Thursday, March 8, 2012

Thirsty Thursday: Avocado Margarita and Austin, TX Top Ten

In January I tagged along with Curtis on his work trip to Austin, TX and then my oldest friend Kelly (we've been friends since she was 2 and I was 3) and her husband Mark graciously put us up at their home and entertained us for the weekend. The only disappointing part of our trip was Snowcropolys had just hit Seattle and our friends Amy and Brock were supposed to join us for the weekend but couldn’t make it since SeaTac Airport was closed due to the weather.

When people asked how my trip to Texas was, here was my answer:

#1. It was so much fun to see and spend time with Kelly and Mark. I haven’t laughed so hard and that much in a long time!

#2. Knowing Seattle was experiencing snow, ice storms and power outages, the 70 – 80 degree Austin weather and sunshine was incredible and just what we needed in January.

#3. I’d then go into excruciating detail about everything we ate and all the new food we tried! And Curtis would probably tell you all about playing golf, but I only care about food. Here are a few highlights:

AUSTIN, TX TOP TEN (in no particular order):

1. Getting to meet Food Network star, Guy Fieri.

2. Kelly and Mark introducing us to Kolaches for breakfast, an amazing Czech pastry filled with jalapeno sausage or bacon and cheese. Click here to see my attempt at recreating the recipe.
I would happily eat these every morning!

3. Uchiko Japanese Restaurant. This was our big splurge because Paul, the executive chef was competing on Top Chef at the time. And after we got back home we saw the final episodes and Paul won and becameTop Chef! It was a fun experience starting with really great cocktails and sake. The crazy waitress described each dish as “ridiculous” and some were ridiculous like the $30 “smoked duck dish” that was a tiny bite of duck served in a mason jar. But most of what we tried from sashimi to fried milk for dessert was incredible. We couldn’t afford to leave with full bellies, but we did leave happy and glad to have tried new things.

4. Torchy’s Tacos. I thinking opening a Torchy’s in our neck of the woods may be my next calling. They have a great menu, are reasonably priced and oh so good! The menu is witty with tacos named; Dirty Sanchez, The Democrat, and Mr. Pink. It’s a hot spot with a continuous line out the door all day long. The concept has got to work in WA too, right? Our top pick was the Trailer Park Taco and we’d “Get it Trashy” – take off the lettuce and add queso. We were only with Kelly and Mark for 3½ days but managed to hit Torchy’s twice, once for lunch and once for breakfast!

5. Gourdough’s donuts. On Saturday night after Uchiko we headed to downtown Austin to listen to live music and then wandered down Sixth street to people watch. Found a great bar with a balcony where we could perch up, drink and observe all the craziness. On our way home, at 2:30 am, we hit one of Austin’s famous Food Trucks: Gourdough’s Donuts. I ate an entire flying pig all by my piggy self!
6th Street

Cinnamon and PB&J
Flying Pig (Maple Bacon) and Banana Cream

6. Texas BBQ at Ruby’s. We tried it all; ribs, briscuit, sausage, cream corn, beans, and white bread with cold beer to wash it down. Curtis came home inspired to make Texas style smoked ribs.
Don't worry, I ate a lot more than that! 

7. Alamo Drafthouse. What a great movie experience! It’s so nice to be able to order a pitcher and a meal if you’re so inclined while watching the big screen.

8. Fried Avocado. This is another thing I’ve never tried that seems to be popular. We hit up the line of food trucks and the well known The Mighty Cone for fried avocado cone tacos. Serving tacos, dripping with delicious sauce, in a cone is brilliant.
Fried avocado, fried shimp and secret sauce. What else do you need in life?
Yes, we ate all the french fries too!

9. Foot long corn dogs and deep fried macaroni and cheese. As long as we were at the line of food trucks, we figured we better experience everything they had to offer!
Whose is bigger? 

10. Avocado Margaritas. Sounds weird, right? Well it’s creamy, smooth and delicious. Plus it’s an extra bonus getting all the health benefits of avocado in your cocktail! We hit Curra’s Grill on our way to the airport for a final farewell cocktail.

Here’s my attempt at recreating the Avocado “Frozen” (their word for blended) Margarita at home:

Very important thing to note: Avocado is considered one of the healthiest fruits on the planet because of its nutrient content. Its fat is monounsaturated, which lowers “bad” LDL cholesterol and raises “good” HDL levels. So cheers to a healthy cocktail!

 Horny Toad’s Avocado Margarita

1 ripe and delicious avocado
¼ cup fresh lemon or lime juice
2 cups crushed ice
½ cup tequila
¼ cup triple sec

Put in a blender and turn it on. It's so simple; that's why we love it. Then, rub the rim of the glass with lime and dip in a coarse sea salt and chili pepper mix. Sit back with some friends and enjoy the smooth goodness.
Cheers to the BEST weekend with one of my favorite people!


  1. No really, can we go to Austin for our next girls' trip??

  2. Can I come too? I'm so hungry right now, and this did not help! Everything looks soooo good! I love food trucks!

  3. This all sounded incredible. What a culinary experience you had! I love that your top 10 ALL had to do with food. Love you, girl! I think the best looking thing was the fried avocado taco. I love avocado.

  4. That was so fun to read! I want to go to Austin after watching Top Chef! Looks like a blast... not sure about that margarita but do trust that you wouldn't steer us wrong!

  5. p.s. Emily, this was like food porn.

  6. Ok I am now starving! The donuts sent me over the edge!! Looks like an amazing trip.