In the Kitchen: Negroni Week Recipe Roundup!

Negroni Week Recipe Roundup

Launched in 2013, Negroni Week was created as an effort to raise money for charities around the world. Participating bars and restaurants mix classic Negroni cocktails that result in donations to their charity of choice.

This year, Negroni Week takes place from June 4th to June 10th. Here are some Negroni cocktails for you to ask for the next time you’re out with friends (or to even try making at home)!

The Breakfast Negroni: Great for brunches or a late night pick-me-up, this drink combines orange marmalade and an Irish tea infusion for a the right amount of caffeine, sweetness, and kick.

Sparkling Negroni Punch: This sweet beverage is perfect for parties; light, bubbly, and delicious! You can serve in tall glasses with fruit for garnish or leave in a punch bowl with a ladle for guests to serve themselves.

FroGoni: This drink is half refreshing smoothie, half slushy cocktail. It’s perfect for enjoying at summertime BBQs, relaxing by the poolside, and even lazy hot nights on your balcony or porch.

Blood Orange Negroni: Blood oranges not only lend a stunning color to beverages, but a perfect blend of tartness and sweetness too. Add an entire slice to the finished cocktail for a real show-stopper!

Original Negroni: You can’t have a list for Negroni Week without including the classic Negroni. This simple and delicious cocktail includes just 3 ingredients—and an ice cold glass!

Makers Gonna Make: Lavender Lemonade

Lavender Lemonade

This recipe combines the subtle aroma of lavender with the classic flavor of cold, refreshing lemonade. Its vibrant and beautiful hue makes this a fun beverage for the kids to enjoy on a hot summer day or for moms to turn into cocktails for a rejuvenating night in with friends. You can even consider serving this simple drink at your next BBQ, picnic, dinner party and more! The combination of citrus and floral undertones will make this drink a hit, no matter who you’re serving it to or what you’re serving it with.

When using lavender in recipes, I find it’s best to use fresh lavender (but you can easily use dried lavender for this recipe as well). Just remember; use lavender sparingly. Like rosemary, this highly fragrant herb doesn’t take much! Too much and your risk your recipe tasting like our Lavender soap (great for showers, not so great for beverages).

Ingredients

  • 6 cups of water
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • ¼ cup of honey
  • 3 tbsp of lavender (pull the flowers off the stem before measuring)
  • 2 cups of fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • Lemon slices and sprigs of lavender for garnish (optional)

Etta + Billie Lavender Lemonade Recipe for Spring and Summer

Tools

Measuring cup, measuring spoons, juice squeezer (if you don’t want to do it by hand), pot, pitcher

Let’s do it!

  1. Combine water and sugar in a large pot over medium heat and bring to a boil under the sugar is dissolved.
  2. Turn off the heat and stir in honey and lavender.
  3. Allow your mixture to steep for 2 hours (1 hour if you want less of a lavender flavor), keeping the heat off.
  4. Strain the liquid, removing the lavender, and mix in your fresh squeezed lemon juice.
  5. Pour into a large pitcher, serve over ice with some lemon and lavender as garnish, and enjoy!

Etta + Billie Gift Guide: The Food + Drink Lover

 foodie-gift-guide-2016

Food + Drink Lovers are generally pretty easy to buy for. They like food after all, so worst case scenario you can get them a gift certificate to their favorite restaurant/coffee shop/bakery. If you want to give them a physical item, the biggest challenge tends to be that they have almost every food and cocktail tool, knick knack and book on the plant. What’s a gift giver to do? Here are a few of my favorite slightly more obscure (ok sans the cookbook) food + drink items perfect for the cooking, cocktailing, noshing person in your life.

p.s. I have Appetites and I love it and not just because I have a thing for Anthony Bourdain. 😉

  1. Appetites a Cookbook by Anthony Bourdain & Laurie Woolever | $37
  2. 3 or 6 Month Indie-Gredient Subscription by Mouth | $65-70/a month
  3. I like Big Butt’s Pork Print by Drywell Art | $20
  4. Hot Bourbon + Lemon Soap by Etta + Billie | $12
  5. Japanese Copper Cocktail Shaker at Food 52 | $112
  6. California Shaped Cutting Board by American Heirloom | $48

Makers Gonna Make: Kumquat Mint Smash Cocktail Recipe

Photo Jun 17, 7 50 24 PM

I came up with this super easy, super tasty, summery cocktail recipe a few weekends ago at my best friends house (you may remember her from my previous posts/videos). She wanted a cocktail, I wanted a cocktail and it was really warm out so we decided we needed something refreshing but didn’t want to go to the store. Being the resourceful girl that I am, I knew we could put something together with whatever was around the house. Luckily, that included kumquats from the tree in her backyard and fresh mint from her garden. I whipped these up and we sipped it while lounging in her yard, enjoying the sunshine and possibly talking about Game of Thrones (it’s an obsession). I hope you enjoy it too!

Ingredients

  • A handful of Peppermint leaves
  • 2 Kumquats (can sub tangerines, just use less)
  • ½ – 1 tsp Sugar
  • 2 oz Vodka
  • Ice (ideally crushed ice but any ice will do)
  • Sparkling water

Tools
Shaker, muddler, jigger, knife, glass

Let’s do it!

  1. First, slice your kumquats (remember to leave some slices for decoration at the end) and add about 3-5 slices to the shaker
  2. Put a 2-3 fresh mint leaves into the shaker
  3. Add 1/2 tsp of sugar (you can add more but I don’t like overly sweet cocktails so I always start with a tiny bit)
  4. Mash all the ingredients together using the muddler
  5. Add 2 ounces of vodka
  6. Add a few ice cubes and shake
  7. Pour your cocktail into a glass with crushed ice or regular ice
  8. Fill the glass with sparkling water
  9. Garnish cocktail with slices of kumquat and mint leaves

Sip away and enjoy!! Great for sharing with friends or family. 🙂

Thanks for watching! Check back for more videos and don’t forget to follow Etta + Billie on Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat

Labor Day Weekend Recipe Round Up

Labor Day Weekend always feels like the last hurrah of summer, even though summer isn’t technically over until September 22nd. This weekend is the perfect time to gather with friends and family outdoors before the we are in the midst of falling leaves and chilly days. Take advantage of the last of the seasons fantastic produce and grilling weather. I’ve gathered up recipes to try this weekend using some of my favorite summer ingredients like figs, stone fruit, blue berries and sweet corn. Get them now, otherwise you’ll have to wait until next summer.

Etta + Billie Labor Day Weekend Recipe Round Up

1. Spicy Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Parsley | Bon Appetit

2. Fig and Lemon Fizz Cocktail | My Diary of Us

3. Grilled Cord with Honey Basil Butter | Feed Me Pheobe

4. Grilled Watermelon and Donut Peach Salad with Balsamic Reduction | Brooklyn Supper

5. Blueberry, Peach and Lavender Pie | Hummingbird High

Additional recipes that caught my eye:

Cucumber Mint Gin Coolers | Heather Christo

Roasted Onion and Fingerling Potato Salad | The Gouda Life

And of course you can always find more at my Pinterest page.

Fourth of July Recipes to Try

The Etta + Billie team and I pulled together a list of recipes to try out this Fourth of July weekend. Hope you’re inspired and please share any photos or recipes you think we should try!

Lottie + Doof Marinated Mozarella

Photo: Tim Mazurek, Lottie + Doof

Marinated Mozzarella
Tomatoes and cheese is always an epic combination but this recipe takes it up a notch. Perfect for summer evenings as a shared snack or a light dinner.

Garlic, Rosemary and Chili Almonds
The Etta + Billie team has some serious snackers (we talk about food at least 2-3 times a day) and our intern loves this recipe because it keeps guest happily munching while you complete the meal. Caution though, these nuts may develop into a serious addiction. Bonus: points since these are done on the stove top, you won’t be sweating intensely over a cranked up oven.

Bon Appetit Corn and Nectarine Saladphoto credit: Bon Appetit

Grilled Corn and Nectarine Salad
Take advantage of all the fresh corn and nectarines out there with this delightful salad. A really great side for grilled meat.

Watermelon, Feta and Black Olive Salad
I pretty much love anything Nigella Lawson creates and this salad is no exception. A lovely combination of sweet watermelon and salty olives and feta.

Draft Magazine Steak with Dubbel ButterPhoto: Jon Edwards, Draft Magazine

Grilled New York Strips with Dubbel Butter
As part of a great American tradition, no 4th of July celebration would be complete without some form of grilled meat. Or beer. So this recipe kills two birds with one stone, and is sounds AMAZING.

Honey Mustard Vegetable Kabobs
This recipe seems like a great way to add a twist to a traditional veggie grill plus it will satisfy both vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. The bittersweet flavor of honey mustard, perfectly complements the smoky grilled vegetables.

Maple-Bourbon-Brown-Butter-Peach-PiePhoto: Morgan from Host the Toast

Maple Bourbon Brown Butter Peach Pie
Touches on a great American tradition but definitely not your ordinary Peach Pie. Lightly sauced with maple and bourbon with a fine sweet crunch of pecan streusel. Ready to be topped with vanilla ice cream.

Last but not least, the cocktails!

Cardamom Moscow Mule
A few of my favorite things, all in one cocktail – Ginger Beer, Cardamom and Lime. Try it with Bourbon for a little more depth.

Strawberry Basil Smash Cocktail

Strawberry Basil Vodka Smash
A nice alternative way to use in season strawberries and basil.

Recipe: Smashing Old Fashioned

Etta + Billie Smashing Old FashionedI was asked to review the Arctic Chill cocktail muddler and I was super excited to try out this product since I’m clearly a fan of smashed cocktails (see Strawberry Basil Smash recipe). It’s a bit harder to find recipes for winter smashed cocktails but I was lucky enough to find some inspiration at GQ Magazine. The muddler was really easy to use and far more effective than using a spoon or even a traditional wooden muddler. I recommend getting one so you can up your at home cocktail game. Read on for this super simple Smashing Old Fashioned recipe.

Etta+Billie_Smashed Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

Smashing Old Fashioned
1 slice fresh orange (with the rind is fine)
1 smoked southern cherries from Lemon Bird Preserves or good quality cocktail cherries
1 teaspoon turbinado sugar
1 dash angostura bitters
Small ice cubes
2 oz bourbon – I used Few Rye

Etta+Billie_Smashed Old Fashioned_Muddle timeGrab a wide mouth sturdy glass or cocktail shaker and use the Arctic Chill (or other muddler) to muddle the orange slice, cherry, sugar and bitters together. Pour into a low ball and add a couple of ice cubes, bourbon and stir. You can also add a splash of club soda. Enjoy!

Recipe: Tarragon Buck Spring Cocktail

Tarragon Buck
Tarragon Buck

We recently received Tarragon in our CSA and having no plan to put it into a meal we happened upon this recipe for a tarragon buck vodka cocktail (very spring). I think it was fate. Our version is below. Cheers!

Ingredients:

  • 1 sprig of fresh tarragon
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 3 oz Q Ginger Ale (this stuff is delicious)
  • 1 oz dry vermouth
  • 1 1/2 oz vodka
  • ice

Place sprig of tarragon into your palm and slap it, then gently rub the tarragon onto the inside of a lowball glass. Fill glass with ice, add vodka, vermouth, ginger ale, tarragon sprig and about half the juice of the lemon. Stir. Enjoy.

Do you have a great tarragon recipe you love? Or a spring cocktail recipe? Please share!