Getting accustomed to Texas starts with tacos and salsa

By B.A. Belthoff / The Bulletin

It’s coming up on my three-year anniversary of moving to Texas. In that period of time, I’ve made a lot of mental comparisons between Texas, and the Northeast (where I grew up.)

I love my new home and the beautiful surroundings where I live. Seeing cows grazing in pasture along the side of the road makes my heart happy. It’s not something I ever saw growing up.

This column is going to be devoted to the way I see things and what I’ve encountered so far – the good and the bad; stick with me as I will sometimes make you laugh. Let the journey begin . . .

“Would you like some salsa with that?”

I wondered why anyone would need salsa with their breakfast. I was barely in Texas a month, and I had an opportunity to participate in my first ladies’ golf tournament.

I had arrived early to get some breakfast. With a big smile on her face, the waitress was full of Texas charm and trying to be helpful.

I’m not sure I can be classified as a foodie, but I do like to eat.

As I increase in age, (notice I didn’t say getting older,) I’m finding I have issues with certain kinds of food.

By that, I mean two segments, or 50 percent of the food pyramid: grains and dairy! I’m learning how to navigate when eating out.

However, one benefit of having to eliminate so much from my diet is the realization I can now eat french fries. When I was able to eat everything, I deemed french fries as being “bad.” Over the past year, things have changed, and I now order them at every opportunity!

French fries are great because they don’t contain any gluten but mostly because they are the perfect vehicle for eating ketchup.

They’ve become a guilty pleasure. If they’re available, I order them.

I even started making my own baked version at home, served with plenty of ketchup, of course.

Another vehicle I enjoy with the savory red sauce is eggs – scrambled eggs.

I was on the buffet line looking down at these aluminum foil- wrapped cylinders and wondering what on earth they could be. They looked more like hot dogs, but one platter was labeled bacon and the other sausage.

Bacon and sausage what? And why would I want to put salsa on it? If it’s a hot dog, I’m gonna’ need some ketchup.“What is this?” I asked the waitress.

“Tacos,” she said, still wearing that happy smile.

Tacos for breakfast?! When in Texas, I thought, do as the Texans do.

So, I grabbed one of each, sat down at a table and introduced myself to the group of ladies.

As I unwrapped the aluminum foil, I began to understand.

“Oh, it’s like an egg McMuffin, except the egg is scrambled – and there’s a flour tortilla, not an English muffin – and the bacon is chopped up. It’s practically the same thing!”

“They’re really good with salsa,” one of the ladies commented.

The waitress came over to check on our table and asked if we needed anything.

I seized the moment: “Could I get some ketchup, please?”

(New-ish Texas resident B.A. Belthoff welcomes your comments. You can reach her at babelthoff@gmail.com.)