Salt-baked chicken and chocolate mousse: What was the best recipe from the year you were born?

Food & Wine magazine is turning 40 this month, and to celebrate, the magazine compiled 40 recipes that have stood the test of time. They call them the best-ever recipes, but they also reflect how food culture and food media have changed over the past four decades.

I was born in 1983, when they featured a salt-baked chicken inspired by a dish from the Hakka region of China. I’ve never had a dish like this, but I can see that it reflected Americans’ love of Chinese cuisine in the 1980s and its budding interest in regionalism, even within what we then called “ethnic food.”

Many of you might have been born before 1978, but I think you’ll still enjoy this list that tracks the evolution of what we’d call American cuisine, which has always been a compendium of global cuisines.

1978 — Jacques Pepin’s Grand Marnier Souffle, an “ethereal recipe” that is “just as good today as it was 40 years ago.” At 82, Pepin has been a longtime contributor to Food & Wine magazine and he is still involved with it today.

1979 — Potato and Egg Pie with Bacon and Creme Fraiche from Andre Soltner, the chef-owner of an upscale Manhattan restaurant, Lutece, which was open for 40 years before closing in 2004.

French Chef Paul Bocuse, seen here in 2011, died earlier this year. (AP Photo/Laurent Cipriani)

1980 — Poulet au Vinaigre from the famed French master chef Paul Bocuse, who died earlier this year at 91.

1981 — Soboro Donburi, a Japanese meat-and-rice dish from Elizabeth Andoh, who has lived in Japan since 1967 and written several cookbooks on the cuisine.

1982 — Poached Eggs with Red Wine Sauce, a French spin on an American breakfast from culinary school founder Anne Willan.

1983 — Hakka-style Salt-Baked Chicken, a dish from southeast China in that a whole chicken is baked in a pot of salt.

1984 — Craig Claiborne’s Ultimate Chocolate Mousse from the esteemed New York Times restaurant critic, who took over as the newspaper’s food editor in 1957 and expanded its coverage of chefs and restaurants. He died in 2000.

Before Emeril Lagasse was a TV star, he was the head chef at Commander’s Palace in New Orleans, a restaurant that has been open since 1880. In 2000, he invited Julia Child to be a guest on his Food Network TV show. She died in 2004. (AP Photo/Jim Cooper)

1985 —Shrimp Creole from Emeril Lagasse, the former Commander’s Palace chef who was not yet a Food Network star when this recipe published.

1986 — Garlicky Braised Lamb Shanks with Sweet Peppers from Jeremiah Tower, the California chef behind Bay-area restaurants Chez Panisse and Stars, where he served this dish. Tower, Alice Waters and Wolfgang Puck are credited with establishing and popularizing California cuisine.

1987 — Deep Dish All American Cinnamon Apple Pie from baking expert Rose Levy Beranbaum, who macerates the apples in sugar before making a syrup from the apple liquid that releases from the fruit.

1988 — Grilled Korean-Style Short Ribs from Linda Burum and Linda Merinoff, Los Angeles food writers who shared this recipe with Food & Wine readers, most of whom weren’t yet hip to Korean cuisine.

1989 — Sizzling Pancakes, a savory Vietnamese pancake the Connecticut-based chef Binh Duong.

Alice Waters has owned Chez Panisse in Berkeley, Calif., since 1971. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

1990 — Baked Goat Cheese Salad, Alice Waters’ iconic salad from Chez Panisse in Berkeley.

1991 — Mom’s Citrus Meringue Pie from African-American foodways historian Jessica B. Harris.

1992 — Seared Salmon with Summer Vegetables from Michael Romano, the chef behind Union Square Cafe in New York City.

1993 — Swordfish Sicilian-Style from Marcella Hazan, the legendary Italian cookbook author who was a Food & Wine contributor in the 1990s.

1994 — Julia Child’s Ham Steaks in Maderia Sauce, a recipe that celebrated the humble cut of pork that America’s best-known food personality called a “fast entree for fancy people.”

1995 — Jerk Chicken from Paul Chung, a “self-taught cook of Chinese-Jamaican descent who worked in the Food & Wine mail room.”

1996 — Vegetable Hot-and-Sour Soup from Eileen Yin-Fei Lo, a columnist who covered low-fat cooking for the magazine during the height of the low-fat diet era.

1997 — Catalan Tomato Bread, a Spanish recipe from cookbook author and TV host Steven Raichlen, who continues to write grilling books today.

1998 — Caramelized Black Pepper Chicken from Charles Phan, chef/owner of The Slanted Door in San Francisco, who said this was one of his favorite (and easiest) dishes to make at home.

1999 — Pizza with Smoked Salmon, Creme Fraiche and Caviar, a very Wolfgang Puck recipe from the Austrian-born, California chef who became known as the Oscars chef.

2000 — Fried Chicken with Tomato Gravy and the Best Biscuits from the legendary Southern chef Edna Lewis, who died in 2006, and her longtime assistant Scott Peacock.

2001 — Shrimp and Corn Chowder from Ecuadorian chef Maricel Presilla, who continues to run a restaurant in New Jersey called Zafra.

2002 — Pasta with Sausage, Mustard and Basil from British cookbook author Nigel Slater.

2003 — Chicken Tikka Masala, “the perfect gateway dish to Indian cooking” from Grace Parisi, a Food & Wine recipe developer.

2004 — Breton Butter Cake, a spin on the famed french pastry kouign-amann from cookbook authors Naomi Duguid and Jeffrey Alford.

2005 — Antipasto Salad with Green Olive Tapenade, a recipe from former Best New Chef winner Nancy Silverton.

2006 — Crispy Okra Salad, which calls for thinly sliced strips of okra, a technique from Indian chef Suvir Saran.

2007 — Pan-Roasted Salmon with Tomato Vinaigrette, a “Queer Eye”-worthy dish from “Chopped” host Ted Allen, who was on the original season of “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.”

2008 — Tiki Snack Mix, a nod to the revived tiki cocktail movement, from Food & Wine recipe developer Melissa Rubel Jacobson.

2009 — Kogi Dogs from Roy Choi, the Los Angeles-based chef who got his start in a food trailer and was the first to win a Best New Chef award without running a brick-and-mortar restaurant.

2010 — Mom’s Chocolate Cake, a moist layer cake whose recipe had been passed down through several generations and ultimately landed in the lands of longtime Food & Wine test kitchen supervisor Marcia Kiesel.

2011 — Kimchi Creamed Collard Greens from Hugh Acheson, the Georgia-based chef who in 2002 was named a Best New Chef for the magazine and has since appeared as a judge on “Top Chef.”

2012 — Baltimore-Style Crab Cakes, a recipe from TV host Andrew Zimmern that has become the most popular dish on Food & Wine’s website since it was published six years ago.

2013 — Farro and Green Olive Salad with Walnuts and Raisins from Heidi Swanson, one of the early food bloggers who turned her website, 101 Cookbooks, into a thriving food writing career.

2014 — Almost-Instant Soft Serve, a recipe from Justin Chapple, who oversees the magazine’s Mad Genius series, which includes videos and articles about smart food hacks.

2015 — Spaghetti with Clams and Braised Greens, a new spin on an old classic from Ashley Christensen of Poole’s Diner in North Carolina.

2016 — Tomatoes with Herbs and Almond Vinaigrette, whose dressing from Dan Kluger of New York City’s Loring Place is what caught the eye of Food & Wine editors.

2017 — Chickpea and Kale in Spicy Pomodoro Sauce, another new spin on an old classic, this time from Missy Robbins, a former Best New Chef winner known for her restaurant, Lilia.

2018 — Miznon’s Whole Roasted Cauliflower, the signature dish at Eyal Shani’s restaurants from Tel Aviv to Melbourne and now New York City.




Got an old piece of wedding cake in your freezer? We want to see it.

Earlier this week, I told you the story of Zollie and William Goodrich Jones, a couple that married in Belton in 1890 and whose legacy lives on in a piece of their wedding cake.

Beth Norvell, the associate director of alumni relations at Mary Hardin-Baylor, found this piece of Zollie Luther’s wedding cake from 1890 in the museum’s archives. She doesn’t know what the cake is made of, but she said they are hoping to use historical recipes from the era to create a similar cake for alumni functions. Contributed by Beth Norvell

This delightful little gem of dried organic material is housed in the archive of the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. It’s shriveled up and brown and not at all appetizing, but it got me thinking about the other pieces of wedding cake that are housed in freezers around Central Texas and the stories they tell.

Zollie Luther married William Goodrich in December of 1890, and Mary Hardin-Baylor University still has a piece of their wedding cake. Baylor’s Texas Collection has many photos, letters and papers from both Zollie and her sister’s family. Zollie died in 1934 at the age of 69. Courtesy of The Texas Collection, Baylor University

The tradition of a couple keeping a piece of wedding cake to eat for good luck on their first anniversary dates back to the 1700s, when a cake could be preserved with boozy fruit or wine, but since the advent of freezers, we’ve been keeping them around for a lot longer than a year.

I’d love to hear stories about wedding cakes you might still have or ones you held onto for a long time, but eventually decided to toss. You can email me at or call 512-912-2504.

Zollie Luther, a year or two before her marriage. Courtesy of The Texas Collection, Baylor University

To get you thinking about love a long time ago, here’s a poem that William wrote to Zollie on their 40th anniversary in 1930:

Forty years we’ve garnered joy,
Along with tears that oft annoy.

Forty cycles, fulsome, sweet,
where sunbeams and the shadows meet.

Forty dividends in life,
Without regrets and without strife.

Forty stars in firmament,
Have blazed the trail to life’s content.

Forty morns of silken lint,
Have twined our lives with love’s imprint.

Forty eves of golden tint,
Coined into years, a precious mint.

Forty hills climbed in the past,
Leading upward, reached at last;

Trails the path to summits crest,
Lengthening shadows in the west.

Forty sighs at set of sun,
Comes the Master’s voice: ‘Well done’

— William Goodrich Jones (Waco, Texas)

(From Luther-Bagby collection, Accession #1337, Box #1, Folder #16, The Texas Collection, Baylor University)


Prune, peach and poppyseed: How to get Old School Kolaches, delivered

Dawn Orsak has spent much of her adult life learning about Texas-Czech foodways.

What started as a personal interest of preserving family history through recipes has turned into a company called At Memory’s Table, where she’ll help others gather their own family recipes, record the stories behind them and preserve them in various forms.

These Old School Kolaches are from At Memory’s Table owner Dawn Orsak. Contributed by Dougal Cormie

In 2016, Orsak co-curated a traveling exhibit on the history of Texas-Czech culture, and one of the biggest ways Texas-Czech heritage has been preserved is through the popularity of kolaches, which you can find everywhere from the refrigerated section of H-E-B to one of the beloved kolache shops in West or La Grange.

Back in 2014, Orsak and I made the journey over to Caldwell to judge the town’s annual kolache baking competition, and now Orsak is getting into the kolache business herself. Through her new cottage business, she’s selling Old School Kolaches, as she’s calling them, by the tray.

RELATED: A plea to Central Texans from a Czech girl: Please stop referring to sausage-filled pastries as ‘kolaches’

Austinite Dawn Orsak is selling her Old School Kolaches from her cottage business, At Memory’s Table. You can order them for delivery in South and Central Austin. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

You can pick up to four flavors — apricot, pecan, fig, poppyseed, prune, peach and apple — for delivery to South and Central Austin at A tray of 24 kolaches (or two trays of 12) costs $60, including delivery.

We tried these kolaches in my Relish Austin livestream last week, which is now sponsored by H-E-B.


What’s the connection between the Salvation Army and National Donut Day? Plus, where to get a free one today

Of all the national food days, National Donut Day (or National Doughnut Day, if you’re following AP Style) is one of the oldest.

During WWI, the Salvation Army sent volunteers to France, where they would often serve doughnuts and coffee to soldiers. These women, called “donut lassies,” are often credited with helping popularize doughnuts with the soldiers, who returned to the United States and brought with them the demand. Contributed by the Salvation Army.

It dates back to 1938, when the day was established to to honor the Salvation Army volunteers who handed out doughnuts to soldiers during World War I. Twenty years later, the Salvation Army designated June 1 as National Donut Day to raise awareness (and funds) for their cause. (That makes today the 80th anniversary of National Donut Day, if you really want to celebrate.)

You can read the full story about these “donut lassies” over on the Salvation Army page, but if you’re just looking for where to get a free doughnut today, the answer is Walmart.

Walmart is giving away more than a million free doughnuts today, and according to their representatives, all you have to do is walk into the store to get one.

From Krispy Kreme to Voodoo, Austin has plenty of doughnut shops. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

With the addition to Voodoo, Bougie and several other shops, Austin has become quite the doughnut town in the past few years, but it’s hard to beat the classic glazed doughnut at Round Rock doughnut.

You can also make them from scratch, of course. Might I suggest this recipe for biscuit doughnuts?


On Texas Independence Day, embrace your love of Whataburger at new Capitol Visitors Center food exhibit

Did you know the Poteet Strawberry Festival started in 1948 as a way to encourage World War II veterans to get into farming?

That’s one of the many Texas food factoids you’ll learn at a new food exhibit at the Texas Capitol Visitors Center called “A Diverse Blend: Celebrating Texas Food,” which is open until Sept. 30.

The Texas Capitol Visitors Center has a new food exhibit open until Sept. 30. It’s a small but informative exhibit, but this free, two-floor museum itself is an excellent alternative to the Bullock Texas State History Museum, which can be overwhelmingly crowded. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

But why wait until September? Today is Texas Independence Day, a widely accepted day to proudly proclaim Texan heritage and the state’s sprawling, if complicated, history, and although the Texas Capitol Visitors Center isn’t as comprehensive as the Bullock Texas State History Museum, this free museum near the southeast corner of the Texas Capitol has enough exhibits to keep a family entertained for at least an hour or two.

RELATED: Eight things every Texan should know on Texas Independence Day

What’s the most Texas dish to celebrate Texas Independence Day?

The Texas Capitol Visitors Center is located on 11th Street in the southeast corner of the Capitol grounds. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

The food exhibit is particularly fun. Curators set up the space to look like a kitchen, with a table in the middle of the room, an old fridge, oven and cabinets to showcase early kitchen tools, historical cookbooks and recipe cards. On the walls, you’ll find lots of quick pieces of info about the state’s food festivals, agricultural history and even the food companies that call the state home, including Whataburger and Blue Bell.

If the Bullock is too busy this weekend, or you’re looking for a less-intense (or free) place to learn about Texas history, including its foodways, this is the place to do it. It is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Here are some more photos from my recent visit.

RELATED: ‘Come and Take It’: Lone Star celebrates Texas Independence Day with special cans


On Feb. 20, Taste of Black Austin celebrates black food history, culture

Austin has lots of tasting events, many of which raise money for good causes, but few tell a story as rich and historical as the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce‘s Taste of Black Austin, which returns for the second year on Feb. 20 at Peached Social House, 6500 N. Lamar Blvd.

A Taste of Black Austin will return for the second year on Feb. 20. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

At the event from 6 to 9 p.m., more than 20 black-owned food businesses will be serving small bites connected to the theme of “From Field to Table.” By focusing on the influence of food and farming in the preservation of black history and culture, Taste of Black Austin organizers are opening a door to a deeper conversation about black economic prosperity through food.

Celebrating Austin’s current black food culture also provides a lens through which to see the history of black-owned food businesses in Austin, says GABC CEO and president Tam Hawkins. At a preview lunch earlier this week, Hawkins explained that Austin had more black-owned food businesses in 1905 than it does today, including many farms.

Today, there are few farm owners of color in the Austin area, and even fewer, if any, who identify as black. The lack of diversity in Central Texas agriculture didn’t happen overnight, and it won’t be resolved overnight, but Hawkins says she hopes that this event will spark a dialogue about the barriers to entry for all kinds of food businesses, not only agriculture, and honor the long legacy of African Americans in the farming and food communities of this area.

Members of the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce at a Taste of Black Austin preview event earlier this week at the Cook’s Nook. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

At the event in a few weeks, guests will enjoy savory small plates inspired by historic menus and recipe books and prepared by some of Austin’s talented chefs and a curated photo exhibition showcasing unique food history. During the preview, we tried chicken confit on pork rinds, garlicky collard greens with seared pork belly and an old fashioned ice milk served on creole-style bread pudding from local chefs Shon Moeller of Conjure Noir Social Aid & Pleasure Club and Demmerick Johnson, who has worked in fine dining kitchens in Austin for more than 20 years.

Event tickets are available for $85 and VIP tickets are available for $150, which includes a VIP cooking demonstration preceding the reception. You can find out more about the event and buy tickets at

An über sweet story behind an old cookie called pfeffernüsse

I’d never heard of pfeffernüsse until 2012, when a reader named Sally Jo Hahn emailed me to try to find a recipe for her dad.

He was about to turn 92, and he absolutely loved these spiced “peppernut” cookies from his childhood. Hahn had some questions. I tried to find some answers and ended up having a memorable afternoon baking cookies with her. This story had fallen off the internet, so I’m republishing it today, on National Cookie Day appropriately.

RELATED: Our five favorite cookie recipes on National Cookie Day

Sally Jo Hahn lost her grandmother’s recipe for pfeffernusse, a traditional cookie made in countries throughout Europe during the holidays. With the help of dozens of recipes that readers sent in, she found one that was similar to her Oma’s, which we made together in her South Austin home. Many of the recipes called for eggs, but her grandmother’s used potash and ammonium carbonate, which she found online. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

Editor’s note: This story originally ran on Dec. 12, 2012.

Sally Jo Hahn just wanted to give her dad a taste of one of his favorite cookies for his 92nd birthday this month.

The South Austinite emailed me in October to ask whether I knew where to find any old-fashioned pfeffernüsse recipes like her grandmother’s, which contained potash (potassium carbonate) and ammonium carbonate, ingredients used in the 19th century to add leavening and a crispness to the small, round cookies.

When her grandmother, Marie Rahn, and mother, Anneliese Hahn, died a year apart about a decade ago, the recipe got lost in the shuffle of their possessions.

These heavily spiced pfeffernüsse cookies aren’t found on my tables today, but they are fondly remembered by many who were born in post-war America. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

The cookies Hahn remembered were heavily spiced with cinnamon, cloves, anise, cardamom and nutmeg, and because they were hard as nails, they shipped well and stayed good for months.

We published her request and were inundated with recipes. More than 30 of you sent in your own family recipes and stories about these German cookies, which are also popular in a number of northern European countries.

I forwarded all the notes, including the handwritten ones, to Hahn, and last week, I helped her make a batch.

While we were rolling out the long ropes of sticky, dense dough, I found out that there was much more to her family’s love of pfeffernüsse than its signature spice.

Here’s how Hahn tells it: Her grandparents and mother emigrated to Michigan from what was then East Prussia after World War I ended. In 1944, her mother married Jerry Hahn, a soldier who was also from Detroit.

All in all, Hahn was deployed for two and a half years during World War II, including fighting under George S. Patton in the Battle of the Bulge, and during his time in Europe, his mother-in-law would send tins of pfeffernüsse in his care packages.

The irony is not lost on Sally Jo Hahn that her German grandmother sent German cookies to her father, who was fighting the Nazis not all that far from the part of Europe where her grandparents had left less than 20 years before.

Hahn’s grandmother used to send pfeffernüsse cookies to her dad when he was in Europe during World War II. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

The history of this particular recipe, of course, led to entirely different stories, a heartbreaking one of relatives, including young children, crossing heavily guarded borders in the middle of the night, and another of her dad staying up late to transmit Morse code with the help of coffee so thick that a spoon could stand up on its own in the middle of the cup.

For Jerry Hahn, slowly chewing on those rich, flavorful cookies from home made the nights pass a little quicker.

It’s no wonder Sally Jo Hahn was on the hunt for the recipe.

Unlike the photo we ran with the column, most of the recipes, including the one Hahn was after, did not call for powdered sugar. “My grandma grew up in East Prussia. They didn’t have powdered sugar, ” she said. “These were peasant cookies.”

They also didn’t have electric mixers or ovens that kept a steady temperature. To find the potassium and ammonium carbonate that were readily available to her grandmother, Hahn had to go online, where she discovered‘s extensive inventory. (The website also has a large retail store in Colleyville, which opened about three years ago.)

Though the German name translates to “peppernuts” in English, not all pfeffernüsse contain black pepper or nuts, though some of the recipes that readers sent in certainly did.

Maren Larsen Palmer’s recipe, which originated with her Danish grandmother, calls only for ground cloves, and a number of recipes relied on anise extract or oil to give the cookies that characteristic bite.

Jennifer Michie’s family favorite, from a church cookbook from a Lutheran church in North Dakota, calls for a cup of coffee thrown in the mix.

Many of you sent in recipes that have been in your families for generations. Helen Kott’s family, including her Aunt Dora, have likely been making pfeffernüsse in and around Fredericksburg since they moved there in the mid-1850s, and Martha Rinn’s recipe, which calls for eggs and no molasses or syrup, has been in her family at least 100 years.

(Ottilie Cleesen’s and Marie Offerman’s daughters were kind enough to email their mothers’ recipes in for them.)

One reader from Manchaca who wished to remain anonymous summed it up best: Though it is impossible to replicate a memory, especially one created by an “Oma, ” the search itself is a gift.


This recipe is a combination of several, including one from Sally Jo Hahn’s cousin Jutta Rahn and another from Buzz Moran’s grandmother Annie. It’s as close as Hahn has gotten so far to what her Oma once made.

1 cup Karo syrup (light or dark) or honey
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
3 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground cloves
2 tsp. ground ginger
2 tsp. ground cardamom
2 tsp. ground nutmeg
Pinch ground star anise
4 cups flour
1 ½ tsp. potassium carbonate (pottasche)
Pinch ammonium carbonate (hirschhornsalz)

In a small saucepan, mix together the Karo syrup or honey, sugar and butter and bring to a boil. Let the caramel-like mixture cool. While that is cooling, whisk together the spices and flour in a large bowl. Reserve.

In a small bowl, heat 2 tbsp. water until warm but not hot. Dissolve the potassium carbonate and ammonium carbonate in the water and then add all to the cooled syrup/butter mixture.

Slowly add the syrup mixture to the flour mixture in small batches, incorporating the ingredients with a wooden spoon as you go so that the syrup doesn’t end up in a blob in the bottom of the bowl.

Once the dough is starting to come together, you can use a stand-up mixer with a dough hook attachment to help bring it together, or you can continue to use a spoon and your hands.

When the dough can be pressed together into a ball, refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

After the dough has cooled, place a chunk of the dough on a floured surface and roll into a long rope about as thick as your thumb.

Place on a baking sheet and continue making ropes with the dough. Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Remove ropes from fridge and cut into ½-inch pieces. Place pieces with a little space between them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 8 to 9 minutes, or until slightly puffed up and only slightly browned. Cool on a cookie rack.

(You can toss them in powdered sugar when they are still warm, but this isn’t the Hahn family way.)

When completely cool, store in a sealed tin or glass jar. The cookies will continue to harden as they cool, but dipping them in coffee or milk will soften them.

— Recipe from Jutta Rahn, Ontario, Canada


Janice Friesen’s Oma’s recipe, which she says she makes in large batches to give cookies away to neighbors, family and friends this time of year, calls for shortening, baking powder and an egg, a totally different set of leavening agents, but one that makes for a similar, if less tooth-cracking cookie.

2 cups sugar
1 cup shortening
1 cup dark Karo syrup
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. ground star anise
5 cups flour, plus more for dusting

In a large bowl, cream together the sugar and shortening with an electric mixer. In a small bowl, combine egg and Karo syrup, and in another large bowl, whisk together the salt, baking powder, spices and flour. Mix the wet ingredients together and then slowly add the flour.

On a floured surface, roll the dough into long ropes and then chill for at least an hour.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove dough ropes from fridge and cut into ½-inch pieces. Place pieces on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes and let cool. Store in an airtight container.

— Recipe by Ann Friesen


Gaga’s Goulash fed many; now, here’s the recipe

I was moved by so many of your emails last week after my column about losing my grandmother.

So many of you had similar memories of your grandparents and are making those memories with your own grandchildren now. It’s always an honor to read your personal stories, so thank you for sharing them with me.

My grandmother, known in our family as Gaga, died in September. She made many batches of goulash for friends and neighbors, and it was one of her most requested recipes. Addie Broyles / American-Statesman

I didn’t have my grandma’s goulash recipe in time for last week’s print section, but enough of you requested it that I decided to publish it separately.

Like my grandmother, the recipe is short and to the point and assumes that you know a thing or two already. Cook the meat over medium-high heat in a large skillet that has a lid. Use the empty can of diced tomatoes (always one of those 14-ounce cans) to measure the water. My grandma didn’t list how long to simmer the tomatoes and ground beef, but my mom remembers it being about 10 minutes. If you simmer it for longer, you might not have enough water for the pasta shells, but that’s something you’ll just have to figure out as you go. Exactness was not my grandmother’s specialty, but patience and practicality were. If you have to add a splash or two of water or drain it if it’s too watery, just do it.

The last cooking tip, passed from my grandma to my mom to me to you, is make sure you have a jar of that Better Than Bouillon condensed bouillon in your fridge. My family still swears by that stuff. It’s as strong as Swedish coffee and will make your dumplings, and goulash, sing a song worthy of the angels making it.

American goulash is a mix of ground beef, tomatoes and pasta, and this version comes from Gonna Want Seconds. It looks similar to the one my grandmother used to make for friends and neighbors, especially after they’d lost someone special. Contributed by Gonna Want Seconds

Gaga’s Goulash

1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
3 to 4 teaspoons Williams chili seasoning
1 (14-oz.) can diced tomatoes
1 can water
2 1/4 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon beef broth
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup dried small pasta shells
Salt and pepper, to taste

Brown meat and onions. Add chili seasoning while browning hamburger. Add diced tomatoes, water, bouillon and sugar. Let cook, covered, about 10 minutes. Add shells and cover. Boil 10-12 minutes until done.

— Carolyn Cook

Next Kitchen Diva lunch focuses on history of old L.C. Anderson High School

Remember when I told you about Angela Shelf Medearis’ new Lunch and Learn series taking place this summer at the George Washington Carver Museum?

Graduates of L.C. Anderson High School in 1960. Contributed by the Austin History Center/PICA 07568

Well, the Kitchen Diva is back with another one.

On Thursday, Medearis will host a lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. with a lecture at 1:30 p.m. from Roland Hayes, professor of African American history at Austin Community College, who will talk about the history of L. C. Anderson High School, which closed in the 1970s in an effort to desegregate Austin schools.

Anderson High School secretary Irene Thompson, 94, knew just about everybody in East Austin
Community reactions mixed over proposed LASA move to Eastside site

The Carver Center is hosting an exhibit this summer dedicated to Austin’s first black high school. Tickets to the lunch cost $20, or $10 if you are an old L.C. Anderson alum. You can pay at the door or online through Eventbrite.

Students outside L. C. Anderson High School, March 1, 1956. Photo by Neal Douglass. Photo ID ND-56-1753(A)-01. Courtesy Austin History Center, Austin Public Library.

On the menu: Cajun Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo, Penne Pasta Bolognese, Fresh Tomato and Cucumber Garden Salad, Green Beans with Balsamic Onions, Buttery Garlic Bread, Spicy Jalapeno Corn Bread, Yellow Jacket Layer Cake and Diva-Licious Iced Tea

MORE: Anderson High School Closed 45 Years Ago, But East Austin Still Feels Its Absence


Austin Found: What did Austin’s farmers markets look like in the 1970s and 1980s?

It’s National Farmers Market Week!

This is the 18th year for this USDA-approved event that celebrates the thousands of farmers markets across the country. For every $100 spent at a farmers market, $62 stays in the local economy and $99 stays in state, according to the Farmers Market Coalition, a national organization committed to strengthening farmers markets.

Carlos Rodriguez (May 26, 1977, photo by Kit Brooking); No name/info for middle photo; Jeff Campbell of the Stonewall Chili Pepper Co. at the Travis County Farmers Market’s Texas Hot Pepper Festival (Sept. 6, 1992, photo by Larry Kolvoord)

According to research conducted by the USDA, farmers and ranchers that sell directly to consumers at farmers markets have lower rates of bankruptcy and farm foreclosure than producers that rely solely on the wholesale contracts.

To celebrate the long history and cultural and economic importance of farmers markets, I thought I’d dig into our archives to find photos of markets in the Austin area from the 1970s through the early 1990s, when Austin’s primary market was located on Lakeshore Boulevard just north of Riverside Drive.

I don’t have a lot of caption info about the farmers and customers in these photos, so if you recognize someone or want to share your memories from these markets, leave a comment below.

Debi White, right, of White Produce northwest of Dallas sells produce to a shopper at the grand opening of the Travis County Farmers Market, which was open every day of the week. 1989 photo by Ralph Barrera.

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Shannon Grant sells tomatoes to Beth Martin at the C&J Produce Farm booth at the farmers market on Burnet Road. 1992 photo by David Kennedy

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Peaches and other fruit for sale from Lightsey Farms in Mexia. 1991 photo by Lynn Dobson

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Connie Guitierrez of Corpus Christi (July 15, 1984, photo by Ralph Barrera); Ken Pryor (May 6, 1977, photo by Tom Lankes); J.A. Boyd (photo by Daniel Kennedy)

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In 1989, some farmers at the South Austin Farmers’ Market split off to run their own market at the Live Oak Hotel at 2900 South Congress. Photo by Ralph Barrera

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Leeks cost 20 cents a bunch at the Travis County Farmers Market in 1977 (right). Tom Lankes photos
Bert Bochert and Cornell Marcee sell produce at the farmers market in 1978.
Pauline Palousek smells a melon, right, while Amy Wilson looks on at one of the Austin farmers markets on May 24, 1980. Photo by Kit Brooking
Frank Hunt sells honey at the Travis County Farmers Market (April 25, 1988, photo by Zach Ryall); Marilyn Bryan buys pickling cucumbers at the Travis County Farmers Market (June 2, 1991, photo by Mike Boroff); Mauro Vasquez shows his garlic to a customers (June 18, 1983, photo by Zach Ryall)
A band called The Polacheck Bros. and Maggie played at the farmers market in 1980. Photo by Kit Brooking
Ben Marroquin, right, buys parsley from John Bennett at the Burnet Road Farmers Market in 1988. Photo by Zach Ryall


Cora Lamar of Kosse sells her produce at the Travis County Farmers Market in 1991. Photo by Mike Boroff
Rusty Harsh of Luling sells tomatoes at the Travis County Farmers Market in 1990. Photo by Mike Boroff
Denise Worthey and her son, Miles, buy apples at the Travis County Farmers Market in 1989 through the Farmers Market Coupon Program, a Texas Department of Agriculture initiative to increase access to healthy food for WIC participants. Photo by Mike Boroff
J.D. and Barbara Moffett of Red Rock, right, sell produce to customers Linda and Ed Smith, left. 1986 photo by Tom Lankes
John Vlcek of the Texas Department of Agriculture inspects produce at one of the Austin farmers markets in 1983.
Larry Butler of Boggy Creek Farm sells produce in 1993.