A Culture of Food on Wheels
Barbados has had a culture of travelling kitchens and food vans for many years. Long before tourism became an industry in Barbados, cooks carried meals to employees on the job and to homes, cricket fields and places where people gathered. Home cooking predated sandwich boxes and Barbadians (Bajans) have all the time enjoyed the arrival of the food van with hot plates of delicious home-cooked ‘Peas ‘n Rice’ and Macaroni Pie.
Street Food – 2.5 Billion Served
Today, food vans are a very important a part of the worldwide street food industry, which serves an estimated 2.5 billion people on daily basis. There are food trucks with yacht-style compact kitchens, portable food booths, canteens on wheels and food carts. The latter come to you on bikes, by foot and maybe, as within the old days, by donkey cart.
All Sizes & Types from Carts to Trucks
They vary in size from small to large vans and converted trucks, storing and serving food wherever they’ll. Some serve packaged foods, confectioneries and home-baked breads and sandwiches.
Others offer hot meals from buffet-style Bain Marie pans. Probably the most advanced are cooking machines with ovens, grills, fridges and the whole lot else including the kitchen sink.
Pop-up Food Island Wide
The fair varies from home-cooked pies to gourmet cuisine to Jamaican Jerk Chicken. Today, food vans and kitchens on wheels serve tourists and locals on street corners, beaches and parks throughout Barbados. Most vans have schedules and are licensed to sell from certain locations.
Some appear to operate by instinct, going where they need once they want. That is particularly true of the icicle-bicycle vendor along with his icebox bike, able to stop wherever there are individuals who might need a snow-cone or cool drink.
Fresh Healthful Bajan Food
Van Food is a few of the perfect Bajan food you will discover anywhere. It’s healthful, fresh food cooked with flair, love and personality. The chefs are up early before the sun rises to prepare for the day. They prepare all varieties of Bajan delights including Rice and Peas, Veggie Burgers, Rotis, Patties, Fish and Meats. Fried Fish, Chicken, Lamb, Pudding & Souse and Macaroni Pie are crowd-pleasers.
Food for Love & Love for Food!
The van at Accra Beach normally has a line up of loyal customers, each tourists and locals who love the banter as much because the food. They love the love that’s served with the food. “What you wish, my love?” and “You’re welcome, my darling!” are dished out freely with every serving!
Ingenuity Makes the Day
Barbadians are ingenious! Give them a dilapidated old Truck and they’re going to make it into something smart and useful. They made the famous Barbados Vintage Bus from a flatbed lorry. All of the kitchens on wheels are made locally from converted trucks or flatbed frames. The #1 Bajan Old Time Bus was a remarkable success that led to Barbados manufacturing buses prefer it for other islands. The Jamaica Grill was one other local production, as was the Fed By Nature canteen and a number of other others prefer it.
The vans are sometimes home-built with local craftspeople outfitting the van with storage, iceboxes, hot plates and in some cases generators. Food Vans don’t normally require plumbing and electricity. That’s something that requires expert advice and a high level of skilled work – of the extent you will note within the Barbados Kitchen Trucks. Vans makeovers, by comparison are mostly a handyman’s job.
Licensing, Health & Safety
All food vendors, street merchants, vans and trucks need to be inspected, approved and licensed by the authorities before they go on the road. The present licenses will define where they’re allowed to operate. They’re inspected often by the heath authorities and shall be shut down immediately in the event that they fail to keep up heath standards.
Location, Contacts & Timelines
Contacts for Featured Gourmets on Wheels
- Jackos Food Stop – Victor Headley
- Accra Beach Soul Food Van – 248-7431
- Sips Smoothies – 262-9109 https://instagram.com/sipssmoothiebar
- Fed By Nature – Rendezvous (Gas Station) 263-9114
- Jamaica Grill – Pebbles Beach (Wed-Fri 11am-6pm & Sat-Sun 10am-5pm) – Mark Dates
- Mr. Delicious – Miami Beach
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