By Lory Diaz
The Toronto catering company, Toben Food By Design, recently launched a food truck and have already lined up an impressive list of events they’ll be attending this summer! The company was started by Chef Toben Kochman, who has almost two decades of experience in the culinary arts world, mainly gathered by working in Toronto and Paris, France.
If you’re not familiar with Toben Food By Design, you can read about my last delicious encounter with them as they catered the One of a Kind Spring Show! Since Toben’s Global Street Food With A Twist Truck will be available at events throughout the city, let’s just jump right into some of the menu items you can look forward to trying:
I’m a huge fan of beets, so I was happy to see some french fry alternatives: beet home fries with BBQ sauce, lime & chili aioli, coriander, and feta queso fresco. These are less of a long, lean, fry shape that most of us are familiar with, and instead, healthy cuts of cubed beets battered up and served with an assortment of bright flavours.
Next, I tried the watermelon salad which is vegetarian, but comes with a non-veggie option that is topped with seared salmon. The salad base itself is made with heirloom tomato, mint, crispy chickpeas, and is dressed with a tahini vinaigrette. I think the vegetarian option is delicious, and in those hot summer days, a cool burst of watermelon is refreshing, but the salmon is a nice addition if you’re looking for a protein.
By far my favourite item was the Korean Braised Short Rib Tater Tots: bean sprouts, house-made kimchi, gochujang aoili (gochujang is a spicy fermented condiment known also as red chili paste that is both sweet and savory), fried egg, scallions, and topped with toasted sesame seeds. If you’re turned off by the idea of kimchi due to how spicy it traditionally is, Toben’s team has made some delicious kimchi that isn’t overpowering but still serves up some wonderful flavours. Definitely give this item a try when you spot the truck!
The Schnitz Sandwich seemed to be a real crowd pleaser, and after one bite I could tell why: grain fed chicken schnitzel, grainy dijon aioli, pickled purple cabbage-apple slaw, double smoked thick-cut bacon, all on a freshly baked brioche bun. First of all, the bun itself is soft and slightly sweet, which pairs very well with the cabbage-apple slaw. These two sweeter notes counter the dijon aioli and leave your tastebuds happy!
One last item to keep an eye out for is the Jerk Popcorn Fish. This comes with a lime-ginger aioli, and sriracha sauce drizzled over a mango, cucumber, carrot, and daikon slaw. These fish bites have a great coating on them that isn’t too thick (like a fish’n’chips batter), but delivers a great texture and crunch. Though the cabbage-apple slaw delivered more, the mango and daikon combination is hard to ignore. Seafood fans should try this one out.
Now that Toben’s food truck is up an running, make sure to keep an eye out for it at the following events: Field Trip Music Festival, The Big Feastival, CBC Music Festival, Beaches Street Fest, Digital Dreams, The Honda Indy, NXNE, and Open Roof. Also, if you’re looking for a catering company that serves up delicious treats, but keeps flavour combinations innovative and fun, check out the Toben Food By Design team’s website.