Get your taco fix from new home-based firm Mande Taqueria near Edzell.
A former north-east MasterChef contestant who took part in the show a year-and-a-half ago has launched his own ‘at home’ takeaway food business.
Based at Edzell Woods, 31-year-old Euan Walker who works as a student development and volunteering coordinator at Robert Gordon University, will cook up a range of tacos for those living in the local area to get their hands on.
Mande Tacqueria is a small-batch cooking business specialising in one of Mexico’s most-loved dishes and will launch on May 14 with three different tacos available to try out.
Inspired to get into the kitchen more since his debut on hit TV series MasterChef where he was eliminated Knockout Week, Euan says he has always dreamed of doing something in the food industry.
He said: “It has been something I’ve wanted to do for a while – get myself into the food and cooking industry. Because of lockdown there’s not been as many opportunities to get into established businesses and get hands-on.
“I’ve been working away for the last year and a bit to get myself around the business side of things and my wife and I have settled on opening up a weekend takeaway from our house for the moment. We want to see how things go and we have developed a concept that could be scalable if need be.
“I have always been really into Mexican cuisine, although I had a worry going into the taco market with having no connection to Mexico as I am Scottish, but it is something I have really come into with respect.”
Starting off with three different flavours of taco, Euan has focused primarily on ensuring he has something on offer for everyone, despite having a small offering.
He added: “We’re starting off with three types of tacos. Lots of friends of mine have different dietary requirements and I find tacos, when you can sort of build your own, can accommodate this.
“The entire menu is gluten-free and dairy-free. One of the tacos is vegan, the banana blossom taco, and I try and limit as many allergens out as possible so everyone can feel this is food for them.
“The cod fish taco is the same as the vegan one, but with fish. I didn’t want anything thinking the vegan option was lesser than. The final one is the pulled pork which is my personal favourite.”
Supporting local firms, Euan will use producers close to home for sourcing his ingredients from.
“I’m hopeful that I’ll be ordering a lot of my produce from the greengrocers in the area I live. There’s Turriffs of Montrose who can provide me with a range of ingredients. I live right outside of Edzell which boasts Bel’s Butchers, and there’s plenty fresh and available seafood here, too.
“It is a little more difficult to get dried chillies which grow natively in Scotland, but we have some good sources for those.
“My wife Naomi is a graphic designer by trade and she’s been handling all the branding, social media, photography and that sort of thing. I have been focusing on the health inspections, getting the business up and running and getting the processes right, even sourcing Vegware and sorting out which packaging is better for tacos.”
Customers can call to pre-order 07783615945 or call also place an order by messaging Euan on Instagram.