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Written by Texas Highways

Makes 6 servings.

Makes 4 servings.

Texas Humble Pie is a delectable way to serve the Texas 1015 SuperSweet.

The Taylor Cafe is a tiny beer joint with two bars—a leftover from the days of segregation. It sits on an all-but-abandoned block of Main Street that is now shadowed by a highway overpass. In the 1950s, Taylor Cafe was a rough-and-tumble honky-tonk that catered to itinerant agricultural workers and cotton pickers. There was a fight almost every night, remembers owner Vencil Mares. The cotton pickers are gone now, and there aren’t so many fights anymore, but otherwise the Taylor Cafe hasn’t changed an iota in 50 years. The dean of Central Texas pit bosses, Vencil began his barbecue career at the original location of the South Side Market in downtown Elgin, where he learned to make Elgin sausage. He opened the Taylor Cafe in 1948.

Our senior editor tasted this dessert at the East Texas Yamboree booth of the 1996 Texas Folklife Festival and proclaimed it "one of the best pies I've ever eaten." The Gilmer folks have served Yam Pie at the booth since the festival began 26 years ago.


  • 3 (12-oz.) cans of shoe peg or white corn, drained 
  • 2 medium size tomatoes, chopped 
  • 1/4 c. green onions, chopped 
  • 1/4 c. green bell pepper, chopped 
Toss ingredients with 1/3 c. of vinegar and 1/3 c. vegetable oil. Add pinches of salt, pepper, and sugar to taste. If you like, vary the vegetables, or the proportions of oil and vinegar. Make one day ahead, and allow to marinate in refrigerator. 
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