All Aboard the Gravy Train: ‘The Magpie’ Serves Up The Goods In Anchorage

Amanda Cash slices rosemary bread for an egg sandwich.
Amanda Cash slices rosemary bread for an egg sandwich.

From inside her bright yellow food truck called The Magpie, Amanda Cash stares across five lanes of traffic rushing past, or stopped at the light, on Benson Boulevard.

Listen now:

“People yell from the middle lane, ‘What kind of food do you serve?'” she says. “I’m like, ‘come get some biscuits and gravy! I want to cook you breakfast!'”

Cash makes lunch too, but breakfast is where her heart is. She’s has an omelette on the menu this week with cremini mushrooms, zucchini, basil, Swiss chard, and feta cheese – finished with a swirl of aged balsamic vinegar and Sitka sea salt.

“I really want commuters to stop by here instead of fast food, because I’m just as fast, and a lot more delicious,” she says.

Cash has had a booth at the farmers market on 15th and Cordova since 2012. This year, she decided to upgrade her cooking space and branch out to more locations. She serves breakfast and lunch four days a week from Waymatic concession trailer she found on Craigslist. Cash is considering adding a Thursday night event to her schedule called “Magpie a la mode” with homemade pie and ice cream.

“This is such a fun way to be able to do local food and go into neighborhoods and to create a sense of community by going to people instead of them coming to me,” she says.

The Magpie will be in the Allen & Petersen parking lot on Benson and the Seward highway until the end of May. Cash is currently scouting her next locations.

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Annie Feidt is the Editor and Producer of Alaska News Nightly, and is also a frequent contributor to the show. Her reporting has taken her searching for polar bears on the Chukchi Sea ice, out to remote checkpoints on the Iditarod Trail, and up on the Eklutna Glacier with scientists studying its retreat. Her stories have been heard nationally on NPR and Marketplace. Annie’s career in radio journalism began in 1998 at Minnesota Public Radio, where she produced the regional edition of All Things Considered. She moved to Anchorage in 2004 with her husband, intending to stay in the 49thstate just a few years. She has no plans to leave anytime soon. afeidt (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  |  907.550.8443 | About Annie