Cookbook author and restaurant designer Erin Hicks has been busy working on the just opened El Big Bad Downtown in the midst of releasing the updated version/second printing of her latest book, Houston Small Plates & Sips, just in time for holiday gift giving. The revised edition includes a cocktail recipe from new restaurant Trenza – Food Network star Susie Jimenez’s hot spot in West Ave.

Houston Small Plates & Sips is Hicks’ fourth book, and follows Houston Classic Desserts, Houston Classic Mexican Recipes and Houston Classic Seafood, showcasing the best of the city’s small plates – each beautifully photographed and home-kitchen tested along with a corresponding beer, wine and cocktail recipe pairing plus personal tips from top chefs, mixologists and sommeliers. Hicks, being the self-professed “queen of the oven-baked french fry”, also include instructions on how to “oven-fry” any dishes in the book that calls for deep frying.

With recipes perfect for parties or a quiet evening at home, Houston Small Plates & Sips serves up more than 100 culinary finds and cocktail ideas. Mix and match multi-course tasting menus or treat a friend, family member or co-worker to a cookbook that is sure to be enjoyed long after it’s been unwrapped. Highlights include sought after signature dishes ranging from REEF’s Shrimp Shooters and Roost’s Miso Cauliflower to Mockingbird Bistro’s Braised Short Ribs and Queen Vic’s Scotch Egg. And wash it all down with an Aviation from Mongoose Versus Cobra, a Persimmon Julep from Anvil, La Perla from Coppa or Gin, Lillet & Croquet from Brooklyn Athletic Club – another restaurant designed by Hicks.

Hicks, a former restaurant owner from Corpus Christi who also works as a designer, realtor and photographer, has grown a loyal following thanks to her cornucopia of chef sources and accessible choices that position the home cook as a star in the kitchen.

According to Hicks, “Houston Small Plates & Sips is a great book for dreaming or designing a spectacular dine-around at home.”

And critics agree. JeremiahTower, James Beard Foundation Outstanding Chef and author says, “Who knew that Houston was so packed with talent, cooking all of our favorite dishes, and that they’re all in this beautiful, stunningly photographed cookbook? And not just the food – all my favorite cocktails as well! Who better than Erin Hicks to show the way around town?”

Priced at $24.95, copies are now available online at

Hicks also offers a beautiful holiday package of all four books for a discounted $75 on her website and all may be personally signed by Hicks upon request.


Information provided by Erin Hicks.

The Urban Swank Girls


Leave a Comment