Empanadas Aqui brings Hispanic food to Cincinnati streets

After tossing around the idea of a food truck at a family gathering, husband-and-wife team Brett and Dadni Johnson and Brett’s aunt, Pat Fettig, joined Bad Girl Ventures. They won the competition, and started serving up empanadas on their food truck, Empanadas Aqui, in June.
“We decided on empanadas because we wanted to bring them to Cincinnati,” Fettig says.
Dadni, who is from Caracas, comes up with the recipes; Brett worked for Dewey’s Pizza for two years, and was on the management track. And although Fettig doesn’t have a culinary background, she says she's the one who cooks for family events.
Empanadas Aqui’s rotating menu features a few staples, including the signature Bad Girl, which is shredded chicken, sautéed onions, peppers, cheese and a house blend of seasoning; and the Popeye, which has spinach inside. Dessert options include the Emporeo, which has crushed Oreos and cream cheese topped with a sweet glaze, and a guava and cream cheese filled empanada.
Empanadas Aqui will be at the City Flea this month and next, as well as the Midwest Food Truck Show and the Hispanic Festival at the Hamilton County Fairgrounds. Next year, they want to be at LumenoCity and the Taste of Cincinnati.
The truck is also available for private parties, with a wider offering of food items.
“We hope to bring something different to the city,” Fettig says. “There are almost 10,000 Hispanics in the area, and we’re bringing a familiar food to them, as well as introducing other people to something new.”
Follow Empanadas Aqui on Facebook and Twitter @empanadasaqui.

Read more articles by Caitlin Koenig.

Caitlin Koenig is a Cincinnati transplant and 2012 grad of the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri. She's the department editor for Soapbox Media and currently lives in Northside with her husband, Andrew, and their three furry children. Follow Caitlin on Twitter at @caite_13.