Looking for last-minute Texas food gifts? There's still time to ship citrus fruits, pecans, stollen
It's a busy time of the year for buying gifts and supporting local food businesses. There's a little time left to buy some of those nifty gift boxes and kitchen gear we wrote about recently, but here are a few more ideas, as well as some news about local food brands.
Easy Tiger has long sold its holiday breads and cookies in the Austin area, but this year, it's announced nationwide shipping. That means you can send a loaf of stollen or a holiday cookie tin with pfeffernusse and lebkuchen to your relatives. Find the menu at easytigerusa.com.
Brennan Vineyards is selling a creative wine-and-pecan pairing box ($180, brennanvineyards.com) that includes five bottles of wine and five different kinds of Texas pecans.
Austin pastry chef Lorin Peters, who lists the French Laundry on the list of restaurants where she's worked, launched a cookie business this year called Cookie Rich. She bakes the cookies into two half-spheres and combines them with a filling, creating a little cookie sandwich. She makes 10 flavors and you can mix and match flavors (in boxes of 4 or 12, $15 and $33, respectively, getcookierich.com) for pickup or delivery.
The South Texas-based US Citrus ships boxes of fresh citrus all year round, including Persian limes, Meyer lemons, Rio Red grapefruit, mandarins, tangelos, and Navel and Valencia oranges. Customers can also choose to sign up for a Craft Citrus Club subscription to get a 10- or 20-pound box delivered every few weeks or every month. Prices start at $29.95, and you can sign up at uscitrus.com.
Kimchi Jon's launches new line of kimchi
Kimchi Jon's served Korean street food from 2018 until late last year.
Owner Zach Miller never reopened the trailer after the coronavirus pandemic began and instead decided to open a new kimchi company.
Miller's smoky kimchi "is as close to Grandma’s kimchi as you’re going to find on this side of the hemisphere,” he says. The original kimchi ($8 for 16 ounces) is currently available at Royal Blue Grocery, Vista Brewing and Rockstar Bagels, which also sells a kimchi cream cheese. Kimchi Jon's plans to soon launch vegan options, hot sauces, a kimchi barbecue sauce and more.
Tacodeli adds tortilla chips, famous refried beans to Whole Foods lineup
Whole Foods has been selling Tacodeli's salsas and queso for several years now, and this month, stores in the Southwest region of the grocery store are adding the restaurant's organic corn chips and a black bean dip.
The taco restaurant has been familiar to Austinites since it opened more than 20 years ago, serving dozens of kinds of tacos inspired by the regional cuisines of Mexico. It now has locations in Dallas and Houston, and its grocery products are sold at Whole Foods Markets in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma.
This new round of products includes molidos, a term for pureed black beans that can be used as a dip or tucked inside tacos, a la Tacodeli's bestselling breakfast taco the Otto and its everyday bean and cheese taco.
The tortilla chips cost $4.49 for 5 1/2 ounces, and the vegan molido dip, sold in the refrigerated section with the salsas, costs $6.99 for 12 ounces.
Loving Libbie Foundation new selling frozen dumplings
Another comfort food classic from the Loving Libbie Foundation has hit the freezer aisle at H-E-B.
The nonprofit that supports families whose children are experiencing life-threatening illnesses started from Becky Nichols' West Austin cafe, which she used to make mac and cheese and chicken and dumplings to drop off at Dell Children's and a nearby cancer treatment facility. That mac and cheese hit grocery stores last year, and this month, H-E-Bs around the state started carrying Nichols' Loving Libbie chicken and dumplings ($3.35 for 10 ounces), which you can also find the frozen section.
On the day the product launched, Nichols and her team delivered boxes of the frozen product to several medical care facilities in Mueller. Using the proceeds from the frozen food sales, Nichols continues to drop off meals (and birthday cakes) to patients, families and staff at local children's medical facilities. She also has a food truck, which makes appearances from time to time at the hospital. During the coronavirus pandemic, she's been dropping off groceries for families who can't easily get to the grocery store.