Etta + Billie Gift Guide 2019: Foodie Traveler Gifts

Gifts for the Foodie Traveler with natural skincare with culinary scents, cooking classes, brew and sip coffee bottle, and culinary travel journal!

A few gift ideas for the person in your life who loves to travel almost as much as they love food.

  1. All-Natural Skincare Travel Kit | Etta + Billie – $35
  2. Culinary Travel Journal | Nourishing Notes – $8 (buy multiples!)
  3. Dia de Los Muertos Cooking Class | Los Dos – $185 per person
  4. Set of Reusable Shopping Bags | Baggu – $36
  5. Soma x Ritual Brew Bottle | Ritual Coffee – $45 (coffee lovers rejoice)
  6. Evergreen Tangerine Soap | Etta + Billie – $14

A Few Good Fried Chicken Recipes for National Fried Chicken Day

We’ve pulled together a few different recipes for you to test out just in time for National Fried Chicken Day.

Nashville Hot Chicken

Classic Fried Chicken

No fried chicken taste test would be complete without a traditional option like this one from The Spruce Eats.

Extra Crispy Fried Chicken

Apparently there is one ingredient that you can add to make your fried chicken super crispy. Read more about it and other fried chicken tips at The Stay at Home Chef.

Fried chicken with a touch of spice from Front Porch.

Nashville Hot Chicken

This addictive spicy chicken is a must if you ever make a trip to Nashville. But if you don’t have plans to head to Nashville anytime soon, you can make your own with this recipe from Saveur.

Where to Go? What to Eat? in Bend, OR. with Root Adorned

This week we asked Root Adorned owner Erin Hasler a bit about her beautiful shop and some local tips when visiting Bend.

Root Adorned owner Erin Hasler inside of her Bend, Oregon shop.

Born and raised in Bend, Erin is honored to bring her unique perspective to the community that she so dearly loves. After facing breast cancer as a young mother and wife, Erin discovered a new zest for life. She sold her hand crafted jewelry line and sought out a new career that would enable her to travel the world, support artisans and connect to community. It was from this dream that RootAdorned was born. Erin is a firm believer that life is short and you shouldn’t waste a moment of our precious time on Earth. 

Tell us a bit about your shop.

An inside look into Root Adorned, with plants hanging above and a variety of products carefully curated below.

“Root Adorned is a home goods experience that brings the very best treasures from around the world to your home. Our goal is to help you create the nest of your dreams. A home that feels like the perfect sanctuary to rest and revive. We believe that surrounding yourself with beauty has an incredible effect on the soul. Our homes should reflect the beauty that is within all of us; each as unique as the individuals we know and love.” 

Moroccan blankets hanging on a wall, plants inside of artisan ceramics, stationary cards

“We scour the globe to find one of a kind treasures for your nest. Swoon worthy vintage Moroccan rugs that are patina’d with time and love, hand selected from deep within the souks and sure to be family heirlooms for generations to come. Vintage handiras, Moroccan wedding blankets crafted with love, intention and prayers for a beautiful life. House plants so stunning they double as art.”

What do you love most about your area and how long have you been located there?

The sun setting over an unpopulated field of trees and bushes.

“I’m a second generation Bendite, which is rare these days. I’ve lived in other cities but I always came home to the high desert. I am my happiest when I’m out in in nature and we’re so blessed to have a bounty of natural beauty around us in Bend.”

Is your area known for anything in particular?

A lake where people are swimming under a partially cloudy sky, a large mountain range sits snow-capped in the background.

“Bend, Oregon is an outdoor recreation mecca. We have some of the best trail systems, high mountain lakes, skiing and snowboarding, rock climbing, white water rafting and mountain biking. It’s also become a bit of a beer haven; last time I checked we had 32 local breweries! Although ironically, I’m allergic to gluten and can’t drink beer :).”

Describe your favorite places for food/drinks in your area:

My favorite restaurants/bars are:

Breakfast: Cafe Sintra in downtown for a delicious breakfast/brunch with a Portuguese influence. D&D for the local dive bar eggs & bacon.

Lunch: Sunny Yoga Kitchen!!! They’re our neighbors, but they’re also the best lunch spot in town and the sweetest women you could ever know! 

DinnerJoolz for Lebanese with a delicious twist. Barrio for the best tacos and their Don Chipotle margarita. Spork for fantastic, globally inspired faire and the raddest ambience.

Drinks: Velvet in downtown Bend for fantastic cocktails, great ambience and it’s owned by a really awesome couple. D&D, it’s my favorite dive bar and the perfect place to have a low key drink with your friends.

Etta + Billie Father’s Day Gift Guide for the Foodie Dad

I’ve pulled together a few gift ideas for that foodie dad in your life. Perfect for your pop or your honey!

A collection of some of our favorite gifts for the cool dad in your life. Etta + Billie Beard and Face Oil and Cedarwood Soap. Pyknic Always Down for Tacos Tshirt, Mouth Foods Hot Sauce Gift Box. Gift certificate to his favorite local record store.
  1. Upgrade dad’s bar cart and help the environment at the same time with the reclaimed glass decanters from Reclamation Etchworks | $59
  2. They may not all believe it but guys need skincare too. Especially when it smells damn good and keeps their face soft and beard manageable. This will change your couch snuggling game. Etta + Billie Beard + Face Oil| $28
  3. Dad’s love tacos. It’s a fact. Pyknic Foodie T-Shirt | $29
  4. Keep his hot sauce on point with this collection of small-batch hot sauces from US-based indie food makers. Mouth Foods | $69.50
  5. Our Cedarwood soap is equal parts fresh and woody, conjuring up memories of meals around the campfire. The perfect choice when you’re trying to wean your loved one off the Irish Spring. Etta + Billie Cedarwood Soap | $14
  6. Does your dad love mixing up his favorite pancake recipe with solid tunes in the background? Not sure which record to get him? How about treating him to some quality time at your local record store? Grab a gift certificate so he can pick the perfect album to play during his next breakfast prep. SF pops hit up Tunnel Records + Beach Goods.
Etta + Billie All Natural Palm Oil Free Cedarwood Soap

Everyone Around the World Loves Donuts!

Whether you spell it DOUGHnut, DOnut, or call it something completely different (“Sfenj” in Morocco!), there’s one thing that pretty much the entire world can agree upon: we absolutely LOVE a puffed pastry.
If you’ve been following Etta + Billie for a while, you know that I don’t hide my love for these pillowy miracles (see exhibit A).

Exhibit A.

So, in celebration of National Donut Day (mark your calendars, this amazing holiday always falls on the first Friday in June), I thought it might be fun to share with you all some “donuts” from around the world!

MoroccoSfenj. These little guys are fried and sprinkled with sugar, or soaked in honey. The perfect Moroccan pastry for morning tea!

Morocco's version of the donut: Sfenji.

South AfricaKoeksister. These are made by frying the dough and then immediately dunking them in ice cold sugar syrup. Yum!

South Africa's version of a donut: Koeksisters.

IndiaVada. These can be made from dal, lentil or potato flours rather than wheat flour. Vada is always served with chutney. In North India: sweet & sour chutney. In South India: coconut chutney.

India's version of a donut: Vada. Vada can be made from dal, lentil, or potato flours rather than wheat flour. In Southern India it's served with coconut chutney. In Northern India, it's served with sweet & sour chutney.

Iran: Zulbiā (aka Jalebi) – This is a Persian fritter that’s made in pretzel or circular shapes. These are made with Saffron syrup and Rose Water. Yes, please!

Iran's take on the donut: Zulbia, also known as Jalebi. A fritter made in pretzel or circular shapes.

Czech Republic: Koblihy. Koblihy are usually filled with jelly or a vanilla custard. They’re so pillowy!

The Czech Republic's version of a donut. These are usually filled with a jelly or vanilla custard.

Latin America: Churro. No list could be complete without one of my favorite treats, the Churro. Although its origins are in Spain and Portugal, this tasty treat found its way through most of Latin America. Dip them in chocolate, stuff them with cream, or coat them in cinnamon sugar!

Latin America's favorite fried treat: the churro. Churros are coated in cinnamon sugar, dipped in chocolate, and sometimes stuffed with vanilla cream.

San Francisco: Dynamo Donuts. To bring it all back home, I just had to add a local favorite, and a staple pastry in the Etta + Billie studio: Dynamo Donuts. My favorite one is the Coconut Lime-filled donut!

San Francisco based donut shop Dynamo Donuts. Artisan donuts made in the Mission District of San Francisco.

Obviously there’re so many other types of donuts around the world, but hopefully you enjoyed how some different cultures love their fried doughy goodness. Have you tried any of the pastries we mentioned? Is there a different style of fried dough that you absolutely love? Let me know, I would love to hear about it!

In the Kitchen: 5 Fancy Looking but Totally Easy Easter Brunch Recipes

There are many things to celebrate on Easter, but one of my all-time favorite parts of the day is the incredible holiday brunch gathering. The kind of brunch you don’t see on a normal day. The kind that makes your eyes wide, mouth water, and sets your stomach growling!

Ready to be hailed brunch royalty? Here are some scrumptious recipes to put you on that pedestal: 

French Toast Casserole 

Flavorful and delicious, this french toast bake takes 15 minutes of prep the night before. Impressive dish, without the stress. 

Brioche with Prosciutto, Gruyere, and Egg

Fancy will be your name after you serve your guests this open-faced fried egg sandwichon toasted, buttery bread. Top with your favorites like frisee salad, prosciutto, and add some pretty garnish. 

The World’s Easiest (VEGAN) Sticky Buns

Soft, tender, and fluffy! These sticky bunsare perfectly spiced and loaded with pecans! This delectable treat gets better with each bite. 

Apricot-Bourbon Glazed Ham

This tangly glaze by the one and only Martha Stewartcarmelizes into a gorgeous amber coat for a bone-in presentation that is sure to impress. Sweet, tart, and smoky, this ham is a stunning centerpiece. 

Easter Brunch Cocktail: Lavender & Grapefruit

You can’t leave brunch without an impressive (but simple) Easter Brunch Cocktail. This drink is hard to mess up with only TWO ingredients! Lavender-infused vodka and grapefruit juice! Okay three ingredients – you do have to infuse the vodka with dried lavender prior to the day. But totally worth it! 

In the Kitchen: International Women’s Day edition!

At a time when we have more mompreneurs, boss women, and female leaders than ever, we are celebrating the women who broke social conventions and blazed the way for us. 

This month is Women’s History month, a time to honor the past and present women who inspire the future. Today, we are honoring women who are influencing the kitchen. Here we spotlight a few amazing female chefs. 

1. Christina Tosi, author of “Momofuku Milk Bar” cookbook

Christina Tosi is the chef, founder and owner of Milk Bar. After working in the kitchens of fine dining restaurants, Christina founded the dessert program at Momofuku, where she later created the concept for Milk Bar, resulting in a culinary empire of her own.

Milk Bar is known for its familiar yet unexpected desserts including Crack Pie®, the Compost Cookie®, “naked” layer cakes with unfrosted sides, and Cereal Milk Soft Serve, among other playful and craveable treats.

Christina is also a judge on the hit cooking competition series Masterchef and Masterchef Junior (on FOX), and was recently the subject of an episode of Chef’s Table, the Emmy-nominated docu-series on Netflix. She’s made headlines in New York Times, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, Forbes, The Today Show, among others, and she’s graced the covers of Adweek and Cherry Bombe. 

2. Belinda Leong, chef & co-owner of B Patisserie

Belinda Leong began her career as a pastry chef at Restaurant Gary Danko in San Francisco in 1999. After eight successful years, she left the restaurant for Europe to stage at some of the most esteemed restaurants and patisseries in Paris, Barcelona, and Copenhagen. After two years in Europe, Belinda returned to the Bay Area and became pastry chef at Manresa Restaurant, a two star Michelin Restaurant, in Los Gatos, California before opening b.Patisserie.

At her new bakery, which is co-owned by San Francisco Baking Institute co-founder Michel Suas, Leong offers everything from elegant layer cakes to a 10-hour apple tart to rustic butter cakes. Her signature item is the Breton pastry kougin amann—and if some New Yorkers notice a familiarity in the undulating top and flaky layers, it’s because Dominique Ansel also staged at Fouchon, though at the Paris location. 

3. Pim Techamuanvivit, chef & proprieter of Kin Khao

In Thailand, to eat is to eat rice. So, colloquially, when we say “kin khao” we mean “to eat” or “let’s eat,” – kinkhao.com

Born and raised in Bangkok, Pim took a circuitous route through the world of food–from writing, teaching, to jam making [ahem, award-winning jam making]–before finding her way back home to the food she grew up with. Longing for Thai food of richer quality and variety in the U.S. Pim is now on a mission to liberate her beloved Thai cuisine from the tyranny of peanut sauce. Kin Khao is her first (and hopefully not last) restaurant project.

4. Jessica Koslow, chef at Sqirl

Jessica Koslow started her daytime-only restaurant, Sqirl in 2011 and its been at the top of of the Best-of-LA lists ever since. She started with jams and has expanded to breakfast and lunch, including her popular rice bowls. 

5. Marianne Despres, chef & owner of El Sur 

El Sur was started in 2012, by Marianne Despres, a classically trained chef with roots in Argentina and France. Upon graduating from the Cordon Bleu in Paris, she continued her culinary training in some of the world’s best kitchens including Potel et Chabot and the French Laundry.

After running a successful catering business in the Bay Area specializing in fine French cuisine, Marianne realized she most enjoyed cooking and sharing the food she grew up with, specifically the empanadas from her childhood. Marianne developed the recipes for El Sur’s empanadas using old-fashioned techniques and the finest local ingredients.

In the Kitchen: Best Chocolate Chip Cookies EVER!

From Craftsman and Wolves

These are the best chocolate chip cookies EVER! Seriously. I know there are a ton of blog articles out there claiming to be the real deal, but none of them have ever made me feel the way about a cookie like I do when I’m waiting on the Craftsman and Wolves to get out of the oven. 

Think ooey gooey hot Valrhona chocolate wrapped in a salty-sweet cookie batter with REAL vanilla and sea salt. I mean oh.my.goodness! Take it to the next level with a dip in some almond milk and I’m done for the day!

Have I convinced you? 

Get the Recipe: Valrhona Chocolate Chip Cookies

Last-Minute V-Day Gift Ideas

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Giant stuffed bears line the grocery store, candied hearts are making eyes at would-be dieters, and love is simply in the air. 

Valentine’s Day is a chance to show someone special that they’re always on your mind. You could go with the expected gift: a two-layer box of mystery chocolates (not knocking it.) Or you could choose to go head over heels with these amazing, albeit non-traditional gifts for Valentine’s Day. 

1. Realistic heart jewelry 

Can an anatomic heart be more pretty in this rose gold setting? This Etsy seller even pairs it with a custom printed gift note. 

2. Cooking Class

This Valentine’s Day, make a 3-course meal with your special one. Many cooking classesfeature specialty chefs from your local area, cocktails, and guided sessions on knife skills and plating. Then enjoy a candle lit dinner. 

3. Citrus Scents

Totally a favorite on a normal day, grapefruit is known to boost confidence and … ahem performance. Wink. Wink. This grapefruit + cardamomscent will also enhance mood and decrease stress so you are kept in the moment.

4. Shadow Box

  Swoon! Fill a shadow box with tokens from your relationship: photos, tickets, notes.

5. Chocolate!!!

Yes! Chocolate! But you can take it beyond sweets, like these fancy hot chocolatecanisters sourced from South America or the Dominican Republic. 

And yes! Etta+Billie has you covered in the chocolate realm too. Every one of our main products has cocoa butter in it (aka the main ingredient in Chocolate). We also use cocoa powder in our Geranium Patchouli Soap (double the chocolate).

Want more information on this chocolatey goodness? Check back next week for our ingredient spotlight on cocoa butter. 

Recipe Roundup: Cozy Winter Dishes

I admit it: I’m pretty anti-traditional when it comes to resolutions. People generally pick something and then beat themselves up about not doing it, or just have a hard time incorporating it into their lives because it’s something really intense – like going from never exercising to setting a goal to go to the gym 5 days a week! It’s not very sustainable or easy to accomplish. 

But I also love that the New Year sparks the imagination for improving your healthy and happiness. And it’s one of my favorite times of year to try out new (somewhat healthy) recipes. 

I’m talking about the kind of meals you eat while wearing fuzzy socks. These Winter recipes are the ultimate in soul-warming comfort food. And healthy (ish) too! 

So, park yourself in front of the fireplace and chow down on these amazing cozy dishes. After all, the New Year is about improvement, not deprivation. 

Roasted Winter Vegetable Bowl

Pepper-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

Lemon Chicken Piccata

Apple Crisp in a Mug