Prepping and ‘Repping Food in Trenton’ kicked off with some cajun spice over the weekend at The Big Easy of Trenton.
Bernard McMullen, Coordinator of Taste Trenton and leader of the Prepping and ‘Repping Food Campaign, explained this is an extension of Taste Trenton, a weekend adventure of Trenton restaurants where they offer smaller plates to customers who participate.
“It is sort of an extension of that,” McMullen said. “I’m not interested in dragging people in a three-hour period from restaurant to restaurant. I said let’s just do one a month, and you know, where the restaurant offers a prefix offering, and people can sign up, and we’ll have the chef pop out and say a few words about why they’re in Trenton or what they’re doing today and what their hope is.”
Part of the allure is that guests with Prepping and ‘Repping Food in Trenton get plates that aren’t generally offered on the menu. At The Big Easy, they served up salmon jambalaya with saffron rice, a choice of cabbage or collards, with a beverage and desert.
Jocelyn Francis-White explained that they usually serve the jambalaya with shrimp instead of serving it with salmon. “(McMullen) and his guests enjoyed themselves immensely,” Francis-White said. “And it was interesting. Olugbala, who is our executive chef, switched up; he didn’t put shrimp in it. He put salmon because I’m allergic to shrimp. So he wanted me to be able to sample it. And they loved it. (The guests) said maybe it should always have salmon instead of shrimp.“
Guests were treated to a meal and a story about the restaurant Francis-White and the Executive Chef Olugbala Sababu. Francis-White explained that she opened Big Easy in 2017, moving it across the Street to the 111 S Warren St address where the restaurant is now.
“We opened up in 2017, and I don’t have a background in the food service industry or the restaurant business. I’m a retired educator. So it’s been an intense learning curve,” said Francis-White.
McMullen explained that this is what he hoped to do, expand people’s knowledge of Trenton restaurants. “Here are some of the great things that have happened or some of the challenges. Here is an inside view of what might be going on in a restaurant in Trenton,” McMullen said.
Next month McMullen and the group are headed over to one of Trenton’s newest restaurants that is quickly becoming a staple in Downtown Trenton, Skil-Lit Cafe.