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No. 35 July/Aug | Travel 2014


Celebrating Central Texas food culture, season by season


TRAVEL Issue Memb er of Edible Communities


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CONTENTS travel issue 6

Publisher’s Note


Notable Mentions


Notable Edibles

 Travaasa Austin, Hill Country Memorial Hospital, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, AquaSprouts.


Edible Destination



Edible Roadtrip

Camper cuisine.


Edible Destination Brewery

St. Arnold Brewing Company.


Farm Stay

Winfield Farm.


Edible Roadtrip

Native American Seed.


Cooking Fresh

Vietnamese dining.


Edible Roadtrip


PASSPORT to local 24 An Old Tradition for Something Nieuwe Season’s first herring.

31 Pub Grub Gets a New Hat British food revival.


Edible Past

Ghost vineyards of Texas.


Edible Gardens

Edible flowers of the world.


What I Eat and Why


Handheld Europe Apps to help you navigate like a local.


Mexican Market Drinks Taking the market by hand.

“E” is for egg.


Hip Girl’s Guide To Homemaking

Crunch time.


The Directory


From the Streets of Lima Sights, smells and tastes from the local mercado.

COVER:  B  anh Xeo (Vietnamese Crepe) from Elizabeth Street Café (page 45) by Kate LeSueur.





ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER eep summertime presents challenges to dwellers in Central Texas. Relentless sunny, cloudless skies with either too much

humidity or too little, depending on the current State of the Drought, can make you feel like a prisoner in your own abode. To help you get through, we now publish our Travel Issue in July for your perusing pleasure. For those of us who plan an escape during the hottest months, we hope you will

Jenna Noel




enjoy the stories in this issue that offer tips and inspirations for travel far away in

Whitney Arostegui

cooler (or at least distractingly different) climes. For those content or resigned to


stay put, we offer “travel quickies” or places to go and things to do close to home.

Shannon Kintner

Either way, all our stories can be enjoyed vicariously, whether aboard an overseas aircraft or relaxing on your back stoop. With a nod to escapist summer reading, we have also included stories on ghost vineyards, a ghost town and an unsolvable mystery involving an ostrich egg. And if you stay put (or when you return), plan to spend more time in your kitchen. This issue is packed with recipes, many inspired from distant locales, while some tailored to fit perfectly into that Gulf Coast camping trip or next potluck party. Summer in Austin is a time to slow down, take a siesta, indulge in a midday swim at Barton Springs or a visit to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center (while barely missing a beat), then toss together a Nom Hoa Chuoi (Vietnamese Banana-Blossom Salad—recipe on page 61) for supper. Or just go out to eat. In keeping with this advice, this note is shorter than usual. And because pages with pictures get more eyeballs, I’d like to present a selected gallery of outtakes from our stories in this issue. See if you can figure out which stories they go with, and let us know. There’ll be a prize. Prost!

COPY EDITOR Anne Marie Hampshire

EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS Melinda Barsales, Dena Garcia, Marie Franki Hanan, Cari Marshall, Michelle Moore

ADVERTISING SALES Curah Beard, Lori Brix, Valerie Kelly


ADVISORY GROUP Terry Thompson-Anderson, Paula Angerstein, Dorsey Barger, Jim Hightower, Toni Tipton-Martin, Mary Sanger, Suzanne Santos, Carol Ann Sayle

CONTACT US Edible Austin 1415 Newning Avenue, Austin, TX 78704 512-441-3971 Edible Austin is published bimonthly by Edible Austin L.L.C. All rights reserved. Subscription rate is $35 annually. No part of this publication may be used without written permission of the publisher. ©2014. Every effort is made to avoid errors, misspellings and omissions. If, however, an error comes to your attention, please accept our sincere apologies and notify us.




The 24th Annual Join an exciting gathering of nonprofit leaders farmers, ranchers, and local food activists!

Hot Sauce


Sunday, August 24

at Fiesta Gardens




notable MENTIONS WE LIKE IT HOT Spicy food lovers, come beat the Texas heat! The 24th annual Austin Chronicle’s Hot Sauce Festival will be held Sunday, August 24 from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., at Fiesta Gardens. Stand in the shade of the giant tasting tent with hundreds of tasty sauces free for sampling. Got a contest-winning recipe? Visit for details on entering that special sauce. Some of Texas’ finest chefs will judge the three levels of competition: individuals (homemade), restaurants and commercial bottlers. The event is free (with a donation of three healthy, nonperishable food items or a $5 cash donation benefiting the Capital Area Food Bank of Texas).

FARMS AND FOOD IN FOCUS Prominent populist Jim Hightower is the keynote speaker at the 8th Annual Farm and Food Leadership Conference September 15 and 16 in Bastrop. This unique gathering focuses on the policies and regulations affecting our farms and food, and features top speakers addressing genetically engineered foods, the politics of organics, the 2014 Farm Bill, FDA’s food safety regulations, urban farming, raw milk and water policy. Plus enjoy workshops and networking opportunities with individuals, nonprofits and businesses that care about our local farms and food. Presented by Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance and Council for Healthy Food Systems. Visit for more information.

NEW LOCATION FOR DRIPPING WITH TASTE Come bask in Hill Country ambiance at the 7th annual Dripping with Taste Wine, Food & Arts Festival on Saturday, September 13 from noon to 7 p.m. Check out their new location at the Dripping Springs Ranch Park Event Center. The event showcases many of our finest Texas wineries, restaurants, chefs, caterers, artisans and musicians and benefits the Dripping Springs Chamber of Commerce and the Visitors Bureau. Visit for all the details.

TOUR DE VIN The Wine & Food Foundation of Texas presents the 12th annual Tour De Vin, Thursday, September 18 at the W Austin. This exclusive, globetrotting event features wine tastings from more than a dozen wineries, paired with some of the best cuisine in Central Texas, along with live music and a silent auction. The

Saturday, September 13th, 2014

Texas Wines Craft Beers Gourmet Foods, Demos Specialty Vendors Live Music Spacious INDOOR Venue Dripping Springs Ranch Park Noon - 7pm 8



event benefits The Wine & Food Foundation, which provides scholarships and grants to sommeliers, culinary students and other food-based causes. Details at

SAVE THE DATE FOR EDIBLE AUSTIN CHEF AUCTION! The 3rd annual Edible Austin Chef Auction fundraiser that raises thousands of dollars for local food nonprofits in Austin will take place on Thursday, October 9, hosted at The Allan House in downtown Austin. After tasting delectable food and Texas spirits, guests will live bid on exciting chef dinner packages—to be announced soon! Check for details.




ffering a seasonal menu full of the freshest fruits, vegetables, herbs and meats available from area farms and ranchers has

always been a priority for local resort Travaasa Austin. But a year and a half ago, the hotel took that concept one step further with a commitment to produce much of their food on-site. “Having a farm here was a way of experimenting—kind of taking that farm-to-table idea to the next level, and really trying to see what we could do with the resources we have on the property,” says Kim Grabosky, the former farm manager of Johnson’s Backyard Garden and the current manager of Travaasa’s new 3.25acre farm. “This is an opportunity for us to grow the freshest food we can and also to use as many of the resources from the hotel that might otherwise be wasted.” Though the farm is only in its second growing season, Grabosky and an assistant have managed to transform a mostly empty field in a valley at the edge of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve into a diverse, permaculture-inspired organic farm that, last year, produced about 5,000 pounds of food—including an array of vegetables, fruits, edible flowers, medicinal herbs and more. In addition,

Experience the 12th Annual Tour de Vin at W Austin highlighting sips and bites from around the world. Proceeds help suppor t local sommeliers and the culinar y industr y through scholarships, grants and awards.

Tickets are available at

a flock of nearly 100 hens now serves as the exclusive provider of free-range chicken eggs for the restaurant, as well as a major source of fertilizer and pest control for the farm, and GraboskyWFFT_TDV2014_Ad_3p625x4p75_FINAL.indd


5/16/14 12:39 PM

recently added 20,000 bees to the mix. Now that the new residents are settled in and busy at work, she says she’s focused on saving seeds and improving the fertility of the land through notill farming, composting and mulching the beds with organic cover crops and hay. The farm also serves as a learning opportunity for guests, who are invited for tours, dinners and classes on diverse subjects, such as seed-starting, chicken-keeping, pickling and medicinal herbs. Grabosky says that while the classes are mostly introductory, their impact can be far-reaching. “We have people who aren’t very connected to their food system, so though it might seem pretty small, it’s a big first step,” she says. Of course, the main focus of the farm is to provide food for the kitchen, and Grabosky says Chef Benjamin Baker has been more than willing to creatively incorporate the offerings—from using a row of savoy cabbages for kimchee to a bunch of carrot tops for pesto. “I’ve brought up wild amaranth, and I ask, Can you use this? And he says, Yeah, OK,” Grabosky says with a laugh. “Whatever we have, he’s into it.” For his part, Baker says it’s been great to have this kind of access to food grown with such integrity. “Kim’s giving us some amazing beets, sugar snap peas, some great carrots, beautiful edible flowers and herbs,” he says. “Just being able to get my hands on those ingredients and work with them, to me, is really a high honor.”—Nicole Lessin

Thomas Gainesborough, Spitz Dog, c. 1765, oil on canvas, 24 × 29 ½ in., Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection

Blanton Museum of Art /

For more information, visit EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM




ships with some of the market vendors as a result of the initiative.


something outside the walls and getting in contact with people and

“This program is so cherished because we are actually doing

hat’s an effective way for a hospital to honor the mission statement to “create healthy” and also connect with the

surrounding community? For Hill Country Memorial Hospital (HCM) in Fredericksburg, the answer was simple: Become a partner with the Fredericksburg Farmer’s Market (FFM) and sell a different homemade soup each week at the market prepared with the market’s seasonal offerings—everything from a spicy caldo de res made with local grass-fed beef shank and vegetables to a chilled tomato peach soup with basil. “The hospital is trying to not be isolated, or be seen as just the building you go to to get repaired,” says HCM’s Director of Nutrition Services John “JP” Phelps, who was part of a HCM/FFM team seeking ways to demonstrate uses for the market’s produce and other products. “We’re trying to set a good example.” Phelps says the idea for soup was a logical choice because it was something the hospital was already offering to some of their patients and was easily transportable. Plus, it was not difficult to adapt recipes to incorporate the seasonal produce from the market. Therefore, since last year, the hospital’s chef, Steve Sommers, has been purchasing ingredients from farmers each week at the market, and then preparing a soup at the hospital to be sold at the market the following weekend, along with a printed recipe. FFM’s Assistant Director Cynthia England says that from the very beginning it was a hit. “It was wildly popular,” she says. “[The soups] were packaged as a takeaway product, but a lot of people just enjoyed it so much that they sat there at a picnic table and drank the soup right away.” What’s more, England says the collaboration with the hospital has provided other benefits, including increased exposure for the farmers whose ingredients are featured, and for the market itself, thanks to posters and other promotions created by HCM’s marketing department. “Money can’t buy that kind of awareness in the community,” England says. “Certainly, we spend some money on ads in places we think are appropriate, but to have the hospital system be on our team and go to bat for us is invaluable to us at the market, to our vendors and to the entire community.” Phelps says for its part, the hospital plans to keep making the soups for a second year, and has even developed other partner-

making them aware that there are a lot of things that are going on at the hospital,” he says. “But also, we are trying to ‘create healthy’.” —Nicole Lessin For more information visit and fredericksburg

CHILLED TOMATO-PEACH SOUP WITH BASIL Courtesy of Hill Country Memorial Hospital Serves 10 3 T. olive oil 2 large Engel Farms onions, diced 2 stalks celery, diced 2 garlic cloves, minced 2 c. vegetable stock 4–6 Engel Farms tomatoes 4–6 Marburger Orchard peaches 12 leaves fresh basil Pinch ground coriander 1 t. balsamic vinegar 1 /³ c. olive oil Salt and pepper, to taste Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat in a saute pan. Add the onions, celery and garlic and saute for 5 to 10 minutes—until vegetables are golden. Transfer the mixture to a blender, puree, then transfer to a bowl. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and, using a paring knife, carve a slight X on the bottom of each peach and tomato. Drop 2 to 3 tomatoes at a time into the boiling water and let them blanch for 30 seconds. Remove from the pot and place under cold running water. Remove and discard the skins, cut the tomatoes in half and squeeze out the seeds. Place the tomatoes in the blender. Drop the peaches into the boiling water and let them blanch for 45 seconds. Remove and place under cold running water. Remove and discard the skins, cut the peaches in half and remove the pits. Add the peaches to the blender and blend with the tomatoes (this may need to be done in batches). Add the reserved vegetable puree, basil, coriander, vinegar and olive oil to the blender and puree the entire mixture until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste, place mixture in a large bowl, cover and refrigerate to chill before serving.

Find Chef Sommer’s Caldo de Res recipe at


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ust south of downtown Austin, the

opportunity anymore to just explore

beauty and majesty of Texas native

on their own and see how the world

Photography of the grotto in the Family Garden courtesy of Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

plants are in full effect at the Lady Bird


Johnson Wildflower Center. “Well,

This new 4.5-acre space offers an

the bluebonnets have come and gone,

array of interactive exhibits for all

but the wildflower center looks spec-

ages, including a three-quarter-acre,

tacular right now [early June]—awash

native-grass play-lawn framed by fun

with giant coneflowers and Indian

exercise equipment; human-scale bird’s

blanket and just a whole host of other

nests and wooden eggs; a living “Meta-

wildflowers blooming,” says Damon

morphosis Maze” that documents the

Waitt, the center’s senior director and

life cycle of a frog; a “Stumpery” filled

botanist. Yet, aside from the acres of

with logs that can be climbed on and

wildflower meadows and the gardens

examined for earwigs; as well as a man-

bursting with more than 650 different

made grotto with a waterfall, streams

native plant species, many people don’t

and a working hand pump to allow

realize the various other activities this

children to spill water through porous

local treasure has to offer, or for that

limestone, on plants and even on each

matter, how close to town (just 10 short

other. And there are secrets to be dis-

miles away) it actually is.

covered throughout, such as climbable

The Center hosts a variety of rotat-

lifelike sculptures of native animals,

ing art exhibits and educational events,

high-interest native plants (including

as well as scenic walking trails snaking the grounds—including

sweet-scented chocolate flowers or sensitive briars that shrink

a brisk one-mile hike to the 16-acre Mollie Steves Zachry Texas

away at the slightest touch) and even a mud-pie-making area

Arboretum where visitors can enjoy the surroundings in a more

complete with baking tins and scoops. “Our previous gardens

personal way. “Amongst the really magnificent live oaks and post

don’t cater to kids so much,” says DeLong-Amaya. “We want to

oaks there are picnic areas and swings,” Waitt says. “Coming out

have younger families and kids, and to really inspire the next gen-

for a stroll in the morning or the early evening is always a good

eration to be involved with nature more.”

idea—a good activity with opportunities for exercise.”

Perhaps one of the most important reasons to visit the cen-

What’s more, the center recently opened the Luci Baines John-

ter, though, might not be immediately apparent to guests, but

son and Ian Turpin Family Garden, named for the project’s lead

attendants are quick to enlighten. Delivered via the blooming,

donors: the younger daughter and son-in-law of Lyndon Baines

budding, verdant grounds, there dwells a critical crash course

and Lady Bird Johnson.

in water conservation for growers and gardeners of all skill lev-

“A lot of us had the great fortune to grow up in the country or

els. “It’s important for people to see what that looks like first-

in rural areas,” says Horticulture Director Andrea DeLong-Amaya,

hand, because if they adopt some of the practices, they can save

who was part of the team that designed the new garden as a

water,” says Waitt. “There are practical reasons to come out to

central part of the center’s master plan in 2005. “[As a child,]

the wildflower center in addition to the aesthetic and spiritual

I would just take off all day and, you know, say, See ya!” she

ones.” —Nicole Lessin

says. “Most kids, especially in urban areas, don’t really have that

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THINK TANK Plus, it provides free fer-

left out in the backyard

tilizer for the plants. “It’s

may seem like an unlikely


source of inspiration, but for

ture,” Ikard says. “The fish



Jack Ikard, it provided the

and the plants both rely

spark for AquaSprouts—a

on one another.” The system can work

system that converts stanaquariums

with any kind of orna-

into self-cleaning aquapon-

mental plant or even edi-

ic gardens for low-mainte-

ble leafy greens, herbs or

nance indoor fish viewing

baby tomatoes. “What you

and plant growing.

can’t grow are deep-root-



ing plants,” Ikard says. As

“My favorite aspect of the

far as variety and num-

fish,” says Ikard, the CEO

ber of fish, Ikard suggests

and founder of AquaSprouts

sticking with the stocking

and a junior at St. Edward’s

recommendations for in-

University. Ikard teamed up

door fish. “You can have

with a classmate and locally

as many fish and variety

based product developers to

of species that a 10-gallon

launch the system. “I had a

aquarium can take,” he

ten-gallon fish tank in my

says. “So this is going to




backyard that I’ve had since childhood, and I had the vision of

be on the pet-side of fish.”

turning that into an indoor little garden—so you could have the

Currently the AquaSprouts team has been working to raise

benefits of seeing the fish and the beauty of an aquarium, but

the necessary capital to begin offering the systems for $150 for

also the benefits of aquaponics and getting plants right above

a complete kit that includes a standard 10-gallon aquarium, or

your aquarium.”

$130 for those already in possession of their own aquarium that

Indeed, traditional, large-scale aquaponics systems, which

they wish to upcycle. In the meantime, however, Ikard says his

combine aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (growing

company is already taking preorders for the kits to make this

plants in a soil-less environment), are normally done outside

technology available to a wider audience and to promote the

and in opaque containers to prevent algae growth and overheat-

benefits of aquaponics in general.

ing. Conversely, an AquaSprouts system offers the same symbi-

“We wanted to bring new life to all those old aquariums out

otic setup—where waste from the fish is pumped out and con-

there,” he says. “Aquaponics, in general, is a very sustainable

verted into nutrients for the plants by bacteria in a grow bed,

form of agriculture; it’s very water conscious, and in this time

and clean water is cycled back into the tank—but this time, for

of drought—here in Texas especially—it’s a great technology for

an indoor environment and on a much smaller scale. This means

people to realize that it’s available.” —Nicole Lessin

there’s no need for home users to have to change their aquarium’s carbon filter or even spend much time cleaning the tank.

Find out more at


in the forest on our farm 12



2730 South Congress •

Photography courtesy of AquaSprouts


n empty glass aquarium

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575 Hyatt Lost Pines Rd., Lost Pines, TX 78612 1 800 55 HYATT (49288) •

The trademark HYATT and related marks are trademarks of Hyatt Corporation. ©2014 Hyatt Corporation. All rights reserved.

Images from Wurstfest 2013, (clockwise from top left): Wurstfest clown welcomes visitors to the Marketplatz; visitor enjoying a festival favorite; sausages-on-astick; Manard Ivy, State Representative Doug Miller, Martin Allen and Bob Rayfield (left to right) toasting Wurstfest.




aught in a whirlwind of twirling dirndls led by leder-

apples, caraway, cloves, pepper and garlic. Respect for heritage

hosen-wearing partners, while chicken hats bob atop a

is a big thing here—many tiers of each family have worked and

crush of sausage lovers, visitors to New Braunfels’ Wurst-

participated in the festival over the years; Palm’s own sons, un-

fest might find themselves temporarily transported to another

cle, cousins and nieces weave in and out of his booth during the

time and place. This beloved annual festival celebrating a con-

day. “I haven’t missed a day of Wurstfest since 1977,” he says with

tinent-hopping, generations-deep love of all things sausage, sour

pride. “Ever since I graduated high school.”

and steeped-in-tradition, is in full swing, and music and dancing

Longtime festival attendee Beverly Pryor has been coming to

are ubiquitous. Cries of “Prost!” are jubilant, loud and frequent,

Wurstfest since the late ’70s to indulge in the kartoffelpuffer, or

and over the course of this five-decades-old, ten-day hurrah, tens

potato pancake. “I come for the food and the music. Mainly the

of thousands of visitors will fill dance halls, the biergarten and the

polka music,” she says. “And the potato pancakes—these are the

many, many lines leading to authentic German delicacies.


Nestled on the banks of the Comal River, the nonprofit festival

The pancakes (which usually produce the longest customer

began as the Sausage Festival in 1961—an idea from the then City

lines) are provided by the New Braunfels Rotary Club, a nonprofit

Meat Inspector Ed A. Grist, to boost the economy and attract vis-

that donates everything raised from the food booth to charities.

itors to New Braunfels. The first event garnered a crowd of about

Stoney Williams, chair of the Wurstfest fund–raiser for the club,

2,000 participants, as well as worldwide attention—particularly

notes that this signature item is the biggest moneymaker for the

in Canada, Germany and most major U.S. cities. Over the years,

festival. “We use an old German recipe—older than the festival

attendance has continued to grow by the thousands.

itself. But it’s been modified over the years for taste.” Fans love

Just inside ye olde Marketplatz, Martin Palm, one of the proud

the salty, crispy outside surrounding a softer, fluffier inside, and a

chefs who has preserved and shared his family’s recipes since

dollop of applesauce balances the sweet-to-savory. A Munich brat

they had the honor of securing a booth at the festival in 1966, is

is often ordered on the side.

preparing for the day. “My parents immigrated in 1965 and be-

Other favorite foods include deep-fried sauerkraut balls, sau-

came part of the Wurst Association in 1966,” he says. “My dad was

sage on a roll or stick, funnel cakes, strudels and big soft pretzels,

a chef, and Mom…was just a real good cook. The Wurst stew we

all of which go amazingly well with—big surprise—beer. German

serve is Dad’s original recipe.”

brewmasters apparently shared a flavor obsession with their fel-

The stew is heady, and fragrant with carrots, bell pepper, cel-

low cooks, so much so that the Reinheitsgebot, or “Beer Purity

ery, myriad spices and, of course, plenty of handmade sausage—

Law”—a law that governs a beer’s quality, crispness, golden col-

perfect for cup-warming the hands and pleasing the belly during

or and floral notes, all of which make it pair well with this par-

the first chills of November. Palm is also one of the few left at

ticular cuisine—has been enforced in Germany since the 1500s.

the festival who serves a traditional “dinner plate” (variety plates

This means that pilsners are especially good at cutting through

were a huge part of German tradition until the late ’70s when sit-

spice while resetting the palate in between trying different fla-

down dinners went out of fashion). Palm describes the dinner

vors, and Oktoberfests, dunkels and wheat beers are offered on

plate as the “best bang for your buck,” and it includes potato sal-

draft throughout the festival to enhance meals and overall food

ad, sauerkraut and your choice of brat—either bier (mild smoke


flavor and made with spices pulled from vats of beer), smoked

Walking among the bright alpine clothing, cooked meats and

(heavy smoke flavor made from cuts of beef and pork) or tradi-

thrumming polka music, the pride and passion invested in this

tional Munich (white in color and made from cuts of beef, pork

event are palpable—tying together multiple families and gener-

and veal that have been cooked lightly with spices).

ations. Wurstfest may have started as a simple way to celebrate

Of course, the accompanying sauerkraut is handmade, too, from his mom’s long-standing family recipe—a blend of kraut,

sausage and boost the local economy, but it’s evolved into something much deeper and more complex. Prost! EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



edible ROAD TRIP



combination of fam-

for nightly standout meals

ily, friends and food

like ours, which featured ten-

is a consistent theme

der, grilled gulf shrimp with

for our camping getaways,

crispy garden salad; fresh

and on our most recent trip

black drum “fish and chips”

to Port Aransas for the long

with hand-cut french fries,

Easter weekend, we were for-

crunchy coleslaw and grilled

tunate to include all three.

artichokes; impossibly fresh

Once our raucous caravan of

ceviche; and a grilled rack

adults, kids, dogs and stocked

of spring lamb with roasted

camper trailers had snaked

rosemary new potatoes.

its way down the coast to the

Working as a team and

beach, we released the excit-

having a full-size barbecue

ed kids and dogs, set up base

grill are paramount for pull-

camp at the camper park and

ing off this sort of rustic but

began a busy, but relaxing,

semi-complex fare. Prepared-


ness is key, and camping near

The park we love offers

the beach in a trailer certain-

plenty of activities for kids

ly makes the transportation

and adults alike. A short walk

and storage of food and cook-

over the dunes puts you face-

ing gear much easier (and

to-face with the lapping Gulf

less sandy!) than tent camp-

Coast waters where beach

ing does. Still, we’ve learned

walks, swimming, shell col-

a few things over the years,



such as thoroughly thinking

ments and endless moments

through what we’ll be prepar-

of toes-in-the-sand hypnosis

ing, and bringing only those

are the perfect way to un-

ingredients needed for each

wind from an overscheduled,

meal; and making lists of the

stressed lifestyle. And an af-

implements and cooking con-


ternoon of fishing on the nearby jetty is not only challenging

tainers (both the number and size) needed for preparation as

and fun, but could produce a couple of nice sheepshead fish for

well as what we’ll specifically need to serve it. We’re also real-

an evening appetizer of ceviche. Which brings us to the food.

istic about portion sizes: Extra food and leftovers can be a big

Our trips have always been a testament to the fact that campout

hassle on a camping trip and can significantly increase the time

food doesn’t have to be limited to the admittedly tasty, but expect-

and effort in cleaning up. We always take into account what type

ed, hot dogs and hamburgers. Of course, four-star cuisine isn’t

of dinnerware and utensils will be necessary for any given meal.

the goal, but enjoying a satisfying, homemade and somewhat

And we’ve become huge fans of the plastic baskets with wax

sophisticated meal under the stars can make for more memo-

paper liners found at most restaurant supply stores—they’re not

rable times. And sharing meal plans and cooking duties with

only user-friendly, especially for the kids, but they make cleanup

traveling companions lessens each family’s workload and allows

a breeze.





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Serves 4–6 1 lb. cleaned, fresh sheepshead fish (or any kind of whitefish—also may include small scallops and shrimp) Juice from 8–12 limes and lemons 12 oz. pico de gallo (store-bought or homemade) 1 bunch cilantro, chopped 2 large or 3 small avocados, diced Salt and pepper, to taste Garlic powder and onion powder, to taste

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Cut the fish into bite-size cubes and put into a large bowl. Pour the lime and lemon juice over the fish—making sure the fish is covered with the juice. Let the fish marinate until it is opaque (unrefrigerated for about 3 to 4 hours and stirred occasionally or in the refrigerator overnight). When the fish is opaque, drain and reserve the juice. Add the pico de gallo to the fish and stir. The fish and pico de gallo should be balanced so that there’s more fish overall, but still enough pico to taste in every bite. Add the cilantro, salt, pepper, onion and garlic powders and enough of the reserved fruit juices to make the ingredients loose and citrusy. Add the avocados just before serving and gently stir. Keep chilled and serve with crackers, tortilla chips or pita chips.

BEACH BLANKET FISH FRY Serves 4–6 10–12 gulf black drum fillets (about 5 oz. each) 1 gal. peanut oil 1 c. self-rising flour (plus more for dredging) 1 t. mustard powder 1 t. baking soda 1 t. salt 1 t. mixed dried herbs (your favorite combination) 1½ T. sugar 8–12 oz. lager beer (enough to produce a batter consistency) In a large fryer, heat the oil to 375° (we used an outdoor fryer). Make the batter by combining the flour, mustard powder, baking soda, salt, herbs, sugar and beer in a large bowl. Dredge the fish fillets in flour before dipping into the batter mix. Carefully drop the fish into oil and cook until golden brown—approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve.

COOLING COLE SLAW Serves 4–8 For the slaw: ½ cup sesame seeds 1 c. slivered almonds 2 packages ramen noodles, broken into small pieces 1 head fresh white cabbage, shredded 4 green onions, chopped fine

For the dressing: 1 c. olive oil 1 /³ c. white rice wine vinegar ¼ c. sugar 1½ t. salt 1 t. pepper

Carefully toast the sesame seeds, almonds and dry noodles until golden. Place all of the ingredients for the slaw into a large bowl. Mix together the ingredients for the dressing and pour over the slaw. Mix well and chill until ready to serve. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



ARTICHOKES NANCY Serves 4 This dish gets its name from Nancy Butlin, one of our traveling companions, who has tweaked and adapted this recipe over the years to get it to its current, and very popular, form. 2 large artichokes For the remoulade sauce: ¾ c. mayonnaise 2 green onions, chopped Juice from 1 lemon 1 T. whole-grain mustard 2 T. ketchup 2 T. chopped fresh cilantro or parsley 2 garlic cloves, crushed Salt and pepper, to taste 3 or more dashes cayenne hot sauce

Heat a grill to medium heat. In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the remoulade and chill. In a blender or food processor, combine all of the ingredients for the marinade. Wash the artichokes and trim the leaf points if sharp. Cut the artichokes in half length-wise, then steam the halves in a steamer basket over boiling water for 20 to 25 minutes—flipping them over halfway. Remove the artichokes and allow to cool, then use a tablespoon to dig out the furry middle parts. Brush the marinade on both sides of the artichokes—making sure to get under the leaves. Then, beginning with the cut-side down first, grill for about 15 minutes. Flip the artichokes and brush with the marinade again. Remove from the grill and serve with remoulade sauce as a dip for the leaves.

For the artichoke marinade: ¼ c. canola oil ¼ c. olive oil 1 /8 t. each salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, celery seed, celery salt, Cajun seasoning, Greek or Italian seasoning Juice from 2 limes 1 T. whole-grain mustard 3 garlic cloves, crushed 1 t. anchovy paste

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wenty years ago, Saint Arnold Brewing Company (named

brewer who had left a stable job in investment banking to test

for the patron saint of hop-pickers and brewers) set out

his hand at mass production. What’s more, he was introducing a

to establish itself in Houston’s Warehouse District. Fast

somewhat bitter, no-name beer to a culture that religiously bought

forward to the present day and the award-winning craft brewery

light, name-brand brew and wasn’t familiar with terms such as

has accomplished that and much more. The urban brewhouse’s

“hops” or “IPA.” “Back then, it wasn’t like people described the

sales have soared over the past few years (reaching an average of

types of beers they liked to drink. They mostly stuck with brands,

nearly 55,000 barrels last year), but it’s the widespread influence

like Coors Light or Budweiser,” says Wagner. “Now, consumers

the ale enterprise has bestowed upon the Texas brewing industry

can easily recite the spectrum of styles and flavors of beers they

as a whole that makes Saint Arnold’s headquarters a traveler’s

drink, like IPAs and Hefeweizen.”


That once-mundane beer culture has been literally trans-

When Brock Wagner launched Saint Arnold Brewing Compa-

formed before Wagner’s eyes. In the early days, Saint Arnold’s

ny in 1994 with just a simple amber ale, he was embarking upon

Saturday tours would pull in anywhere from two to 20 visitors.

operating one of the first craft breweries in the state. In the years

Compare that to the nearly 1,000 that crowd in on any given Sat-

since Saint Arnold’s inception, up-and-coming breweries around

urday these days, and it’s clear the company has infused some-

Texas have credited this pioneer craft brewery for firing up the

thing viral into its fizzy, hoppy waters.

immense diversity we’re witnessing in the industry today. “Craft

But none of this happened overnight. In fact, Wagner says his

breweries were unheard of,” he says, “so I wasn’t sure if we would

team isn’t doing anything much differently than they did in the

take off or if our sales would fall flat.”

early years; it took about a decade for the public to shift to pur-

Wagner was indeed courting a risky business venture. Though

chasing local-purveyor goods and for the brewery to begin no-

he came from a lineage of successful beverage entrepreneurs and

ticing a spike in sales. “We never changed what we were doing,”

grew up living in international beer and wine hubs, such as Bel-

Wagner says. “We didn’t advertise around the city or preach to

gium and Burgundy, at that time he was merely a savvy home-

people about craft beer. We focused on quality and consistency. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



By the mid-two thousands, I think it had sunk into the psyche of beer drinkers that beer was about more than buying a brand. That’s when people really started coming out to see what we were doing here.” The Saint Arnold’s warehouse, with its worn, red-brick facade, now serves as an entertaining destination for out-of-towners and locals alike. Against a backdrop of comical Saint Arnold murals and the giant steel brewing tanks, patrons play board games, relax at

“Back then, it wasn’t like people described the types of beers they liked to drink. They mostly stuck with brands, like Coors Light or Budweiser.” —Brock Wagner

grandiose picnic tables and order from a menu of New American dishes. Over in the beer hall on a recent Saturday, people from all

ery few months that almost always sell out within two hours of

walks of life engaged in a range of celebration milestones—from

hitting store shelves. “With the Divine Series, I never intended

21st birthdays and Houston Texans tailgates, to college gradua-

to create a product that makes anyone wait in line,” Wagner says.

tions and long-delayed Texas road trips. But whatever the occa-

“But I’ve learned that most people actually enjoy the time it takes

sion, it’s clear the visitors all come for one thing: the libations.

to get their hands on the beer.”

Wagner and his team of 60 employees have crafted a selection

In the years since Saint Arnold’s opening, young breweries,

of permanent and seasonal drinks that conjure cult-like follow-

such as Deep Ellum Brewing Co., Pedernales Brewing Co., Dodg-

ings. A few include the Fancy Lawnmower, a citrusy, hoppy, Ger-

ing Duck Brewhaus and Austin Beerworks, have popped up across

man-style beer; the Endeavour, a silky, strong, double IPA; Elissa

the state—leaving plenty of room for diversity and competition

IPA, a malty-bodied, traditional India pale ale; Summer Pils, a

in the craft playing field. Yet, there’s something special about vis-

warm-weather, aromatic, sweet beer; and an ever-popular Divine

iting one of Texas’ original craft breweries that awakens a deep

Reserve series, which releases small batches around Houston ev-

sense of pride in all beer-drinking Texans.

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PASSPORT to local



n Amsterdam, a visitor quickly

Today, the first barrel is auctioned off for

grows accustomed to the winding

charity. In 2012, a barrel of just 45 fish

canals, the throngs of bikes, the in-

heralded the season by selling for a re-

evitable coffee shops loaded with tour-

cord €95,000 (approximately $130,000).

ists…and lekker—a word so pervasive

Next, the catch is off to market, where

that it had been seared into my memory

it’s prepared in much the same way as in

by the end of my first day in Holland.

medieval ages. The head is removed and

When I learned that lekker literally

the body gutted, but the pancreas left

means “tasty” or “luscious,” I was a tad

intact (along with a long soak in a brine

confused—the Netherlands, after all, ar-

bath, the pancreas aids in preservation

en’t exactly known for gastronomy. Be

and helps develop the signature flavor of

that as it may, the Dutch are proud of

the flesh). The fillets are then left to ma-

their cuisine—happily touting the su-

ture in small, wooden barrels for several

periority of their beer, poffertjes (mini

months. Finally, it’s time to eat.

pancake-like snacks topped with butter

If you’re outside Amsterdam, the

and powdered sugar) and stroopwafels

preferred technique involves plucking

(thin waffle cookies with a chewy car-

the fish by the tail, tilting your head

amel filling). But the food considered

back and lowering the body into your

most lekker of all is Hollandse nieuwe,

mouth. Inside Amsterdam, however, this

the season’s first herring.

maneuver is considered gauche at best.

For more than 600 years, herring has been a staple of the

Here, you’ll find canal-side stands selling dainty paper plates

Dutch diet. The fish was, and is, plentiful and easy to catch, rel-

of herring cut into bite-sized pieces. Locals seem unanimous in

atively inexpensive and loaded with fat and nutrients. Over the

their adoration of the accompanying pickles and chopped onions,

centuries, such practicality turned to preference, and locals now

while the uninitiated sometimes edge in with a more tame herring

eagerly anticipate the official arrival of herring season each June,

broodje, or sandwich. Either way, the snack comes with a tooth-

when the schools are at their best. Vlaagetjesdag, or Flag Day,

pick topped with a Dutch flag, tiny and proud.

is celebrated throughout the country, but the biggest festival has

I sampled my first Hollandse nieuwe at Stubbe’s—widely re-

been held in a seaside village just outside of The Hague for more

garded as the best herring stand in Amsterdam. I skirted a few

than 60 years. Here, townspeople and tourists gather in Dutch

bikes and elbowed my way to a spot at a standing table. The man

costume amid music, games and handicrafts in wait for the fleet

behind the counter pointed to a bread roll and nodded, but I

returning with the first of the season’s silvery swimmers.

shook my head in the direction of my neighbors, who had the real

Soon, everyone knows the quality of the entire haul: the weight,

deal. I wanted to taste the full flavor of the herring. The vendor

the size, the fat content and the sheer number of herring about to

smiled in approval and placed the shimmering fish before me. I

hit the market. Traditionally, the captain of the first ship to arrive

speared a slice, tossed it back and chewed. The flesh was slightly

in port had the honor of presenting a crate of herring to the queen.

firm, buttery and faintly sweet—in a word, lekker.





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farm STAY


t Winfield Farm, a 35-acre patch of pastoral heaven in Red Rock just southeast of Austin, visitors can live out their agrarian fantasies (or perhaps learn a bit of the reality of

them from someone who’s been there) by staying at Winfield’s se-


rene and utterly charming B&B named Hotel California. “So many people want to escape the city, and they want this idyllic little country life,” says Govinda Hough, who moved with her family from California to the property in 2007, and now manages a diversified organic operation that produces hay, vegetables, edible flowers, herbs, fruits, nuts, eggs, sprouts, preserves, pickles and more. “This just gives them a little piece of it; they can really see what’s involved in having a farm.” Govinda does the bulk of the farm work herself with some assistance from her husband Jason Hough—a Travis County Sheriff’s deputy—their two teenage children, Matthew and Madison, a flock


of about 60 feathered “ladies,” some cats and a hedgehog. This often means long hours and an endless laundry list of tasks, such as mowing, picking, planting, feeding, canning and harvesting, as well


as some of the more unsavory chores. “The reality of it is, you’re dealing with chicken poop,” says Govinda with a laugh. “It’s like everyone thinks those eggs are so beautiful. Well, yeah—but you’ve got to go to the back of that stinky chicken house and pick up the eggs, and your hands are going to hit chicken poop.” In contrast, B&B guests get to experience something more akin to five-star luxury—despite its affordable, $105-a-night price. Outside the cabin that accommodates two are sprays of milky-white roses and potted herbs; inside are warm, California-gold walls appointed with 1930s-era postcards of landmarks in Los Angeles and San Diego, a double bed covered with an antique chenille coverlet and other vintage linens, plus other early 20th-century pieces. Sure, if visitors want a hot meal, they’ll need to cook it—either in the kitchenette using an electric skillet or crock-pot, or out on the patio using their own personal barbecue—but Govinda keeps the cabin stocked with goodies, such as her homemade preserves, cream-on-the-top milk from Full Quiver Farms, free-range chicken eggs from her flock, locally sourced fruits, artisanal breads from Baguette et Chocolat and even granola from Texas French Bread. Plus, boarders are encouraged to forage the four acres of gardens for everything from Swiss chard to the kind of cilantro that Dai Due chef, Jesse Griffiths, most prefers for his wild boar tacos. Some guests enjoy feeding carrots to the family’s three rescue horses—which includes Caspian, a friendly, full-grown equine who EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



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Play Outside! thinks he’s a foal—while others prefer to take a midnight walk through the complete darkness of the back hay fields for some top-drawer, deep-in-the-heart-of-Texas stargazing. “There are no lights anywhere,” Govinda says. “It’s amazingly quiet, with a perfect view of the Milky Way.” Anne York’s husband booked Hotel California last year for her and their infant son to have a safe and relaxing long weekend at the cabin while he was away on business. “We loved it,” she recalls. “It was so cozy. We were able to just roam the land. [The horses] would meander back into the back fields and I really like doing photography, so I took a ton of photos of the horses and other wildlife and the sunset.” But it was the cabin’s provisions and the fresh produce from the gardens that forever converted York into a fan and locavore. “Honestly, it was a completely different taste, and the colors were more vibrant,” notes York, who now buys Govinda’s products each week at the Barton Creek Farmers Market. “It was far better than the organics you can find at the grocery store. I really got a sense that the business practices she has are really high, and I got to see for myself what it means to have a truly organic garden.” Fellow farmer Håkan Ward, who came all the way from southern Sweden with his wife for a visit to Hotel California, says they had a nice experience dancing at Watterson Hall just down the road, and particularly enjoyed the B&B’s rustic setting coupled with its convenient location. “It was very nice and peaceful,” he says. “But quite close to Austin and Bastrop, so it was in the countryside, but not so far away from Bastrop, where there was a lot of shopping.” While guests most often prize the tranquility of the experience, Govinda says visiting Winfield Farm is also a perfect opportunity for those who wish to learn more about the realities of sustainable farming. “Everybody I talk to says, Oh my gosh, you’re living my dream, and that is being on an organic farm, living in the country and having a small business,” Govinda explains. “When they come

Just 10 miles south of downtown Austin! Play in the wonderous new Family Garden, stroll through beautiful native gardens, and swing under live oak trees. Then, cool off in the café, check out the exhibit and art galleries, and shop at the store.

out here, they actually get to have a piece of that. If I had had a place like this to come out to, I would have jumped into this whole business with a little more understanding of what is needed and what is involved.” You can find Winfield Farm at Barton Creek Farmers Market on Saturdays and at Lone Star Farmers Market on Sundays. Find





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PASSPORT to local



he tradition of the London pub is as old and storied as the city itself. Bars of all kinds have been the capital’s social hub since the days of Roman rule—shape-shifting

throughout the ages into taverns, alehouses, inns and most recently, gastropubs. Sure, plenty of joints still dole out dusty bags of cheese biscuits (that’s crackers to us Americans), but the gastropub shines through as a beacon of the British food revival. Where there were once pickled eggs fished from murky jars, there are now crispy duck eggs with truffle; fried pork-fat “scratchings” have made way for venison terrines; and steak-and-ale pies have been shelved for pad thai. But don’t be fooled that these joints are just quasi-restaurants with fancy ingredients. It’s important to remember that a gastropub is, first and foremost, a pub—simply one that happens to serve quality food. And with the majority of the gastropub’s focus being on beverages and community, menus are blissfully unrestricted by theme, wide open to interpretation and free to wander the map—hopscotching from cuisine to cuisine. Here’s a crawl through some of London’s best gastropubs. The Eagle 159 Farringdon Rd. Bloomsbury

by Hampstead Heath. They’ll alternate between the bar and the crackling fireplace—stopping every once in a while to pat a dog underfoot. Eventually, after a few pints, they’ll tuck into a classic roast of 28-day, dry-aged rib eye with Yorkshire pudding, or may-

This is gastropub ground zero. Since 1991, The Eagle has been

be crispy beer-battered haddock with minted, mushy peas. The

credited with bringing quality food to the pub scene, and has

menu may be full of classics at The Spaniards Inn, but these are

been buzzing with customers ever since. The once-revolutionary

classics done to perfection.

Photography courtesy of The Spaniards Inn

open kitchen prints a new menu twice daily—focusing on hearty dishes such as lentils with sausages, beef tagines and a signature

The Harwood Arms

steak sandwich. Service is gruff at best, but just take it as a re-

27 Walham Grove

minder that you are, indeed, still in a pub.

West Brompton

The Spaniards Inn Spaniards Road Hampstead

Don’t quote me on this, but I think that The Harwood Arms may be the only pub in history to lay claim to both a rousing quiz night and a Michelin star. Here, you’ll find the perfect balance of refinement and homey comfort in dishes designed to show-

Keats wrote poetry here, Dickens was a frequent patron and the

case local produce and wild Berkshire game. Menu items, such

place drips with creaky, 16th-century charm. But despite its his-

as treacle-cured smoked salmon with pickled apple, whiskey and

toric notoriety, The Spaniards Inn manages to avoid gimmick and

watercress, and lamb neck with potato dumplings, artichokes and

remain a true local’s hangout. On Sundays, there will be families

Gentleman’s Relish are distinctly English in character and work

and friends in muddy “wellies” mingling after a jaunt in near-

in harmony with the well-stocked bar of British ales and ciders. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM




followed suit—confusing tourists and expats alike—by offering

5 Regent St.

curry with Carlsberg. Amongst the jumble of Churchill memo-

Kensal Green

rabilia, flags and wicker baskets, you’ll find a menu managed by

Since emerging in the early ’90s, gastropubs have gone from cool to stale and back to cool again. And leading the recent resurgence is Parlour—a funky pub that slings bold meals throughout the

an in-house Thai family, featuring things like spring rolls, ginger-pork stir-fry and a jungle curry that begs for the cooling solace of a pint. Perhaps that’s the point.

day, and in more ways than just flavor. Reserving a seat at the Chef’s Table is akin to buying a ticket to a private show. Music is blasted through headphones, dessert is “painted” on the table


in a Pollock-meets-Adria flurry and occasional flames burst from

Biscuits: Cookies or crackers

a blowtorch. A la carte items served from the safety of the main

Bubble and Squeak: A dish made from boiled vegetables and potatoes

dining room are equally creative; the chestnut hummus is sweet

Crisps: Potato chips

and mysterious, while an orb of Chicken Kyiv seems to defy grav-

Chips: French fries

ity. Despite the madcap performances, though, Parlour is a neighborhood spot—meaning you can still get a table. And you should.

Digestive: A round cookie to be dunked in tea Faggots: Meatballs wrapped in caul fat

The Churchill Arms

Fairy Cakes: Cupcakes

119 Kensington Church St.

Gentleman’s Relish: Anchovy paste also known as patum peperium

Notting Hill

Jelly: Jell-O (In the U.K., it’s a peanut butter and jam sandwich.)

The Churchill Arms is famous for many things. It was once the

Moreish: Any food you want to eat more of

watering hole of Winston’s grandparents, its facade is bedecked

Nose Bag: Slang for a bag of crisps one might nosh while drinking beer

with award-winning hanging flower baskets and it was the first

Rashers: Bacon

pub to serve…Thai food. Yes, this combo is admittedly incongru-

Rocket: Arugula

ous, but The Churchill Arms has turned the whole Thai-food-in-

Soldiers: Rectangles of toast used to dip into soft-boiled egg yolks

pubs thing into a wildly popular trend, and many other pubs have

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CHESTNUT HUMMUS WITH ROSEMARY-SHERRY CARAMEL AND ROSEMARY FLATBREAD Courtesy of Parlour Makes 2 cups Make the rosemary water for the flatbread the night before, and make the rosemary-sherry caramel at least a day before, or longer, if possible. For the rosemary-sherry caramel: 9 oz. sugar 3 oz. water 3½ oz. sherry vinegar 1 sprig fresh rosemary Make a wet caramel by cooking the water and sugar together over medium to medium-high heat until the sugar turns the color of an old penny. Remove from the heat and add the vinegar (be careful, it will spit). Stir, then add the sprig of rosemary. Cool and store in the fridge. When ready to use, bring to room temperature and remove the rosemary sprig. Keeps for months. For the rosemary flatbread: 7 oz. bread flour 1 t. salt 3½ oz. rosemary water 1 T. chopped parsley The day before making the flatbread, bring a half-liter of water to a boil, add one bunch of rosemary, remove from the heat, cover and leave to infuse overnight. The next day, strain the water and

reserve. Place the flour and salt into a mixer and mix. While the mixer is running, add enough of the rosemary water to achieve a dough consistency. Add the chopped parsley and mix again. Divide the dough into 2½ oz. portions and roll out (not too flat). Cook the rounds in a 400° oven on a dry sheet pan, until lightly brown on both sides. Remove from the oven, then carefully “puff ” each round over a gas or electric burner until light and “pittery.” Keep warm. For the hummus: 8 oz. water 17 oz. vacuum-packed whole chestnuts (a couple reserved for garnish) 1 T. sugar 1 t. salt

1 garlic clove 1 T. butter (optional) 3½ oz. olive oil Lemon juice, to taste 2 ribs celery, small dice Parsley, for garnish Grated chestnut, for garnish

Add the water, chestnuts and sugar to a pan and boil until the chestnuts are soft. Transfer the mixture to a blender, add the salt, garlic and butter (if using) and, while the blender is running, slowly add the olive oil until smooth. Check for seasoning—possibly adding a bit more water to make the right consistency. Add lemon juice to taste and transfer hummus to a piping bag fitted with a large tip. To serve, pipe a generous “splodge” of hummus into the center of a small bowl, top with some celery and parsley leaves, drizzle with the sherry caramel and finish with some grated chestnut over the top. Serve with the warm flatbread.




PASSPORT to local



ama says don’t leave home without your smartphone,

Netherlands or a medieval suite in the Jewish quarter in Girona,

but first make sure you have unlimited text and data

Spain—offer more privacy, but accommodations of both types

download or you’ll come home from Europe with a

run the gamut from cheap to ultra-luxurious. Best of all, Airbnb

phone bill bigger than Texas. Ask your cellphone provider for

allows those of us who desire to “do as the Romans do” to trade

their best travel options. For a small fee, my provider allowed

our chain restaurant and hotel Americanisms for a more unique

me to use my U.S. number while in Europe—to phone home or

and authentic experience when traveling abroad.

call my traveling companions, who also had U.S. numbers—and

To truly learn the lay and way of the land, consider agritour-

gave me unlimited data download and texting so I could freely

ism at a farm or vineyard. For example, through, I

use my apps and GPS. International calls were still very expen-

found Tenuta Maraveja—a charming

sive, but I didn’t use my phone for talking. Instead, I used it to

B&B, winery and vineyard in the Beri-

keep from becoming lost; to book trains, accommodations and

ci hills, a short distance from the his-

dinner reservations; and to research a destination’s information,

toric center of Vicenza, Italy. Owner

such as museum hours, history and photography. Here are some

Gildo Gennari prepared a wonderful

things I learned along the way.

Barolo risotto for us, and took us to a

Before leaving home, download the

sagra (festival) in a neighboring village

TripAdvisor app—used by Europe-

where we tasted all the freshly pressed,

ans more than any other travel review

but not yet fermented, juice from the region. We also received an

service—to peruse reviews from locals

introduction to grappa as the vinaccia (remains from the wine

and visitors alike on restaurants, hotels

pressings) were being hauled away in truck-sized bags to the dis-

and B&Bs. For my trip, I discovered

tilleries. Other agritourism sites for Italy include and

that there was a little-known chef-

owned B&B across the street from the

EuroGites, the European Federation of Rural Tourism, gives

coast guard docks near the Leonardo da Vinci airport in Rome.

similar choices for 27 countries in Europe, and at visiteurope.

I slept well in its modern rooms and dined on the Michelin-star

com/plan/where-to-stay/pensions-and-gites you’ll find a por-

restaurant’s specialty of local fish and seafood. Thanks to TripAd-

tal for all of the members’ national or

visor, the experience ranked as the best of that trip, and since

regional websites with links to several

the B&B was located less than 10 minutes from the airport, it

apps to help locate the perfect rural,

saved me untold early morning travel anxiety.

country or farm accommodations. This is extremely popular

site is also a mother lode of travel in-

with young Europeans, and the Airbnb

formation with links to practical, “need

app is a great way to meet locals who

to know” information, such as curren-

will graciously sell you a peek into

cy converters. In fact, a currency con-

their daily lives by sharing space in

vertor is great to have on the phone (I use the one available

their dwelling. Both traveler and host

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are screened, and guests and hosts if you need to translate a local sign or, say,

verify their IDs by connecting to their

directions on a box. Simply point your phone’s camera at the

social networks and scanning their official ID or confirming

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personal details. Not all accommodations are shared with the

languages for the iPhone, and similar camera-based translators

owner, though. Some—such as the incredible houseboats in the

are available for Android phones. And consider downloading a




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If you farm or ranch and are restoring native plants to your landscape for wildlife habitat and livestock forage, you’ve probably bought seeds from the Neimans.

Photography courtesy of Native American Seed


ative American Seed is a seed propagation farm and

conservation organizations, you’ve probably heard Bill Neiman

seed cleaning and sales business, located a few miles

speak about native plants and his long and varied work with them.

from Junction, Texas. The 262-acre property includes a

The Neimans specialize not just in propagating and harvesting

mile of frontage on the Llano River—the source of irrigation wa-

seeds, but also in designing and implementing ecological resto-

ter for the 60 acres devoted to cultivating native plants for seed.

ration projects on large private and public lands, including a 2013

In addition to the farm’s riparian habitat, the acreage encom-

job for Texas Parks and Wildlife, restoring tall-grass prairie plants

passes bottomland hardwood forest, an alluvial flood plain and

to the San Jacinto Battleground. Though Bill often describes him-

uplands. The business is owned and operated by two generations

self as a refugee from urban sprawl, much of the Neimans’ work

of the Neiman family—Bill and Jan, who founded it near Dallas

takes place in cities such as San Antonio, Dallas and Houston,

in 1988 and relocated it to Junction in 1995, and their children

and provides an antidote to the many ills of sprawl. As awareness

Emily and Weston. After finishing college and working brief-

of the role of native plants in healthy ecosystems grows both in

ly elsewhere, Emily and Weston have returned home to work

urban and rural areas, the Neimans’ seed and restoration work is

with their parents. The Neimans harvest seeds not only from the

flourishing more than ever; they now count 20 full-time employ-

plants they cultivate, but also from widely scattered remnants

ees and currently sell 30 mixes of 170 individual plant species.

of the prairie, and their business is the foremost seed source for

While seeds and restoration projects form the core of the Nei-

numerous plant species native to the ecosystems of Texas and

mans’ business, a smaller and lesser-known enterprise has been

surrounding states, including those of northern Mexico.

coming along in recent years: ecotourism. Overnight accommo-

If you farm or ranch and are restoring native plants to your

dations are now available on the farm in either the Hacienda Ma-

landscape for wildlife habitat and livestock forage, you’ve prob-

ria or Cool River Cabin. The two-story hacienda—on a low mesa

ably bought seeds from the Neimans. If you live in the city and

overlooking the farm and river valley—has two bedrooms, five

cultivate native plants on your property or are involved in native

bathrooms, a kitchen, bar, patio and meeting room. It houses up

plant projects in parks and other spaces, you’ve probably bought

to eight people overnight and accommodates up to 50 for day or

seeds from the Neimans, too. And if you attend conferences of

evening meetings or parties, including wedding receptions. Some

Opposite page: Native American Seed Farm fields. Top: painted bunting; scrambled eggs; winecups. Bottom: Cool River cabin bedroom; Texas cupgrass; private access on the Llano River.

distance from the hacienda, the cabin sits between the cultivated

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fields and a hardwood forest growing along the riverbank. With two bedrooms, a sleeping loft, two bathrooms, a kitchen and a living-dining area, it accommodates up to six people. I rented the cabin for the first time 14 months ago, and as I write this article, I’m occupying it for my eighth time. I love road trips into the west—to the Trans-Pecos and on to New Mexico and sometimes Colorado—and since becoming aware of the lodging options at Native American Seed, I’ve made the farm my first stop on the way out and my last stop on my way home. Working landscapes—places where people use natural resources to produce things to sell while also nurturing the ecological health and beauty of the place—appeal to me at least as much as simply scenic landscapes do, and certainly Native American Seed farm is a working landscape and an instructive one. Each cultivated plot of a particular plant is marked with the

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plant’s common and botanical names, and my favorite activity here is to take long walks around the plots and study the features and names of the grasses and flowers—a beautiful exercise in Plant ID 101. On my first visit, the plot nearest the cabin was a riot of yellow Corydalis curvisiliqua, also called “scrambled

eggs”—a new flower for me and a feast for my eyes all day long.


though not the low-growing perennial I know, but a taller annu-

This visit, the same plot is now a wine fest, abloom in winecups, al, Callirhoe leiocarpa, which the Neimans discovered on a back road near the farm. Walking around the plots, I almost always encounter workers hoeing and moving irrigation pipes, and I enjoy chatting with them. Having seen cultivation activities every visit, I look forward to the day when I get to see sowing and harvesting. I also enjoy daily walks to the river, on a path from the cabin through the hardwood forest of mesquites, live oaks and native persimmons swaying above an understory of nopal, agarita, huisache and more. Native white-tailed deer usually appear, and sometimes Axis deer—an exotic breed introduced by neighboring ranchers. The path ultimately winds to a rack of canoes and kayaks available for free to guests, and to a flat rock on the bank that’s a good entry point, though I haven’t yet gone in. I like simply sitting and watching. Once, a pair of wild turkeys foraged for a long time on the opposite bank, and more than once I’ve seen a great blue heron working the shallows. You need not be at the river to see birds, however. They’re everywhere, and with two large water vessels near the cabin to attract them, I see plenty from the porches and the many-windowed main room. This past March, a vermilion flycatcher thrilled me for hours, yesterday it was a painted bunting and today, a roadrunner foraged in nopal and agarita then ambled over to a water vessel. The nights here are as wonderful as the days, offering additional quiet and solitude and a darkness deep and wide enough that you can see the stars and moon in rare brilliance among long swaths of the Milky Way. The only sounds are crickets and frogs and sometimes the wind. With each visit, I think it’s the best trip yet, the most interesting and beautiful and the most restorative—a specialty of Native American Seed farm in more ways than one.




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cooking FRESH



he most memorable bite from a recent trip to Vietnam was

proteins—seafood (especially shrimp) and pork—are abundant,

a single scallop, grilled in its shell and eaten at a low plas-

as well. Yet, despite the worldwide fame of pho—the aromatic

tic table beside a street roaring with motorbikes. The vivid

Vietnamese rice-noodle soup made with beef broth—dishes made

color and scent palette of red chili, chopped mint, salty peanuts

with red meat are typically consumed in very small amounts. In

and sour lime juice draped over the unbelievably fresh seafood

“Into the Vietnamese Kitchen,” author Andrea Nguyen writes that

created the perfect harmony to its tender sweetness. To me, this

Vietnamese cooks developed pho in the 19th century to use beef

dish embodied the beguiling food of Vietnam that Pat Lee—own-

scraps unwanted by the French colonizers. “Some of the cooking

er of the local chain of PhoNatic restaurants—describes as simple

techniques are very French,” says Hong. “Like long-simmered soup

but bold. So simple, in fact, that Vietnamese food is easy to cook

stocks that are skimmed until they’re clear.” And the Chinese, who

in home kitchens, as long as there’s a basic understanding of the

also occupied the country at one point, left a marked influence

ingredients, preparation and cooking techniques.

with noodles, steamed buns and simple stir-fries.

Like much of the cuisine in Asia, Vietnamese dishes typical-

“The great thing about learning to cook Vietnamese food,”

ly feature a combination of spicy, sour, bitter, salty and sweet

notes Lee, “is that it’s very versatile and oftentimes includes ex-

notes. According to William Hong, general manager of Elizabeth

perimentation.” Basic equipment works fine—such as a large soup

Street Café, Vietnamese food is inextricably connected to the

pot, to start. A wok is helpful for stir-fries, but a skillet will work

tropical environment—influenced not only by what grows there,

in a pinch. Eventually, you might want to incorporate a mortar

but also by the sweltering climate. Food tends to be light, and

and pestle, mandoline or rice cooker. “It doesn’t hurt to be handy

tropical ingredients such as palm sugar, tamarind and green pa-

with a grill, either,” adds Hong.

paya are copious and easily found. Perhaps the most important

Indeed, grilling is so popular in Vietnam that visitors practi-

ingredient, though, is fish sauce—a potent, salty liquid made

cally trip over meats sizzling on low sidewalk charcoal grills. Lee

from fermented anchovies. The fish sauce in Vietnam, however,

says that some of his favorite street snacks are grilled sea snails

is more understated and less salty than sauces from surrounding

and barbecued octopus. I say that if those sidewalk chefs can pre-


pare delicacies like the grilled scallop I had on the busy streets of

Thanks to Texas’ warm climes, many of the ingredients found in Vietnamese cuisine are also available here. And two popular

Saigon, surely amateur American cooks can make delicious Vietnamese dishes in the convenience of their home kitchens. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



PHO BROTH Courtesy of Elizabeth Street Café Makes 6 quarts This long-simmered stock is the backbone of a good bowl of pho. According to William Hong, roasting or grilling the bones beforehand intensifies the flavor. 12 oz. dried ginger 6 cinnamon sticks 12 star anise 6 whole cloves 1 lb. beef shin bones 1 lb. beef neck bones 4 large onions, rough chop 4 large carrots, rough chop 1 large piece ginger, unpeeled 2 T. salt 1 c. sugar ½ c. kosher salt 2 /³ c. fish sauce (we suggest the Red Boat brand) Place the dried ginger, cinnamon sticks, star anise and cloves in cheesecloth to create a sachet. Tie the ends of the cheesecloth together and set aside. To a large stockpot, add the bones, onions, carrots, fresh ginger and salt, then cover with cold water. Add the sachet of dried ingredients, bring to a rolling boil and skim any foam that develops. Decrease the heat to simmer and cook for 1 hour—occasionally skimming foam. After an hour, add the sugar, kosher salt and fish sauce and simmer for another 2 hours—continuing to skim frequently. After 2 hours, add more water to bring the total volume to 15 quarts, cover the pot, decrease the heat to low and let the broth cook overnight. After the broth has cooled, strain it through a fine strainer. Add cooked beef, rice noodles and fresh herbs to make pho, or use the broth in other soups. It will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or 6 months in the freezer.

BANH XEO (VIETNAMESE CREPE) Courtesy of Elizabeth Street Café Makes 4 This crepe is another example of the French influence on Vietnamese cuisine. Named for the sizzling sound the batter makes as it hits the hot pan, this crepe is filled with pork, shrimp and bean sprouts. It differs from its European counterpart with the inclusion of coconut milk and rice flour. For the crepe batter: 2 c. white rice flour 1 c. unsweetened coconut milk 1 c. cornstarch 4 c. water 2 scallions, sliced thin 1½ t. turmeric Salt, to taste 4 T. vegetable oil For the filling: 3 T. vegetable oil, divided ¾ lb. pork shoulder, sliced into ¼-inch slices ¾ lb. medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and chopped 1 white onion, thinly sliced 1 c. washed mung bean sprouts For the garnish: Red lettuce leaves Iceberg lettuce leaves Fresh mint Nuoc cham Combine the rice flour, coconut milk, cornstarch, water, scallions, turmeric and salt in a mixing bowl. Mix well and let rest for 20 minutes (better if overnight). Heat 1 teaspoon of the vegetable oil in a nonstick skillet, add ¼ of the pork, shrimp and white onion and cook for 30 seconds. Stir the crepe batter then pour ¼ of it into the pan—tilting and swirling the pan to evenly coat the bottom with a thin layer of batter. Sprinkle ¼ cup of the bean sprouts over the crepe and drizzle 2 teaspoons of the vegetable oil around the edges. Cover the skillet and cook over medium heat until the bottom of the crepe is crispy and golden. Using a spatula, fold the crepe in half to form a half moon and slide it onto a plate. Keep warm while making the other three crepes. Serve with the lettuce leaves, fresh mint and nuoc cham.




BANH CUON Courtesy of Elizabeth Street Café Serves 4 This dish is one of William Hong’s favorite recipes from Northern Vietnam. It consists of a thin, almost noodle-like sheet of cooked rice flour batter wrapped around pork and wood ear mushrooms and is served with a tangy dressing and fresh herbs. 4 dried wood ear mushrooms 7 oz. rice flour 2 oz. tapioca flour ½ t. kosher salt 2½ c. cold water 4¼ oz. vegetable oil, divided 4 garlic cloves, sliced thin 4 shallots, diced 10 oz. pork shoulder, sliced thin 1 t. fish sauce (we suggest Red Boat brand)

½ t. sugar Salt and pepper, to taste 1 bunch fresh mint, chopped, for garnish 10 oz. mung bean sprouts, for garnish 2 T. fried shallots, for garnish Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling Nuoc cham, for serving

Cover the dried mushrooms in warm water for 20 minutes, drain, dry and thinly slice. Combine the rice flour, tapioca flour and salt with the water and whisk until the flours are dissolved and the mixture is smooth. Heat a nonstick pan over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil and saute the garlic and shallots until fragrant. Add the pork, mushrooms, fish sauce, sugar and a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir-fry for 4 minutes, then transfer to a bowl and set aside. Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat and add oil to coat base of pan. Pour a small ladle of batter into the pan and swirl to cover the base, creating a thin layer. Cover the pan with a lid and cook for 30 seconds. Remove the lid, slide the mixture onto an oiled cutting board or tray, and place the pork/mushroom mixture atop the batter on one side. Fold the cooked batter over to form a roll, and using a good pair of kitchen shears, cut the roll into 1-inch cross sections. Remove the roll to a plate and top with the fresh mint, bean sprouts, fried shallots and a light drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil. Repeat to make three more servings. Serve with a side of nuoc cham.

SUON RAM MAN (CARAMELIZED PORK RIBS) Courtesy of PhoNatic Serves 4 When Pat Lee was a child, his mother and grandmother often cooked simple dishes using few ingredients. This dish is one of them, and it’s now one of his beloved comfort foods. 2 lb. baby-back or pork spare ribs, cut into small, 1- to 1½inch cubes 1 T. minced garlic 1 T. minced shallots 1 t. kosher salt 1 t. ground black pepper

4 T. sugar 3 T. fish sauce ½ c. coconut juice Black pepper, chopped green onions, chopped cilantro, for garnish

Bring a small pot of water to a boil and boil the ribs for 2 or 3 minutes to remove impurities. Place the ribs into a colander, rinse thoroughly and drain. Season the ribs with the garlic, shallots, salt and ground pepper then set aside to marinate for 30 minutes. Heat a nonstick wok over medium heat, then add the sugar to evenly coat the bottom of wok. Wait patiently as the sugar melts and turns into a caramel color. Add the fish sauce and ribs to the wok and stir until the sugar coats all of the ribs evenly—about 5 minutes. Add the coconut juice and cover. Let the ribs simmer, covered, over medium-low heat for 20 minutes while occasionally stirring. Remove the lid and continue to stir for an additional 15 to 20 minutes over medium heat, or until the liquid reduces by half. Adjust with additional sugar or fish sauce, as needed. Remove from the heat, pour into a serving dish and garnish with the green onions, cilantro and a pinch of ground pepper. Serve with steamed jasmine rice.

NUOC CHAM (FISH-SAUCE DRESSING) Courtesy of PhoNatic Makes approximately 1½ cups This traditional and basic dressing and dip accompanies many Vietnamese dishes and salads—including many of our featured recipes. 1 c. hot water 3 T. sugar 4 T. fish sauce 2 T. lime juice

1 T. minced garlic 1 T. minced sambal oelek (we suggest Huy Fong Foods brand)

Combine the water and sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add all of the other ingredients and stir well. Set aside. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



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This is a different way to use the same Vietnamese pickles found in banh mi sandwiches. For the pickles: 1½ c. water ¼ c. sugar ¼ c. vinegar Pinch salt

½ head white cabbage, thinly sliced 1 carrot, julienned ½ small red onion, thinly sliced

Place the water in a small saucepan and bring to a near boil. Remove from heat and add the sugar, vinegar and salt. Stir until the salt and sugar dissolve. In a mixing bowl, combine the cabbage, carrots and red onion. Pour the vinegar and sugar mixture over the cabbage mixture and refrigerate at least 24 hours. For the chicken: 1 large chicken breast Pinch salt Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add the chicken breast and salt, and boil for about 20 minutes. Remove the chicken and set on plate to cool. Once the chicken has cooled, shred the meat lengthwise and reserve. For the toppings: 2 T. canola oil 1 t. finely minced garlic 1 T. fried shallots

1 T. crushed roasted peanuts 1 T. chopped basil ¾ c. nuoc cham

Heat the canola oil over medium heat and add the garlic. Sauté until the garlic turns light brown. Remove from the heat and let cool. Drain the pickle mixture and place the pickles into a thick plastic freezer bag. Seal the bag, cut a small incision into one corner of the bag and squeeze out as much moisture from the mixture as possible. Remove the contents from the bag and set on a serving platter. Drizzle the canola and garlic mixture over the pickles. Next, add the chicken to cover the salad mixture. Top with shallots, roasted peanuts and basil. When ready to serve, pour the nuoc cham over the salad.

FINDING VIETNAMESE INGREDIENTS Growers at local farmers markets and farm stands produce a surprising selection of vegetables used in Vietnamese cooking—including Thai chilis, lemongrass and Thai basil. The cuisine also calls for more familiar vegetables, such as cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce. MT Supermarket 10901 N. Lamar Blvd. Austin, Texas 78753 This Asian supermarket is owned by Pat Lee’s family and specializes in Southeast Asian and Chinese products, but also carries products from all over the world. You can find almost any Vietnamese ingredient here—including obscure herbs, vegetables and several brands of fish sauce. Springdale Farm 755 Springdale Rd. Austin, Texas 78702 This urban farm grows seasonal lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, cilantro, Thai basil and Thai chilis. Farmstand Wednesday and Saturday. Johnson’s Backyard Garden Another Austin farm that grows seasonal vegetables, such as daikon, Thai chilis and cilantro. Available via farm stands at markets all over town. Tecolote Farm This area farm sometimes grows seasonal long beans, Thai basil, daikon and Vietnamese melon. Available on Saturdays at the SFC Farmers’ Market–Downtown, SFC Farmers’ Market–Sunset Valley and Texas Farmers Market at Cedar Park. Richardson Farms This Rockdale, Texas farm sells locally raised beef, pork and

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Enjoy a two-course dinner for one, just $25*

chicken on Wednesdays at SFC Farmers’ Market–Triangle; on Saturdays at the SFC Farmers’ Market–Downtown, SFC Farmers’ Market–Sunset Valley and at the Barton Creek Farmers Market and on Sundays at Lone Star Farmers Market in Bee Cave.


K&S Seafood K&S sells fresh-caught gulf seafood, such as shrimp, squid, scallops, crab, crabmeat, whole fish and fillets. Available on Saturdays at Texas Farmers Market at Cedar Park and Barton Creek Farmers Market and on Sundays at Texas Farmers Market at Mueller. Simmons Family Farms T hanks to several years of studying horticulture in Thailand, Harry Simmons and his family grow lemongrass, Thai eggplant, Thai basil, Thai chilis, cilantro, kaffir lime leaves, mint and green papaya at their farms in Niederwald and Luling. Their products are available on Saturdays at the SFC Farmers’ Market–Downtown and SFC Farmers’ Market–Sunset Valley.

Find more farmers markets, nurseries and growers resources at

200 Lavaca Street | Austin 78701 | @traceatx EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



PASSPORT to local



erlingua, Texas, is what anyone might call a ghost town—a term particularly apt because of the town’s proximity to the Chisos (Spanish for “ghosts” or “phantoms”) Mountains of Big Bend State Park. In the early 1900s, the town was a quicksilver

mining hub and promised steady work to immigrants. Citizens enjoyed regular mail service, an ice cream shop, a theater and the occasional weekend dance. The industry slowed down dramatically after World War I, however, and the mining company eventually went bankrupt. By the 1970s, the population barely topped 20 residents, but the West Texas landscape is both resilient and enchanting, and that number has been steadily on the rise ever since. When we arrived in Terlingua, feeling languid from the summer sun and dry air, the town certainly seemed eerily desolate. Out of the blanket of desert-tan hues, we could see a few ruins, abandoned cars and only the occasional structurally sound building. On the left, we passed a cemetery of wooden crosses atop piles of stones decorated with colorful beads and flowers; on our right, an abandoned yellow school bus with faded letters reading “Far Flung Adventures.” Behind us, the mountains’ sharp peaks were shrouded by the thick dusty winds, leaving us with the uncanny feeling that we were being watched.

Barely two minutes later, we arrived at the Terlingua Trading Company—that’s where we found almost every person in town. Inside the shop were a number of gifts—from Mexican sugar skulls to a well-curated selection of books—but the focus really seemed to be on a refrigerator full of a variety of cold beers. We were instructed about the procedure: Buy a six-pack at the counter but leave it in the fridge, then write your name on a sheet of paper by the register. Every time you grab one of your brews, add a tally to your name and drink it on the store’s porch. Repeat until you’re out of beer. The Trading Company porch was bustling with tourists and locals alike, though there was one lone gentleman with a white beard, a cowboy hat, a cigarette in hand and a stern gaze who seemed to be overseeing things from his rocking chair in the corner. We spent an easy few hours on the porch learning about Terlingua and its residents. We met Jaime, who builds geodesic domes. He told us that the town is internationally renowned as a chili destination, and about the famed chili cookoff that split into two rival events (they both occur on the first weekend of November). Delores shared the story of the beer-drinking goat from nearby Lajitas that could toss back a bottle quicker than any of us. The goat’s name was Clay Henry and he was voted mayor of Lajitas in the ’80s but has since passed away—allegedly in a goat brawl over a fine lady goat. Later, Delores introduced us to Paul the silversmith, who told us all about the women who have come through Terlingua and broken his heart over the years. Eventually, we moved 10 feet down to grab a bite to eat at the packed Starlight Theatre Restaurant & Saloon. After dinner, we returned to the porch to take in the stunningly starry sky and drink a final glass of whiskey with everyone we’d met. It’s easy to understand how so many have stayed in Terlingua, even if the original intention was just to pass through town. And even though Terlingua’s weekly farmers market, art shows and porch gatherings make it clear that the town is very much alive, those ghostly Chisos Mountains still loom in the distance, whispering warnings that the Texas desert is not for the faint of heart. O pening Page: Driving through the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend. Previous Page (from top left, clockwise): A decorated grave in Terlingua Cemetery; an abandoned building from an old western movie set outside of Terlingua; the Terlingua Trading Company porch. This Page: Terlingua’s welcome sign on the drive into town; a busy breakfast and coffee joint frequented by locals and visitors. E ditor’s note: Edible Austin would like to extend our condolences to the Terlingua community regarding the recent death of well-known resident and La Kiva owner, Glenn Felts.

edible PAST



he absence of the moon combined with a dense fog

gles, hardships and tragedies that came before the modern-day

made the night exceedingly eerie, but rounding the spot

glitz. Some of Texas’ so-called “ghost vineyards” are evidence

on the road known as “dead man’s curve” just south of

of ventures lost, but others have reappeared from the ashes of

Fredericksburg on Route 16 and seeing the ghostly apparition

defeated dreams—rising like the phoenix. In honor of these

of the once-promising and long-abandoned Pedernales Vine-

pioneers, my coauthor, Russ, and I recently gathered on a gray

yards looming in the distance only magnified the effect.

Texas Hill Country eve—each of us bringing wines from our

Tales and speculation about the failed winery (not to be

personal cellars and from winemakers who have tried and lost,

confused with present-day Pedernales Cellars) linger to-

as well as from those who are moving forward from those ear-

day—a mystery from the early days of the Texas wine re-

ly footsteps—to celebrate and resurrect the past bounty of the

naissance. Inside, barrels of wine wait for no one, and the

ghost vineyards and to honor the sacrifices that were made.

guest book lies open with anticipation—the last entry recorded in 1996. Rumors hint, and some argue, that the vine-

Cypress Valley Winery was established in the early ’80s

was the only Texas casualty of the devastating phylloxera,

in Cypress Mill, in Blanco County. Founder Dale Bettis was

the dreaded killer of French and other European vineyards

raised a Texas country boy who went on to achieve a doctor-

in the mid-1800s. Others say the vines suffered from Pierce’s

ate and travel the world as a consultant. However, the siren’s

Disease—spread by the glassy-winged sharper shooter—

song of the soil pulled at his heart. While working in Switzer-

before the condition was better understood in the state.

land, he became enamored with the craft of making wine, and

Whatever happened, visitors walking the once-flourishing

in the late ’70s, Bettis returned to Texas and planted a small,

vineyard are warned by anyone familiar with the grounds to

experimental vineyard on the century-old Goeth Ranch. He

burn their boots when they leave.

used American and French-American hybrid grapes, as well

Modern Texas winery visitors have no idea of the strug54

Cypress Valley Winery

yard fell victim to tainted rootstock from California, and



as Old-World Vitis vinifera grapes, and the early plantings

were encouraging—particularly the performance of the classic

at Cypress Valley. The 2012 Wedding Oak Terre Blanc, made

Old World varietals. Armed with this success, Bettis continued

from Hill Country marsanne and roussanne (both white Rhone

planting and purchased an existing vineyard in Midland.

Valley varietals) was a full-bodied white with an aroma sharp

While Bettis reveled in working in the vineyard, reality dictated

with honey-floral notes followed by clean, lemony-dry and min-

that he continue to work as a consultant to support the fledgling

erally character. And the Wedding Oak Tioja (a blend of Texas

operation. He reached out to Texas A&M University for a student

High Plains tempranillo, Mourvèdre and cabernet sauvignon)

to apprentice in the vineyard, and a young Penny Sue Adams an-

had a fresh aroma of dark cherries and the earthy experience of

swered the call. “The project was much bigger in scope than I ever

High Plains red dirt.

imagined,” Adams says. “There was nothing to compare to in those early days of the Texas wine industry—nor anyone to ask.”

Penny Adams is an unsung Texas treasure—modest of her accomplishments and contributions to the history of the Texas

Adams threw herself into the work of tending the vineyard

wine industry. When asked if she thinks a true Texas style has

and eventual winery, which released its first commercial wines

yet emerged, she replies that it takes a long time. “We’re still

in 1982. And Bettis was so impressed with Adams that he turned


the entire operation over to her and returned to his work—making Adams the first female winemaker in the state of Texas. Her love of the work grew in a few unexpected ways, too. “Dale asked me to marry him within a year,” she recalls with a sigh.

Blue Mountain Vineyards On a path less traveled, the expanse of West Texas desert extends to a veil of blue hazy mountains. A stranger points the

The couple’s operation continued to expand. They added

way to the deteriorated sign marking the once-famed, mile-high

additional vineyard acreage, established a home in the original

Blue Mountain winery and vineyard in the Davis Mountains,

1880s limestone house and had two sons. And their wines were

where mysteries intertwine with the legend of the renowned

gaining a following with consumers and critics alike. Tragically,

Blue Mountain Cabernet.

though, in 1989 Dale passed away and a devastated Adams sold

A walk on the property reveals the old vineyard still ringed

the winery property, their home and the Midland vineyard, and

by tall wire fencing. Inside, the grimaces of dead vines stand

moved to Austin.

outstretched, while a few twining green tendrils whisper of

Adams maintained her dedication to the Texas wine indus-

hope and resurgence. Winemaker Patrick Johnson, who worked

try, and in the ensuing years she became a sought-after consul-

with winery owner Nell Weisbach, recalls the lore of the caber-

tant. When Mike McHenry and a group of investors established

net grapes that once adorned Blue Mountain. “They were simply

a winery in San Saba, Texas, they immediately tapped Adams

perfect,” he says. “The sugar, pH and acidity were all right there

to be their winemaker. Wedding Oak Winery opened in June of

in the vineyard. Once I got the grapes into the winery, they just

2012, in a lovely historic property in downtown San Saba, and

about made wine by themselves.” Johnson admits that the vine-

once again Adams was able to pursue her dreams of producing

yard’s demise over a decade ago was due to Pierce’s Disease.

fine Texas wines.

Then, it was common belief that this affliction was a syndrome

Although the Cypress Valley wines are long gone, we chose

only associated with parts of the state much farther east with

two of Adams’ current wines from Wedding Oak for our ghost

wetter climes. But at Blue Mountain, no one ever discovered

vineyard tasting—to honor the skills and knowledge she forged

why the mysterious infestation spread. Most likely, the last taste of original Blue Mountain Estate Cabernet came from a bottle that lay hidden in the depths of Russ’ personal wine cabinet from the 1999 vintage. Out of the bottle, the wine was purple-black, thick and inky, with clean and refreshing aromatics of cedar, mint and anise, and a pure crisp palate of cassis—the gold standard

Photography courtesy of Penny Adams

of cabernet experiences. Previously, Russ had shared another bottle of the cabernet with winemaker Ben Calais, of Calais Winery, and before tasting, Calais submerged a pH meter into the wine. “This is incredible!” he said. “The pH is three point six—spot-on quality cabernet, and something that’s not seen commonly in Texas cabernets without serious winery adjustment.” Winemaker Penny Adams and Dale Bettis with their son Adam at home at Cypress Creek WInery in 1984.

Since that day, Calais has begun planEDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



At auction in 2013, the Bingham family—for whom Bobby has been a vineyard and winery consultant—bought the Pheasant Ridge Winery and its vineyard. Shortly thereafter, the Binghams announced they would bring Bobby Cox back to Pheasant Ridge Winery as winemaker with their son Daniel Bingham as assistant winemaker. When asked what the biggest surprise was when Bobby and the Binghams finally had a chance to enter the winery after the auction and look around, Bobby thought for a moment, then said, “I found something; something good.” It was some 1996 Pheasant Ridge Estate pinot noir left there by the previous owners who took over after Bobby’s departure. “I’m not going to tell you how good I think it is because you likely won’t believe me,” he teased. “I’m just going to send you a bottle and you decide.” While awaiting the delivery of the package and the opportu-

Ben Calais pouring wine at his Calais Winery in 2010.

nity to taste the wine, the feeling of anticipation built, but was ning his own foray with a cabernet made from grapes grown by

tempered with skepticism. At the ghost vineyard tasting, when

new Blue Mountain winegrower, Jack Wright. In honor of Blue

the cork was finally pulled, we gasped when the cork came apart

Mountain Cabernet and Calais’s new high-altitude adventure, we

into several pieces before being extracted. Regardless, Bobby

tasted Calais’ La Cuvee d’Elme made from grapes grown at New-

was right—the pinot noir was a radiant garnet color and had

som Vineyards on the High Plains west of Lubbock. It’s a blend of

the medium body of bottle-aged Burgundy. It was aromatic with

cabernet sauvignon, merlot and cabernet franc that reveals a red-

the sweetness of cedar-wood and hints of smoke, supported by

black color with aromatics of dry earth and mineral combined with

an essence of sweet strawberry and mineral. All elements were

a deep-black cherry essence. It brought high expectations for Cal-

well integrated—a hallmark of prime pinot noir. Bobby’s wine

ais’ upcoming expedition into the vapors of Blue Mountain.

was the real deal, created by the magic of a moment in time when soil, grape and climate played in synchronicity.

Long before we gathered for our ghost vineyard tasting, Russ

day is dawning for Bobby, and for many of the others who’ve fol-

was in Lubbock where the sky was a bright azure, but the weath-

lowed the successes and mistakes of Texas winemakers past. Of

er report was ominous with sub-freezing temperatures. Weather

course as in the past, some ventures won’t make it, but for others,

notwithstanding, Bobby Cox—a larger-than-life character both in

there are second chances. The legacy and spirit of Texas wine-

stature and reputation among Texas grape-growers, winemakers

making remains strong, and will most definitely carry on as the

and associated brethren—was available to share dinner and wine

crafting of a new wine region continues, one vintage at a time.

at the Newsom Vineyards B&B. Bobby and his wife Jennifer entered the room cradling a red-dust-encrusted magnum of their wine, a 1982 Pheasant Ridge cabernet sauvignon— more than two decades old. All eyes were fixed on the bottle, but as the couple got closer, the focus switched to Bobby’s hands—worn from years of tending Texas vines—and his furrowed face etched with lessons learned at the mercy of Mother Nature and hard economic times. Even after losing the winery under financial duress in the early ’90s, the Coxes spent years sipping their coffee every morning staring across the field at the winery that was no longer theirs. But life goes on. In the early ’80s, Bobby was an acknowledged “young Turk” of the new Texas wine revolution. With help from their parents, he and his wife started the Pheasant Ridge Winery and its estate vineyard on the outskirts of town. But when they looked out over the fields, they didn’t see Lubbock. They saw similarly sun-drenched regions of Spain, Italy and southern Europe that produced excellent wines. 56



Bobby Cox in 2008 demonstrating expected season’s canopy height at a High Plains vineyard.

Top photo courtesy of Ben Calais, Calais Winery; bottom photo courtesy of Russel Kane,

Like wine, winemaking can sometimes be enigmatic. A new

Pheasant Ridge Winery

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Gifts • Housewares • Garden • Hardware • Feed EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



PASSPORT to local



hen taking a stroll through any market in Mexico, one

drinks are known as machacados de frutas. In Veracruz, when

of the first things that catches your eye is the beauti-

sparkling water is added, the name of the drink is champola.

ful range of colors exploding from myriad fruits piled

The major difference between aguas frescas and licuados is that

on stands. Familiar fruits, such as watermelons, pineapples,

the former is water-based and the latter milk-based, thus more fill-

strawberries and mangoes, vie for your attention, alongside oth-

ing. Because many people drink this beverage for breakfast, the

er more exotic varieties, such as guanábanas, chirimoyas, ma-

market stands that sell licuados are particularly popular during the

meys, zapotes and papayas. And it’s common to see people buy-

morning. Many stands let you pick and choose from a number of fla-

ing large cases of these different seasonal delights—the majority

vor combinations that can include vanilla, powdered Mexican cane-

of which will soon be transformed into delicious drinks.

la, sugar, oats, shredded coconut, pecans, granola, cocoa powder and

There are three kinds of fruit drinks that can be found at the

an assortment of fruits and vegetables. Two of my favorite combina-

market stands: aguas frescas, jugos and licuados (“fresh waters,”

tions include strawberry, pecan and vanilla, or the extremely simple

“juices” and “blendeds,” respectively). Aguas frescas, also known

licuado de mamey made from mamey fruit, a delicious tropical Mex-

as aguas de sabor (flavored waters), are sometimes fruit purees

ican fruit that tastes of caramel, vanilla and a hint of coffee.

and sometimes fruit infusions mixed with water. They’re most

Market stands that sell licuados will generally have jugos, as

commonly enjoyed during lunchtime, which is the main and most

well—from the simple-yet-delicious freshly squeezed orange juice or

important meal in Mexico. These drinks are a long-standing tradi-

pressed carrot juice, to the more complicated carrot-orange-papaya

tion in the culture, and used as a healthy alternative to soft drinks.

blend or even the vampiro (vampire), made with carrots, beets and

Commonly, sugar is added for sweetness and flavor, though I pre-

orange juice. A very popular option is the jugo verde (green juice),

fer to use lime juice and lime zest instead, to enhance and stabi-

which some use as an aid to losing weight. Many people incorporate

lize the natural sugar already present in the fruit.

vegetables such as celery, cilantro, parsley and nopal (cactus paddle).

Aguas frescas often contain more than just fruit, water and

And if you should ever find yourself suffering from a night of

sugar. Some include ingredients such as tamarind, rice, chia

“overindulgence of spirits” while in Mexico, head to the nearest

seeds, oats, dried corn, cacao, flor de Jamaica (hibiscus flower)

market and order an off-the-menu blended drink called a polla.

or even vegetables. In some regions of Mexico, the fruit is first

Its blend of orange juice, sweet sherry and raw eggs will have you

muddled and then water, ice and sugar are added. These fruit

back on track in no time.




LICUADO DE FRESA CON NUEZ Serves 4 At my restaurant, El Naranjo, we serve licuados at brunch and use whatever fruits we have on hand. 2 c. strawberries (or mangoes, mameys, bananas, etc.) 1 qt. milk ½ c. pecans 1 t. Mexican vanilla extract Sugar, to taste Place all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. Serve cold.


AGUA DE BETABEL Makes 2½ quarts 1 lb. beets 3 c. freshly squeezed orange juice Simple syrup, to taste Boil or steam beets until tender. Cool to room temperature, then peel. Cut the beets into chunks, place in a blender along with the orange juice and blend well until smooth. Add simple

Agua fresca tip: Always place ice in the individual cups, not in the pitcher.

syrup to taste and refrigerate before serving.

½ c. chia seeds 1 c. warm water 1½ qt. water ¾ c. freshly squeezed lime juice ½ c. simple syrup Stir the chia seeds into the cup of warm water and let them soak for at least 2 hours. Place 1½ quarts of water in a large pitcher, add the chia seeds along with their liquid, and stir in the lime juice and simple syrup. Serve cold—stirring vigorously before serving.

JUGO VERDE Makes 1 large portion

AGUA DE JAMAICA Makes 2 quarts Jamaica (Hibiscus sabdariffa) is a natural diuretic. The less sugar used to make this agua fresca, the more healthful it is. We serve it as a substitute for iced tea and people enjoy it very much.

1 stalk celery ½ c. fresh pineapple ½ nopal paddle Juice of 1 orange 3 sprigs parsley Place all ingredients in a blender, blend and drink immediately.

¾ c. dried Jamaica flowers 2 qt. water, divided Simple syrup, to taste Place the hibiscus flowers in a medium-size pan, cover with 1 quart of water and bring to a boil. Cook for 10 minutes, then remove from the heat and let cool. Strain the liquid into a pitcher and add the other quart of water and simple syrup, to taste. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



edible GARDENS


Above, left to right: Sesbania grandiflora, golden needle, banana blossom, zucchini blossoms, black locust blossoms, waterblommetjies.


hile living and teaching in Thailand, I learned that it

with a salad made from the inner petals of deep magenta banana

was common practice for Thai students to go by nick-

blossoms soaked in a bath of sweet, citrusy, spiced marinade and

names. I immediately appreciated this when, glancing

layered between slivers of onion, carrot, pepper and unripe papaya.

down my class roster to call attendance, I was greeted by names

With a little more research, I discovered flowers in most re-

such as Wannaporn Sukcharoen, Kanokwan Charoenwikkai and

gions of the world are often more at home in a pot or wok than in

Bordeesorn Kunlanantakun. All I had to ask, however, was “Fah?”

a vase. While petals and buds in American cuisine usually accept

“New?” “Mind?”

the role of playful, bright garnishes mostly meant to be admired,

Even though my name is comparatively much less complex, my

these same blossoms take center plate in many other cultures.

new Thai friends insisted upon christening me with a nickname, as

North of Thailand, the Chinese are known for the golden nee-

well. They threw around ideas until finally deciding upon dok khae

dle vegetable, which, although termed a vegetable, is actually

(pronounced “daw care”), and eagerly explained that it’s a type

the edible bud of the daylily. In Hong Kong, it’s called gum jum

of flower—Sesbania grandiflora to be exact—also known as agati,

choi, while further into mainland China, it goes by huang hua

hummingbird tree or scarlet wisteria in English. This tropical plant

cai. Golden needle vegetables are most commonly found dried

is native to Southeast Asia and northern Australia, flourishing in

in Chinese markets and stores, so that when used in stir-fries or

the rich soil and sweltering surrounds. The leaves resemble the

soups, they’re first steeped in water. They’re often cooked with

broad fans of ferns and the oblong flower buds are creamy white

cloud ear (an edible fungus that grows on trees), shredded pork,

and sometimes even vibrant red. What’s more, they’re edible.

scrambled eggs and peanut oil in a sizzling wok to make the

“Edible?” I inquired with raised eyebrows.

classic Chinese dish moo shu pork.

“Yes,” my friends exclaimed with enthusiastic head nods, “Gin

Traveling along the Silk Road, the famous trade route that

dai!” (“Can eat!”). The flower buds are cooked in dishes such as

connects parts of Asia to the Mediterranean Sea, one can find

kaeng som (a remarkably sour fish curry) and kaeng khae (a fla-

another classic, cultural dish that utilizes the flavor of flowers—

vorful, vegetable-laden northern curry). They’re also steamed

one flower, in particular. In Persian and Middle-Eastern cui-

and served with nam phrik (a spicy chili paste) or enjoyed, as

sines, the rose takes liquid form in rosewater and is used to give

many things are in Thailand, battered and fried. I must have still

the beloved confection, Turkish delight, its distinct and aromat-

looked skeptical, because my friends quickly grabbed my hand

ic quality. It’s also poured over baklava and splashed on rice

and led me to the nearest roadside market, where, behold, my

pudding, bringing out the floral notes in cinnamon and honey.

namesakes lay piled upon a vendor’s reed table.

Italians are known to harvest the delicate clusters of black

It didn’t take long for me to start noticing that flowers are used

locust, or acacia honey, blossoms in the spring in order to coat

extensively in broader Asian cuisine. On a weekend trip to Bang-

them in a pastella—a simple batter of flour, water, oil and salt—

kok shortly thereafter, I was dared to eat the fried purple petals of

and deep-fry them. Sprinkled with sugar, these frittered petals,

an orchid. And when I ventured to nearby Vietnam, I fell in love

called fritelle di fiori d’acacia, taste like little kernels of laven-




der. They also fry fiori di zucca, or zucchini blossoms, or stuff

Closer to home, the loroco vine (Fernaldia pandurata) flour-

the golden pockets with various cheeses, herbs and seafood for

ishes in the hot valleys of El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and

roasting. In fact, in Italy the zucchini blossom has come to be

Nicaragua, and the distinct and pungent flavor of its flowers and

synonymous with the splendors of summer and is arguably more

vine, similar to that of asparagus tips, defines the pupusa—the na-

adored than the vegetable itself.

tional dish of El Salvador. Similar to a Mexican gordita, a pupusa

South Africans harvest flowers for their kitchens in late summer. Before blooming, native waterblommetjies (little water

is a thick corn tortilla stuffed with a blend of soft cheese, refried beans, slow-cooked pork and loroco.

flowers), likened to a citrusy cousin of the green bean or a more

I often reminisce about my Thai nickname and my friends,

subtle artichoke, are plucked from ponds, marshes and swamps

and I sometimes wonder why they chose that name—which they

along the Western Cape to be included in the seasonal stew, wa-

all said was utterly perfect for me. I’d like to think it was in hon-

terblommetjie bredie. Traditionally, the waterblommetjies are

or of my versatility in living in, and fully engaging in, a different

simmered in a cast iron pot over a fire for several hours with

culture and culinary practice.

lamb, potatoes, onions, wild sorrel and white wine before being

If you’d like to taste a flower for yourself, there are ample oppor-

ladled over rice. In the book “Edible and Medicinal Flowers,”

tunities to do so locally. Green Gate Farms runs a flower CSA pro-

author Margaret Roberts writes that the early Dutch settlers

gram, in which members receive handpicked edible bouquets week-

learned to use the waterblommetjies from the indigenous Khoik-

ly. The bouquets are meant to be placed at the center of the table—as

hoi people, who used the plant as food, but also for medicinal

bright and beautiful focal points to be admired but also pulled from,

purposes: The juice from the stems was used to soothe burns,

used and eaten. Winfield Farm grows flowers on its Red Rock farm

sunburns, grazes, sores, bites and rashes, and, after washing in

to distribute to local restaurants such as Trace, Barley Swine and

warm water, the leaves were applied directly to inflamed areas

Odd Duck, so look for nasturtiums, cilantro blossoms, verbena,

such as sprains or bruises.

violets and pansies on menus or, even better, on your dinner plate.



Makes 1 salad

Serves 6

For the salad: 1 young banana blossom* 2 c. ice water mixed with 1 T. lime juice ¼ papaya or ½ green mango, shredded into thin slices 1 onion, thinly chopped 1 carrot, cut or shredded in thin sticks ½ green bell pepper, thinly sliced 1 T. long coriander leaf (polygonum) or use cilantro 1 T. Vietnamese mint leaves 2 T. crushed peanuts, plus more for garnish

1 T. shallots for garnish (crispy fried or fresh) For the dressing: 1 T. water 1 T. agave or acacia honey or maple syrup 1 T. soy sauce 1 T. lime juice ½ t. chopped garlic ½ t. chopped shallots ½ t. chopped red long chili, plus more for garnish if desired

Place the layers of the banana blossom (or the cabbage leaves) on top of each other and roll them tightly together. Slice very thinly into ribbons and place in a bowl of ice water and lime juice for about 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, squeeze the blossom until dry and set aside. Add all of the ingredients for the dressing to a small bowl and stir until dissolved. Combine the banana blossom, papaya or mango, onion, carrot, green pepper, coriander, mint leaves and peanuts in a large bowl, add the dressing and toss until well blended. Arrange the salad on a serving platter (or even better, on a thick green banana leaf ) and sprinkle with the shallots, additional peanuts and red chili, to taste. * you can also use white cabbage, red cabbage or kale

12 large zucchini blossoms, stems intact ½ c. fresh, whole-milk ricotta cheese ¼ c. Parmesan cheese ¼ c. chopped basil Salt and pepper, to taste 1½ c. all-purpose flour

1 t. fine sea salt 1 T. extra virgin olive oil 1 large egg, lightly beaten 2 c. water Canola oil for frying Fried flat-leaf parsley sprigs for serving (optional) Coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Carefully remove the stamen (the pollen-producing center) from the center of each blossom. Gently wash and pat dry the blossoms. In a bowl, mix together the ricotta, Parmesan and basil, and then season with salt and pepper, to taste. Spoon a heaping teaspoon of the ricotta mixture into the center of each blossom, twisting the tips of the petals to close it. Set aside. In another bowl, whisk together the flour and fine sea salt. Add the olive oil, egg and water and whisk into a batter. In a heavy-bottom pan, pour the canola oil to a depth of 2 inches. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until it reaches 375° or is shimmering. One at a time, gently dip the stuffed blossoms into the flour batter and turn to coat completely. Using a slotted spatula, lift the blossoms from the batter, allowing the excess batter to drip off, and carefully lower them into the hot oil. Fry in batches of 4—placing each blossom at least 1 inch apart in the pan. Flip after 2 minutes, or until each side is golden brown. Using the spatula, remove to paper towels to drain. If making the fried parsley garnish, add the parsley sprigs to the hot oil and fry just until lightly crisped—about 30 seconds. Transfer to the paper towels to drain. Sprinkle the cooling blossoms with coarse sea salt and top with the parsley, if using. Serve immediately. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



WHAT I EAT and why


“I did not open the egg. It hung there, year after year, until one morning, after the longest night of my life, I suddenly understood what it meant. Then, I no longer needed to open it.” —“I Dreamed of Africa,” by Kuki Gallmann


n her beautiful and brave memoir, “I Dreamed of Africa,” Kuki

son, Emmanuel, died from a poisonous puff adder viper bite.

Gallmann—born and raised near Venice, Italy—recounts the

I have long been an admirer of courageous and talented women

time she found her husband in the bedroom of their ranch

like Kuki Gallmann, who enhanced a writer’s voice and passionate

home in Kenya hanging a “large perfect ostrich egg” above their

love life through the rigors and richness of living deeply on foreign

four-poster bed.

soil. But I have come to understand that I need the familiarity of home

Gallmann and her second husband, Paolo, uprooted their finan-

ground beneath me as I gradually walk the steps toward fulfilling my

cially privileged lives in Italy to settle in Africa with her young son

creative and personal dreams. However, it’s neither possible nor ad-

and Paolo’s two daughters. Often asked why she moved to Afri-

visable to return to the city in which I was raised, and where my large,

ca, Gallmann came to understand that her “desire to go to Africa

complicated network of extended family and old friends live. So when

seemed to have been an obscure yearning to return, a nostalgic in-

I’m tired of navigating a new sense of home, and the refrigerator and

herited need to migrate back to where our ancestors came from.”

my strength are running low on provisions, I hard-cook an egg.

From the unblinking honesty through which she reveals the sen-

I begin by reaching for my two-quart, stainless-steel Cuisinart

suously rich stories of her African life, Gallmann seems to have em-

saucepan that’s been with me for over a decade. It’s scratched from

braced the rewards and costs of pursuing her dream. For while the

use, both inside and out, with one rainbow-like burn mark on the

ostrich egg dangled from a thin nylon thread above the bed, her hus-

copper-core bottom from when I left it on a heated electric element

band died in a car crash on the Mombasa road just before the birth of

with nothing inside. And although this saucepan and her mates have

their first daughter. And two and a half years later, her 17-year-old

moved with us from Atlanta to Portland to Santa Monica, it’s in our




current southwestern city of Austin where she seems to look most at home. Settled on the black coils of the electric stove top, her scuffedup silver face and simple, strong and purposeful rounded shape fit naturally into the weather-scarred, but defiantly beautiful and honest, Texas landscape outside my wide kitchen window. The scene is a seasonal mix of smooth, slender, silver-trunked and pink-blossoming crepe myrtle trees guarded over by tough, old, thick charcoal-brown-trunked oak trees and sun-bleached, sturdy, white stone walls. Just behind these are short, dry, green-and-gold grasses and a black-paved parking area where families of hungry deer often graze on the nearby low bushes with deep-green and pale-brown leaves. Sometimes, if I look up at the right moment, a couple of translucent yellow, richly textured auburn or mosaic-colored butterflies come into view, illuminated by a white ray of fierce, untamed Texas sunlight. Under the small, golden glow of my oven light, I place one large egg into my well-traveled saucepan with enough water to cover, then gently stir the egg once or twice with a wooden spoon to help center the yolk. Then, after bringing the water to a gentle boil, I add a pinch of salt and cook the egg, uncovered—boiling very gently for 10 minutes. I stay close to the egg while it cooks—setting a timer and draining the hot water at exactly 10 minutes. To quickly stop the cooking and retain the fresh yellow and white color, I immediately cover the egg with cold tap water while it’s still in the

Casual French Bistro Since 1982 510 Neches St. 473-2413

easily be held in the cool water until the rest of my meal is ready if

LUNCH Tues.–Fri. DINNER Tues.–Sun.

I need more time before cracking and peeling the shell.

saucepan. I prefer to eat a hard-cooked egg warm, but the egg can

In “3 Bowls, Vegetarian Recipes from an American Zen Buddhist Monastery,” a special cookbook my mother bought for me many years ago, it’s explained that students of the monastery were taught how to crack a cooked egg by the abbot Roshi. It should be accomplished, one of the co-authors Nancy O’Hara writes, “not as we had done, with multiple taps on the table, but with one loud thump.” Roshi encourages the students to “pierce the silence and be done with it.” I am intrigued by this strong approach to cracking a hard-cooked egg, but I also like the words Auguste Escoffier offered in his classic book, “The Escoffier Cookbook.” In chapter 12, entitled “Eggs,” he explains that “boiling eggs hard may seem an insignificant matter, but like other methods of procedure, it is, in reality, of some importance.” And he concludes that as soon as the eggs are cooked within a properly monitored period of time and dipped in cold water, it is advisable to “then shell them carefully.”

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“There is a message for you in this egg,” Gallmann’s husband tells her shortly before his tragic car accident. “But if you want to read it, you have to break the egg.” She decides to bury the perfect ostrich eggshell whole, with her son’s body during his funeral. “The mystery in the egg would be buried with the mystery of death,” she writes. Beginnings and endings so closely tied; the untouched shape of an egg so near perfection—the kind that looks easy to achieve. “E is for Egg” is adapted from “One Peaceful Moment,” a book-length collection of alphabetical stories with recipes highlighting the natural nourishment to be discovered on the other side of loss, and the sustaining power of a well-chosen eating experience.

1807 South First Street 512-215-9778 EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM






e landed in Mérida, Mexico, on a muggy October evening,

as soon as the fruterías (fruit stands) started carrying them, and on

almost a week before Día de los Muertos (known locally

hot sunny days, we’d visit the paletería (ice cream parlor) for mango

as Hanal Pixan) and just months after we’d lost my father.

licuados (smoothies) or a fruity paleta (ice pop)—or even both be-

Over the summer, I’d struggled with the feelings of crushing loss and

cause my dad always spoiled me. Sometimes we’d have lunch at the

disconnection, and I hoped this trip would bring me closer to him. I’m

Hotel Alaska, and I’d order the Milanesa—pounded thin and fried

a second-generation Mexican, born and raised on the Texas-Mexico

crisp—with fries and a big Coca-Cola. These memories came rush-

border, which means that I grew up in two worlds—an experience

ing back as I sat in a restaurant almost 2,000 miles from home.

that also informs my work as food access manager at Sustainable

The rest of our trip was spent visiting Mayan ruins and nearby

Food Center. Many of the first- and second-generation families I work

towns and wandering aimlessly and blissfully through the displays of

with are also straddling two worlds as they hold on to their identity

silvery fish, mountains of dragon fruit, fragrant chiles and moles and

from the old country and adapt to the new. I’ve learned much from

just-rolled and fire-kissed tortillas at the technicolor Mercado Lucas

them over the years—most important, that our cultural roots can be a

de Galvez in downtown Mérida. There was the familiar pan dulce

source of comfort when we’re navigating new paths in life.

(sweet buns) and tender, achiote-tinged pork tacos al pastor, but also

At dinner that first evening, I soaked up my surroundings: the

new dishes, such as quesadillas with huitlacoche (a savory, deliciously

mother and father nearby with their children, the character and at-

musty corn fungus) and papadzules (corn tortillas filled with hard-

mosphere of the place, the food and music. I saw my father in so

boiled eggs and topped with a sauce made of pepitas and tomato).

much around me—his generosity of spirit and love of life and good food—and the memories began to trickle in.

In the end, this is what our trip was made of—the familiar and the new, the food and the culture of a place that, at times, reminded me of

Growing up, my weekdays were spent just like any other kid:

home, but was also new and different from the memories of my child-

going to school, hanging out with friends and watching television.

hood. It was all beautiful, exotic and delicious, and it provided more

On the weekends, though, we crossed el puente (the bridge) to visit

than just the nourishment my body needed—it fed my memories and

family, eat out and gather groceries. My mother swears that certain

created new ones that brought healing. And I brought home renewed

foods just taste better in Mexico—purer, with brighter, cleaner fla-

compassion and understanding for the people I connect with every

vors—and my memories of being there always involve family and

day at work, who may be navigating new communities and are hungry

food. There were the small sweet guayabas (guava fruit) that we ate

for home, yet are willing to create new connections through food.




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PASSPORT to local



ven in winter, when street lamps replace daylight ear-

I found it impossible to stroll one city block without the

lier and earlier and overcast weather mutes the sens-

smells of at least five different foods vying for my attention

es, Lima, Peru, bursts with swirling colors, sounds

and tempting the jingling soles in my pocket—and it was best

and smells. Despite being sand- and dirt-dusted, buildings

just to give in. In the morning, it might be fresh papaya juice

pop with turquoise, mandarin, lilac and royal-blue paints,

and pan y palta (ripe avocado wrapped in a pocket of soft,

and the hazy exhaust from city buses can’t compete with

white bread and sprinkled with sea salt), then for lunch, fresh

the heady scents of basil and cilantro wafting from the bar-

ceviche served with spicy salsa de aji (made with hot yellow

rio markets into sidewalk traffic. And from every sidewalk,

chilies), sweet potato chunks and roasted corn, and I couldn’t

corner and park come the familiar sounds of busy street-

pass on the ice cream made from lúcuma (a local fruit that

food vendors at work: coins ringing on linoleum count-

tastes of maple and sweet potato), the crispy plantain chips

ers, papas sizzling in pots of molten oil, businessmen and

or the picarones con miel (sweet dough rings bobbed in hot oil

schoolchildren ordering tamales.

until golden, then drizzled with a citrus-infused honey).




My personal weakness, however, quickly became quinoa emoli-

be dancing with the dark salty air, and the rumbling chorus of our

ente—a warm breakfast drink made gelatinous with quinoa pearls

stomachs would make me wonder where I would buy a quinoa

and sweetened with pineapple chunks. Sipping on this nourishing

emoliente when I awoke.

elixir filled me with the same satisfaction as a steaming bowl of brown-sugary oatmeal in the dead of winter when I was a child.

P revious Page: Peruvian citizens spend their evening on a pier,

And I found this Peruvian staple everywhere—around the corner

looking at the colorful boats and fishing for small clams. This

from my friend’s apartment, two blocks away on a corner next to

Page: A vendor reads a newspaper after helping customers

a rushing roundabout, even outside the airport of the mountain

in his typical, neighborhood mercado stall. These common

town of Cusco.

markets boast a selection of anything from fresh produce and

Walking through Lima all day was akin to walking through an

meats to prepared sandwiches and soups to household goods.

eight-million-person tapas bar. I’d grab a bite of papas y huevas

Opposite Page (from top left, clockwise): Street vendors line av-

(potatoes and eggs smothered in a spicy cream sauce), try a taste

enues in any Peruvian city, grilling meats, slicing juicy melons

of fried yucca and nibble on roasted beans throughout the day.

or, like these women, frying whole potatoes and yuca fries.

But whether I spent time browsing the mountains of avocados,

Ceviche, a traditional dish of raw, marinated fish, is a source

melons and bananas at the market or simply snacking on the go,

of pride for this gastronomic capital of the Americas. A “coca

every good day ended with a friend, a “Salud!” and a few pisco

sour,” a spin on a traditional pisco sour, is made with coca

sours (a nectar-like cocktail of grape brandy, frothed egg whites

leaves and coca syrup. Drinking tea (or cocktails) with coca

and fresh lime juice)—which allowed me to hazily ingest the

leaves aids in reducing altitude sickness in mountainous areas.

country’s sights, sounds and scents. By the time my friend and I

A man vends sweet potato and plantain chips, popcorn and

would find our way home, smells from the mercado would already

roasted, salted beans near the beach.







This Page: Andean women sell fresh produce, like cactus fruit, avocados and apples, in a street market in the mountain town of Cusco.




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always tote gluten-free crackers to events, potlucks and restau-

Because my gluten-free recipes are usually modified from a

rants to ensure I don’t miss out on whatever spreadable good-

gluten-full base, I approached cracker recipes as I would a bread

ness or “dippable” dishes might be coming my way. Yet, despite

recipe and, voila! I made crackers that I really liked and that

their centrality in my gluten-free lifestyle, homemade crackers

didn’t fall apart even when dipped. I like the flexibility of this rec-

were a late addition to my pantry staples because my initial at-

ipe, which can be modified if buckwheat isn’t a personal favorite.

tempts produced less than savory results. After a couple of crum-

Try substituting almond meal or millet flour for the buckwheat

bly disasters, it became apparent that since decent, wheat-free

flour to explore other flavor bases.

crackers were easier for me to buy than to make, I wouldn’t invest any more time developing my own.

The recipe for nut and cheese crackers, on the other hand, has remained a staple snack food for trips over the years ever since

An impending kitchen book tour inspired me to try again,

a friend shared the recipe for sunflower seed and sharp cheddar

though, since I eat a lot of crackers dipped in various on-the-go

crackers she found in an old book. I’ve since made this recipe with

spreads while on the road. Upon closer look, I realized that crack-

all different nuts and seeds and a variety of cheeses. Cashews are

ers are essentially bread that’s rolled out very thin and not in-

my favorite, but feel free to explore the many options offered in

vited to rise—think flatbreads such as matzo or papadum, which

the bulk section of the grocery store (or shake down a local pecan

are our snack crackers’ not-so-distant relations. Since bread is a

tree). The salty nature of pecorino Romano gives these a perfectly

mainstay in my gluten-free skill set, the task of crackers seemed a

seasoned finish, but if using other, less-salty cheeses, add ½ tea-

little less daunting right away.

spoon of sea salt to the combined meal.




BROWN RICE AND BUCKWHEAT TABLE CRACKERS Yields 2 batches of 50–60 snack crackers ¾ c. brown rice flour ½ c. buckwheat flour ½ c. potato starch ¼ c. sweet rice flour 1½ t. xanthan gum 1 t. baking powder 1½ t. kosher salt 1 t. sugar 1 egg 1 t. apple cider vinegar 4 T. butter, melted ¼–½ c. water Preheat the oven to 375°. Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg and apple cider vinegar. Add the melted butter and whisk to combine. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until the dough resembles a very course meal. Add the water by the tablespoon until the dough comes together without crumbling when pressed. Cut the dough in half and roll out one portion between two sheets of parchment paper to an even thickness of 1/8-inch. Store the other half of the dough in the refrigerator for up to one week or in the freezer for up to three months. Remove the top piece of parchment paper and use a pizza cutter or knife to slice the crackers into squares, rectangles or any shape desired. Poke holes in each cracker with the tines of a fork. Slide the parchment paper with the prepared crackers onto a pizza stone or baking sheet and bake for 25 to 28 minutes. Allow the crackers to cool, break apart and store in a mason jar or other airtight container.

NUT AND CHEESE CRACKERS Yields 1 standard-size cookie sheet of crackers 1 c. raw cashews 1 c. grated pecorino Romano cheese ¼ c. water ½ t. salt (add only if using a cheese less salty than pecorino Romano) Preheat the oven to 325°. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Combine the nuts and cheese (and salt, if using) in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the water by the tablespoon until the dough comes together and forms a cohesive ball. Spread the mixture onto a prepared cookie sheet using a spatula. Cover with another sheet of parchment paper and roll the mixture between the papers to 1/8-inch thick. Peel off the top piece of parchment and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the crackers are lightly browned on top. The edges will be darker than the center, but keep cooking until the center is lightly browned to ensure a crisp cracker. Cut the crackers into desired pieces immediately after pulling them out of the oven because they will harden and crisp up as they cool. Store in a mason jar or other airtight container for up to two weeks.

Tools • Supplies • Ingredients • Classes To make beautiful cakes, cookies & candies

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Alamo Pecan & Coffee Company We sell freshly shelled pecan halves and pieces as well as a variety of gourmet pecan candies and gourmet coffees. Large variety of gift baskets and tins. 325-372-5275, 877-618-9089 601 E. Wallace, San Saba

Antonelli’s Cheese Shop We love cut-to-order artisanal cheese and all that goes with it. Order a picnic platter, take a class, or host a private guided event. Free tastings daily. 512-531-9610; 4220 Duval St.

Blue Note Bakery Blue Note Bakery is Austin’s premier custom cake shop, meticulously creating one of a kind dessert for your special occasion. 512-797-7367 4201 S. Congress Ave., Ste. 101

The Red Oak Bakery A 100% dedicated gluten free bakery. We bake from scratch, using the highest quality organic, local and sustainable ingredients. 830-214-6911 596 S. Castell Ave., New Braunfels

BEVERAGES Alamosa Wine Cellars

Lick Honest Ice Creams Artisan ice creams celebrating the finest ingredients Texas has to offer! Handmade in small batches in our shop, locally sourced and seasonally inspired. 512-363-5622; 2032 S. Lamar Blvd.

Lone Star Foodservice

Making cool wines from warm climate grapes at the top of the Texas Hill Country since 1999. Tempranillo, Syrah, Viognier, Sangiovese, Verdelho, Graciano. 325-628-3313 677 County Rd. 430, Bend

Lone Star Foodservice is a family-owned wholesale meat company, whose mission is to source and deliver the finest cuts of natural beef, pork and lamb to tables across Texas. 512-646-6218; 1403 E. 6th St.


Noble Sandwich Co.

Banner Natural Vodka: 100% organic ingredients, proofed with Texas rainwater. Super smooth! Now distilling & aging our original small batch Texas Wheat Whisky. 512-815-2326 13201 Jacobson Rd. #11

Local sandwich shop featuring house cured meats, made from scratch breads, condiments and pickles. 512-382-6248; 12233 620 N., Ste. 105 512-666-5124; 4805 Burnet Rd.

Healthy living starts with healthy water! Aquasana manufactures and sells high performance water filtration systems for home and commercial use. 866-662-6885;

Banner Distilling Co.

Barcelona Celler

Royalty Pecan Farms A family owned & operated pecan farm featuring a gift shop, event venue & tourist attraction. Great source for fresh Texas pecans, pies, breads, and gifts. 979-272-3904 10600 State Hwy 21 E, Caldwell

Texas Olive Ranch

Spanish wine with a Texas accent! Russell Smith crafts premium wine in Spain for his friends in Texas.

Brooklyn Brewery

Leading the world in beers made in Brooklyn. 718-486-7422;

Only one hour west of Austin, Perissos Vineyards is passionate about using only Texas-grown fruit to produce exceptional wines. Casual atmosphere. 512-820-2950 7214 Park Rd. 4, Burnet

Real Ale Brewing Co. Welcome to the Texas Hill Country - the home of Real Ale Brewing Company, where a dedicated team of brewers produces quality handcrafted ales. 830-833-2534

Spec’s Wine Spirits and Finer Foods Family-owned since 1962, Spec’s offers expert service and Texas’ largest selection of wines, spirits and beers along with gourmet foods and more! 512-366-8260; 4978 W. US Hwy. 290 512-342-6893; 10515 N. MoPac Hwy. 512-280-7400; 9900 S. I-35 512-263-9981; 13015 Shops Pkwy. 512-366-8300; 5775 Airport Blvd.

Texas Hills Vineyard Winemaking, wine sales, tasting room, patio for picnics, gifts, award-winning wines, fun-loving staff and a beautiful place to visit. 930-868-2321 878 RR 2766, Johnson City

The Austin Winery The Austin Winery is a boutique, urban winery sourcing grapes from premier regions of California and Texas to handcraft artisanal wines. 713-724-0942 9007 Tuscany Way, Ste. 100A

Tito’s Handmade Vodka

Moonshine Sweet Tea

Wedding Oak Winery

Tommy’s Superfoods

We are based in Austin, TX and make fair trade certified organically sweetened soft drinks and lemonades available on fountain and in bottles. 888-793-3883 6500 River Place Blvd., Bldg.2 Ste. 102


Perissos Vineyards

Vineyards, winery & tasting room. 830-644-2482 12346 E. US Hwy. 290, Fredericksburg

Hilmy Cellars


Paula’s Texas Orange Liqueur and Paula’s Texas Lemon Liqueur—all natural and handmade in Austin since 2006. Available throughout Texas.

Tito’s Handmade Vodka is handcrafted from 100% corn & distilled 6 times by Tito Beveridge in Austin, TX at America’s original microdistillery. Gluten-free! 512-389-9011

Fresh Texas-grown extra virgin olive oil from Carrizo Springs, infused olive oil & balsamic vinegar at farmers markets in Austin, SA, NB, Houston, Dallas. 877-461-4708 Food company based in Austin, TX. Look for our delicious frozen products at a store near you! All Natural. Gluten Free. Non-GMO Project Verified. #tommys 512-695-2582

Paula’s Texas Spirits


Located in the northern Hill Country, Wedding Oak Winery creates Texas wines from 100% Texas-grown warm weather varietals. Our Texas roots run deep! 325-372-4050 316 E. Wallace, San Saba

CATERING AND MEAL DELIVERY Pink Avocado Catering A custom catering company specializing in tailored menus, incredible food & surprisingly personal service. 512-656-4348 401 Sabine St. Ste. B

Spoon & Co. Catering It’s our business to delight you with the details, memorable events with mindfully chosen, prepared and presented food and a caring crew! 512-912-6784

DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION Texas Casual Cottages by Trendmaker Trendmaker Homes makes it easy to build a new home on your land. Come visit one of our two Model Home Parks in Round Top or Wimberley, TX. 512-392-6591 6555 RR 12, San Marcos

Texas Oven Co. Experts in designing and building wood-burning ovens. Our handcrafted ovens are fire-breathing works of art. We are also a Forno Bravo pizza oven dealer. 512-222-6836

EDUCATION Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts The Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts is teaching the next generation of chefs and pastry chefs the importance of sustainable and ethical choices. 512-451-5743 6020-B Dillard Cir.

Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts – Pastry Program Professional pastry diploma program. 512-451-5743; 6020-B Dillard Cir.

Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance FARFA is a national organization that supports independent family farmers and protects a healthy and productive food supply for American consumers. 254-697-2661

The Natural Epicurean The place to go for a plant-based, comprehensive professional services training, plus public events and classes. Learn here— change your kitchen; change your life. 512-476-2276 1700 S. Lamar Blvd.

ininthe the

Visit our model home parks in:

Round Top, TX

Wimberley, TX

(979) 278-3015

(512) 392-6591



Dripping with Taste

Boggy Creek Farm

The most choices of Texas wines under one roof! A fun day of wine, craft beers, gourmet food tastings, cooking demos, art, specialty vendors and music! 512-858-4740 1042 DS Ranch Rd. at RR 12 North

One of the first Urban Farms in the USA, BCF offers hyper-fresh vegetables at the on-farm stand, Wed. through Sat., 9 am­–1 pm. Stroll the farm and visit the hen house! 512-926-4650 3414 Lyons Rd.

Palm Door on Sixth Palm Door on Sixth is the most versatile event space located in downtown Austin’s Historic Entertainment District for parties up to 1000 people. 512-391-1994; 508 E 6th St.

The Wine & Food Foundation of Texas The Wine & Food Foundation of Texas is a membership nonprofit using our passion for wine and food to better the health and well-being of our community. 512-327-7555;

FARMERS MARKETS HOPE Farmers Market at Plaza Saltillo Sundays 11 am–3 pm. Come celebrate local food, art and live music every Sunday at our unique East Austin market! We accept SNAP/WIC. Free parking. 512-553-1832; 401 Comal St.

Lone Star Farmers Market Providing fresh fruits, vegetables and quality products. Located at The Shops at the Galleria every Sunday from 10 am–2 pm in the Lowe’s parking lot. 512-924-7503 12611 Shops Pkwy., Ste. 100, Bee Cave

Sustainable Food Center SFC cultivates a healthy community by strengthening the local food system and improving access to nutritious, affordable food. 512-236-0074 400 W. Guadalupe St. 3200 Jones Rd., Sunset Valley 2835 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. 4600 Lamar Blvd. 2921 E. 17 St., Bldg C (Office)

Cedar Park (Saturdays, 9 am–1 pm, Lakeline Mall) and Mueller Farmers Markets (Sundays, 10 am–2 pm, the historic Mueller Hangar). Open year round, rain or shine. 512-363-5700 11200 Lakeline Mall Dr., Cedar Park 4550 Mueller Blvd. TRAVEL TRAVEL 2014 2014

Coyote Creek Organic Feed Mill produces certified organic, non-GMO feed for all types of livestock. We are dedicated to local, organic, and sustainable Ag. 512-285-2556 13817 Klaus Ln.

GROCERS Farmhouse Delivery We bring the farm to your door, offering home or office delivery of local produce, meat, dairy, eggs and local, artisanal products. 512-529-8569

Selling the highest quality natural & organic products. 512-542-2200 525 N. Lamar Blvd. 512-345-5003 9607 Research Blvd. 512-206-2730 12601 Hill Country Blvd., Bee Cave 512-358-2460 4301 W. William Cannon

HEALTH AND BEAUTY Peoples Rx Austin’s favorite pharmacy for more than 30 years, Peoples integrates nutrition, supplements and medicine with natural remedies and custom Rx compounding. 512-219-9499 13860 Hwy. 183 N., Ste. C 512-459-9090 4018 N. Lamar Blvd. 512-444-8866 3801 S. Lamar Blvd. 512-327-8877 4201 Westbank Dr.

HOUSEWARES AND GIFTS Greenling Greenling is a home delivery service of organic & sustainably produced local food! 512-440-8449

in.gredients A neighborhood grocer committed to zero waste, local and sustainable foods, and community. Beer and wine on tap, prepared goods, and a garden! 512-275-6357 2610 Manor Rd.

Royal Blue Grocery Downtown Austin’s neighborhood grocer— with dairy, prepared foods, beer and wine, Royal Blue has it all, in a convenient and compact format. Catering too! 512-499-3993; 247 W. 3rd St. 512-476-5700; 360 Nueces St. 512-469-5888; 609 Congress Ave. 301 Brazos St., Ste. 101

Callahan’s General Store “Austin’s real general store!” From hardware to westernwear, from feed to seed... and a whole lot more! 512-385-3452 501 Bastrop Hwy.

Der Küchen Laden Der Küchen Laden is for the little chef in all of us. We have gourmet kitchenware, tools, gadgets, coffees and teas (just to name a few). Come check us out! 830-997-4937 258 E. Main St., Fredericksburg

The Herb Bar Best place to cure what ails you and a healing resource center since 1986. Our Optimal Health Advisers are highly trained, knowledgeable and compassionate. 512-444-6251; 200 W. Mary St.

Wheatsville Food Co-op

Texas Farmers Market

76 76

Coyote Creek Organic Farm and Feed Mill

Whole Foods Market

Serving up local, organic, sustainable and humanely raised food since 1976. Full service deli, hot bar, salad bar, espresso bar and eating area with wi-fi. 512-478-2667 3101 Guadalupe St. 512-814-2888 4001 S. Lamar Blvd.


Serve Gourmet Fun and functional finds will make the casual cook look and feel like a celebrated chef. Gadgets to simplify, or tablescapes to mystify can all be found, in one spot. 512-480-0171 241 W. 3rd St.

LANDSCAPE AND ENVIRONMENTAL Austin Water Austin Water is committed to providing for Austin’s current and future water needs in a reliable and sustainable way. 512-972-0101

Barton Springs Nursery Locally grown Texas native plants. Organic pest management. Environmentally friendly soil amendments. Beautiful gifts. 512-328-6655 3601 Bee Caves Rd.

The Great Outdoors Nursery A garden store and so much more! 512-448-2992 2730 S. Congress Ave.

It’s About Thyme Garden Center Top quality culinary herbs for chefs, and native plants for gardeners. A nursery with expert staff and pocket-friendly prices. Free lectures most Sundays. 512-280-1192 11726 Manchaca Rd.

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center The Wildflower Center is a native plant botanic garden, a university research center and one of the 1,000 places to see before you die. 512-232-0100 4801 La Crosse Ave.

Natural Gardener We are a garden center and teaching facility dedicated to promoting organic time-tested gardening practices. 512-288-6113 8648 Old Bee Caves Rd.

LODGING AND TOURISM Agarita Creek Hill Country Ranch Retreat Stay in secluded bliss in one of two spacious log houses on a bluff overlooking the Pedernales River and Fredericksburg on a 170 acre ranch. Perfect for families, gatherings of friends or just you two. 830-992-5283 968 Braeutigam Rd., Fredericksburg

edible MARKETPLACE Pure Michigan maple syrup, maple candy and assorted seasonal jams and jellies.

Soup, Salads, Sandwiches, Local Beer & Wine Featuring 12 of Blanco’s Real Ale beers on tap

Available online and weekly at your local markets.

Mon. - Thur. 10:30 am - 3:30 pm Fri. - Sat. 10:30 am - 9:00 pm & Sunday 10 :00 am - 3:00 pm

Our food is made fresh using premium products, and featuring local lavender lemonade. 830-833-0202 /

Live Honeybee Removal Beekeeping Supplies • Consultation • 512-963-5357

Johnny G’s Meat Market Made especially for Johnny G’ s Meat Market 11600 Manchaco Rd. H, Austin, TX 78748 (512)280-6514

The Best Little Meat Market In South Austin.


Old-school baking with a twist! • Local Ingredients • No Corn Syrup • Special orders Available

11600 Manchaca Rd., Suite H, Austin, TX 78748

High quality, free-range venison, antelope and wild boar meat from truly wild animals. And Diamond H Ranch Quail!

Visit our Treat Truck at Native South 10106 S. Manchaca!

Order Online • follow us @pmstreats




edible TULSA

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Support Local Community, Food & Drink Member of Edible Communities

Bastrop Culinary District With over 18 restaurants and 11 food related businesses, historic downtown Bastrop has something for every palate. Come visit and experience the food! 512-303-0904

Brenham/Washington County CVB Visit Brenham and Washington County, home of the Birthplace of Texas, Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site. Scenic drives, wineries, great lodging. 979-836-3696 115 W. Main St., Brenham

Cool River Cabin at Native American Seed Farm Come take refuge. Enjoy private lodging here on the farm! Experience the natives - wildlife viewing, birding, photography, swimming, canoeing, star gazing. 866-417-4837 3791 U.S. 377, Junction

Fredericksburg Conference and Visitors Bureau Visit Fredericksburg, a small gem nestled in the Texas Hill Country. Enjoy eclectic shops, diverse lodging, amazing restaurants and Texas wines. 866-997-3600

Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort and Spa Our luxurious Texas wilderness escape outside Austin is home to Wolfdancer Golf Club, Spa Django & Stories Fine Dining, featuring locally-inspired fare. 512-308-1234 575 Hyatt Lost Pines Road, Lost Pines

Onion Creek Kitchens at Juniper Hills Farm Cooking school, private dinners, luxury cabin rentals. 830-833-0910 5818 RR 165, Dripping Springs

San Saba Economic Development Corporation Be a part of San Saba’s community and economic rebirth. Award-winning winery, olive oil co, gourmet dining, antique mercantile, historic shops and pecans! 325-372-8291 303 S. Clear, San Saba

Travaasa Experiential Resorts Experiential Resort. 512-364-0061 13500 FM 2769

W Austin Unleash your inner soul man, rock god or indie hipster with a stay at the latest destination sensation in Austin— W Austin, featuring Trace & Away Spa. 512-542-3600 200 Lavaca St.


Marta Stafford Fine Art Located in the Texas Hill Country, housed in a historic early 1900’s bank. Work by national & regional artists. Figural work, Impressionistic landscapes and more. 830-693-9999 200 Main St., Marble Falls

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Austin Label Company Custom Labels up to 10 x 20 on paper, foil, synthetics, multiple adhesives, embossing, hot foil and UV coatings. Proud members of Go Texan, FTA and TWGGA. 512-302-0204 1610 Dungan Ln.

Nunnally and Freeman Dentistry Holistic dentists known the world over for excellence. 830-693-3646 2100 Hwy. 1431 W., Marble Falls

The Purple Fig Cleaning Co. We are a local company providing green cleaning services, producing green cleaning products and offering green living workshops to adults and children. 512-351-1405

Sustainable Food Center SFC cultivates a healthy community by strengthening the local food system and improving access to nutritious, affordable food. 512-236-0074 400 W. Guadalupe St. 3200 Jones Rd., Sunset Valley 2835 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. 4600 Lamar Blvd. 2921 E. 17 St., Bldg C (Office)

REAL ESTATE Land & Ranch Realty, LLC Assisting buyers and sellers in Texas land transactions involving ranches, farms and live water recreational properties. 210-275-3551 382 Hwy. 83 S., Leakey


Marble Falls/Lake LBJ Chamber of Commerce & CVB Visit Marble Falls, adventure by day, romance by night and an array of activities in between—wineries, lakes and caves, golf, shopping and more! 830-693-2815 100 Avenue G., Marble Falls

National Museum of the Pacific War The National Museum of the Pacific War is dedicated to telling the story of WWII in the Pacific. Located right on Main Street in Fredericksburg, Texas. 830-997-8600 340 E. Main St., Fredericksburg

Blanton Museum of Art

Barlata Tapas Bar

The Blanton Museum of Art, one of the foremost university art museums in the country, offers all visitors engaging experiences that connect art and ideas. 512-471-7324 200 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

Located in the heart of South Lamar. Barlata offers a variety of tapas, paellas, regional Spanish wines and cavas. Come and enjoy a bit of Spain with us. 512 473-2211 1500 S. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 150

The Contemporary Austin

Buenos Aires Cafe

The Contemporary Austin reflects the spectrum of contemporary art through exhibitions, commissions, education, and the collections. With two locations and the Art School, The Contemporary aspires to be an essential part of city life. 512-453-5312; 700 Congress Ave. 512-458-8191; 3809 W. 35th St.

Austin-grown Argentine restaurant. We use only the freshest ingredients available and make an effort to support local farmers. Food made with love daily. 512-382-1189 1201 E. 6th St. 512-441-9000 13500 Galleria Cir., Bee Cave

Cabernet Grill Texas Wine Country Restaurant Award winning upscale Texas Hill Country cuisine served in a casual and relaxed atmosphere. Largest all-Texas wine list in the nation. 830-990-5734 2805 S. Hwy. 16, Fredericksburg

Chez Nous A casual french bistro, serving Austin since 1982, Chez Nous offers a delectable selection of regional french cuisine and wines in a relaxed, convivial and intimate atmosphere. 512-473-2413 510 Neches St.

East Side Pies We’ve got homemade, thin crust pizzas with local veggies and meats. Gluten-free options, too! 512-524-0933 1401 Rosewood Ave. 512-454-7437 5312 Airport Blvd., Ste. G 512-467-8900 1809-1 W. Anderson Ln.

Green Pastures Located in old South Austin a mileand-a-half south of the river on 5 acres. Offering lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. Catering and events on and offsite. 512-444-4747 811 W. Live Oak St.

Jack Allen’s Kitchen Texan in spirit and local in source, Jack Allen’s Kitchen serves up Texas-inspired cuisine, fresh cocktails, cold beers and good times daily. 512-852-8558 7720 Hwy. 71 W. 512-215-0372 2500 Hoppe Tr., Round Rock

Kerbey Lane Cafe Kerbey Lane Cafe has proudly served comfortable food at a reasonable price since 1980. Come into any of our 5 Austin locations for a taste! 512-451-1436 3704 Kerbey Ln. 512-445-4451 3003 S. Lamar Blvd. 512-258-7757 13435 Hwy. 183, Ste. 415 512-477-5717 2606 Guadalupe St. 512-899-1500 4301 W. William Cannon



79 79

The Leaning Pear Café & Eatery

Wink Restaurant & Wine Bar

Serving the Texas Hill Country fresh and seasonal favorites using local ingredients. 512-847-7327 111 River Rd., Wimberley

The daily menu is based on local artisans. Wink happily embraces omnivores, vegetarians, vegans, pescetarians and special dietary issues. 512-482-8868 1014 N. Lamar Blvd.

Lenoir Lenoir is an intimate, family-run restaurant offering a weekly, local prix-fixe menu, great wine and friendly service. 512-215-9778 1807 S. 1st St.

Otto’s German Bistro Otto’s offers German-inspired fare in Fredericksburg, Texas. Featuring locally sourced produce & meats. Local beers & wines on tap, handcrafted cocktails. 830-307-3336 316 E. Austin St., Fredericksburg

Roadhouse Bastrop Roadhouse has been voted Best Burger in Bastrop County for the past 10 years! Serving burgers, chicken sandwiches, huge salads and homemade desserts! 512-321-1803 2804 Hwy. 21 E., Bastrop

Ronin Cooking, LLC Chef Brian Light & his wife Amanda operate out of an old barn converted into a commercial kitchen. Full Moon Dinners on their farm and other special events. 979-574-8745

Snack Bar Chef-driven, globally inspired & locally sourced menu with eco-vineyard wine, craft beer, artisan coffee and tea in a stylish relaxed space. Bring the dog. 512-445-2626 1224 S. Congress Ave.

SPECIALTY MARKET For Goodness Sake Natural Foods Family owned and operated health food store featuring high quality supplements, all-natural and organic bodycare plus unique grocery items. 830-606-1900 1306 E. Common St., Ste. 101, New Braunfels

Make It Sweet At Make It Sweet, you can find tools, supplies and ingredients to make cakes, cookies and candies and learn fun, new techniques in the classes offered. 512-371-3401 9070 Research Blvd.

Mission Restaurant Supply Mission Restaurant Supply is a full-service dealer for top of the line food service equipment and supplies. Come shop with us. We are open to the public! 512-389-1705 6509 N. Lamar Blvd. 210-354-0690 1126 S. St. Mary’s St., San Antonio 361-289-5255 1737 N. Padre Island Dr., Corpus Christi 956-467-1295 3422 N. 10th St., McAllen 817-265-3973 2524 White Settlement Rd., Ft. Worth

8648 OLD BEE CAVES RD. (512)288-6113

Keeping floors and loved ones healthy since 2007

Paella Mix Paella Mix “Online Store” is the easiest way to buy authenthic Paella stuff such as Paella Mix, Paella Pans, Cazuelas for tapas, etc. 512-577-5251

The Turtle Restaurant Your destination for food prepared from locally available, seasonal ingredients. 325-646-8200 514 Center Ave., Brownwood

For information on advertising and listings in the directory, email

$20 OFF


ThunderCloud Subs For fresh, fast and healthy, head on over to your neighborhood ThunderCloud Subs, Austin’s original sub shop. Now with 30 locations in Central Texas. 512-479-8805

We provide health insurance, living wages and profit-sharing for employees! | 512.351.1405 EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM



Subodh Gupta, Spooning, 2009. Stainless steel and brass (unique). 13.3 x 108.25 x 20.5 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth. Photograph by Thomas Müller.


A Secret Affair: Selections from the Fuhrman Family Collection Jones Center and Laguna Gloria Orly Genger: Current Laguna Gloria May 3 – August 24, 2014

Jones Center 700 Congress Avenue Austin, TX 78701 512 453 5312

Laguna Gloria 3809 West 35th Street Austin, TX 78703 512 458 8191 82



Art School 3809 West 35th Street Austin, TX 78703 512 323 6380






Meet our

Enjoy local brews and tasty brats at our outdoor container bar!




FOR AGER Lynda Berrios I love fostering partnerships with Texas growers, ranchers and artisans to help bring the best local products to our stores. Whether it’s organic tomatoes, handcrafted tortillas or cattle raised to meet our animal welfare standards, we are proud to offer hundreds of local products at every store in Austin. 84






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Edible Austin Travel Issue 2014  
Edible Austin Travel Issue 2014  

This issue explores Texas road trips, Vietnamese cuisine in Austin, Mexican market drinks to make at home and much more!