The Gulf Coast Food Project

Houston Eats! Conference

Texas Gulf Coast:

Food in the Past, Present & Future

Feb 2 & 3, 2018


**Tickets Are Free But Tickets Required**

Click Here for Tickets

for parking and directions, click here


For printable pdf schedule, click here


The Houston Eats! conference is a two-day exploration of the past, present, and future of Texas Gulf Coast Food featuring academics, journalists, activists, and food writers. The conference is being organized by the Gulf Coast Food Project and Foodways Texas. The event has been generously supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as the University of Houston Center for Public History Center Lecture Series, and the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management.


Conference Schedule


Friday, February 2nd

Location: Rockwell Pavilion, M.D. Anderson Library


9:00-9:45 Keynote: Tyina Steptoe, University of Arizona, "From Lightnin' to Lemonade: Reimagining Culture in America's Most Diverse City"


10:00-11:00 "Feasting on Culture: Vietnamese Platiality through Gardens and Food Practices."

● Roy Vũ, North Lake College, "Farm to Freedom: Vietnamese Americans and Their Home Gardens"

● Claudia Kolker, Journalist, "Vietnamese Monthly Rice"


Break 11:00-11:15


11:15-12:45 "Expanding Local Farm and Food Communities: Key Arenas of Opportunities for Activists"

● Pam Walker, Food Writer, Moderator

● Casey McAuliffe, Councilwoman, City of La Marque and Market Manager, Galveston's Own Farmers Market

● Kim Korth, Edible Houston

● Judith McGeary, Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance

● Paula McDermott, Food Policy Specialist, Austin/Travis County Food Policy Board


12:45-1:30 Lunch: Kolache Shoppe


1:30-2:00 J.C. Reid, Houston Chronicle, "In the Land of the Links: Tracing Houston Barbecue Traditions from Cajun Country to Beaumont"


2:00-2:30 Alston V. Thoms, Texas A&M University, "Native Texan Foodways on the Gulf Coastal Plains: Ancient Roots of Earth Oven-Baking"


3:00-3:30 Alana Dao, Writer, "Baked: Chinese Bakeries and the Creation of Identity in Houston"


3:30-3:45 Break


3:45-4:15 Bernice Heilbrunn, Melton & More Scholars Program and the Jewish Learning Project, Congregation Beth Yeshurun, "It Began with a Sewing Circle: Stories Gleaned from One Hundred Years of Houston Jewish Community Cookbooks"


4:15-5:00 Keeley Steenson, Director, "This is Pchum Ben: Festival of the Hungry Ghosts" Documentary, produced by Robb Walsh


5:30-7:00 Happy Hour at 8th Wonder Brewing Company, 2202 Dallas Street



Saturday, February 3rd

Student Center South, Multipurpose Room 237


9:00-9:30 Mark Young, University of Houston, "The Food History Collections in the Hospitality Archives, Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management"


9:30-10:00 Maria Corsi, University of Houston, "Haute Cuisine Comes to Houston: Economic Growth Reflected in Fine Dining"


10:00-10:45 MM Pack, Food Writer and Historian, "Uncle Ben's Converted Rice and World War II: A Houston Story"


10:45-11:00 Break


11:00-11:45 "Home Is Where the Food Is: How One Syrian Refugee Teaches the Ways of her Homeland Through Food and Friendship"

" Wafdia Ibrahim, Cooking Instructor

" Ellie Sharp, Food Writer

" Chloe Krane, Advocate for Refugee Services of Texas

" Mike Tibi, Chef-owner Mezza Grille


11:45-1:00 Lunch: Fat Bao


1:00-2:30 City "'I Heard the Earth Singing Beneath the Street:' The Challenges of Farming in the Most Diverse City in the Country"

● David Leftwich, Food Writer, Moderator

● Kellie Karavias, Program Founder/Director Cultivated Classroom at Gregory-Lincoln Education Center and Hogg Middle School

● Constant Ngouala, Production Manager, Plant It Forward Farms

● Scott Snodgrass, Partner, The Edible Group


2:30-3:00 Mikaela Selley, Houston Metropolitan Research Center, "Selling Mexican Culture in Houston: A History of La Nacional Tortilla Factory and La Consentida Cafe"


3:00-3:15 Break


3:15-3:45 Saneea Sakhyani, University of Houston, "Re-imagining Southern Foodways: Bodies and Belonging in the South Asian Diaspora in Houston"


3:45-4:30 Paul and Christiane Galvani, Food Writers, "The Lost Restaurants of Houston"


Break 4:30-5:00


5:00-6:00 Alison Cook, Restaurant Critic, Houston Chronicle, interviews Sylvia Casares, Sylvia's Enchilada Kitchen and Kaiser Lashkari, Himalaya Restaurant