We were navigating down Airport Blvd after a nacho breakfast at La Fruta Feliz last week when we noticed that the space that formerly held Springhill Restaurant has a new tenant.

Mr. Catfish has pulled stumps from his old spot on Springdale Road, and migrated westward into the big shopping complex at the corner of Airport and Oak Springs.

We were stunned when Springhill couldn’t make a go of selling fried fish in East Austin. The fried fish culture of Central Texas has always been scant, but all you can eat catfish parlors are few and far between, and this part of Austin is hungry for good restaurants.

With almost 2 decades in the industry, we predict Mr Catfish owner David Lott will be able to make a go of it where his predecessor failed.

Plus he’s got gizzards.

postscript: The Texas State Record for blue catfish is held by Cody Mullenix who landed a 121 lb 5 oz fish from Lake Texoma back in 2004. The fish was right at 5 feet long.

With breastaurant acolytes Andrea Grimes, Matthew Odam, and Virginia B Wood sitting in judgement, local cook Tawny Villain emerged victorious as the winner of ATX Brands Trailer Truck Off.

Ms. Villain walked away with the victory via a concoction dubbed Sweet Heat Meat.

She now has a 6 month contract vending food at the Zorro Food Truck parked at East Austin’s Scoot Inn.

photo credit http://johansonphotography.wordpress.com/tag/tawny-villain/

all Austin Daily Photos http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/Austin-Daily-Photo

Sallie’s Down Home Cooking was one of the few places in Austin where you could get a big plastic tumbler filled with green Kool-Aid to wash down your fried chicken and collards. I was doing a little spring cleaning this past weekend when I stumbled upon this Polaroid photo I took for my food/punk rock zine “Voice of God.”

Back in the 90s, I’d run around Austin for a couple weeks taking Polaroids and writing articles (in longhand) about fried chicken parlors, steak buffets, and places to get dollar beers and watch Bad Livers-then spend a few hours at the Kinkos downtown, pasting up a master copy to xerox and hand out at FringeWare on the Drag.

Zines were kind of like blogs. Factsheet 5 was kind of like Google and, oh never mind. Those were different times.

Sallie Foster ran her old soul food kitchen out of what is now East Side Pies for almost a decade prior to hitting the big time, and moving way out 12th st. east past the old Catfish Station. Back then she had the finest fried chicken in Austin, and that green Kool-Aid was really something special.

Sallie Foster eventually shuttered her fried chicken joint and opened a prepared meal service that subsequently closed as well.

E.12th Kafe is now open in the old Sallie’s Down Home Cooking. They are vending chitlins, hog maws and collard greens http://chowpapi.com/wordpress/wordpress-2.8.6/wordpress/tag/east-12th-kafe/

If you don’t have the time or inclination to drive to Madisonville, Tennessee to buy the best commercial bacon in the USA (Benton’s) then you may as well hit the kitchen and rig up a de facto curing shed in your fridge and make your own.

Homemade, Mexican-style bacon http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/2011/12/19/How-To-Make-Your-Own-Bacon-Our-Mexican-Pork-Belly-Project

Homemade Turkish-style bacon http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/2011/11/3/Show-And-Prove-RL-Reeves-Jr-Tackles-Pork-Belly-2-In-Home-Curing-Turkish-Bacon-Project and yes there are plenty Turkish Muslims who eat pork.

Homemade New Mexico-chile style bacon http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/2011/10/9/Hatch-Chile-Hickory-Smoked-Bacon-Project-Part-Three-Recipe-Technique-Smoking-Slicing-And-Eating

Please report back. You will never eat the washed-out, grocery store bacon that’s fueled you thusly, again.

We were sitting on the front porch in the rainstorm this morning daydreaming about the Mocha coffee steaming out of our old, chipped coffee mugs.

Last week we ran smooth out of our stash of Tanzanian Peaberry, so we had to make a run to Anderson’s Coffee to re-up.

Wise move.

After explaining to Cyrus, the resident coffee guru on the staff, that we wanted something funky and dirty he resolutely suggested their Mocha Java.

It’s sublime. Once the beans are ground the whole house smells like an ancient Yemeni cafe. It’s an unbelievable brew.

We still drink the Hell out of our Cuvee but Anderson’s is seeing a good, heavy rotation through the old timey stove-top percolator these days.

Austin craft coffee scene coverage http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/Coffee

We notched another sell-out dish Saturday night at our most recent pop up restaurant event with our rendition of Ruby Lee Adam’s cobbler recipe.

We veered off the original formula slightly by using self-rising flour but otherwise remained true.

the formula http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/2013/4/15/Strawberry-Cobbler-Recipe-From-The-Kitchen-Of-Ruby-Lee-Adams?adminview=true