Behold the Modern Kolache

It was bound to happen. Beset on every side by chic-er croissants and trendier tortillas, the poor old kolache is fighting back. These yeasty Czech rolls have earned Texas-classic status despite having a shelf life of approximately 20 minutes, but nowadays being a classic ain't enough. Accordingly, to increase their all-important market share, kolaches are venturing forth from the old-fashioned realm of apricot, poppyseed and cottage-cheese fillings. Lately -- take that! you croissants and tortillas Ñ they're presenting themselves as a complete meal.

Example: the hilariously cross-cultural huevos rancheros kolache purveyed by the various Kolache Factory locations. Stuffed with scrambled eggs, cheese and picante sauce, this tennis-ball-sized invention has a high specific gravity but a highly agreeable taste. And what could be more indomitably Texan than this spunky driving-around-in-the-morning item?

You've got to nab the huevos rancheros kolache early, however, before the shelves are picked clean. Do not accept the sausage-and-cheese version as a substitute, either; it will remind you of Jimmy Dean, and not in a warm, fuzzy way.

-- Alison Cook

Kolache Factory, 9711 Westheimer, 952-2253; Two Shell Plaza, 222-2253; 5808 Kirby, 664-2253; 2608 S. Shepherd, 523-5567.

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Kolache Factory - Closed

10535 Westheimer Rd.
Houston, TX 77042


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