I would be wrong if I did not mention one of the BIGGEST food events in Houston, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. Yes, this is really supposed to be about concerts, bull riding and mutton busting (youtube it), but the food is what brings many folks back year after year from February to March. For those of you who are new to Houston, please understand that EVERYONE of all races, ages, genders, socio-economic backgrounds attends the rodeo every year. It is one of the events that truly shows how diverse Houston is as a city
Each year a barbecue cook-off kicks off the rodeo. The cook-off consists of teams, usually sponsored by a company, competing in several categories and of course the grand prize. For us average joes, the best part is, each competitor host a tent where they share all the great food they have cooked for the contest. Apparently the highly coveted tickets to the tents usually are not for sale and you must be in the know to obtain a few. Luckily my mother happened upon four tickets, so I and a few of my girlfriends attended.
So for that FREE ticket, we were offered an open bar that even included jello shots. THEN this huge plate of bbq. Most events with catered bbq only offer you one to two meets. Well our tent certainly did not skimp, I ate sausage, brisket, tamales, chicken and ribs. When I tell you I grubbed! I did not eat the rest of the day.
Beyond the cook-off, you have the typical carnival fare and other food tents that will be present over the course of the three weeks of the rodeo. Local restaurants such as Pappasitos and Pappas BBQ have tents during the rodeo too, but I can get that anytime so I go looking for the other stuff.
On my first trip to the rodeo for the cook-off I bought a slice of fried red velvet cake from one of the carnival stands. It would have been divine if the cake was not cold once you got through is warm fried shell.
When I came back for the John Legend concert I ventured into another area of vendors just beyond the carnival by the NRG center. Everything over there was soooo good. I feasted on a home grown Texas turkey leg. *licks fingers* AND ended the night with fried oreos. I forgot the name of this fried stand, but LORD, they’ve figured out how to fry deserts without them being frozen before going into the oil. I am not a huge fan of Oreos, but covered in a funnel cake like batter topped with powder sugar?? Heaven!
My Fried Oreos!!