Go you and go them!

$500 OR MORE – Above and a custom Miss Vegan apron! One of a kind! Look sharp in the kitchen (pun intended again)

$1,000 OR MORE – Above and a catered party for up to 25 people! Restricted to RI residents.

Along with tasty baked goods, when Miss Vegan gets her food truck she will be serving up veganized diner classics such as mozzarella sticks, steak and cheese sandwiches and chicken parmesan. Miss Vegan has been working long and hard to come up with tasty recipes that can be offered at affordable prices. We’ve thrown some spins on the classics, like Steak and cheese sandwiches and clam cakes and chowda. We plan to have a regular menu and a daily specials menu.

So if you have the means, please donate to help out some members of the vegan community and get some delicious vegan food out on the streets of Providence. If you can’t donate you can always help by telling everyone you know about Miss Vegan.

 

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As our readers know our Monday featured articles are set aside for the promotion of the Meatless Monday food program. By doing this, we are able to share information about a program designed to have individuals take one day a week off from eating meat. Not only does this make the individual healthier, but it gives them a way to help do their part in helping the planet.

Our articles have ranged from introducing the Meatless Monday program, to providing meatless recipes, to profiling food trucks that serve vegetarian or vegan cuisine, and finally on health related articles on how someone can find protein on a food truck without ordering meat.

In today’s article we will focus our attention on healthy source of nutrients and low in calories which can be found on gourmet trucks or carts around the country. Arugula gained a lot of recognition when President Obama mentioned it during his Presidential run in 2008, but was an ingredient found in almost every vegetarian or vegan refrigerator prior to that time.

Spicy Green with Unique Nutrient Combo

While Ancient Egyptians and Romans considered arugula to be an aphrodisiac, modern nutrition science suggests it may have benefits for your bones.

Nutrient-rich and low in calories – just 20 calories in about three cups (85g) – arugula provides an excellent source of folate, vitamins A and C, and over 100% of your daily vitamin K needs. This same serving supplies a good source of calcium, magnesium and manganese. The fact that this leafy green, unlike spinach, is lower in oxalates (which as discussed in previous DNNs can inhibit mineral absorption) gives a “green” light to arugula’s calcium availability. Researchers now believe that the nutrients needed for bone building go beyond calcium.

For example, vitamin K has been linked to a reduced risk of bone fractures. The Framingham Heart Study found that people who consumed approximately 250mcg/day of vitamin K had a 35% lower risk of hip fractures compared to those who consumed just 50mcg/day. Research also shows potassium and magnesium may boost bone mineral density. Vitamin C has been linked with greater forearm bone mineral content in post-menopausal women and helps promote collagen formation (collagen is needed to build strong bones).In addition, manganese is a cofactor for enzymes involved in the formation of healthy cartilage and bone, while folate lowers levels of homocysteine, an amino acid linked to increased risk of fractures.This unique combination of nutrients make arugula a Superfood for your bones.

Arugula also has significant quantities of the phytochemicals beta-carotene (promotes healthy eyes, skin and immune function), lutein and zeaxanthin (promote eye health) and glucosinolates (promote the body’s natural detoxification systems).Besides its health benefits, arugula, or “rocket,” is peppery and aromatic, with a pungent, somewhat bitter flavor that adds zest to any meal.

Seasons/Availability
Arugula is available year round.

Current Facts
Arugula that is sequentially planted and harvested encourages new growth and prevents the plant from bolting, which produces flowers and decreases the life longevity of the plant. One can determine aged crops vs. fresh crops by the toughness and intensity of the leaves and the woodiness of its stems.

Description/Taste
Arugula appears to be a leafy green, but it is in fact an annual herb. Its flavor proves its herbaceous qualities with peppery essences and mustard like flavors. When the plant matures it produces four-lobed white flowers with purple veins that are also peppery in flavor and equally edible.

Applications
Arugula is considered an herb, a salad green and even a leaf vegetable, making it a versatile ingredient in a food truck’s kitchen. When arugula is grown as an herb it is often woodier and more strongly flavored. Add this variety of arugula to raw pesto and sauces where its pungency will come through. Add whole leaves to grilled cheese sandwiches or a BLT. Use as a leafy bed for grilled seafood or vegetables. Use herb arugula within a week of purchase and keep dry and refrigerated.

Ethnic/Cultural Info
Arugula is used as a pizza topping in Italian cuisine, often finishing the pizza at the end of the baking period or just after it comes out of the oven so as not to lose the intensity of its flavor.

Geography/History
Arugula’s vernacular name is garden rocket or simply rocket. It is of the species Eruca setiva and native to the Mediterranean region, specifically Morocco, Portugal and Lebanon. It can grown on dry land and wet soil alike.

As you can see from this information, arugula is a fantastic and tasty option on any type of burger, salad, or even grilled cheese sandwich. Please do your part today and join the Meatless Monday movement.

Interested in a recipe with arugula in it? Check <here>

Signing up is fast and easy! Follow them on Twittter.

Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to continued coverage of Meatless Monday for our readers!

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The first official Earth Day was celebrated on April 22, 1970. More than 40 years later, we continue to try and educate ourselves about the value of conserving the Earth’s natural resources.

Back in the day, environmentalists were often ostracized as “tree huggers,” but today we all should embrace that designation. Liberal or conservative, the goal should be to protect our natural resources if we even want to think about a bright outcome for future generations.

A simple act of picking up trash, using reusable water bottles or bicycling to work all add up. Pretty soon we won’t need to label anyone an environmentalist since we all will have become one. Here are some tips to to green your food truck or cart dining experience:

 

  • Choose to dine green by patronizing Certified Green Restaurants®
  • Walk, take public transit, dine at a food truck close to your home or office, or carpool when dining out. Find their location at Mobile-Cuisine.com or Twitter.
  • Carry pocket-size guides to sustainable seafood, like the ones from Blue Ocean Institute, to help you make smart seafood choices at the fish counter, or your local sushi truck or cart.
  • Bring your own mug for coffee. Make sure to remind staff to make your drink in the cup you bring, not to waste by making it in a to-go cup, then pouring it into your travel mug
  • Consider menu items lower on the food chain. For example, chicken has a lower environmental impact than beef, while sustainable seafood has a lower impact than chicken, and vegetarian and vegan items have the lowest of them all.
  • Bring your own re-usable container and offer it to your server when you ask to take meal with you.
  • Research has found that several mobile food vendors claim that 25% of food ordered by customers is wasted and thrown out. Be conscious about what you order and really think about how hungry you are.

If you can think of other useful suggestions, please let us know in the comments section below.

 

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For our first Meatless Monday back online after a long layoff, we will provide a food truck profile of one of the nation’s most know vegan food truck.

Soon after we began covering Meatless Mondays on MCM we consistently received messages to provide a list of food trucks that carry a vegetarian or vegan menu. We did this by providing a list of these trucks, but only gave short descriptions of each. We have added to the list since that time, but have also made the commitment to provide our readers with more in-depth profiles of these vegetarian or vegan food trucks.

On this President’s Day, Mobile Cuisine Magazine will take a closer look at a food truck that has a home base just 30 minutes outside of the hometown of our 22nd and 24th President of the United States, Stephen Grover Cleveland. The Cinnamon Snail calls Hoboken, NJ home and is run by self-taught chef Adam Sobel.

The Cinnamon Snail has been a dream of Sobel’s for years, but is not sure what sparked the initial concept. In his youth he was a self-described “little punk graffiti artist”, who always liked the idea of forcing creativity and beauty back into the community, to the street, where everyone comes in contact with it.

Sobel a vegan for nearly a decade owns what is considered to be the nation’s first organic vegan food truck which opened last February on Valentine’s Day. During this time Chef Sobel has been spreading his passion for veganism to vegans and non-vegans in the Hoboken area.

Since he started preparing vegan food professionally, there have been few things that get him as excited as hearing how something vegan has helped someone change their eating lifestyle. As he has explained, “The thing about most vegetarian restaurants is that largely, you are “preaching to the choir”. Most customers are already vegan, or at least conscious about the suffering of animals in food production. With the truck, I deal with the full spectrum of people. Most of my customers are not (yet) vegan. They come to my truck and see awesome looking donuts and pastries, and they fall in love with the sweet, donut-y circles of heaven. After a couple of weeks they are eating Creole Grilled Tofu sandwiches, or enjoying clean raw food for lunch.”

The truck’s menu is seasonal, and is something that will evolve the longer they are open. The truck serves pastries and sandwiches and is open Thursday thru Sunday. Sobel stated that they primarily serve breakfast and lunch but on rare occasions will stay open for dinner.

Sample items from the menu:

  • Smokey portabello carpaccio on semolina fennel bread with kalamata olive tapenade, arugula and capers
  • Hempseed crusted tofu with spicy French mustard dressing over white truffle mashed potatoes, greens, and rosemary bread pudding
  • Creole grilled tofu sub on toasted baguette with caramelized onions, arugula, and grilled tomato

The menu item the chef is most proud of is his Ginger Island Grilled Tofu over Coconut Mashed Yams and Greens, with Grilled Mango Salsa, Spiced Candied Pecans, and Fried Ginger.

Another menu item that is constantly mentioned in customer tweets or Yelp reviews are his vegan donuts. He worked on them for years, but is always modifying the recipe in a pursuit of perfecting this creation. They make traditional donuts such as apple cider, and strawberry glazed (made with fresh strawberries in the glaze) but also sell more decadent choices such as peanut butter chocolate cheesecake donuts, and chocolate cookie glazed.

While researching for this profile we stumbled across an interview where Chef Sobel was asked, “What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?” His answer?

When you have some negative perception of someone you do not know, confront them and make sure you communicate that you love them and just want peace between you.

When I first got the truck running, the Hoboken Police chased me from time to time. Hoboken has some annoying parking laws that make it tough for food trucks, and when the police choose to enforce the parking laws, it makes operating very difficult.

One slow Sunday morning, a Policeman came and made me move my truck. Within five minutes of finding a new spot, he was back and already getting irritated. He gave me a ticket and told me that I had better pack up for the day. It was a bummer but I started packing up. Packing up a commercial kitchen on wheels takes time, and he was back within ten minutes, really mad now that I wasn’t gone yet. The officer gave me two more tickets and followed me out of town. I didn’t leave town immediately though. Instead, I boxed up all of my pastries and went to the police precinct and gave them to the police to enjoy; I make a regular habit out of doing this.

A couple of days went by, and I had been left with such a bad taste in my mouth about this police officer. Thinking of the advice I had been given, I decided to go to the police station to talk to him. I let the officer know that I was sorry if it seemed like I was giving him a hard time the other day. I was super friendly, and immediately I could feel the tension clear. He told me how bad he felt when he came back to the station and was enjoying the donuts I had given them.

Now that officer eats lunch at my truck often. He brings new policemen with him all the time, and I know that slowly, he is getting turned on to vegan food!

If the Cinnamon Snail’s popularity can be shown by the number of individual entries for Phase 1 or our upcoming Best Food Truck in the Country contest, it looks as though all of New Jersey is lending Chef Sobel a huge hand.

For updates on where The Cinnamon Snail is parked in Hoboken, follow Adam on Twitter or Facebook. You can find their site online at thecinnamonsnail.com.

If you own or know of a truck you would like to see profiled for our weekly Meatless Monday coverage, please let us know and we’ll be sure to add them to our ever growing list, and in doing so others will learn about them and can follow those in their area.

Please do your part today and join the Meatless Monday movement? Signing up is fast and easy! Follow them on Twittter.

Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to continued coverage of Meatless Monday for our readers!

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While the idea is not new, there is a movement afoot aimed at changing the way we eat one day a week and Mobile Cuisine Magazine has jumped into it with both feet. Since the beginning of MCM we have introduced a new direction for our food truck industry coverage on Mondays.

To do our part in supporting Meatless Mondays we believe that sharing information, recipes, and news about vegetarianism and leading a more conscious life overall is beneficial for everyone, vegetarian and omnivore alike.

This week we found a program created, not for just one day, but for an entire week of the year. This week marks the reintroduction of DC Meat-Free Week, and on Thursday, they have set aside an entire day for the mobile food industry in Washington DC to join in. Here are the details.

DC Meat-Free Week is back and even better! This year’s schedule welcomes back a few favorites from Meat-Free Week’s inaugural year, and offers tons of new options for you to try. There are also plenty of opportunities to learn all about meat-free cooking, and to give back to the community while sampling some of DC’s best veg eats.

Meat, meet your match.

Thursday, February 10th
Food Truck Day featuring
Eat Wonky – $1 off vegan fries or vegetarian Wonky fries
Sweet Flow Mobile – $1 off all vegan and vegetarian salads and wraps
Pie Truck – $1 off a sweet slice with the purchase of a meat-free savory slice
Fojol Bros. – $1 off Pick 3 Vegan Feast
P.O.R.C. Mobile – $1 off vegan special of the day
DC Slices – debuting cooked-to-order 10? personal pies with Daiya vegan cheese and fresh chopped veggies
More truck listings coming soon!

Find the entire schedule for the week <here>

How To Enjoy DC Meat-Free Week

QWhy should I participate in Meat-Free Week?
A: At the same time that you improve your own health, you’ll benefit the planet, lessen animal suffering, and enjoy some of DC’s very best restaurants!

QTo be a part of Meat-Free Week, do I have to attend every event?
A: Feel free to treat yourself to as little or as much delicious meat-free food as you want. You can come one day, but you’ll probably be tempted to come all seven. Used to eating meat every day? Challenge yourself — you’ll be surprised!

QCan anyone come to the events, and do I need to RSVP in advance?
A: Meatatarians, carnivores, omnivores, vegetarians, vegans, and all others are welcome to attend any part of Meat-Free Week. The schedule indicates when reservations are recommended or required.

QHow does Meat-Free Week work once I get to a restaurant?
A: The same as any other visit to one of these great locations! Dine with your party and order as you wish. When in attendance, your Meat-Free Week organizers will try to make themselves known. Please feel free to introduce yourself and tell us what meat-free options you enjoyed.

QWhat does it cost to participate in Meat-Free Week?
A: We’ve provided you with a fabulous schedule of restaurants, but what you spend is entirely up to you. Treat yourself to a cupcake or indulge in a full tasting menu.

QAny advice?
A: Be adventurous. Try a restaurant you’ve never experienced before. Order a dish that you’ve never heard of. Or, order a favorite dish prepared in a new way. Expand your horizons. Bring a friend. Come alone and talk to your neighbors. Remember, you can win friends with salad.

QAre there plans for another Meat-Free Week in the future?
A: Don’t worry, we’ll be back next year! But you won’t have to wait that long — Compassion Over Killing will host their annual Veg Week in April 2011.

QWhat if I want to make every week Meat-Free Week?
A: Check VegDC.com for help finding even more veg-friendly dining options in DC. Or, contact any of the below organizations for information on the joys of embracing a veggie lifestyle!

Please do your part today and join the movement? Signing up is fast and easy! Follow them on Twittter.

Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to sharing Meatless Monday with our readers!

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