Mobile vegan food offered in the Comox Valley

They prepare and serve everything from poutine to burgers.

But with a definite twist.

The Bandwagon food truck is meat-free, corn-free, peanut-free, dairy-free and mostly gluten-free.

Elizabeth and Trevor Burdock, of Merville, started operating their vegan food truck recently at one of the city-licensed spots down at the Air Park on Mansfield Drive (near the Rotary SkyPark children’s play area).

They’re both committed vegans, ever since Trevor came down with infectious colitis after eating some bad meat.

He lost 40 pounds and started experimenting with his diet to get some relief.

Then he was in an accident and broke both his femurs. He was in the hospital six months, and in a wheelchair for a year. That meant a lot of television-watching, especially programs and documentaries on food.

“I already was a vegetarian,” said Elizabeth. “He hated the food.”

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and Canada opened their eyes to what was possible with vegan food.

They sampled dishes in a variety of vegan restaurants along the way.

“It helped inspire us to create our own,” Elizabeth said.

They’ve spent the past two years perfecting their menu: “Creating North American favourites in a more sustainable and cruelty-free environment.”

Cooking is a new venture for the couple: Elizabeth is the mother of two, and a tattoo artist at the Black Rose tattoo studio in downtown Courtenay; Trevor is a camera operator in the film industry.

They still fit in this work part-time around their new food truck.

The truck was purchased second hand and then remade to their specifications by Lantzille company Jemco Food Equipment Service.

The couple try to buy everything they need locally. Produce will be coming from Merville Organics. They use a hot sauce, “Ammo Box”, made by a Valley firm.

Speaking of sauces, that’s where the couple really wants to focus in the coming years.

They’re proud of their Russian Dressing, Ranch Dip, Burger Sauce and Chipotle Mayo, all of which are vegan and gluten free.

Elizabeth hopes to one day bottle these creations and sell them in Island grocery stores. That’s their five-year plan.

For now, they’ve booked the food truck spot with the city through to the end of July. They’ll also be at the new Friday Night Market starting in July in downtown Courtenay, and a few special events such as the Gabriola music festival, and a VIP event at Best Buy the end of this month.

The Bandwagon’s offerings have so far been getting rave reviews on their facebook page.

Everything is $10 or under and includes a “crispy chicken burger” (made from seitan), a “chicken” ranch wrap, a Reuben sandwich made with seitan and sauerkraut, cauliflower “wings”, poutine made with Daiya cheese substitute and gluten-free gravy (chickpea and rice flour, oil, herbs and spices).

They hope to also add more gluten-free “specials”.

“We really do want feedback from the community,” said Elizabeth.

The Bandwagon food truck is open 3-8 pm on Thursdays and Fridays, and 12-5 pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

For more information, and to double-check opening times (which can occasionally change), please go to www.facebook.com/thebandwagonfoodtruck/

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