Honest Fare

Pretty Provisions and Notes from the Kitchen

Big announcement.

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Big announcement., Honest Fare by Gabrielle Arnold

What if I told you I’d been keeping something from you? Something BIG! If you’re a regular around here, you may have noticed that I haven’t been posting as frequently the last couple months, and there’s a good reason for that. I’m trying to figure out how to put this….like I need something to bring this announcement to a solid crescendo. But whatever, cause I’m drawing a total blank.

So instead I think I’ll just go with: By the way, I’m starting a food truck!

Maybe you already guessed by the images at the top. It’s me and my loving partners, Andy and Janelle from black bean deli. We’re calling our truck La Empanada. And like the name suggests, we’ll be selling gourmet empanadas, as well as seasonal salads and sometimes soups.

And just like that, it’s officially been made public all across the interweb. Cool!

Backing up now…
You may or may not know that I left my gllllorious job in advertising last August to pursue something food related. I wasn’t sure what that would be, but I did know that I wasn’t going to figure it out sitting at a desk eight hours a day. Sometimes the leap is necessary.

Months gone by, and I’ve learned a ton about the food biz since teaming up with Andy and Janelle. I’ll say, working in a professional, busy kitchen has definitely shown me a thing or two. We’ve managed to pretty seamlessly merge our flavors and styles (mine being what you see all across this blog and there’s being traditional Cuban) and the results have been pretty exciting.

Us in action at the opening night event for the Florida Film Festival.

Our main focus has been (is) in developing recipes for empanadas. (This post from a few weeks back gets into some of the combinations we’re experimenting with. Anyway, the empanada thing is pretty hot. People love them cause they’ve got that pocket of goodness to bite into, and they go over especially well at parties and events because they’re self contained, therefore easy to eat while you stand around mingling.

When you think about it, they’re kind of the ideal street food. Can’t think of a handier meal.

(Spinach & Feta empanada)

The food truck thing has been a conversation for several months now, but it wasn’t until the last couple that we really started making it happen. We’ve been slowly but surely renovating this beauty…

a 1985 Chevy, since January. We obviously haven’t gotten to the outside yet ;-)

It’s a pretty huge project (quite literally) that presents new and exciting discoveries every step of the way. Like, “Yay, we finally found the perfect wastewater tank!!!” That sort of thing.

So now I’m a truck driver. I hope everyone I used to work with reads this. And I couldn’t be more excited about it. Me, driving a 20-something foot rig and slanging empanadas out of a window, who would have thought it?

We’ve done SO much work on this thing over the last few months its nuts.
Countertops, stainless steal on all the walls, plumbing, equipment, Cceaning, tearing apart, ventilation system, putting in windows where walls used to be, getting permits permits, applications, mechanics, etc, etc.

We’ve taken it one thing though cause we’re trying to do a lot of the work ourselves.

And we’ve seriously ripped this thing apart in order to renovate it right!

Ew, nasty looking…but that’s just many, many years of accumulated grit for ya.

New window before and after…

It’s exciting stuff!

The plan is to use it primarily as a food truck in Downtown Orlando and Winter Park, FL as well as for caterings and special events. But the obvious question on everyone’s minds (including ours) is, when will it be ready!? A very good question indeed!

Our goal was April. Then it was May. Now it’s June. And now this is the part where I ask for your support.

Please help!

Watch our Kickstarter video to find out how and see how far we’ve come in the renovation process! I JUST posted it about 10 minutes ago so you guys are the first to see it!!!

**************Click HERE to donate and learn more about our project!*************

* Donating through Kickstarter using your major credit card is 100% safe and secure. AND we’re offering all kinds of awesome rewards to our backers! If you decide to donate, you’ll have to quickly login (free) and then you’ll be routed through Amazon, which is how your card will be charged.

Kickstarter is an organization that seeks to help creative projects get funded through donations. It’s all or nothing though, meaning that if we don’t reach our goal of raising $7,500.00 within 33 (end date is June 7 at 10:45 am) days, we don’t get a dime and no donations are processed! But no pressure ;-)

I consider you all friends and supporters of my ventures (just for reading this blog) regardless of whether you decide to donate to this project or not. And so you know, I gather a huge amount of inspiration from the comments and the sweet emails I get and that’s what’s really helped propel me in this direction. All that stuff is invaluable to me.

That said (and now that we’re two loans and a credit card deep) we could really use any contribution you can make! Ha. Think about it and throw a few bucks our way if you can.

Lots of love and appreciation,

**************Click HERE to donate!*******


  1. Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:31 AM | Permalink

    i’m rather new to your blog, but nevertheless, i’m excited for you and your team! the la empanada truck sounds so cool and, taking a look at your empanada recipes on here, looks soooo yummy! my fiancé’s father and stepmother live in winter park, so maybe someday i’ll see your truck around!

    best of luck to you all! it sounds and looks like you know what you’re doing. i can’t wait to see pictures of the truck when it’s finished!

    ps. from a design standpoint, i love how the logo is a mixture of cursive and print: elegant and simple at the same time, perfectly highlighting the fact that your food is gourmet but that your taking it on the road, something fun!

  2. Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

    YOU GUYS ARE AMAZING. I will donate… and I really wish you all well and good luck! I wish I lived in Florida to experience it when it gets completed! YAY for doin’ it!

  3. Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

    Congrats Gabi! What a fun adventure! I wish you all the best :)

  4. summer redwine
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    Good luck!!! I can’t wait to try your food!

  5. Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    Congrats! I wish you much success!!!!

  6. Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:02 PM | Permalink

    Congrats! This is beyond awesome!

  7. Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

    This sounds great! Funny pictures – seams you alls had a lot of fun and work. Wish you good luck and success. Cheers, Susanne

  8. Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

    Wow, this is so cool! I can’t wait to see the finished truck, all best in this endeavor!

  9. Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    Who knows if I’ll ever make it to Florida, but I’m an Honest Fare superfan and excited to support whatever you do.

  10. Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:06 PM | Permalink


  11. Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

    I had a feeling this might be coming. Congrats!! Can’t wait to come try your yummy empanadas! I live out by the beach, but we head to Orlando fairly often — can’t wait to come see/eat at the truck! Excited to be able to support you guys — best of luck!

  12. Posted May 5, 2011 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    How exciting! Well done and all the best with your new venture.

  13. Shivani Joshi
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:39 PM | Permalink

    so exciting!!!! we are so in!!!!! Congratulations!!!!

  14. Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:52 PM | Permalink

    Congrats guys.. can you park in front of my house around 6 – my son never eats, off of a truck!


    love you gabs

  15. Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:04 PM | Permalink

    Can’t wait to try this next time I’m in Orlando. Best of luck!

  16. Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:20 PM | Permalink

    Whoop whoopety whoop! The bus looks awesome! Congratulations!

  17. Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:00 PM | Permalink

    Wow!!! I am so excited for you! Way to get out there and follow your passion! Last year I left a desk job as well and now work in a massive bakery so I can totally relate to the (lovely) whirlwind that is the food biz! Best of luck and I can’t wait to hear more about your adventure.

  18. Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:26 PM | Permalink

    SOOOO excited for you! I can’t wait to try what you guys come up with. Nate and I eat from the food trucks all the time! :)

  19. Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

    SO exciting! Congrats!!!

    Good to see you also… hopefully we’ll run into each other around the mat before I fly back. When I return I will be hunting down your empanada truck!

  20. Aususacan
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 12:44 AM | Permalink

    Very impressed! I am inspired by you and loved the photo of you all jumping. So proud you are of your truck! A long shot, but would love to have some of those empanadas down here in Australia!

  21. Posted May 6, 2011 at 8:46 AM | Permalink

    This is so exciting! A million congratulations, and I can’t wait to read all about every step of your journey to truckdom. Wonderful, wonderful news, and best of luck to you.

    Go, go, little empanadas!

  22. Jessica
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 10:14 AM | Permalink

    Bummer! My family and I are going to be visiting my husband’s grandmother in Longwood (for her 99th birthday!) in mid-May — I would have loved to be one of your first customers. I’ll look for the truck next year, when we make our annual pilgrimmage south from New England… Good luck, by the way. Very exciting stuff.

  23. Posted May 8, 2011 at 1:30 PM | Permalink

    My friend and I do a lot of nonprofit work regarding food security and really want to start a local foods restaurant. After this post/video, I’m thinking we should start in a food truck and feed our food deserts while we save up enough money for a building/renovations/greenhouse, etc. Thanks for the inspiration.

  24. Posted May 8, 2011 at 3:48 PM | Permalink

    Cool! I’m so excited for you. Best of luck. (And I’ve never heard of Kickstarter… what an awesome idea! I’m headed that way now to check it out and donate!)

  25. Chris H
    Posted May 9, 2011 at 5:33 AM | Permalink

    Wow.. so cool, congrats on taking the plunge and going for it! Can’t wait to check it out when I’m in Orlando.

  26. Posted May 9, 2011 at 6:38 PM | Permalink

    So exciting! I’m really happy for you guys! Empanadas are killer because they’re finger foods, too!


  27. gabi
    Posted May 9, 2011 at 9:21 PM | Permalink

    Just wanted to thank everyone for all the positive feedback and support – be it comments, emails or contributions to the Kickstarter.
    We’re so excited about this and it’s really encouraging to see that so many of you are too!

  28. Posted May 11, 2011 at 3:18 AM | Permalink

    I don’t remember how I found your blog, but when you quit your job at the same time as me, I started checking in every now and then to see what you were up to. And I love the recipes and the photos too.

    I haven’t exactly found my calling yet, but I’m much happier than I was. I will absolutely be following your adventure with the food truck (and I loved that you shared photos from the renovating).

    Line, Norway

  29. Posted May 12, 2011 at 4:26 PM | Permalink

    Congrats & good luck! Happy to follow along on this new endeavor! Very inspiring.

  30. Posted May 15, 2011 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    Congrats! Next time I drive up to Orlando, I will eat an empanada from La Empanada :)

  31. Posted May 16, 2011 at 10:39 AM | Permalink

    Congrats! Love the food truck concept! Wish I were closer to taste some of those yummy empanadas. Best of luck!

  32. Posted May 17, 2011 at 2:30 PM | Permalink

    Congratulations!! We just moved back to the states from china and i can’t wait to partake in your contribution to street food!

  33. Posted May 17, 2011 at 3:30 PM | Permalink

    Best of luck to you and I hope that you do really well.

  34. Posted May 23, 2011 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

    Wow, congratulations! This looks like a really exciting and delicious project! If only I lived a bit closer so I could try out your empanadas!

  35. Raul C.
    Posted September 29, 2011 at 7:51 PM | Permalink

    Could you guys please come to Rollins College? I’m craving Cuban food. Bad.

  36. Posted October 5, 2011 at 9:33 PM | Permalink

    a few weeks ago we went to the truck gathering and I still cannot get the vegan sloppy joe empanadas out of my head. seriously delicious!

  37. Bruce
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 5:13 PM | Permalink

    Really liked the video. Could you tell me exactly what brand/model camera you used and which editing program. Looks great. Oh, yeah, can’t wait to see one of my favorite restaurants on the road.

  38. gabi
    Posted December 25, 2011 at 6:05 PM | Permalink

    Thanks, glad you liked the video! The video was shot by a professional videographer/friend so I’m not sure of the equipment or post software he uses.