BEMIDJI — A mother-daughter trio from Bemidji is giving America a taste of gourmet Midwestern comfort food with a hockey-themed twist in the season premiere of Food Network’s “The Great Food Truck Race: Holiday Hustle” on Wednesday, Nov. 27.
Former culinary student Annika Johnson, backed by mother Sheila and older sister Michaela, will compete in an “ultimate holiday showdown” throughout New England for the chance to win a $50,000 grand prize.
“I had watched the show a lot in past seasons and there wasn’t anything quite like (Midwestern and Minnesotan cuisine),” Annika, who also has experience as a cook for Concordia Language Villages, said. “I know the cuisine in this area is a lot different than on either of the coasts, so I thought it would be really fun to show that to the rest of the country.”
While competing with four other food truck teams and adapting to various challenges, the Johnsons will prepare and sell menu items out of their Slapshot Food Truck, a name they chose as an “ode to hockey” and their love of the sport’s concessions.
Each week the food truck that makes the least profit will be eliminated and sent home “with coal in their stockings” while the remaining teams continue on to the next city, a Food Network press release said.
From barbecue pulled pork mac and cheese to specialty s’mores hot chocolate, hearty yet flavorful menu items such as these are what viewers should expect to see from the Slapshot team.
“It’s what we grew up eating and what I really enjoy cooking,” Annika said. “It’s that comfort food we’ve known our whole lives.”