Corporate Chef Perspective
Prepared Foods talks about food trucks and street food with Christopher Hansen, corporate executive chef at OSI Group LLC, Aurora, Ill. OSI is a global processor-supplier of prepared meat proteins, entrées and side dishes.
Prepared Foods: Can you recall a memorable street food taste experience? Where were you? What was it?
Hansen: I had some great carnitas in East L.A. It featured slow-braised pork, fresh salsa verde, cilantro and onions, all on a sunny spring day. I could eat three portions, no problem!
PF: What advice would you have about translating or transforming a street experience into a further prepared item?
Hansen: What’s most important is to respect the recipe and idea—and replicate the ingredients and the method of preparation.
PF: How are food trucks changing the culinary landscape and consumer food experience?
Hansen: They offer a great, quality experience without the overhead of a restaurant. This gives them the flexibility to be creative on the menu. Daily specials and seasonal ingredients can easily be incorporated in the menu to keep it fresh and vibrant.
PF: If you opened your own food truck tomorrow, what would you do?
Hansen: I’d showcase artisanal deli and focus on the seasonal strengths of what local farmers have to offer.