A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from August 27, 2006
Texas Toothpick (onion and jalapeño strips)

An “Arkansas toothpick” is a 19th century term for a knife. A knife was sometimes (rarely) also called a “Texas toothpick.”

“Texas toothpicks” is a 1990s name for jalapeño peppers and onions that are shaved into straws, lightly breaded, and deep fried. The term “Texas toothpicks” is used in restaurants and bars across the country, so it is not known if it originated in Texas.

Nieman-Marcus trademarked “Texas Toothpicks” for chocolate-covered pretzels (first used in 1978), but this term was short-lived.


Cap Rock Cafe, Lubbock, TX
Texas Toothpicks: Deep-fried strips of Onion and Jalapeño. With Spicy Ranch.

Little Taste of Texas, Glasgow, KY
TEXAS TOOTHPICKS – Fresh cut onions and jalapeno peppers dipped in a light batter with cayenne and black pepper, served with a sauce. $5.95

Golf Club of Flourissant, MO
TEXAS TOOTHPICKS
Onion Straws and Jalapeno Straws, Served with Chipotle Mayo

Sports Brew Pub, Wyandotte, MI
Texas Toothpicks
Slivers of jalapeno peppers and sweet onions coated in zesty batter and deep fried with chipotle ranch. 4.99

Dusseldorf’s on the Beach, Fort Myers Beach, FL
Texas Toothpicks
Onion and jalapeno peppers thinly shaved into straws, lightly breaded and deep fried. Served with Ranch dressing. 

June 1888, Southern Cultivator, pg. 285:
The “Texas Toothpick.”
Very strong; large blade, wide, keep and compact; German silver finish.

18 June 1995, New York Times, “A Lively Place for Snacking and Grazing” by M. H. Reed, pg. WC17:
Although some preparations were too hot for our taste, diners who like spicy heat might enjoy crisp Thai noodles with peanut sauce and Texas toothpicks, breaded and deep-fried slivers of onion and hot jalapeno.

22 November 1996, The Capital (Annapolis, MD), “Good food meets value at downtown’s Riordan’s Saloon,” Entertainment, pg. 2:
Tom tried the Texas Toothpicks ($4.95), a switch on Jalepno poppers consisting of breaded onion and jalapeno slivers, deep fried and served with a soothing dip.

10 April 1998, Elyria (Ohio) Chronicle-Telegraph, Entertainment, pg. 8:
Our appetizers of Lizard Lips (breaded chicken breast strips) and Texas Toothpicks (battered onion and jalapeno strips) were brought to our table in a reasonable amount of time for the number of people packed in the restaurant.

(Trademark)
Word Mark TEXAS TOOTHPICKS
Goods and Services (CANCELLED) IC 030. US 046. G & S: Chocolate Covered Pretzels. FIRST USE: 19780400. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19780400
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Design Search Code
Serial Number 73332532
Filing Date October 15, 1981
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition October 5, 1982
Registration Number 1221963
Registration Date December 28, 1982
Owner (REGISTRANT) Carter Hawley Hale Stores, Inc. d.b.a. Neiman-Marcus CORPORATION CALIFORNIA 550 S. Flower St. Los Angeles CALIFORNIA 90071
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record Warren L. Kern
Disclaimer Applicant disclaims any exclusive right to the word “Texas” apart from the mark as shown in the drawing.
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Cancellation Date April 27, 1989

(Trademark)
Word Mark TEXAS TOOTHPICKS
Goods and Services (CANCELLED) IC 029. US 046. G & S: vegetable pieces. FIRST USE: 19941000. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19941000
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Design Search Code
Serial Number 74545941
Filing Date July 5, 1994
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1B
Published for Opposition June 27, 1995
Registration Number 1993955
Registration Date August 13, 1996
Owner (REGISTRANT) Anchor Food Products, Inc. CORPORATION WISCONSIN 555 Hickory Farm Lane Appleton WISCONSIN 54914
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record Nicholas A. Kees
Disclaimer NO CLAIM IS MADE TO THE EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO USE “TEXAS” APART FROM THE MARK AS SHOWN
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Cancellation Date May 17, 2003

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Sunday, August 27, 2006 • Permalink