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Friday, 4 December 2015

Gifts for Foodies

For those of you who would like to buy a present for a food-lover but don't want it to be, you know,  food, then here's a gift list for you. I've put together a few things that I have given or received in the past and loved, as well as a few things that I'm coveting. If you do want to give someone a food extravaganza for christmas then here's a link to my christmas hamper guide.


Pandora have a few food related charms, my all time favourite being the cupcake (coincidentally the reason I bought a pandora bracelet in the first place). They also have some seriously cool looking cakes, including a three tiered one (that I can no longer find on their website). In fact, there are some many that I like it was hard to choose just three to show you. The cupcake (Pandora £40) was obviously on the shortlist but then, should there be an ice cream cone (Pandora £35)? A pineapple (Pandora £45)? or a teacup (Pandora £25)? In the end I decided to add to the list a pretty espresso maker (Pandora £35) for coffee lovers and a cool chef's hat (Pandora £35), appropriately named "I love cooking", for all those recipients who would just rather be cooking! If you need to get the bracelet (Pandora) to go with the charm then they start at £35 for a multi-strand strap and go up to £1,200 for a gold gold one! Don't worry though - the silver ones are £55 and hold at least 15 charms, or you can buy a leather one (£40-£50) although they recommend a maximum of 7 charms as the leather can stretch.


I am a messy cook, and I take after my father in liking to use every pan in the house to make one meal. Therefore I need to wear an apron most of the time when I cook! However, I struggle with classic aprons as the proportions don't fit me - if the straps around the waist are to be actually around my waist, then I have to fold the middle part of the apron up, which falls down and messes up the neck. Basically, I'm uncomfortable and spend more time fidgeting than cooking. Cue the Cake and Bake show 2014 in Manchester where I was drawn to The Messy Bakers stand. Their aprons ( £25) are deliciously retro; flattering, pretty and best of all, the straps are all adjustable and appear to be made for actual human girl proportions (I'm 5'6" and a UK size 12). They fit sizes 8 to 22 and come in 2 styles. I even accidentally wore one to the local shops once when I ran out of an ingredient midway through the recipe and got complimented on it (I also got a few odd looks).


I don't know when Brad stops shipping for Christmas, or even if it would arrive before Christmas but I can promise you that these beautiful wooden utensils are worth the wait. I would recommend the trifecta set ( $32) for a flat sauté, spreader and tera scraper) as a useful gift and the tasting spoons ( $16) are both gorgeous and practical. Their dry goods scoop ( $26) would make a perfect addition to the coffee hamper I suggested here. The Earlywood item on my wish list? Their medium ladle ( $54) for its gorgeous looks and undeniable usefulness, but as it's the equivalent of £36 without p&p I think it will remain on my lust list for the foreseeable future!


Enya is a very talented artist who I happened to stumble upon on Instagram via The Meringue Girls about 8 months ago, and since then I've bought 3 of her paintings and requested another for Christmas (so excited). She paints cakes and other sweet treats, like eclairs and macarons. If you're lucky she might even agree to do a commission, but says it would be tight before Christmas. I can't tell you her exact prices as obviously it depends on the painting, but the three currently on her website are £50 each, and I paid between £40 and £70 for mine. Her website is where you can admire all of the gorgeous paintings Enya has done. Her deadline for Christmas shipping is the 20th so hurry and snap up an image before they're gone!


Souschef is amazing. They stock hard to find ingredients for enthusiastic cooks from all over the world. I buy my curry paste ingredients from here, and they do the most lovely gift sets consisting of a cookbook and a selection of common/hard to find ingredients from the recipes, such as the below set, themed around Ottolenghi's brilliant Middle Eastern recipe book, Jerusalem ( £39.50). These sets cost between £22.50 and £87.50 and, in my opinion at least, would make a lovely present. Check out their website and I dare you not to have to cut down your basket when you realise how much everything you want would cost!

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I love to cook and this blog follows my successes (and a few failures) in the kitchen. If you enjoy my posts, or think there is a problem with a recipe then please let me know