Abracadabra will be Senegal’s first vegetarian food truck, creating a fusion of cultures and flavors featuring local ingredients in international cuisine. And we’ve got the scoop, here on Dakar Eats in this interview with Kap.
Thanks for talking with us. So why did you decide to start a food truck?
For selfish and altruistic reasons! After twelve years in Senegal, I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve had a delicious, ‘complete’ vegetarian meal made from local ingredients in a restaurant. That is, we want some well-thought-out vegetarian and vegan meal options madefrom the freshest ingredients, as locally as possible.
We also want to support local agriculture and food artisans and celebrate the plethora of amazing Senegalese ingredients, from mangos to moringa, from soow to soursop. We also believe that food is culture, and we want to explore a Senegal beyond thieboudienne, and what it means to combine local ingredients that have ancient histories with modern international cuisine.
That sounds great. Who are the key players?
Well, we’re hoping that many of them are reading this interview right now! While the core team is us (a German-American couple) and a few international and local friends, we’re looking to partner and collaborate with many producers and food artisans in and around Dakar. We also want to involve artists and musicians to show off the culture behind the food.
So let’s talk food. What types of food will you be offering?
We’ll serve up vibrant, adventurous dishes, including curries, soups, salads, noodle dishes and smoothies, all made of mostly local ingredients. We’ll strive to offer ‘complete’ meals, that is, well thought-out in terms of nutrients. Since we have a serious sweet tooth, we can’t say we’re all healthy, but we’re 100% ‘pure’ goodness! We also want to use as many “added value” products on the truck, supporting local people making oils, jams, cheeses, breads, etc.
Will you start in a specific location and then branch out or move around from the start?
We’ll be mobile from the start. Roulez-Roulez! We have a general idea of which neighborhoods and locations we want to start in, though we’re going to let people vote in case they want us to add their spot to our lunch routes! Our top 5 locations right now are: Les Almadies, N’gor, Point E, Fann and Plateau. We’ve got some people asking for Yoff already, so we’ll consider that, too!
People can already direct our compass by donating to our crowdfunding campaign. We offer two perk levels which allow people to choose where we park!
We’ll also show up at special evening and weekend events around the city, and we’re hoping to offer pre-order school lunches for Jean Mermoz and ISD, and other schools if enough people pre-order.
When can we hope to see you launch?
It all depends on how long it takes us to raise the capital. We’re aiming for April 2016, but, you’ll see us set up around town offering tastings before much earlier than that! Of course, we’d love to start sooner if we get funded quickly.
So how can we help?
Right now, we need people to show their interest and support by donating to our crowdfunding campaign – which is an all-or-nothing deal. Either we raise the funds and launch or we don’t.
Essentially, by funding this venture you’ll be pre-ordering meals, with some other fun perks in there, too.
We’ve also designed perks for people who don’t live in Senegal and for businesses interested in sponsorship, e.g. in exchange for their logo on our truck. We also would love it if people already came to us with menu requests, contacts for sponsorship and partners — any idea really! We also appreciate any help getting media coverage.
And lastly, we want to generate a lot of good vibes and excitement around the Abracadabra Truck, so please pass the word – both to your friends & family here,and abroad!
How should interested partners and suppliers contact you?
We’re all sorts of wired up. You can contact us on Facebook or Twitter, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or just call us! Jurgen’s number is 78 128 1254 and mine is 78 125 1908.
Thanks so much, Kap! I am very excited about this venture and I know you guys will make some Dakar Eats readers very happy. Looking forward to hearing more from you soon!