Chef Talk: Miss Meatball’s Sara Lechman

The roving ‘Meatwagon’ joined Pittsburgh’s mobile-food scene in June.

Photos courtesy of Sara Lechman


Lechman uses classic recipes for her ‘Meatwagon’

On the subject of food, sometimes fast and healthy don’t go together. It’s not that food can’t taste good and be good for you but that quality may be sacrificed to get the job done quickly. Not so with the meatballs crafted by Miss Meatball herself, Sara Lechman.

A graduate of New York’s International Culinary Center, Lechman joined our mobile-food scene back in June. She makes beef and chicken meatballs that are served in one of three sauces — asiago béchamel, classic tomato or mushroom ragu — on a bun or plain. Her “meatwagon” can be found at area events, such as the North Huntingdon Township Summer Celebration (Aug. 23-24) at Oak Hill Park.


Meatballs on or off the bun?
Definitely on. I love meatball sandwiches. I recently tested a chicken asiago sandwich with prosciutto.

Favorite utensil?
A spoon another chef got me when I was in New York City. It’s bent and curved, and people don’t understand the point of it. It looks like a spatula and is perfect for anything you do. It’s one of the best things I’ve ever gotten.

Best meal ever?
One thing I think of is my mom and gram’s halushki. That’s one thing I don’t think I can make better.


Enjoy Ukrainian food at the annual McKees Rocks festival
Now for something near and dear to our hearts: pierogies. You’ll find lots of them at the 10th annual Ukrainian Food Festival, set for Aug. 28-31 at St. Mary’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Order some of the stuffed dumplings, made on-site by parishioners, as well as halupki, halushki, baked goods and more. Grab a seat and watch one of the scheduled performances; Ukrainian dancers are known to impress with entertaining choreography.

(116 Ella St., McKees Rocks; festival runs Aug. 28-31;

‘Shaved ice guy’ serves summertime delights
When’s the last time you had shaved ice? No, we’re not talking about a sno-cone. We mean the real deal.

If you’re lucky, you might be able to convince Tom, “the shaved ice guy” who runs Steel City Shaved Ice, to show up at your next shindig. Offering an array of choices that include coconut, margarita and watermelon, he crowns cups of flavored ice with sweet additions such as marshmallow fluff. The whole experience takes you back to your childhood, when enjoying spoonfuls of shaved ice topped off a fun-filled day in the sun.


Categories: PGHeats