by Susan Cohen
Goose Creek resident Jessie Stament is an Air Force veteran who served as an in-flight refueler for six years. He refueled planes so they could complete their missions, and with his ReFueler food truck, he’s refueling customers so they can complete their own daily missions too — with Filipino-inspired food to reflect his heritage. As Stament points out, a lot of people in the Lowcountry aren’t really familiar with Filipino food, so he’s hoping to introduce Charleston to these new flavors.
Stament is getting his ingredients from D.C. Burbage Retail Meats in Goose Creek, and he’s stocking up on supplies from H&L and another Asian market closer to his side of town. Veggies come from Limehouse Produce and farmers markets. By far, the most popular item is the lumpia, or Filipino egg rolls. The deep-fried shell is lighter than a typical Chinese egg roll, and it’s filled with ground beef, pork, or banana for dessert. For the KC-135 “Fili” cheesesteak, they marinate rib-eye steak in Filipino spices, cover it with havarti, and serve it on Filipino flatbread with ReFueler sauce (horseradish mayo) with a side of garlic fried rice.
The chicken adobo lands more on the traditional side, they braise a chicken leg and thigh in a soy vinegar broth along with a boiled egg, which absorbs some of the saltiness. The chicken is served on steamed rice along with the egg, which you’re supposed to mash into the rice, and is topped with some crushed fried chicken skin. The truck also serves breakfast, which features Stament’s personal biscuits-and-gravy recipe that he usually serves up to friends during football season, along with a breakfast version of the Fili and tacos.
When the City Paper spoke to Stament, the truck had just sold out of both breakfast and lunch and it wasn’t even 1 p.m. yet. They do dinner too, but they’ve mostly stuck around Goose Creek and North Charleston, though you’ll find them downtown at the Flagship (corner of East Bay and Calhoun) in September as they start to branch out. See a menu at refuelers.net or keep track of the truck at facebook.com/ReFuelers or twitter.com/refuelersmobile.