Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne once said if someone really likes potatoes, they must be a pretty decent person.
Meet Rebecca Roth, owner of The Wandering Root, a new food truck that specializes in baked potatoes.
“The potato is a beautiful and yummy vessel. There’s so much you can put on it,” she said.
Her menu is proof of the starchy tuber’s versatility. There’s the opa potato, which is topped with tzatziki, artichokes, olives, sun dried tomato, feta and lemon. Or the hipster potato with cranberries, walnuts, goat cheese, arugula, caramelized onions and glory bowl dressing.
“People always put down potatoes, but they’re delicious,” she said.
The vegetable has an important place in the kitchen as potatoes are rich in vitamin C, potassium, and fiber. Agriculturally, the plant is easy to grow and provides more nutritious food faster on less land than any other food crop in almost any habitat.
The potato is native to the Americas and was brought to Europe in the 16th century. Some researchers assert the vegetable helped end famines across the continent. Some historians go even further and argue the introduction of the potato fueled a handful of European nations to assert dominion over most of the world.
In other worlds, the lowly potato fueled empires. There are now over 5,000 different varieties of the tuber.
Roth said her business has been in the works for several years. She loves to cook and knew she wanted to work for herself. Roth settled on a food truck because it’s small, contained and mobile. If she doesn’t like where she’s parked, she can drive away and set up elsewhere. Eventually, she would like to sell at festivals.
Roth tested her recipes and perfected her menu through several potato tasting parties, asking friends how much they would pay, how filling an item is and how spicy it was.
On top of several potato dishes, she also offers chili and soup. All of her items are gluten free.
Her truck was custom made and she picked it up this summer in Ontario. It was her first time driving a trailer.
“I now have 4,000 km of practice,” she laughed.
As COVID-19 surges, forcing businesses to close or change services, it might not seem an optimal time to start a new business. Regardless, Roth said she has no expectations and just wants to start feeding people.
“COVID won’t make me give up my business dreams and put my life on hold.”
Her food truck is currently open Thursday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.. It’s located at the rest stop west of the Columbia River bridge along Highway 1.
Roth said she hopes to soon relocate onto the property of Revelstoke Trading Post, but is awaiting city licensing.
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