This week, On the Line is featuring Chef Mariela Rebollo of the mobile tapas bar Barcelona on the Go. If you missed yesterday's questions, you can find them here. Tomorrow, Chef Mariela gives us a recipe for octopus cooked with wine and potatoes.
OC Weekly: What would you like to see less of in Orange County from a culinary standpoint?
Mariela Rebollo: Fewer chains.
OCW: What's your favorite cookbook?
MR: Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
OCW: What show would you pitch to the Food Network?
MR: Cooking Principles.
OCW: Weirdest thing you've ever eaten:
OCW: You're making an omelet. What's in it?
MR: Simple: butter, eggs, Irish white cheddar, caramelized onions, and cremini mushrooms.
OCW: What's your favorite place to buy ingredients?
MR: For home, the farmers' market, Whole Foods, and TJ's. For BOTG, La Española for their Spanish delicacies and H-Mart for their fresh seafood.
OCW: You're at the market. What do you buy two of?
OCW: Weirdest customer request:
MR: Starch overload.
OCW: What's your favorite OC restaurant (or restaurants)?
MR: Break of Dawn and Wasa.
OCW: What's the hardest lesson you've learned?
MR: Your own business takes a lot of work.[
OCW: What would be your last meal on Earth?
OCW: Who's your hero, culinary or otherwise?
MR: My dad and grandfather.
OCW: What cuisine that you are unfamiliar with would you want to learn more about and why?
MR: Indian, for its complexity and variety.
OCW: What's your favorite thing about Barcelona?
MR: Where do I start…its architecture, vive, people, and of course, food.
OCW: You'd make a killing with a serious Spanish restaurant in an underserved area. Why a truck?
MR: Because it's new a concept and an opportunity to expand people's palates to something new without breaking the bank.
OCW: You'll be at Hi-Time in Costa Mesa on Friday. Any wine recommendations to accompany your food?
MR: Not a wine connoisseur, but a good rule of thumb is to pair wines and food by region. For example, an Albariño would go great with a Galician-style octopus [recipe to follow on Thursday].
OCW: OC isn't Portland, for sure, but are there cities that are friendlier to food trucks than others?
MR: Angelenos are light years ahead. They are much more likely to eat frequently from gourmet food trucks than OC residents.
OCW: What's your favorite food truck besides your own?
MR: Spencer On The Go, French takeaway in San Francisco.
OCW: If you could correct just one piece of misinformation people have about food trucks, what would it be?
MR: They are cleaner than many restaurants that I've worked in.
OCW: Have you ever had Alebrije's taco acorazado (on Cubbon just west of Main in Santa Ana)? What did you think?
MR: Not yet, but I've heard great things about it.