Weekend Foodie Warriors – Take 55!
Hello hello, again, Foodie Friends 🙂 Hope you’ve had a great week so far! For this edition of Foodie Adventures, allow us to introduce to you a brand new BBQ food truck in Greenville, The Snickering Coyote, and take you behind the scenes of how we made our new Lemon Cranberry cupcake recipe!
The Snickering Coyote Food Truck
When Duane and Karen visited a friend to help with a kitchen renovation project in Greenville about four years ago, they knew this was somewhere they could see themselves living. They fell in love with the area and the city vibe and decided to make it official just recently. They call this their “Best decision ever! We love it here!!” 😁
The Snickering Coyote started out of a love of barbecue and a funny name for the family’s wifi. One day, they wanted to change the name of their family internet connection, and “The Snickering Coyote” name was born! Duane and Karen started their BBQ journey by catering their own “I do” BBQ for 160 guests, to starting their own catering business afterward, where they specialized in corporate and private events. They’ve even won State prizes for their ribs in Connecticut! From this catering business, it grew into a food truck, and for four years, they ran their budding business out of New Haven, CT.
I can’t describe to you the number of times we’ve driven past New Haven, CT on the way to visit my family in Massachusetts. There is one strip of the highway near the ocean in New Haven, where anywhere from five to ten food trucks will hang out, flags flying high, selling their goodies to passersby. I can imagine that at some point, I probably drove by The Snickering Coyote on my way to visit family.
The Snickering Coyote’s menu was colorfully drawn on a Blackboard next to where they were camped out in the Morning Mist neighborhood in Simpsonville, SC.
Their most popular items, based on our observation of the couple hours we spent hanging out with them, were definitely their slider combos and something they like to call a “Coyote Dog”! This grilled hot dog, with a griddled bun, is loaded high with pulled pork and coleslaw. 🌭
It looked absolutely delicious and smelled just as good coming out of the truck and past my (masked) nose. 👃
Anything on their truck can be made gluten-free as well if you don’t put it on a bun, as everything is kept separate meat-wise. They specifically make something called a “Pulled pork parfait”, which is a layered barbecue dish in a cup, consisting of baked beans, pulled pork, and coleslaw. This is the answer to those who want all the saucy goodness of BBQ without the mess! A super-portable way to eat barbecue – in a cup! I don’t think I’ve seen anyone do that yet (feel free to correct me if I’m wrong) and it was super creative to me.
The three sliders (left to right) we tried were their pulled pork, the brisket, and their honey BBQ meatballs.
Everything was super moist and juicy, and they make their own rubs and sauces as well. In order of our favorites, we definitely loved the brisket the best, followed by the pulled pork, and the meatball as a close third.
What was really unique was their barbecue sauce. It was definitely a lot different than any sort of Southern barbecue sauces that I’ve had. By now, I have a great understanding that the Carolinas are famous for either their mustard-based or vinegar-based sauces, so I wasn’t expecting it to taste like one of those. A good frame of reference to pull from though!
I was interested to find that their barbecue sauce was very tomato-based, with notes of Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, and other secret seasonings, but still had some of the sweet and smoky notes that you associate with a traditional barbecue sauce. I really liked it, and that flavor is something that I couldn’t replicate with any other local barbecue joint in the area, which definitely helps them to stand out.
However, if I could critique anything, maybe slightly toning down the tomato and adding either a little more smokiness or a little more sweetness could make it a little more balanced (in my humble opinion).
Also, for the verdict on the corn muffin, which I made sure to grab before we left! You all know I’m not from around here, so my cornbread preference is not the drier, traditional Southern cornbread that is expected around here. So I was wicked happy to find that their corn muffins included either some creamed corn or other variation of that, which kept a lot of the moisture inside the corn muffin and made it slightly sweeter. I would pick their corn muffins over anyone else’s in the area (unless I was making them homemade, of course). Definitely high marks from me on this!! 😁🙌
We attended their first weekend in Simpsonville on Friday the 5th, and we would definitely come back!! Check out their website (here) or Facebook page (here) for more neighborhood locations where they’ll be for the remainder of early March. Then stay tuned for their official debut on March 20th at Birds Fly South from 1-4 pm at Hampton Station in Greenville, SC. This is not a truck you want to miss, so definitely check out this unique BBQ joint in the future! 😋 Tell them Pimento & Prose sent you! 💜
Recipe Testing – Lemon Cranberry Cupcakes
A lot of times when people ask me where I come up with the ideas for recipe testing, and it usually comes from two or three different places. 🤔 Typically, you either have inspiration from your culture or your family, your environment (meaning what’s fresh and local around where you live) and then you also have, I would say, more spontaneous sources of creativity and inspiration.
For me, what sparked the inspiration to make these cupcakes are two things. I absolutely love our lemon cake recipe on the blog, so coming up with new and different ways to have that cake recipe and frosting stand out is always a fun time. I also adore anything cranberry-related, as that is a big tie to my childhood and where I grew up. I remember as a kid driving past miles and miles of cranberry bogs, and going to visit Edaville Railroad, which, believe it or not, is a cranberry-themed amusement park, with a railroad ride through the cranberry bogs! 🚂
This tart berry lends itself so well to baked goods, jams, and compotes, which is what I decided to use to make for the filling of these lemon cupcakes, dotted with cranberries.
I didn’t just want to have plain frosted cupcakes though, and I remembered my grandma when I was growing up would make candied citrus peels. We use a lot of lemon zest and lemon juice in the frosting and the cake. We don’t always need as much of the zest though, and I hate for those to go to waste. This was our first attempt at making candied lemon peel, so this was a really cool experience to be able to try out a new recipe, which also had familial significance.
We first made the cupcakes, and Jamie helped to make the candied peel, while I was stirring up cranberries for the filling. I think next time we’ll make the peels a little skinnier and longer, which might help with the chewiness and texture, which is reflected in the notes I made for the recipe steps you can see in the recipe link above.
My only critique is that the holes were not big enough to fit as much filling as I would have liked. So, last weekend I ended up going out and buying myself a couple of apple corers, which will allow us to have a more consistent filling-to-cupcake ratio in the future.
My friend Kristin from Wildflower Cupcakes also said an industry trick is to wet the back end of a wooden spoon and press it into the center of a cupcake in two or three different places. This allows you to have a more consistent filling ratio so that as people bite into the cupcakes, they get filling from multiple locations instead of just the middle. I will definitely try that next time since my set of corers has not arrived yet.
My mom also got me a new cake stand for Christmas, so I was practicing my food photography shots, both aerial and head-on for these. I would love to get some decorative plates so that I have a better setup for taking more food photography and product photos in the future too. I can definitely see improvement since the last couple of times I’ve taken cupcake pictures though, so very happy with the progress I’ve made so far. 🧁
So how was your weekend, Foodie Friends? Are you excited to try out The Snickering Coyote? What’s the next food truck we need to review? Sound out in the comments below to let us know your suggestions, what dishes to make, or places we should visit next. As always, feel free to like, comment, & share 🤗