For this farm visit, we took a trip to the south side of Indianapolis and visited with Chea Carmack who runs Little Eataly, a food truck many of you are familiar with at the Statehouse Market. It’s also one of our Invest In Your Health trucks this season, because they use so many farm fresh ingredients. Chea her husband Rob have been working for over two years to bring their dream to the streets of Indianapolis. They serve up Pasta, Panini, & Italian Street Food and is it ever good. They also use a lot of fresh fruits, vegetables and plants like chives and fennel grown on a family farm in many of their dishes. Little Eataly has some good stuff coming this fall, so be sure to check them Sept. 5, Sept. 19, Oct. 3 and Oct. 10 at the market.
Little Eataly started up like a lot of trucks right before the Super Bowl. In fact, Chea says “We had a practice lunch, then served an actual lunch on the street and then did our first Super Bowl event. No one on the truck, but me, had any food service experience. It was a huge learning curve for everyone.” Chea has ran the kitchen at a few restaurants and had a few other jobs in the food industry. They call her The Piccola Chef now and she’s responsible for the menu, while Rob handles the administration of the truck, including Little Eataly’s website and social media. Also, the couples 21-year old son works full-time on the the purple truck.
To make it even more of a family affair, the Little Eataly Farm is actually where Rob’s parents have lived for over 30 years. In addition to all of the crops, the farm also has two huge pumpkin fields.
Fresh from the farm
Before we arrived Chea was picking fresh tomatoes and basil to be used in the truck’s Caprese Salad. “We have a lot of basil,” Chea explained. “Basil loves sunshine and we’ve had plenty of that.” There are some plans to experiment with the spaghetti squash growing on the farm as well as the spinach, eggplant, turnips, mustard greens, kale, broccoli, cauliflower and lettuce.
This fall, Little Eataly plans to have Zuppa Tuscana back on the truck, featuring spicy sausage, potatoes and kale. “People ask for this soup in the summer when it’s 90 degrees outside,” Chea added. “We have to tell them it’s coming this fall.”
Also they plan to come out with Piadas, a popular Italian street food. “These are like gyros,” Chea says. “You pick the vegetable, your meat and your sauce and we roll it up in a flat bread. We probably will have a Red Pepper Aioli, a Rosemary Chicken with Roasted Squash and a Roasted Eggplant.”
For more about Little Eataly, visit www.littleeataly.com or follow them on Twitter @LittleEataly.
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