In honor of March being Women’s History Month, we’ve pulled together some of our favorite recipes from Texas-based female chefs. These creative ladies are using their incredible wealth of knowledge and kitchen skills to craft exceptional, memorable, and one-of-a-kind dishes. Try making a few at home or visiting their restaurants across the state!
Irma’s Original’s Tamales
Irma Galvan, the owner of Irma’s Original in Houston, has been hand-rolling tamales in the restaurant’s kitchen for over two decades. This recipe makes a lot of tamales, but you can easily freeze your extras by wrapping them tightly in aluminum foil and then storing them in a large resealable bag—if you have leftovers. You’ll be surprised how fast these disappear!
Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman’s Carrot Habanero Soup
This recipe from Dallas restaurant José was actually created from a not-quite-right carrot mole sauce! Chef Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman added coconut milk to the “ruined” dish and ended up creating one of the restaurant’s most popular menu items. Be sure to use the sweetest carrots you can find.
Juanita’s Tex Mex Cantina’s Habanero Shrimp Tacos
Juanita’s Tex Mex Cantina in College Station serves up everyone’s favorite classic dishes alongside some nontraditional options, like these shrimp tacos. The bold and bright bites are one of Executive Chef Kathryn Rucker’s favorite items on the menu. Make sure to wear long sleeves and an apron before beginning the frying process to protect your skin!
Nicola Blaque’s Jerk Chicken
The Jerk Shack has amassed a devoted following, and now it’s snagged a James Beard Award Semifinalist nod. Nicola Blaque’s famous jerk chicken requires some advance preparation and plenty of tasting as you go. Trust your instincts as you work through this flexible recipe!
Norma Jean’s Beans from The Original Black’s Barbecue
The “Queen of Texas Barbecue” herself, Norma Jean Black, has never revealed the secrets behind her famous barbecue beans … until now! This was the first side dish ever sold at The Original Black’s Barbecue, and it’s been a mainstay on the menu ever since. The special technique Norma coined called “bumpin’ the beans” is what makes the recipe so rich, so don’t skip this step!
SamoasⓇ Pot de Crème
This elegant, award-winning dessert from Executive Chef Sarah R. Myles of LAZO with Don Strange features SamoasⓇ Girl Scout cookies for a hint of nostalgia. You get all the flavors of the beloved cookie—from the rich caramel to the bittersweet chocolate to the coconut—in one spoonable bite. Although this item is no longer on the menu, it’s simple enough to recreate at home!
White Bean Crostini
Chef Tim McDiarmid, the owner of The Good Kind and Tim the Girl Catering in San Antonio, developed this ultra-simple appetizer with alfresco dining in mind. Fig season is short, so when you can no longer find the juicy, sweet fruit, try topping your crostini with plum slices instead.
Anita Jaisinghani’s Fenugreek Fish
Feast on this Fenugreek Fish from Pondicheri in Houston for a “transformative” twist on dinner! Feel free to use any mild white fish you can find, like halibut or cobia. We also recommend grinding your mustard seed fresh for maximal flavor impact.
Elizabeth Johnson’s Quinoa Pizza
Elizabeth Johnson is the mastermind behind Pharm Table, a restaurant focused on serving anti-inflammatory foods using a hyper-local, farm-to-table approach. Johnson’s recipe for the quinoa pizza is a bit of a project, but making dough from quinoa can be a fun weekend activity for kids and adults alike.
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