Introducing Jezebel …
I started cooking in 2009 at a tiny country hall kitchen for my monthly luncheonette and cake table. It was the most direct way to learn the palates and cravings of my new community. It was the most professionally vulnerable position I have ever been in. To take my brand of black food to a sleepy beach side community market was confronting. It was also physically no joke. The amount of work to organize, execute, and deliver top shelf eats is four days of actual labor. Making the connections with farmers, providores, and artisans was the best and easiest part. Going to see where things were growing and what small batch sorcery was going on was really inspiring. It helped me to understand what was truly possible and how far I could push the menus. It also highlighted how little understanding of American food, especially black food, there was. Through these jaunts to the country, my resolve hardened and my focus sharpened. I knew exactly how I needed to cook to showcase who I was and bring Aussies to the table. I am so very grateful for the six years of Snug Market. It truly gave me a platform to build on. It also gave me a network of entrepreneurial women that were using art to express themselves and showcase their talents. I was immediately accepted and befriended by likeminded souls and it was exactly what I needed in so many ways. As the market landscape of Tasmania shifted and evolved, so did my luncheonette service. Gratefully, I now had a customer base and outgrew my 4×4 popup gazebo and rental kitchen system. I needed my own commercial kitchen and fast!
We looked into adding onto the house, shipping container kitchens, outfitting sheds with commercial kit, or food truck. After weighing costs, locations, and dealing with the most pig-headed container salesmen I was over it. For sanity’s sake our attention turned to trucks. The food truck was built in 2018 by Jared Guc of Tasmanian Food Truck Builders. This guy is a King in my books. He listened to everything that I needed and over delivered. He gave me the commercial kitchen of my dreams. The benches are built to my height. I got the biggest, baddest gear that could go in a moving vehicle. I have capacity to feed 300 hungry folks at one time, and enough room for three additional Kitchen Pirates to jump in when needed. Having such a beautiful kitchen housed in a hot rod red shell is a joy I never knew I needed. I never had dreams of being a Motha Trucka, but now cooking on Jez is all I think about. She is aptly named. She is the partner that I have always needed. She is hard working, capable of supreme greatness, and she looks good doin’ it! I hope you get to see her in all her glory, some delicious service or one of our secret Dining Society spots!
Photography: Images 1,3 ,4: Small World Documentaries visionary, Lara Van Raay.