How much do you know about Texas? The Lone Star State has a rich and vibrant history that forms a critical piece of the greater American story. Read on for a brief overview of the history, culture, and cuisine of Texas, plus an exciting announcement about how this relates to Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls and Bread!
The History of Texas:
In its centuries-long history, Texas has resided under the rule of six different nations, up to and including its adoption as the 28th U.S. state in 1845. Texas is the second-largest U.S. state in both land area (after Alaska) and population (after California). The state’s vast land area and geographic and economic diversity make it difficult to categorize. Each region of the state has its own unique make-up, but the whole of Texas seems united in its history and persona.
Today, Texas is home to three of the top ten most populous cities in the country: Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas (with Austin, Fort Worth, and El Paso not far behind). It is also home to numerous large corporations and is an economic leader in various industries.
The Culture of Texas:
Because of Texas’ unique history, its culture is a blend of several distinct influences. One of the most iconic images of Texas is that of the cowboy and the “great frontier,” a visual which ties it to the rest of the western United States. Yet just as prominent is the closely-knit narrative of the Tejanos of the Southwest, a fusion of Mexican and Anglo traditions. And still a close third is the connection with the rest of the Southern “Dixie” states, with which it shares much in common.
This interesting combination of traditions and backgrounds makes Texas somewhat of a melting pot, a reality that is particularly noticeable in its culinary styles and techniques.
The Cuisine of Texas:
As mentioned above, Texas’ cultural diversity has created interesting fusion cuisines that are authentically Texas and have become an important part of America’s culinary history. Here are some of the most influential contributions from Texas’ cuisine:
Without a doubt, the style of food most commonly associated with Texas and the southwestern U.S. is what is called “Tex-Mex.” While this Mexican-inspired cuisine resembles that of its southern neighbor, its flavor and flair are distinctly Texan.
Tex-Mex cuisine starts on the basis of Mexican cooking traditions but incorporates new ingredients more popular in the U.S., such as wheat (flour) tortillas, beef, cumin, and yellow cheese. Foods such as fajitas, nachos, and chile con queso (among others) are strictly Texas in origin, but have become popular around the globe.
Featured Recipe: Tex-Mex Breakfast Sandwich
The breakfast burrito is a great example of Texas’ Mexican-inspired fusion cuisine. This sandwich is a spin on that—with a mixture of scrambled eggs and seasoned taco meat, Tex-Mex shredded cheese blend, green onions, and hot salsa, all served up on a Martin’s 12-Sliced Slider Potato Bun.
Try the recipe: https://potatorolls.com/recipes/tex-mex-breakfast-sandwich
> > More Tex-Mex Recipes:
- Fajita Burgers
- Chicken Fajita Grilled Cheese
- Big Tex Grilled Cheese
- Smoky Tex-Mex Sloppy Josés (by Rachael Ray)
Southern Comfort Food
Southern cooking basically defines “comfort food” with its deep-fried this and home-style that. Texas is no exception to this category of cuisine, which includes such delicacies as fried chicken and chicken-fried steak, cornbread, sweet tea, fried green tomatoes, collard greens, and pecan pie.
Featured Recipe: Chicken-Fried Steak Sandwich
Chicken-fried steak is simply steak (pounded thin) that has been breaded and fried, similar to how you would prepare fried chicken. Because…why not? This southern favorite (alternately called “country-fried” steak) is served here as a sandwich on Martin’s Sandwich Potato Rolls, topped with country-style sausage gravy and green leaf lettuce.
Try the recipe: https://potatorolls.com/recipes/chicken-fried-steak-sandwiches
> > More Southern-Style Recipes:
- Pecan Pie Bites
- Southern Stacked Burger
- Texas Smokehouse Pork Tenderloin Sandwich
- Pecan Pie Bread Pudding
While many U.S. states are known for their barbecue, Texas has its own unique style, with a preference for beef barbecue, especially brisket. Texas barbecue has transformed over time, merging various techniques and flavors from outside influences such as Mexico, the southeastern and western U.S., and German and eastern European immigrants.
Even within the state itself, the preferred styles of barbecue differ from region to region. Check out our blog post here to learn more about Texas barbecue.
Featured Recipe: BBQ Brisket Platter
Texas is famous for its beef brisket barbecue, commonly served on platters or trays like the one above. You can find it at roadside stands and restaurants, often served on pink butcher paper, along with sliced white bread, optional toppings and sauces, and your choice of sides.
Learn how to prepare a barbecue platter like the one shown above on our blog: https://potatorolls.com/blog/backyard-bbq-party-platters
> > More BBQ Recipes:
- Smoked Cowboy Brisket Sandwich
- Brisket Grilled Cheese
- Barbecue Beef Brisket
- BBQ Brisket Sandwich with Jalapeno Cole Slaw
Just like with barbecue, burgers are ingrained in Texas’ food culture. Whether because of Texas’ love for beef, their American frontier mindset, or the hamburger’s hotly disputed origin story, burgers are a crucial part of Texas.
Featured Recipe: America Mini Burger Trio
This burger trio, originally created to honor American Independence Day, is perfectly fitting for the state of Texas. From the Cowboy Burger topped with bacon, BBQ sauce, and fried onion strings; to the classic Diner-Style Burger with the basic fixin’s; to the taco-seasoned Tex-Mex Burger topped with salsa—all three mini burgers apply equally to Texas’ history as to our country’s as a whole.
Learn the background story behind each of these three burgers on our blog: https://potatorolls.com/blog/monthly-burger-series-america-burger-trio
> > More Burger Recipes:
- Steakhouse BBQ Burger
- Southwest Chipotle Burgers Guacamole
- Green Chile Queso Burgers
- BBQ Lovers Burger
Texas + Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls and Bread
While we’re on the topic of food traditions in Texas…it’s time to share some exciting news: Martin’s is coming to Texas!! Beginning this month (February 2020), Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls and Bread products will be available to purchase in our initial retail markets of Austin and Houston, Texas.
We are so excited to be entering this brand-new retail market and for the opportunity to share our products with fans, both new and old, in the Lone Star State. We’re proud to be joining the Texas story of cherished eating experiences.
If you have friends, family, or acquaintances living near Austin or Houston, be sure to share the good news with them!
For more information, including specific Texas retail and restaurant locations, please visit: https://MartinsLovesTexas.com.
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