The Guerrilla Burger: Our flame licked quarter pound beef burger is a real handful. Topped with Apple Bourbon Bacon Jam, Sauteed Onions and Peppers, Southwestern Slaw and your choice of Maytag Blue Cheese or Sharp Cheddar. Served on a Toasted Brioche roll.
The Guerrilla Dawg: Grilled Kosher Beef Frank, Apple Bourbon Bacon Jam, Sauteed onions and peppers, Southwestern Slaw and your choice of Maytag Blue Cheese or Sharp Cheddar. Served on a toasted Dawg Roll.
Reuben eM.P.anada: Corned Beef, Swiss Cheese and Sauerkraut stuffed inside a pastry Disco and fried until golden brown. Served with Thousand Island on the side.
I’m not a food snob, really I’m not. I do enjoy using fine ingredients and eating fresh local food but there is a special place in my heart for a processed staple that has been served in school cafeterias, fast food restaurants and American dining rooms for over sixty years. I love Tater Tots. Tater Tots were invented in 1953 when Ore-Ida founders F. Nephi Grigg and Golden Grigg were trying to figure out what to do with leftover slivers of cut-up potatoes. The added flour and seasoning to the potatoes and extruded the mixture through a round hole, fried them and viola’: the iconic Tot was born.
What I like about the Tot is the texture. On the outside the potato is crispy and salty while the inside is fluffy and soft. With salt and ketchup a Tot stands on its own but as head cook at Guerrilla Canteen I’ve been looking at the possibilities of what a Tater Tot can be. The idea is to elevate the lowly Tot in a way that we normally don’t associate with it. I’m not the only person who loves and respects the Tater Tot. Americans consume seventy million pounds a year.
I hope I grabbed your attention with the title of this article. Sorry, there will be no raunchy stories of sex and drugs but we will talk about Rock and Roll. I’m a big music lover and I enjoy seeing live music. I’ve seen hundreds of concerts from national acts with a range of styles that you might consider diametrically opposed. I’ve seen punk groups like Fugazi and Sonic Youth as well as concerts that your Grandma would love. Continue reading Day 78: Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll.→
I grabbed a can of Yuengling Lager from the refrigerator at my sister’s place and wondered why there was an industrial padlock on the door. I walked out to the deck and asked my brother-in-law Chris what the deal was with the fridge. Chris smiled and drank his can of beer and replied, “I got sick of Stephen getting into the fridge and eating all of our food. He broke two child locks so I installed the padlock. It was the only solution.”
Chris and my sister Mary Frances have four beautiful, spirited, young kids. Claire is under one, Stephen is 4, Joe is 5 and C.J. is 7. It was C.J’s seventh birthday that brought my family, my brother John’s family and my parents and Chris’s mom, Connie, to my sister’s home. Our family is very close and anytime that we have an excuse to celebrate, we always get together. The celebration usually revolves around food. Continue reading Day 77: Escargot and Kid Foodie’s→
Editors note. The following interview was conducted by Frank Stratford on July 29,2015 at Mr. Kramer’s Hershey, Pennsylvania home.
Part Chef, part sideshow pitch-man and part philosopher, the big man sat down with me to discuss food, music, philosophy and the future of Guerrilla Canteen. Wearing a tee-shirt, jeans and a Hershey Bears Hockey baseball cap, the barefoot entrepreneur shared with me a mason jar full of green liquid with a hand written label on it that said “Hillbilly Antifreeze”. Continue reading Day 75: An Interview With Jamie Kramer, Founder Of Guerrilla Canteen→
I walked to the backyard to be assaulted with the sound of “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” blasting so loud that it rattled the neighbors windows. My wife Michelle and my daughter Hannah were lounging in a 20 dollar inflatable pool and singing at the top of their lungs. I climbed into the pool to escape the sweltering heat. Reclining in the soft, polyvinyl, dollar store oasis, I sipped a beer and I thought about all the important women in my life. My wife Michelle: nurse extraordinaire, optimistic, sassy and driven. I looked at my daughter Hannah: the aspiring photographer, saxophone player, a straight “A” student, and opinionated like her Dad. Between daydreaming about how my Mom’s meatball recipe would make me famous and how excited I was to get my food truck on the road, my mind focused on women and how they influenced, pioneered and shaped the culinary world.
Rachael Ray The three-time Emmy winner (two for The Rachael Ray Show and one for 30 Minute Meals) claims that she is not a chef. Her loose cooking style with less than accurate measuring (use a handful of this) spawns creativity in kitchens across America and throws it in the face of culinary convention. Merriam Webster credits her with the phrase EVOO, shorthand for Extra Virgin Olive Oil ( I even hear this phrase used in professional kitchens). Rachael is the girl next door and we like her so much that she has built a media and endorsement empire.Her net worth is 60 million.
Isabella Beeton In 1861, Isabella Beeton a well to do English housewife published The Book of Household Management. Her book was a Victorian guide to all things domestic and included writings about industrialism, animal husbandry, science and the management of servants. Isabella was talking about using fresh and local ingredients 110 years before Alice Waters. Her book included 900 pages of recipes with color illustrations and the format that she used to write her recipes is still used in cook books today.
Josephine Garis Cochran was sick of her staff breaking her expensive china. In 1886 she was awarded the patent for the first fully functioning automatic dishwasher. She demonstrated her invention at the 1893 Chicago’s World Fair to the joy of restaurateurs and homemakers the world over.
Professor Ann Noble You’ve probably never heard of Professor Noble but if you enjoy California wines, you probably should. Her enology courses at The University Of California have influenced the vintners of the Napa Valley for over 30 years. The Corra Cabernet Sauvignon, Pride Mountain Vineyards Merlot and Keplinger Lithic were all produced by her former female students. Professor Nobel invented the wine wheel. Her invention is a pretty cool tool that you can use to expand your appreciation of wine by honing your sense of smell.
Eugenie Brazier was the first women to earn 3 Michelin stars (1936). She was also the first French chef of either sex to attain six Michelin stars. A rock-star by the standards of her day, her clients included Charles de Gaulle and Marlene Deitrich.
Florence Parpart invented the first electric refrigerator in 1914. Before Florence’s invention, food was kept in an ice box which was a large insulated cooler requiring blocks of ice to keep food cold. Imagine a world without reliable refrigeration and I’ll show you a world of food borne illness, back breaking work and seafood with a shelf life measured in hours, not days.
Alice Waters invented California Cuisine. With the opening of Chez Panise in 1971, she brought the idea of fresh and local ingredients prepared with diverse cultural influences into the mainstream. She was the first female chef to win the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef in 1992.
Julia Child made cooking shows accessible to everyone. She wasn’t the first person to have a cooking show, but her enthusiasm, wit and passion brought French cooking to the masses. Julia’s spirit showed us that a cooking demonstration could be entertainment. The French Chef was the first television program captioned for the deaf. Julia Child broke barriers for women by studying at the male dominated Le Cordon Bleu, writing almost twenty books, receiving the first Emmy awarded to an educational show and founding The American Institute of Wine & Food to “advance the understanding, appreciation and quality of wine and food,”
Lillian Moller Gilbreth Every pastry Chef loves their mixer and they can thank one of the first working female engineers with a PhD. Being a busy mother of twelve, Lillian developed the linear layout of the modern kitchen and was awarded a patent for an electric hand mixer. She pioneered studies in time motion and ergonomics. She was awarded 23 honorary degrees including one from Princeton University. Did I mention that in her free time she invented that hands free, foot pedal trashcan and the shelves that are on the doors of your refrigerator?
10. Nancy Johnson In 1843 Nancy Johnson from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania was awarded a patent for the world’s first hand cranked ice cream churn. Her machine aerated the sugar and cream mixture and prevented the formation of ice crystals while chilling the dessert. Although the recipe for making ice cream was discovered by the Chinese in 3000 B.C. Nancy’s machine made it possible for anyone to create the delicious frozen treat and the mechanics of her contraption were eventually applied to the industrial sized machines that are used to produce ice cream today. The next time you have some apple pie a la mode, A pint of Ben and Jerry’s or Baked Alaska you can thank Nancy Johnson for her contribution to the dessert world.
There are many more women that I could mention on the pioneers of the culinary world list. Cat Cora, Paula Deen, and Martha Stewart immediately come to mind. There are undoubtedly hundreds more. Who would you put on this list?
The team approached the target at 1700 hours. The aroma of smoked brisket, fried potatoes and sweet custard hung in the air. Remembering a line from the movie Starship Troopers I thought… Come on you apes, you wanna live forever?
The food trucks were assembled at The Harrisburg Food Truck Feast. Our mission was to gather information about the competition. My daughter Hannah plowed into her assignment with a Soul Burrito and a side of macaroni and cheese.
The Soul Burrito truck are rock stars in the Harrisburg food scene. Starting with one truck they have opened a stand at the Broad Street Market, a trailer at The York Revolution and will open a brick and mortar restaurant on Walnut street at the end of the month. Their story is the blueprint of how to succeed in this business.
Dave and I watched their process and admired their customer service. Dave got the Big Bird Burrito and I got the Jerked Chicken. Huge flavors and a reasonable price, the food was great. Soul Burrito’s operation was a finely tuned machine with lots of moving parts. They made it look easy and their food lived up to the hype. You could taste the soul. Hannah liked it too (but she likes Dad’s mac and cheese better).
Dave called me last night and said ,” You know we should all probably do some recon tonight at the Harrisburg Food Truck Feast.” I’ve been on missions like this before with Dave and Pam and they always involve three things. First we blend into the environment so as not to be detected. Second we try to gather as much valuable intelligence as possible: counts on tickets per hour, the most popular food being served, and an analysis of what food trucks process is the most efficient and why. Third, and most importantly, we stuff ourselves with delicious street food served by really great people. Continue reading Day 60: Operation Recon at The Harrisburg Food Truck Feast→