by food facts by Delbert Trew
About ketchup, pinto beans and chili
Great Blackeyed Pea Hoax by C. F.
Did you eat blackeyed peas for good luck on New Year's Day? Did
you do so because it's a 'great ante-bellum Southern tradition?'
If so, congratulations. You have been scammed by one of the most
likeable con-artists in Texas history...
"...Back when or now, cooking biscuits involves more than combining
the ingredients and baking the result. As the “McLintock” scene
suggests, good biscuits almost do seem divinely inspired..."
even the 'whomp' kind, make world a better place by Delbert
All biscuits talked about so far have been "made from scratch" using
mostly flour, baking powder, soda, shortening, a pinch of salt and
milk or water. This mix has to be rolled flat, cut or formed and
allowed to rise in a warm place, leaving a big mess in the kitchen.
In the end, seldom did a batch of biscuits turn out exactly like
the last effort, although the same measurements were used.
It's not just for Native Americans anymore. by Brewster Hudspeth
- All types of things happened when making butter by Delbert
Great Chicken-Fried Steak Hoax by
Mike Cox 10-28-10
Ever wonder how a legend gets started? I had a small role in the
creation of what has become one of Texas’ most enduring pieces of
“fakelore” -- the story of the invention of the chicken-fried steak.
by Mike Cox
How chili came to be, canning chili, chili con carne, “Chili Queens”
Naming of Chili by Luke Warm
Dish of Texas by C. F. Eckhardt
Chili con carne is the national dish of Texas. It was invented
in Texas by Texas natives-literally-and it's made right only in
by Maggie Van Ostrand
Don Churrero - "The churro cannot be 'made,' it can only be
created. Further, the churro's creator must be touched by the hand
of God himself, for to partake of the delights of a churro is to
know heaven on earth."
Praise of Texas Corn by Clay Coppedge
While it might be a stretch to think of corn as a native Texas plant,
it comes close...
Texans relied on corn for cakes, livestock
by Delbert Trew 11-23-10
To the early Texas settlers, raising corn was a matter of life or
- 'My mama's cornbread' discussion gets hot by Delbert Trew
- Want to know how much a caffeine addict you are?
by Dr. C. K. Wong, M.D.
Coffee, tea, CocaCola, chocolate .....
- "To Drink or Not to Drink"....your cup of coffee
by Dr. C. K. Wong, M.D.
To drink or not to drink, and how much ....
by Mike Cox
Rubus trivialis, or southern dewberry, and dewberry Cobbler recipe.
of vitamin C, dewberries also have lesser amounts of vitamins A
and B, along with minerals. And they taste good, sweeter than their
relative, the blackberry."
- Inventing the Hamburger by Bob Bowman
When Hamburger University, the McDonald's training school and research
group, went looking for the origin of the hamburger some years ago,
they concluded that it was introduced at the 1904 St Louis World's
Fair by an anonymous food vender. But it wasn¹t until the 1980s
that it was discovered that the vendor was from East Texas.
hog, the whole hog, nothin' but the hog by Delbert Trew
Hot Links by Bob Bowman
Few East Texas foods are as well-known as those spicy sausages,
better known as “hot links,” served at Pittsburg (the one in East
by Bob Bowman
The annual Southern Hushpuppy Cookoffs in Lufkin
by Clay Coppedge
Metheglin, the brew, has fared well in the intervening
years. From being the drink-of-choice for intemperate settlers,
it's now bottled and rhapsodized over like fine wine. Spicing appears
to be the key to quality metheglin.
- Got sweet, skim, sour, butter or scalded milk? by Delbert
Pies by Bob Bowman
A friend sent our family a couple of Moon Pies a few days ago. Our
first reaction was: “Are Moon Pies still being made today?'’
Onions by John Troesser
"The Mother of All Sweet Onions": the Texas Grano 502, and the Vidalia
by Mike Cox
The peach tree outside the old stone structure in Burnet at the
site of Fort Croghan and Mrs. Ross’ Croghan Cobbler recipe...
Persimmons by Dana Goolsby
Folklore reveals that superstitions about cutting persimmon trees
may help cure warts, cancer and even predict weather, even Texas
- Once lowly fare, potatoes enjoy popularity by Delbert Trew
by Mike Cox
of the South by Clay Coppedge
"The Confederate Salt Works at Lometa operated in a manner
common to France and Germany but almost unheard of in the south."
- "It Takes a Tortilla…" Mexicans Turn to an Ancient Reliable
Snack by Sheila Mayne
Tacos are categorized and labeled according to both their mode of
preparation and according to their filling. Taco stands usually
have a sign indicating which type of taco, by preparation and/or
filling, they sell.
- Hitting the Marc by Byron Browne
The wine industry in Texas is blooming. The Texas Agriculture Department
lists almost 120 wineries in the state and reports that as of 2007,
Texas is this country’s 5th largest producer of grapes and wine.
For anyone who has traveled to west Texas or the Hill Country...
Traditions, Stories & History
of Cookies Past by Mike Cox 12-16-14
by Mike Cox 9-18-14
Borden by Wanda Orton 9-1-14
Bread and Brown Bananas by John Troesser 8-3-14
Teatime by Frances Giles 10-28-13
Recently I was visited by a friend from junior high days and her
young adult granddaughter and was reminded once again what a marvelous
bonding agent a pot of hot tea can be.
to Me, My Melon-choly Babies by Frances Giles
Watermelon, a high Summer treat if there ever was one. It ranked
right up there alongside baseball, exploring and running through
the hose, as far as great ways to spend the unencumbered days.
encounters of the canned kind by Wanda Orton
Oysters Saved 6 Lives by Ken Rudine 5-6-13
up peaches brings back memories by Delbert Trew
Putting up peaches, and a recipe even cowboys could produce
during WWII - How sweet it wasn't by Wanda Orton
Growing up in World War II wasn't all bad. There were some good
Town of Twin Groceries by Bob Bowman 6-19-12
the Butcher by Bruce Martin 6-16-12
For a good portion of my father’s adult life, he worked as a butcher
in local neighborhood grocery store meat markets, well before the
age of chain stores and packaged foods.
Biscuit and Cornbread Whistles by Bob Bowman 3-25-12
The siren was likely blown for loftier reasons such as personnel
shift changes and fires, but Dibollians came to know the sounds
as “the biscuit whistle” and the “cornbread whistle.”
Beans by Mike Cox 12-7-11
Pinto beans were a staple in 19th century Texas and continue to
be today, but their history goes back even further... By the time
of Texas’ Anglo colonization, pinto beans (better known in the Southwest
as frijoles or Pecos Strawberries) had become ubiquitous...
Lesson in the Sociology of Galveston Commerce by Bill Cherry
A story of Daniel Serrato's pushcart of freshly made hot tamales
and the most photographed home in Galveston The Open Gates...
Beer Train by Mike Cox
Camino Olive Trail 8-5-11
Oliver trees, growers and harvests
here and there by Bob Bowman 7-24-11
Of biscuits, apple peel, and more
everyone has interesting tidbits to share by Delbert Trew
Ways of raising chickens and "putting up sausage."
for the family in tough times..... And the tools to use by Nolan
We grew many various kinds of vegetables in the garden; onions;
cabage; lettuce; carrots; radishes; turnips; beans; peas; squash;
orka; cellery and others. You can do it yourself, too!
Oldest Bakery Ships Thousands of Pounds of Holiday Desserts
by Dana Goolsby
The oldest bakery in Texas has been busy all year
preparing for their busiest season of the year. The holiday season
rush begins during the hot East Texas summer months for Eilenberger’s
Bakery, located in historic downtown Palestine.
Dinner by Mike Cox 12-23-10
In the letter the Galveston News published on Dec. 21, 1893, the
former ranger A. J. Sowell expanded on an incident he had only mentioned
briefly in his 1884 book “Rangers and Pioneers of Texas.”
by Mike Cox 11-25-10
There’s more to the nut produced by Texas’ official state tree than
Young Man, His Kirwin Education, Mike Gaido’s Mentoring & the Fellow
with the $50,000 by Bill Cherry 11-24-10
"It’s a story about my Galveston friend Benno Deltz. I don’t
think I’ve ever told it to you. Draw close. You’re going to love
Shops and Crossbones; Slaton, Texas 1920s by James Villanueva
In the early 1920’s, Slaton was a thriving city with a population
of more than 6,000 and various candy shops and confectioneries fought
and competed over satisfying Slaton’s sweet tooth. The 1920s was
a golden age for candy companies throughout the country...
Liquor by C. F. Eckhardt 9-4-10
From 1919 until 1933 the United States was in the throes of one
of the worst mistakes it has ever made—prohibition. Texas has the
longest border with Mexico of any state. Mexico had no prohibition.
Just across the Rio Grande was a very thirsty state...
Pecans" - Arlington WPA Mural 8-29-10
of Things Fried: Mr. Shipley and Mrs. Hurley by Ken Rudine
in Summer by Clay Coppedge 8-6-10
Glance at brief histories of Texas communities where business from
a given year are listed and you notice how many towns included an
icehouse right along with the churches, stores, post offices and
Brown Seedless Watermelons and Grocery Store Personalities
or The Quality Goes in Before the Face Goes On
by Brewster Hudspeth 8-1-10
Polly's Pancakes by Mike Cox 6-3-10
Next time you fry a stack of pancakes, imagine what it would be
like if your life and the well-being of your children depended on
the 1943 Roof of Mike Gaido’s Drive In Helped Him Keep His Feet
on the Ground 5-1-10
Mike Gaido’s first business venture in Galveston was not a big and
glorious seafood restaurant like it is today, but a drive-in...
Corn Crop to Market at Age 13 by Henry Skupin 3-1-10
Excerpted from "Growing Up On the Farm"
Creek Winery by Byron Browne
You know what’s fun? Besides listening to Texas Tech football coach
Mike Leach speak- fun is drinking a nice, refreshing, Texas wine
on a Saturday afternoon...
Professional Baseball Pitcher, R.S. Maceo, Sr., Says It’s All in
the Olive Salad by Bill Cherry
What separates the authentic muffaletta from the copy is the recipe
for the sandwich spread that we afficionados refer to as “olive
salad.” It’s one of those things you either make right or it’s wrong.
There’s no such thing as reasonably OK olive salad. And the muffaletta
has to be made with a muffa roll...
tales - true or not by Delbert Trew
When old-timers gather and talk about the good old days, you never
know whether the story is the real truth or exaggerated nonsense.
Here are a few samples I remember or have heard lately...
Fried Steak: An Unbiased Recommendation by Britt Towery
One thing I have tired to do through the years is to visit Underwood's
Bar-B-Q when near Brownwood. Pity the poor traveler who is in Brownwood
on a Wednesday...
Country Kids Love'em by N. Ray Maxie
The burley little nut actually resembles a small chestnut, and rightly
so, it is of the chestnut family...
Grande Valley, Winter Texans and Texas BBQ by Ken Rudine
When you find a place with smoke coming from a pit, burning mesquite,
with beef brisket cooking that means you have found a genuine location
Stories by Mike Cox
A family were just about to sit down to supper when a Comanche Indian
burst into their residence and wolfed down all their food...
and Early Coffee and Tea by Bob Bowman
Once upon a time, Bright & Early Coffee and Tea signs, usually painted
on the sides of barns and country stores, could be found in most
Southern states, including Texas.
preserves always worth the work by Delbert Trew
Each year in late September or early October, if Mother Nature allows,
the Trews "put up pear preserves." As long as I can remember this
annual routine has taken place...
to Fear But Thanksgiving by Maggie Van Ostrand
The government is interfering in our lives yet again. They have
decided to add yet another fear to the long list of things they
tell us to be scared of: holiday food.
beef top concern for settlers by Delbert Trew
Before refrigeration arrived in rural areas, a system called "meat
clubs" allowed families to keep fresh meat all year.
Fresh and Fine. Watermelons Right off the Vine." by N. Ray Maxie
Truck farming in the Ark-La-Tex during the Great Depression was
a very necessary way of life. Everyone that was able to work cultivated
a pretty large garden and some even had larger “truck patches” of
A spring delicacy by Bob Bowman
"In case you haven't lived in East Texas for a long time, mayhaws
are to East Texans what blueberries are to Maine. The trouble is
they don't grow in convenient places like fields and roadside bar
ditches. Most mayhaws are found in swamps, river bottoms and other
places where large snakes, giant mosquitoes and other varmits make
Drinkers by Mike Cox
Since practically forever, Texans all across the state have practiced
this little-known daily routine of coffee and conversation. Though
more common in small towns, no-dues, no officers coffee clubs occasionally
develop in the bigger cities...
Meat on the Frontier C. F. Eckhardt
According to DR. CHASE'S RECIPES OR INFORMATION FOR EVERYBODY, the
thirty-sixth edition of which came out in 1866, here are some recipes
for preservation of meat without refrigeration...
Little Piggy Stayed Home by Linda Kirkpatrick
This story is about the important but disgusting details of butchering
the ill fated little pig and preparing the meat for the table. It
is not for the faint of heart...
Shopping Mike Cox
Need a loaf of bread? Unless you live in a particularly remote area,
a plastic bag of sliced sandwich covers and gravy soppers rests
on the shelf only a few minutes away at a nearby and aptly named
convenience store. But in the 19th century Texans did not get to
enjoy all that much convenience, especially when it came to shopping...
Time a Kitten Named Elijah Came to the Passover Seder Table to Bring
Wisdom by Bill Cherry
The most important holy day to Jews is the 14th day of Nisan. It
marks Passover. Passover's purpose is to celebrate God's deliverance
of His people from the bondage of sin. This historical event is
contemplated by Jews at an evening family meal known as the Seder...
An irony of Christianity is that Jesus' last supper was a Passover
supply not to be taken for granted by Delbert Trew
Today we think nothing of turning on a faucet to get water. Daily,
millions of gallons of water are used, saved, wasted, discussed,
bought and sold without raising an eyebrow. Well, folks, it hasn't
always been that way...
pear event preserves the past by Delbert Trew
One annual event that comes as regularly as sunrise at the Trew
house is the making of pear preserves...
Lightning by Clay Coppedge
"Moonshining, in Texas and elsewhere, reached its peak during
prohibition, from 1919 to 1933. Prohibition made it illegal to manufacture
or consume alcoholic beverages, but moonshiners viewed more often
as folk heroes as outlaws..."
you please pass the salt? by Delbert Trew
Many of the elements we take for granted today have incredible histories.
The most outstanding of these is table salt...
canning was a high-pressure job by Delbert Trew
There was a time between root cellars and refrigeration when pressure
cookers were used to preserve food. The Great Depression and Dust
Bowl were blowing full force, home gardens were feeding the populace
and preservation of meat and produce was an absolute necessity to
survive. Interestingly, steam pressure canning dates back to Napoleon,
the French general who offered a cash prize to anyone who could
invent a process to preserve food for his traveling armies.
Mother-in-Law by Mike Cox
"Despite the rocky beginning of their relationship, Sam Houston
treated Mrs. Nancy Lea, his mother-in-law, with all due respect.
He must have learned to accept her eccentricities as well, like
the lard incident..."
Good Sandwiches by Mike Cox
Here's the recipe, with a caution that even by using all the ingredients
Mrs. Hohertz does, the sandwich won't be nearly as good the ones
Possum Dinner by Bob Bowman
While most East Texans were planning Thanksgiving dinners in 1929,
four old friends in Frankston were sitting down for a meal of possum
and sweet potatoes...
biscuits now memories by Delbert Trew
Watching Aunt Ruby Wilkinson make biscuits provided more entertainment
than seeing a three-ring circus...
Texas Savior of the French Wine Industry by Archie P. McDonald
Those who favor a glass of wine, especially French wine, may not
be aware of the debt they and the French owe to Dr. Thomas Volney
Munson of Denison, Texas
The Tupperware of their day by Delbert Trew
"As a little boy I can remember crocks, and crock-type bowls
that were in everyday use in the Trew homes. My favorite crock story
tells of chuck wagon cooks who kept their sourdough batch growing
in a small crock with a lid...."
remains popular throughout time by Delbert Trew
by George Lester
"Our farm was a featureless plain except for the creek bottom
with its tall trees and cool shady areas along the sparse stream.
Down there, we discovered the delicacy of crawdad tails..."
Sweet It Was by George Lester
"I may have this wrong, but the best I can remember it, my
father had a unique way of deciding where to have our vegetable
garden each year..."
in Egg Gathering by Neal Crausbay
McAdoo, Texas, 1948
Pains by George Lester
not, want not' was law at supper by Delbert Trew
Living close to food source, working to prepare it instilled appreciation
Smorgasbord by Geroge Lester
A school lunch story
Scream! by George Lester
Stew by George Lester
Biscuits by George Lester
Store Centennial by Bob Bowman
The San Augustine Drug Store will in May (2004) celebrate a hundred
years of doing business at the same location in downtown San Augustine;
and a fountain drink known as "The Grapefruit Highball."
Murchison Hotel by Bob Bowman
"There are some things about the East Texas Plate Lunch that
are sacred and should not be messed with by either the cook or the
Corn Crib by Bob Bowman
"In early East Texas, corn cribs were as essential to farmers
as their plows and mules. Used to store corn on the floor and peanuts
in the rafters, the cribs enabled families to store food for themselves
and their livestock for the winter months."
on the Grounds by Bob Bowman
It was an annual feast we remembered for a year -- and a place where
we often found rare and out-of-season delicacies.
East Texas Plate Lunch by Bob Bowman
The real culinary treasure of Texas. It is a savory, although unsung,
pleasure that comes only from caring country cooks who have mastered
the magic of bacon drippings and cornbread baking.
Sallet by Bob Bowman
"There isn't a better country dish in East Texas."
Suppers by Bob Bowman
But here in East Texas, I've always felt that some of our folks
devised an ingenious way to deprive politicians of money right when
they need it the most. It's called the pie supper. And it works
Bust by Mike Cox
With more than 20,000 chanting anti-war protestors headed downtown
from UT, the governor decided he was hungry for barbecue...
don’t sell for money at any price (1864)
Salt Lake near El Paso by Delbert Trew
sprung from filling needs by Delbert Trew
Hale Center mural
Bring Me an Order of Gluten and a Large Glass of Lactose by
Maggie Van Ostrand 9-17-14
Law Olmsted by Clay Coppedge 4-13-12
One of the most important people from American history that
most people have never heard of was Frederick Olmsted Law who designed
New York City’s Central Park and dozens if not hundreds of others
parks and public places. He also emerges today as something akin
to Texas’ first food critic.
expressions by Bob Bowman 3-11-12
East Texas expressions seem to be making a comeback. I recently
heard a man say that his wife "has a biscuit in the oven," referring
to the fact that she was pregnant...
With Scissors by Maggie Van Ostrand 2-20-12
These are not your mother's days of shiny can openers and good looking
utensils. Instead, as a defense against the frustrating packaging
from the supermarket, what do I take every time I go into the kitchen?
A toolbelt, that's what. And that includes the most important household
Intervention by Elizabeth Bussey Sowdal
It is a sad day when a young adult child is confronted with the
realization that her parents are not super-heroes, that they are
not members of some omnipotent, omniscient, immortal race of superior
Abuse by Peary Perry
"... It seems to me that each and every day gets shorter and
shorter and I have more and more to accomplish. I envy people who
seem to have extra time on their hands. Like a group of people who
have formed an organization to prevent abuse to vegetables..."
and Cats by N. Ray Maxie
Dreaded Friendship Bread by Elizabeth Bussey Sowdal
Maybe you have an acquaintance who is domestic. One who likes to
decorate and sew and hot glue things to other things with fabulous
results. Maybe you have one who cooks. If you do, you have probably
been the recipient of a bag of Friendship Bread Starter...
Bartender, Make Mine Tuna on the Rocks
by Maggie Van Ostrand
In the Bible, Jesus turns water into wine and multiplies two fishes
into enough to feed 12,000 people, including women and children.
Can China top that? Seems as though they're going to try.
Budget by George Lester
Have you ever been desperately hungry? I don't mean missing lunch
because of a busy schedule or running out of provisions on a camping
trip. That is nothing compared to the kind of hunger I endured in
the mid fifties...
Corn is as High as an Elephant's Eye by Maggie Van Ostrand
Is it unreasonable to think that the Mexican people should be able
to have their customary corn tortillas at mealtime? It seems so.
Politics has again reared its ugly head, and this time, the platform
is "Corn produces ethanol and ethanol fuels automobiles!"...
Lickin’ Good by Elizabeth Bussey Sowdal
"It must be awfully hard to be the youngest child. I have been
missing my brother who moved recently to Arizona, and that has made
me remember all kinds of things about growing up with him..."
Peeves: Coffee, Stereos and Thermostat
by Peary Perry
and Diet by Peary Perry
"This year I’ve decided to get a head start on my annual pilgrimage
towards the torture of exercise and caloric reduction. No more pie,
no more cake, no more anything that remotely tastes good...."
Ten Years Are Up. It's Time to Clean the Refrigerator by Maggie
Texas Pudding Solution or Are We Having Flan, yet?
by John Troesser
"If no good deed goes unpunished, and every silver lining needs
a dark cloud, then every solution needs a problem. In this case
the solution is pudding - the problem is chili..."
Can't Believe We Are Not Butter by John Troesser
Masked, Mystery Gourmet - Aida Lott by John Troesser
Chef Boyardee, Julia Child, Uncle Ben, Betty Crocker, Mrs. Baird,
‘Little Debbie', The Green Giant and General Mills.
Supper by Bob Bowman
A tragic, unthinkable incident in the spring of 1847, frequently
associated with the Regulator-Moderator War, remains after 157 years
one of East Texas’ worst mass murders -- if it was murder.