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Vegas street chef says he loves his 'crazy hot' food truck, shares how he stays cool during summer

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Posted at 9:11 PM, Jul 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-27 02:45:38-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Working outside in Las Vegas's extreme summer heat could be very uncomfortable, especially if you're a food truck cook.

It's already a steamy job working a grill, now imagine cooking inside one.

Street chef Brandon Penny owns Ink Kitchen. He admits the weather makes his job a little harder, often having to wipe the sweat away.

Regardless, Penny loves his food truck even on the hottest, driest days.

“Right here, literally is where [you’re going to] get 300 degrees. This is where all the sweating goes down," says Penny as he touches to his oven.

Ink Kitchen usually sells food near Fremont Street and Eastern Avenue, Thursday through Monday.

The menu features pasta and/or rice combined with a touch of sea food, veggies or various meats.

"I call it the hibachi grill because of the style food I make. I diffuse the Japanese Korean creole together."

Penny says working that grill is "crazy hot" but he's okay with braving the triple digit forecasts.

"I don't mind taking the heat to cook. If it's [going to] make y'all happy I’m okay with it," Penny says.

He shared with 13 Action News that his “old school" food truck is in the process of getting a makeover; there are plans to add a modern ventilated air conditioning system — mainly to keep his employees cool— and get rid of an old swamp cooler unit.

Penny does not spend all day inside his food truck, he prepares most of his food in a real kitchen. It helps with having to spend less time in a limited, sweltering space.

"Honestly, we've had the thermometer that says it's about 120-150 degrees inside the truck at times," Penny says.

You may be wondering what Penny does to keep cool?

He admits he can’t always blast the current air unit inside his food truck because it messes with the oven and the food. Instead, he says he deals with the heat one bandanna and many t-shirts at a time.

“I have some bandannas, I keep a couple of t-shirts to switch in and out of shirts."

Besides that, he often takes breaks and drops some cold-iced water over his body.

Penny says the weather is “so hot” in Las Vegas but it’s not as strong as his love for cooking.