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Curry on a cart comes to Eagle County

Caramie Schnell
cschnell@vaildaily.com
VAIL CO, Colorado
HL Curry cart 1 KA 6-9-11
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Food carts and ethnic food – two things that are pretty hard to come by in Eagle County. Food carts and trucks are ubiquitous in cities across the country, crowding the streets everywhere from New York to San Francisco, but they’re a rare sight locally.

Enter Jordan Wein, owner of Colorado Curry food cart. Nearly every day for the past few weeks Wein and his cart have been stationed at Freedom Park in Edwards, under a big blue-and-white striped umbrella. The cart is usually parked in front of the playground equipment, sandwiched between the soccer fields and the dog park. Starting this Saturday, Colorado Curry will be serving food at the Minturn Farmer’s Market as well.

“I think it’s awesome,” said Minturn resident Zach Mahone, who is one of 31 fans of Colorado Curry on Facebook. “We don’t see enough of that food cart trend, and ethnic food is another thing lacking in the valley.”

And ethnic food you’ll find. There’s tandori chicken, Morrocan lamb and grilled paneer cheese folds, each between $7 and $8, as well as cous cous salad ($3) and hummus and naan bread ($4).

“I’ve been getting terrific feedback,” Wein said on a sunny day last week, while he was busy cooking the chicken for the chicken tandori fold and serving up grilled sweet corn. “One, it’s ethnic food. And the health aspect is popular, too. I’m using high-quality ingredients and trying to do it as fresh as possible. I got a thumbs up yesterday from a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old.”

Most items on the menu are homemade. Take for instance the hummus. Wein soaks dry chickpeas overnight and makes the thick, creamy dip simply –using high-quality extra-virgin Calolea olive oil from Sacramento, smoked paprika, garlic and parsley. At the Minturn Farmer’s Market, he’ll sell gourmet olives, as well as the full line of gourmet olive oils and vinegars from Calolea, along with his Middle Eastern specialties.

He marinates the chicken for his folds in yogurt, spices and lemon juice overnight. Wein piles the tender meat and a helping of curried potatoes on grilled naan bread and tops the folded sandwich with diced red onions, shredded romaine lettuce and feta cheese. The final touch is a tangy yogurt sauce.

“I take thick yogurt and blend it with goat cheese to make a super healthy alternative to sour cream,” Wein said.

Everything is grilled to order, which means you can get the lamb in the Moroccan lamb fold medium rare or well done, depending on your preference.

“Most carts don’t do that,” Wein said.

There’s also a few items on the menu that have proved popular with the large hispanic population that crowds the soccer fields at Freedom Park each Sunday for La Liga, a competitive soccer league that brings a few hundred people to the fields each weekend: all-beef sliders ($3 each or two for $5), chips and queso cheese ($3) and Mexican-style grilled corn with butter, sea salt, ground pepper and smoked paprika ($2). For dessert there’s frozen chocolate-dipped bananas ($3 for a whole, $2 for a half).

If none of those offerings appeal, the Ice Cream Lady –aka Carrie Zovluck – is parked nearby with her ice cream truck, a recognizable fixture around town for more than a decade now, and “The Hot Dog Man,” James Zovluck, has a cart where he sells hot dogs, making the area a food cart/truck trifecta.

“I just want people to know there’s food at Freedom Park, along with a lot of family fun,” Wein said, gesturing towards the playground.

High Life Editor Caramie Schnell can be reached at 970-748-2984 or cschnell@vaildaily.com.


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