December 17, 2010

Gimme Gimme: Top Ten Holiday Gifts for Foodies

Everywhere I go, I feel like I'm surrounded by awesome food gifts that I WANT I WANT I WANT. But since the holidays are a time of giving to others and EXTREME COMMERCIALISM, I've decided to compile a list of the Top Ten Holiday Gifts for Foodies I've seen in my travels this fall and winter.
1. A Maple Block: I saw this in an issue of Martha Stewart Living, and I want it. Because I'm from New England, where REAL maple syrup flows through our veins and REAL maple sugar candy floats through our dreams. This block is also really cool because you can grate it over food. Like oatmeal. Or popcorn. Or anything edible.
2. Egg Cups with Feet: Even if you don't regularly eat soft-boiled eggs (which you should, because they're delicious), you could set these on a shelf or a windowsill in the kitchen and just make the whole place feel a little bit cuter. And not in an obnoxious way. Unless your kitchen is already drowning in kitschy decor.
3. A Functional Cookbook Holder: I've wanted this since I saw it in a friend's kitchen last year. The glass cover keeps your cookbooks from getting splattered, and the measurement conversions in the margin keep you from having to flip back and forth or look them up on the computer with dirty hands.
4. A Little Julia Joy: There are many reasons to watch old episodes of The French Chef: to learn, to openly gawk at the awesomeness that was Julia Child, or even to create a hilarious drinking game. I love watching Julia cook because she makes an absolute mess of everything and loses her train of thought constantly, but still manages to make beautiful food.

5. An Environmentally-Friendly Dish: These are gorgeous, green, and simple enough that they can blend into almost any kitchen. Use as a spoon rest, an appetizer tray, a get the idea. I happen to have an obsession with antique glass bottles, so these make me extra happy. And when you shop on Etsy, you're being an extra good person by supporting independent artisans.
 6. Space-saving Cup Measurers: No, they aren't pretty. In fact, they're pretty ugly. But they live in a drawer, and they are so convenient. In fact, we have these exact ones. Please note that this is the first item on the list that I actually possess. They're also great for newborn foodies (by which I mean recent college grads...not babies), because their kitchens were probably dreamed up by a sociopath and they need to conserve as much space as possible.
7. Non-stick Baking Mats: You don't have to buy the French ones, of course, but I felt like giving credit to the original. Plus, giving a foodie something French is probably smart, because French food is fancy, and feeling like a French chef (for however brief a moment) is fun. These mats are also ridiculously convenient, and prevent waste in the form of parchment paper, etc.
8. Antique Canisters: Even though these are meant for the kitchen, they'd do just as well decorating an entryway table, a bathroom shelf, etc. If they are destined for the kitchen, canisters with screw-on lids like these are really practical for storing perishable items like flour.
 9. A Salt Cellar: If your foodie is as much of a salt addict as I am, he or she will be psyched to have a salt cellar. After about two years of carpel-tunnel-inducing salt shaker...shaking, I finally invested in a salt cellar and love how much more convenient it is when I'm cooking. Of course, any small bowl would work as a salt cellar, but this is America, where we have a special gadget for each action in the kitchen. You're not un-patriotic, are you?
 10. A Man, A Can, A Plan: No. I'm not serious. But I saw this book at T's friend's house (oh, single straight men and their cooking strategies), and immediately read it cover-to-cover. It's a lifetime supply of GROW recipes. It's horrifying. It calls for items like canned chicken, which I didn't know existed. I will admit, though, that it made me think back fondly to my childhood, when I refused to eat anything but SpaghettiOs. Because, seriously, SpaghettiOs are a main ingredient in these recipes. I'm so weirdly fascinated by this book that I've already asked T if we can name our first child Amanacanaplan. He says no.

So that makes a total of: one cookbook, four glass items, one DVD, one silicone product, one collapsible product, one edible product, and one product with feet. Not bad!

Welp, that's it for now. May your holidays be happy and filled with delicious food.

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