What new foods did you try this year? An oat milk latte, an ube cheesecake or maybe a Beyond burger? Maybe 2020 was the year you became obsessed with okra chips or kefir, or maybe you didn't know that red, yellow and green peppers are all the same until this year.
You don't know what new foods you're going to try next year, and you don't need to because Whole Foods already lines them up for you. You can spice up your cuisine with a snack or staple, just make sure your meals are changing with the seasons.
Here is how to get the jump start on these new food trends and find them locally, while you're at it.
“Well-being is served”
2021 is the year of taking care of your body, which means probiotics, superfoods, broths and nutrients. Gone are the days of taking supplements—why do that when you could just eat them in your food? Look for things like sauerkraut, mushrooms, local honey, fresh fruit and kombucha during your next trip to the grocery store.
Austin-local Buddha's Brew sells dozens of flavors of kombucha filled with live cultures for your gut health. Yum!
“Epic breakfast every day”
With so many people working from home these days, there is no excuse to skip breakfast. In fact, there's no excuse to have a boring breakfast either. Think bagels and lox, pancakes on weekdays and sous vide egg bites topped with gruyère. Stock up on your favorite pancake mix, bougie cheeses and a breakfast cookbook.If you just don't have time to make your own breakfast, get takeout from Bouldin Creek Cafe, on 1900 S. 1st St. With vegan and vegetarian options galore, you'll be a breakfast person in no time.
“Basics on fire”
With cooking being one of the major newfound hobbies of the pandemic, home chefs everywhere are looking to amp-up even the simplest of foods. Spices, pastas, sauces and basics and are all getting a delicious makeover. Try some applewood-smoked salt, riced cauliflower or add a new basil pesto to the mix.One of the best ways to start is to go classic and upgrade your olive oil. Texas Hill Country Olive Oil Co. has been making its organic oils right here in the Hill Country since 2008. The local shop doles plenty of different flavors of olive oils and balsamic vinegar. You'll never cook the same again.
“Coffee beyond the mug”
Humans have been drinking coffee for hundreds of years, why wouldn't we start eating it? Nowadays you can get just about anything coffee-flavored: granola, steak rubs, almond butter, booze and even yogurt.
A good ol' cup of joe never goes out of style though, so if you're looking for locally-roasted brew, Texas Coffee Traders, located on 1400 E 4th St., is a great place to go. With good beans, you can make anything coffee flavored.
“Baby food, all grown up”
This holiday season, give your baby the gift of a sophisticated palate. Today's babies are eating superfoods, daring combinations like pear strawberry rhubarb, well-seasoned meals and turmeric. Plus, baby food is getting easier and easier to take on the go.Serenity Kids was started by an Austin couple who care about what kids eat. Not only is its baby food organic and ethically sourced, it is also reminiscent of what mom and dad are having for dinner.
More of your food is edible than you think. Upcycled foods take parts of an ingredient that wouldn't have otherwise been used and makes them into something new, reducing food waste. Things like peels, stems and pulp are officially back on the table.
Upcycled foods are still pretty hard to come by, especially by local makers as most are made in California, but you can still stock up when you come across them. Look for The Ugly Company's upcycled fruits, Renewal Mill's upcycled flour or Pulp Pantry's pulp chips.
You've heard of olive and coconut oils but have you seen walnut oil or pumpkin seed oil during your weekly trip to the grocery store? New oils are popping up on shelves due to their unique flavors and versatility of use from frying to salad dressings.If you want to try something new, grab a bottle of walnut oil. You can mix the oil with almost anything for a subtle, nutty flavor, use it to grease a pan or make a dressing with it. This guide will give you some ideas on how to use these unique oils.
Hard seltzers made a massive splash in 2018 and into this year and kombucha has risen to extreme popularity in recent years, so it just makes sense to make it boozy. Hard kombucha comes with a host of benefits—bubbles, gluten-free and filled with probiotics.One way to get your fix in Austin is at Black Swan Yoga and JuneShine Kombucha's Yoga in the Yard event. After a relaxing outdoor yoga session, you can enjoy a nice, bubbly glass of booch.
“The mighty chickpea”
You've heard of hummus and falafels, maybe even chickpea pasta, but as it turns out, chickpeas are extremely versatile. Chickpeas are a great source of fiber and plant-based protein. Keep an eye out for puffed chickpea snacks, chickpea flour and chickpea cereal.If you're still on a hummus kick but want to try something new, Floreli's hummus is locally made from sunflower seeds. Harkening tastes of Middle-Eastern cuisine, Floreli hummus is easy to come by and sold at Whole Foods and Wheatsville Co-op.
“Fruit and veggie jerky”
You read that right—jerky is for everyone now—vegans and vegetarians alike. From more tame snacks like mushroom or mango jerky to adventurous morsels like banana or jackfruit jerky, fruits and veggies are taking on a new form.Actually, jerky can be made from just about anything. Local company Umami It's Vegan! Jerky Co. makes 100% plant-based, protein-rich jerky in tons of different flavors. Move over, veggie burgers.
2021 is the year of trying something new so what food trend do you want to try?
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The Austin woman suspected of killing star cyclist visiting from out of town, Moriah "Mo" Wilson, has now been captured after evading arrest for more than a month.
Kaitlin Marie Armstrong, an Austin yoga instructor, is believed by officials to be the killer of Wilson, who was found with gunshot wounds in a friend's house on May 11. The murder is being investigated as a crime of passion after Wilson met up with Armstrong's ex-boyfriend.
According to the U.S. Marshals, Armstrong was located at a hostel on Santa Teresa Beach in Provincia de Puntarenas, Costa Rica. Officials said she may have been using her sister's name after fleeing Austin on May 14, the day after police questioned her. She was last identified at Newark Liberty International Airport on May 18.
Federal authorities say they plan on returning Armstrong to the U.S., where she'll face charges of murder and unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
Here's a timeline of events since the night of Wilson's murder.
- The night of her death, Wilson met with Armstrong’s ex-boyfriend Colin Strickland, a fellow pro cyclist. According to an affidavit, the pair went swimming, then to dinner, before he dropped Wilson off at her friend's home where she was staying in East Austin at around 8:30 p.m.
- While Wilson and Stickland had previously had a romantic relationship, Stickland said the two were friends. The affidavit says Strickland lied to Armstrong about his whereabouts that evening.
- Video footage shows Armstrong’s Jeep pulled up nearby the home within a minute of Wilson arriving home.
- At around 10 p.m., Wilson's friend called Austin police after finding her in a pool of blood. Wilson had been staying with the friend ahead of the upcoming bike race in nearby Hico, Texas.
- Armstrong was brought in for questioning the day after the murder and released after appearing “very still and guarded” when confronted with video evidence.
- The Lone Star Fugitive Task Force said her black Jeep Cherokee was sold to a South Austin CarMax dealership on May 13 for $12,200.
- She leaves from the Austin airport on May 14.
- Shell casings found on the scene matched a gun belonging to Armstrong.
- Austin police obtained an arrest warrant for Armstrong on May 17.
- She took a flight from Newark Liberty International Airport to San Jose, Costa Rica on May 18 using a fraudulent passport, according to the Marshals.
- On May 25, another warrant was obtained for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
- On June 29, she was captured by the U.S. Marshals
On Thursday, the Supreme Court limited the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority in regulating greenhouse gases, a move that comes at a time when experts have warned about the need to take action on climate change.
The ruling was brought after a challenge to a lower court opinion brought by Texas and more than a dozen other states.
Vaibhav Bahadur, an associate professor in the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin called the SCOTUS decision significant, noting that Texas is the biggest energy producer in the U.S., and produces more energy than the United Kingdom.
“Power generation accounts for a significant fraction of U.S. carbon emissions, and the EPA loses its ability to control what's happening in about half of that sector,” Bahadur said. “And it's not just the U.S., I think people and environmentalists on pretty much anywhere on the planet will be disappointed because this is going in the wrong direction. We know we want to be decarbonizing, and this is essentially putting a roadblock on progress toward decarbonization.”
So, we’re going to need some insurance, Bahadur says. He’s carrying out work that’ll act as such through his research on carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), the process of sucking carbon from the air and burying it.
For the past five years, he’s been working on a novel approach to storing carbon. It involves supercharging the formation of carbon dioxide-based crystal structures and storing billions of tons of carbon under the ocean floor.
“If all of this is successful, then we will have another option for safely and responsibly storing carbon at the bottom of the seabed for essentially eternity,” Bahadur said.
Still, Bahadur talked about a different approach to responsibly cutting down emissions in the next decade, and doing so in a meaningful and substantial way, then the environment will eventually heal itself and we might not need CCS.
But that’s not the path we’re headed down.
“We're already starting to see temperature records being shattered this year, and we're still to hit peak summer,” Bahadur said. “All of this just makes me think that we need CCS to a larger extent, and possibly sooner than what a lot of scientists anticipate, especially if we can't keep our emissions in check.”
Gary Rochelle, a professor in the department of chemical engineering at UT, thinks CCS was ready to be deployed in 2010 and those 12 years have made a difference.
“But now we've emitted all that CO2,” Rochelle said. “And unfortunately, unlike other pollutants, when you emit CO2, it's there. It's not going away.”
Gary Rochelle and Vaibhav Bahadur are both researching technology to address carbon emissions. (UT)
Still, the delay is good in that now researchers like him have had time to learn about and improve the technology, allowing for fewer problems once it's deployed.
In December, UT announced a licensing agreement with advanced technology company Honeywell. The technology from that is targeted at power, steel, cement and other industrial plants to lower emissions.
Rochelle has been working on the technology since 2000 as part of an international collaborative effort. When he talked to Austonia on Thursday, he had just had calls with collaborators in Germany and Norway. Currently, he’s working with some Ph.D. students on addressing a chemical reaction that can happen with the technology known as oxidation that could lead to ammonia emissions and cause problems for a large-scale commercial unit.
Rochelle says he’s driven to this work because he wants to make a contribution.
“We're trying to develop this technology so that we can make a difference,” Rochelle said. “It's a nice problem to work on. The students are motivated and those are the primary things which drive us.”
Meanwhile, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott celebrated the high court’s decision which acted as a blow to President Joe Biden’s plan to reduce emissions.
“Today’s landmark victory against an out-of-control administration is also a big win for Americans who worry about skyrocketing energy costs due to expensive federal regulations that threaten our energy industry,” Abbott said. “President Biden cannot keep attacking the energy industry and the hardworking men and women who power our nation.”
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