[Interview] Food Truck Road Trip–A Cookbook Author Philip Shen | FTE Episode 084

food truck road trip If you ever wanted to get a recipe book published, this week’s interview is for you. We have one of the co-author’s of the Food Truck Road Trip–A Cookbook, Philip Shen with us to discuss the process of writing a book, getting a publishing deal and taking one epic cross country road trip.

Before Shen and wife + co-author Kim Pham were a published authors, they started a food blog called Behind the Food Carts that spotlighted the local food scene in Portland. They began covering the food scene in 2011 shortly after moving to Portland from the Los Angeles area.  It did not take long for the blog to get noticed by the industry press like Saveur Magazine, USA Today, and Eater. Eventually, Page Street Publishing approached Philip and Kim to see if they would be interested in writing a book based on the concept of their blog. Philip and Kim accepted the offer got busy creating their cookbook.

In addition to learning about the process of writing a cookbook, you’ll also get to learn about the epic road trip that Philip and Kim went on to get photos and recipes from food trucks located on both sides of the United States. In addition to the interesting food truck owners and characters they met along they way, the husband and wife team also leveraged crowdfunding to help fund the trip. Listen to the full journey by listening to the podcast. Happy New Year!

Quotes From the Show

Every weekend we would go out to different food carts in Portland and try out the food. We were kind of floored immediately by how good the food was, how affordable it was, but what interested us most was these crazy people behind the scenes. – Philip Shen describing his first experience with food carts in Portland. 

What You’ll Learn

  • What inspired Phil and Kim to start their blog Behind the Food Carts
  • How to get a publishing deal for a cookbook
  • An overview of what the process is like to write a book with help from a publisher
  • What it’s like to be a published author and the benefits that come with it.
  • How you can use crowdfunding to help pay for a cross country road trip
  • Learn about some of the food truck operators they met along the way.

Mentioned in the Show

Behind the Food Carts – This is the food blog that started it all for Philip Shen and Kim Pham. Read posts and view photos of their past adventures in Portland to more recent trips to more “exotic locations” such as Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and Singapore.

Food Truck Road Trip–A Cookbook – More than 100 recipes from food carts and trucks and compiled into this book. Beautiful photos go along with each recipe and there’s a lengthy description of each food cart associated with each recipe. Really well done and unique cookbook. Available on Amazon.com and pretty much anywhere else you might want to buy a book. 

Page Street Publishing – The publisher of the Food Truck Road Trip–A Cookbook. Other titles from the publisher include Eat More Desert, Grill to Perfection, and The Paleo Foodie Cookbook.

About Support Staff

Brett Lindenberg is the founder of Food Truck Empire and Food Empire Pro. Brett's mission is help to entrepreneurs start and grow profitable food businesses. Since 2014, Brett has interviewed over 100 entrepreneurs on the Food Empire Pro podcast and written hundreds of blog posts on all aspects of food business. Brett has been quoted in media outlets like Entrepreneur Magazine, CNBC, and The Washington Post.