bbq

Coral samples in Galveston could be key to keeping the species alive

On the eve of early voting, Alexandra Samuels of Texas Monthly and Mark Jones of the Baker Institute at Rice University share a closer look at some of the big contests Texas voters will see on their primary ballots.

We’ll hear about what happened when reporters for the Houston Chronicle began mapping where tickets are being issued to people experiencing homelessness there.

Amid mounting threats from climate change, scientists at Moody Gardens in Galveston are caring for 150 coral fragments from five species to keep them alive.

Anyone up for barbecue – for breakfast? BBQ journalist Daniel Vaughn has some prime tips.

Children at Risk’s annual ranking of Texas schools is out

Texas officials say they’re reassigning workers to deal with an ongoing problem of providing care for foster kids without placement.

The 2022-2023 school ratings report from Houston-based nonprofit Children at Risk sheds light on progress and problems that districts are facing statewide.

Former Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo, who also had a short stint in Houston, will soon take on a new position overseeing Austin’s police department.

And a giraffe in a park in Juárez, who made headlines last year, is getting a new home.

A look back at the year in review

It was a year like few others in modern memory at the Texas Capitol, with four special sessions on top of a regular session, a historic impeachment trial of the state attorney general and more.

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of one of the most seminal Texas music moments ever committed to vinyl: Viva Terlingua!

Houston sues state over ‘Death Star’ law that will block local ordinances

Houston has sued the state to try and block the “Death Star” law that will block local regulations from being enacted at the city and county level.

Why several homes and businesses flooded during Hurricane Harvey may be passing up a last chance for compensation.

A new documentary, “Every Body,” turns the spotlight on people in the intersex community.

Plus, with digital streaming services upending the old model for making money in music, tech expert Omar Gallaga explores ways to support one’s favorite artists.

What the worry over ChatGPT looks like on college campuses

The Texas House approved a ban on school vouchers but the Senate has plans to overcome that.

One pill kills: a new statewide campaign to warn Texans about the dangers of fentanyl.

An attempt by the EPA to cut substantial cancer risk in some Gulf Coast communities by as much as 96%.

From college classrooms in El Paso and Austin, a reality check on the impact of ChatGPT.

A Texas child mental health program that could prove to be a model for other states.

Plus more than just peanuts and Cracker Jack on the menu this baseball season… barbecue smokers, too.

What Texans think lawmakers should prioritize this legislative session

Texans say the border should be the top priority for the state Legislature this session, according to a new poll. We’ll dig into the results.

Questions about how the Center for Law and Human Behavior at the University of Texas at El Paso selected two Border Patrol agents for fellowships.

Taco expert Mando Rayo talks about his favorite traditional mom-and-pop eateries across the Lone Star State.

Piano music fills the air as El Paso hosts the Borderland Chopin festival spotlighting the beloved composer.

What is a ‘constitutional sheriff’?

Inauguration ceremonies at the capitol lift the curtain and set the stage as the 88th legislature gets underway in earnest. We’ll have more on the inauguration of the Governor and the Lt. Governor. Also a prison hunger strike and allegations of retaliation. And the constitutional sheriffs movement and why advocates of police reform are concerned a vow to uphold the law is being twisted into something that subverts the law. Also 50 years of BBQ. The barbecue editor of Texas monthly on what’s changed in those decades, and it might be a lot more than you think. Plus, commentator W.F. Strong in celebration of Texas grammar, a Politifact check and more today on the Texas Standard:

What was on the menu this year

It’s been said that food is one of the best ways to understand a culture, and today, we’ve got quite the feast prepared. From migas to pecan pie, kolaches to Tex-mex, fried okra, cowboy cuisine, and everything in between; we review the year that was, in food and drink, in the Lone Star State. From a great Texas cookbook, to a cannabis cuisine trend, the invention of the “travel taco”, and secrets from the kitchen of a celebrated El Paso Chef. We’ve cooked up a special batch of Texas flavors for you today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: October 26, 2022

Governor Abbott extends a COVID-19 disaster declaration for Texas as a majority of states move the other direction. We’ll have the latest. Other stories we’re tracking: a stay of execution for a Texas death row inmate turns the spotlight on a tactic used by police to extract confessions…not all of them true. Also as election day approaches the nuts and bolts of voting machines: often at the center of disinformation claims. And how bout them…ticket prices? If you want to see the Astros in the world series it’s gonna costa ya, big time. We’ll hear how much. And the barbecue capitol of Texas heats up for an event that’s truly smokin. All that and much more today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: January 31, 2022

On this final day to register to vote in the primary, a new survey offers a sneak peek on who’s ahead in what races and why. A pandemic, a statewide power outage, a walkout at the capitol over voting restrictions. In 2022, how much is set to change in Texas politics? A new poll by the University of Houston Hobby School suggests less than some might imagine. We’ll hear more. Also, in a decision celebrated by environmentalists, rights to drill for oil in the gulf wiped out by a federal judge. We’ll hear about what could be long term ripple effects. And a growing problem for Texas pitmasters: where’s the wood? Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard :

Chas Moore

In this episode of Black Austin Matters, hosts Lisa B. Thompson and Rich Reddick talk with Chas Moore, the executive director of the Austin Justice Coalition. His organization has been deeply involved with advocating for racial justice and police reform in Austin and organized some of the largest demonstrations against police violence in the wake of the murder of George Floyd in 2020.

Texas Standard: October 21, 2021

As the fight over Texas redistricting moves from the legislature to the courts, lawmakers and hopefuls are readjusting their political plans. Today on the Texas Standard.
A San Antonio non profit is drawing some unwelcome attention for its recent move into housing migrants. We’ll explore.
And as more bitcoin mining moves into Texas, what’s being done to make sure the energy gobbling industry doesn’t over tap the state’s power grid?
The longest-running indigenous radio program in Texas celebrates all native culture. We’ll highlight the story.
And there are some newcomers in the top 5 in the latest Texas Monthly list of the best BBQ. Why they stood out. That and more.

The Rise of Tex-Mex BBQ

If you asked any natural born Texan what food they most associate with their home state, chances are you’ll get one of two answers: BBQ and Tacos. In this episode we examine how these two disparate food traditions collided to to create the Lone Star sensation that is Tex-Mex BBQ. We’ll get a comprehensive look at this trend’s history, uncovering what exactly is Tex-Mex BBQ? How far do the style’s roots go? And most importantly, where are the best BBQ Tacos in Texas found? Guests include Ernest Servantes of Burnt Bean Company in Seguin, Joel Garcia of Teddy’s BBQ in Weslaco, and Eliana Gutierrez of Valentina’s Tex-Mex BBQ In Austin. Check out this Tex-Mex BBQ map we made with all the spots we mention in this episode.

Texas Standard: September 14, 2020

Primary care physicians on the front line of a health crisis now asking for a primary care “Marshall Plan” to survive long term. That story and more today on the Texas Standard.

El Paso, long a democratic stronghold, but also with a history of low turnout among Latinos and young voters. A closer look at what issues might get them to the polls with election day now 50 days away.

Also, how one of the biggest legacies of the Obama administration echoes in this election season.

And colleges and universities trying to get in good with social media influencers- but at what price? Those stories and more.

Texas Standard: July 21, 2020

A sweeping stay at home order in Hidalgo county to stop the spread of COVID-19. But Governor Abbott says there’s no enforcement mechanism. In the Rio Grande Valley, doctors say resources are so limited they’re at the point of making difficult treatment choices. We’ll talk to the health authority in Starr county. Also, a state prison inmate surrounded by fellow inmates testing positive for COVID-19 is approved for parole but dies before his release. As his daughter grieves, she’s also demanding changes to the system. Those stories and much more today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: June 16, 2020

Bexar County officials among others asking the Governor for authority to require face masks as the numbers of COVID-19 cases continue to rise, we’ll have details. Also, the impact in Texas from yesterday’s landmark decision protecting the rights of gay and transgender workers. We’ll hear from the head of the State house LGBTQ caucus. And almost three years after Harvey, the Houstonians caught in the middle of a fight over relief funds. And the push to rename Fort Hood for a Texas veteran and Medal of Honor recipient who fought with the United States, not against it. Those stories and much more today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: February 18, 2020

As Bloomberg surges in the polls, his Texas strategy draws national attention, as another billionaire bets on Texas as a turning point. Our conversation with Tom Steyer on how the former hedge fund manager is pitching himself as an outsider here in the Lone Star State. Also on this first day of early voting, long time democratic members of congress from Texas facing challenges from progressives, in a fight for the soul of the party. Plus religious tattoos: new research suggests they’re making a distinctive mark. Those stories and so much more today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: January 21, 2020

More foster kids sleeping in state offices? Efforts to deal with a crisis in the states child welfare system still failing hundreds of young Texans. Also, concerns about a growing mental health crisis on the border. We’ll hear the latest. And disorder in the court? A special panel now asking whether judges in Texas should still run for election in partisan races, or if it’s better to follow the federal system of appointment. Plus real brisket, fake news? Texas Monthly’s barbecue editor on Texans with a beef about a unique branch of journalism. Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

Brisket

Not all meat dishes can inspire a poem. Brisket has no trouble.

The Texas Crutch

By W.F. Strong

I like that Texas is so famous for certain things that those things carry the Texas brand all around the world. Like Texas toast, for instance. Or Texas Hold ‘em poker. The Texas two-step. Texas-style brisket. And even within the specialized world of backyard chefs, the brisket has a sub-specialty technique known as the Texas crutch. This technique allegedly originated in Texas, and therefore carries the Texas name throughout the barbecue world.

I’m going to teach you about this technique over the next three minutes. It may come in handy this summer when you are slow-smoking a fine brisket over the required 15 hours and suddenly need to hurry it along without ruining it. This is merely a suggestion. I know all too well that you don’t mess with Texas and you sure as hell don’t mess with a Texan’s brisket. So I go gently forth with this option.

Suppose, for instance, that you have invited people over to the house to eat at 8 p.m. You remember saying, “Y’all come on over for brisket at 8 p.m. and y’all bring the neighbors. Plenty for everybody.” But now it’s 5 p.m., the brisket has stalled and you realize it won’t be ready until probably 10 p.m. or later. Time for the Texas crutch.

The point of the Texas crutch is to speed up the cooking without losing the holy grail of tenderness. So what you do is get some foil or butcher paper and fashion it into a big, sturdy boat that will hold liquid. Put your brisket in the boat and then pour about a half a cup of apple juice into the boat – not over the brisket because it will rinse off the rub. Some people use bourbon or beer or red wine, but apple juice is preferred because of the enzymes that work diligently to tenderize the brisket.

The next step is to cover the brisket completely with foil or butcher paper and put it back to cook. Crank up the heat to about 250 degrees or 275 degrees, and let the apple juice and heat work their dual-action magic until the core of the brisket is 200 degrees, or twice the outdoor temp of the average Texas summer. Then take it off and let it rest an hour. Now you will have splendid, tender, awesome brisket that all those friends and neighbors will rave about and beg for seconds. The only problem is they will want you to do it again next week.

I love knowing about the technique and using it when I must, but I love even more knowing that in the book on brisketology, there is a chapter called “The Texas Crutch.” I enjoy knowing that the Texas name is on things that travel ’round the world, serving as a kind of advertisement for our culture. It’s our one-of-a-kind branding. And that branding is priceless. A manager at H-E-B told me that products sell much better if they have the Texas star or Texas flag or “Made in Texas” on them. And that branding works just as well in the Mexico H-E-Bs as it does here at home. And if we could trademark the Texas name and symbols, license and sell them, I’m sure we could make enough each year to buy a brisket for every family in the state for what I would call National Texas Brisket Day. Might need some beer and ice cream to go with it. Wonder who could help us out with that?