Who and what is Street Beet Detroit? How did you guys meet?
Street Beet [Nina Paletta and Meghan Shaw] is a plant based pop up with a focus on vegan comfort food. We met at an old job [One Eyed Bettys].
Tell me about your first pop-up.
We started out cooking together inside Blue Velvet Vintage, a shop in Eastern Market. I think our menu was something like tacos, a salad, and an ice cream sandwich. The space is an old loft turned store, so it was really DIY.
Where can people reliably find Street Beet pop-ups? Do you guys have a favorite venue?
We pop-up monthly at PJ’s Lagerhouse where we do our Vegan Taco Hell. All of our other events can be found on our Facebook page or Instagram @streetbeetdetroit.
What’s the best meal you’ve ever made for yourself and the best meal that you’ve made for a Street Beet pop-up?
Nina - I’m partial to our fake chicken and waffles variations we’ve been doing lately. The best meal I’ve ever made for myself? Tough question.
Meghan - I think I have to agree with the fake chicken except I’m more salty, so I’m going to have to say...the Kentucky Fake Chicken Bowls or the Sleezy Gordita Crunch because I’m a sucker for Taco Bell. The best meal I’ve ever made myself would probably have to be the first time we made walnut “meat” for tacos.
What was a typical dinner like when you were growing up?
Nina - My mom had around 8 home cooked dishes she would rotate through. However, we ate an unsettling amount of processed boxed/frozen “meals” on the regular.
Meghan - My mom always tried to cook for us, I specifically remember a lot of chicken & dumplings but my favorite was weirdly tuna casserole as a kid.
Who is the first person that you cooked for in a meaningful way?
Nina- I used to bake cake for my dad when I was hardly tall enough to reach the countertop.
Meghan- I began cooking for my dad shortly after my parents split up & my dad got his own apartment I clipped recipes out of magazines and did my best to recreate them.
What has your relationship been with food throughout your life? Were there any turning points or memorable moments where the relationship changed?
Nina - I’d say my turning point was when I was 19. I started to care a lot about what I was putting into my body in general and after some heavy research, I decided to give up meat. Throughout most of my younger years I pretty much ate whatever I wanted.
Meghan - My mom always tried to be as strict as possible about us eating healthy - this definitely stuck with me growing up & as I got older I strayed away from meat. Once I started working in restaurants was when I really gained full interest in cooking and creating food that I was proud of. I was vegetarian when I was introduced to veganism & then everything from there on out became a challenge to me - I thought you could make anything without dairy or animal products easily & better - so that’s what I did.
What’s your all time favorite food?
What’s a typical day for you (food wise) when you’re in Detroit?
Smoothie from Juice Joint in the morning & TAKOI by night.
What advice would you give to someone that’s looking to start a vegan lifestyle?
Become best friends with protein shakes and nutritional yeast, but most importantly TAKE YOUR VITAMINS. It takes a little research and dedication, but once you’re properly supplementing and you can learn to curb your cravings it gets much easier.
How do you recharge? When/where do you feel the most at peace?
We started going to Metaphysica recently and it has been incredibly relaxing - the sauna is the best reset button.
What’s your favorite thing to cook when you’re trying to destress?
Soup - it’s a slow & soothing process.
Are you listening to anything while you cook? Podcast? Favorite album?
Lately we have been listening to podcasts, specifically Serial or Sword & Scale. Other than that, we listen to whatever mix Nina plays - but honestly, we have listened to a lot of Migos while cooking.
What can we expect to see next on a Street Beet menu?
Our menus are constantly evolving, but one thing we’re dying to recreate is mozzarella sticks. Until then, we have a Stuffed Crust Pizza on our upcoming Combination Pizza Butt & Taco Hell menu [Sunday, December 16th @ POP + Offworld]
What’s your next big endeavor?
We definitely want our own permanent space in Detroit, but we are currently in the process of developing a menu for a bowling alley opening in Royal Oak early next year.
Do you have your eye on anything on our website? Let us know what's on your wishlist from Detroit Rose and why?
Nina- The Plum Wine oil, because it seems like a jack of all trades. I have combination skin and deal with being too oily & dry in the Winter. Also the Moon Mist sounds so refreshing and calming.
Meghan - The Aphrodite face oil!!