When a guy from Iowa…ends up in a Venezuelan food truck making arepas in Arizona…it begs the question why?
“I’ve asked myself the same thing. 20 years ago — would I have thought that I’d be married to a Venezuelan, making arepas in a food truck in Arizona being from Iowa? No I couldn’t have. But I’m so happy that fate has brought me to this point… and I guess it’s blind luck,” said Cameron Everett, owner of Arepas Soundtracks Food Truck.
I caught with Cameron and his wife Martha outside of Irene’s Tap Room in Phoenix.
Cameron met Martha — who was born and raised in Venezuela — about 3 years ago — and they instantly hit it off. Cameron says the way to his heart was his definitely his stomach.
“Yes in a big way,” said Cameron with a smile.
Cameron says his wife introduced him to the famous Venezualen arepa and he couldn’t stop eating them.
“I ate 5 of them. They weren’t as big as we make them. But I literally at 5 of them. The ones she made me were like hotdogs. So I went home and googled Arepas and I would have had to drive to Miami to get one,” said Cameron.
So with his new found loves Martha and Arepas…Cameron had a plan. Open up a food truck where they were living in Alabama — then eventually move to Arizona — where his Mom is retired. In October of 2018 they made it happen.
But before we get any further…I had to figure out how did the name come about?
” I associated food, drink and music and they all go hand in hand. It’s always a trifecta of a good time — so I thought well, I can’t pronounce some of our arepas on the menu…so we’ll name them after a song and so we’re associating something recognizable to the food. And I’ll help out other gringos like myself,” said Cameron with a chuckle.
So now you know the story of how Cameron and Martha made it the Copper state….now…let’s figure out what exactly is an Arepa?
“It’s a gluten free, dairy free corn cake. You cut a pita pocket essentially — like a coin purse — then you put delicious fillings inside that are relatively simple,” said Cameron.
You heard right! A gluten free, dairy free, pocket full of deliciousness. The arepa has been a staple of Venezuelan culture for ions.
“This is an Arepa, it’s white corn meal with salt and water. We mix it and roll it. Then we make them into circles and fry them for 7 minutes,” said Martha.
The arepa I ate, called the KING is named after Elvis Presley. It’s filled with awesome ingredients including: sweet plantains, mozzarella cheese, black beans…and best of all melt in your mouth shredded beef — it’s cooked for 12 hours with orange and red bell peppers, sweet onions and garlic sauce.
The taste….well it’s pretty awesome.
Up next I gave the Pork and Cheese if you please a try.
“The Pork and Cheese if you please. Pork tenderloin, cooked smothered in fresh rosemary, garlic salt and pepper for 12 hours, fat is removed then immediately refrigerated then it’s cooked on the flattop. Put in the Arepa and it’s put into the Wisconsin cheddar cheese,” said Cameron.
If that’s not enough —yes there’s desert — it’s called the quesillo. It’s the Venezuelan version of flan. It’s a gluten free desert, and it’s made with condensed and powdered milk and eggs. Sweet corn then it’s baked in a double boiler, it’s brown sugar custard cake.
So if you’re looking for a taste of Venezuela in Arizona…look no further than the Arepa Soundtracks Food Truck…playing the sweet sounds of great food.
“What’s awesome is evey time we’ve been somewhere we’ve been asked back. So give us a try. We can cater your party, wedding or corporate event. Whatever you need,” said Cameron. Make sure you give them a call at 480-388-2122.