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Food Truck Life in The Bahamas!

Location: Long Island, Bahamas

Fun Fact: Shan's Kitchen & Catering is the first food truck in Long Island, Bahamas!

Chef Shan joined The Food Truck University about a month ago, and she is our second international member! Considering I've never connected with a food truck owner in the Caribbean, I couldn't wait to get to know her for myself and share her story!

Chef Shan! Tell us your story!

Let's see. Where do I start? I’ve been cooking for a total of 19 years. I started in restaurants, and made my way into private homes. I've also had the pleasure of traveling with a few of my clients as their private chef.

I love it! So, how did you get into the food truck industry?

The pandemic drove me to getting a food truck. I was cooking family meals during COVID. Money was tight! I'd make big pans of lasagna, shepherds pie, pot pie, etc. and sell it to families. I was in Nassau during this time. Then I moved to Long Island, Bahamas to run a restaurant. I couldn’t afford to pay rent for the restaurant, plus pay rent for the home I was living in, plus inventory, and start a food truck. So, I had to shift gears.

Tell me about your menu. What's your signature dish? I don’t have a signature dish, but there are two things on my menu that are my best sellers– Honey Sriracha Wings and Shan’s Ultimate Burger, which has caramelized onions, bacon, and smoked gouda cheese. I wanted to create a variety. I wanted to bring in “good” fast food-- that’s not really fast food. My menu changes daily. I have over 300 customers on WhatsApp (when customers come to the truck, I ask them if they'd like to be on my text list). I post daily in my WhatsApp group, and I announce the menu options for the day.

What are the highs and lows of operating a food truck in Long Island, Bahamas? The overhead cost is low, and there is no need for the permits that are needed in Nassau, Bahamas. So it’s cheaper for me. I don’t have to pay rent for my space.

What’s one thing you wish you would’ve known before starting your food truck? The slow days, plus the extra work — packing up and the extra prep that is needed. I do everything in the house because there is more space, and I'm constantly moving around. When I was in the restaurant, I had space for everything. My food truck is a "one a man band". I'm constantly marketing, answering phones, cleaning…..everything falls on me. This is the part that you don’t see. I appreciate your sharing your story. Before we go, what would you like people to know most about your food truck? It's a place where you can get good, clean, fun, fresh food.. Plus I’m a fun person!

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