Southern Thanksgiving Recipes with a Twist

Thanksgiving Dinner TableWe’ve all been here before; Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and it’s time to start planning the biggest meal of the year. Everyone knows what to expect; stuffing, corn, sweet potatoes, salad, cranberries, and of course turkey. But what if you want to show off your Lone Star pride and serve up something with a Texas twist? Allens Boots would like to share a few of the things you could expect to find at our Thanksgiving tables this year:

Chipotle Bacon Sweet Potatoes

Because sweet is best when it’s savory, y’all. First, peel and cube a couple pounds of sweet potatoes, boil ‘em, mash ‘em, and throw in:

  • A couple tablespoons of butter
  • A half a cup-ish of sour cream
  • 6 slices of bacon (all crumbled up, natch)
  • A couple tablespoons of brown sugar
  • A cup of grated cheddar (as sharp as you like)
  • And a single chipotle chili in adobo, seeded and minced

Mix that up, salt and pepper to taste, then sprinkle with minced toasted pecans right before you serve for a bit of crunch and the perfect round-out to the taste.

‘Right Proper’ Cornbread Stuffing

The pinnacle of the Texas stuffing experience! First, make (or buy) some cornbread — about a skilletful will do. Brown a pound of your favorite sausage (probably not maple breakfast sausage or chorizo). Then you’ll need:

  • A head of celery, minced
  • 2 sweet yellow onions, minced

And fry those together until the plant matter is soft. Then stir in:

  • The skilletful of cornbread (all crumbled up, natch)
  • 4 cups seasoned bread crumbs
  • 4 teaspoons of fresh sage, minced. (Or 2 teaspoons of ground dried sage.)
  • 1 cup stock (made from the turkey giblets, of course!) or chicken broth.
  • 2 tablespoons soft butter.

Fold together until it looks like stuffing, and serve piping hot!

Cranberry Sauce with Spirit!

This starts with the predicable fresh cranberries — about 4 cups. Get a stock pot, and put the cranberries in with:

  • 1/2 to 1 cup of port (oh yes)
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • Enough water to just barely cover the berries.

Cook the heck out of that, medium-high and stirring the whole time, until the cranberry skins split. Let the whole thing cool for a half-hour or so, and then pop it in a food processor or a high-end blender. Get it spinning and pour in a quarter-cup of orange liqueur. Once the cranberries are not quite pureed, pour the goop into an airtight storage whatsit, and chill overnight (and up to a week) before serving. That is, as they say, ‘the stuff.’

Give some thanks this Thanksgiving and perhaps celebrate with a Texas twist. And we want to say “thanks” for each and every one of you!

Posted on November 20, 2014 by admin in Thanksgiving Recipes
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Brand Spotlight: Old Gringo Boots

Allens Old Gringo boots

Old Gringo boots have been around for almost fifteen years, impressing everyone who sees them with their style and high quality. Led by the leatherworking experience of Emie Traut (the ‘Old Gringo’ himself), and guided by the design artistry of Yan Ferry (a European boot designer for more than 30 years), the 250+ designers, craftsman, and leather smiths of Old Gringo Boots turn out amazing designs that last for decades.

Old Gringo boots have a huge following because every boot they make stands apart from the plethora of generic boots on the market. Here are a few classic examples of what we’re talking about:

The Sora

The Sora is classic Texas cowgirl fashion; the strong black galaxia (read: ‘distressed leather’) finish says ‘hard’, but the beautiful flower embroidery gives the boot a soft feminine finish. A great ‘everything but the boardroom’ boot, the Sora looks great with blue jeans, black jeans, print skirts or dresses…and will for decades!

The Diego (in Turquoise)

You’d be hard pressed to find a woman’s boot that stands out quite like the Diego. The collision of copper-toned leather with the ‘copper in the seawater’ stitching is visually arresting, making it easy to pair the boot with a huge variety of clothes. Put them under a lapis belt and a russet skirt for a beautiful ensemble, or bust them out under crimson jeans and a cyan blouse for maximum effect.

The Porfirio

This men’s boot is made for kicking butt (in the metaphorical sense.) Black-on-black with subtle chocolate stitching, the Texas star is prominent on the toe medallion, but not overly in-your-face. Capable of blending in nicely with business casual or on-the-trail denim, the Porfirio is a great all-purpose boot.

The Frida

On the other end of the spectrum, the Frida is just as outspoken as the Porfirio is subtle, with a rusty look and stitching reminiscent of the fires of the underworld. The ‘wrinkly’ galaxia finish adds an electric vibe to the fire, coming together to suggest barely-contained power. Best paired with classic blue denim and a well-cut flannel, the Frida is a blue-collar boot for anyone that looks good in a cowboy hat.

Posted on November 13, 2014 by admin in old gringo boots
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2014 Fun Fun Fun Fest Boots

Just a week after Halloween, the fun returns with Austin’s own Fun Fun Fun Fest. Four stages of performances, each themed so you can wander around for an eclectic mix or pick your favorite and jam all fest long.

  • The Black stage is the metal/rock stage, reaching its zenith with an appearance by Judas Priest, with awesome rockers like Blood Brothers, Twin Peaks, and Deafheaven as well.
  • The Blue stage features rap and hip-hop, with huge names like Ginuwine, Wiz Khalifa, and 2 Chainz headlining and acts like Thundercat and Run the Jewels rocking out beside
  • The Orange stage brings new meaning to the word ‘alternative,’ mixing and matching an astonishing array of acts from Yo La Tengo and Modest Mouse to Sun Kil Moon and This Will Destroy You.
  • The Yellow stage is the spoken art area, that swings from (ok, mostly) comedy to (a bit of) the instructional, informative, controversial, and bizarre. Come in Friday afternoon to see a completely improvised Ted Talk, Saturday morning for a professional Yoga class, or Sunday evening for the awesome comedy of Kumail Nanjiani (Franklin & Bash, Silicon Valley).Boots For Fun Fun Fun Fest

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Posted on November 6, 2014 by admin in women's boots
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Halloween Fun in Austin

Halloween Jack O' LanternsIt’s the spookiest time of the year and things are fixin’ to get weirder in the ATX. Allens Boots wants everyone to have a safe, fun, and happy Halloween, so we figured we’d put together a little to-do list for y’all to enjoy. Check these out!

The Thinkery’s Candy-Free Halloween Hootenanny

If you’re like a lot of modern parents, you might be worried a bit about your kid and the sugar rush that is All Hallow’s Eve. The Thinkery’s got your back; from 6-8:30 pm, they’re putting on some crazy science shows, having a costume parade, and food — oh, and they’re offering up a bit of beer and wine for the grown-ups along the way. What they don’t have is candy, so if you’re trying to keep your kid entertained on the tame side, this is the event for you.

Rock the Casbah at the Parish

If you’re not the children-having, trick-or-treating type, you may be a bit too young, or a bit too old. If your kids are spending Halloween on campus or with their significant others, you might be exactly the type who would love a rock-solid 80’s dance party. Show up at the Parish at 10PM Halloween night and get ready to rock your socks off, because the party won’t stop until around two in the morning.

Safe Halloween Trunk or Treat at Wells Branch Community Center

There are some folks who get scared around Halloween, and it’s nothing to do with ghouls or goblins, either. If the idea of walking your kids around a strange subdivision and knocking on unknown doors ain’t your cup of tea, come down to the Trunk or Treat, where your kids can safely trick-or-treat through a pile of like-minded folks, play some games, and even get their picture taken. It’s all free, too! Just be polite and bring some candy to hand out as well.

There is a lot more, of course — Bat City is a huge place, and there’s no way we could hope to catch it all. Have a safe and happy Halloween, and don’t forget to keep your comfy boots on!

Top Closeout Cowboy Boots for Men and Women

It’s closeout time; Allens Boots is starting to move some cowboy boots out in order to make room for new designs and current trends, which means it’s the perfect time for you to take advantage. Check out these extraordinary (and extraordinarily inexpensive) men’s and women’s cowboy boots!Men's Closeout Boots

Men’s – Lucchese Horned Back Croc Tail Boots

These beautiful boots have what may be the most distinctive vamp of all (that’s the part that goes over the top of your foot). With the beautiful and unique tail ridges of the horned black crocodile gracing your feet combined with the classic shaft hand-stitching that is a hallmark of Lucchese styling, you’ll make a statement everywhere you plant your heels. Continue Reading >

Posted on October 23, 2014 by admin in Boots
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Our Favorite Statement-Making Belt Buckles

Favorite Allens Belt BucklesAt Allens Boots, we might be all about the leather, but we’re also quite picky about our western accessories. That’s why we’d like to present to you some of our favorite belt buckles that really say something.

The ‘Texas’ Buckle by M&F

How could we not start off with this beauty? It says everything you need to say about your love for the Lone Star State. The Texas silhouette with the Texas flag and the Texas name on a Texas-sized belt buckle that goes with any shade of leather; this is a buckle that any self-respecting Texan can wear with pride! Continue Reading >

Posted on October 21, 2014 by admin in belt buckles
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Best-Selling Cowboy Hats for Fall

Allens_Cowboy-HatsIt’s time to put away the straw hats that kept the sun out of your eyes, and break out the felt cowboy hats that will keep your noggin warm as the weather cools. Allens Boots has the best-selling hats of the season. Here are some of the highlights:

The Boss of the Plains by Stetson

It shouldn’t come as any surprise that most of the best-selling cowboy hats of the season are Stetsons. They just make great hats! The Boss of the Plains has that characteristic highly-curled brim and ‘dusty’ quality that looks like you’ve been wrangling on the trail all day, even if you’ve really just stepped out of your office clothes and onto the dance floor. Continue Reading >

Allens Boots’ 2014 ACL Survival Guide

Music Festival OutisdeThe 2014 Austin City Limits Music Festival is almost upon us, and it’s bigger than ever, filling two weekends with more than a hundred bands. Zilker Park will be crammed full of music-lovers all day, and at night, the bands will be performing at venues all across the city. It’s a ‘new classic’ Austin experience, but it can be a little intimidating for a first-timer — or even a veteran ACL fest goer. Allens Boots has this advice for anyone that wants to maximize their fun at the ACL:

The ACL Survival Kit

There are a lot of things that are available for purchase within the Park, but some things are best brought with you, if only to keep from having to buy them at inflated in-Park prices:

Money: There are two ways to do money at ACL, and neither of them involves swiping cards. You can bring cash, but bring your cash — the ATM lines will be long and the fees high. Or, you can take advantage of the new ‘cashless ACL’ bracelet that allows you to pay for anything in the park with a tap of the wrist. Continue Reading >

Posted on October 2, 2014 by admin in ACL Music Festival
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Festival Style: Boots to Rock at ACL

The Austin City Limits Music Festival is coming — block off the weekends of October 3-5 and 10-12 on your calendar, because you really should be there. Allens Boots has the women’s boots you could be rocking at ACL; ankle boots that will let you move to the music in serious style without getting overheated.Allens_Festival-Boots

Women’s Liberty Black Tocato Boots

Liberty Black makes some unique women’s boots, and the Tocato shows off what we mean. A top-tier dancing shoe with the fringe that shows off your motion, the Tocato rides that line between moccasin and cowgirl boot that makes it easy to match up with almost any outfit. Continue Reading >

Top 5 Men’s Cowboy Boots for Fall

The first day of fall is September 23, and it won’t be long before the green turns orange and we start seeing pumpkins for carving and eating. It’s a man’s job to stay on top of his wardrobe as the seasons change, naturally, but we at Allens Boots thought we might help with some of our best autumn men’s cowboy boots.Men's Cowboy Boots for Fall Season

Men’s Ariat Heritage Roughstock Boots

The thing about men’s cowboy boots (and let’s be honest) is that they come in two basic kinds; the in-your-face, larger-than-life kind, and the classic, timeless kind that seem made to blend in. It’s hard to find a boot that rides the line and makes a statement without bordering on zany. The Ariat Heritage Roughstock boots do the job. By skipping out on the pull tabs and instead opting for a quartet of red-edged gripping rings, these otherwise-classic boots say ‘fall’ without screaming it. Continue Reading >