Holiday shopping season is upon us once again, and I love to share gift ideas for the food lovers in your life. As always, these are just some ideas about personal favorites – no one has asked me to promote any products. To get a good look at all this year fun finds, follow me on Pinterest.
A subscription box is a gift that keeps on giving – I love getting a special delivery full of tasty treats and fun tools. Many of these services will send a single gift collection or create a subscription and they also sell the products from the boxes, so they can be a great resources for special food gifts. Made South sends a box of Southern made products. The culinary adventurer will love Try the World, which sends boxes themed around different countries full of ingredients and recipes for that cuisine. Hampton Lane’s themes their boxes for entertaining- throw a cocktail party or a taco night with tools and ingredients based on the idea. Mary’s Secret Ingredients includes fine foods from all over and a special selected kitchen tool. Farm-to-People offers a box of artisan goods. An easy entry into the subscription box world is Love With Food’s snack boxes which are filled with samples of delicious healthy snacks. Batch offers subscription boxes, but you can also build your own gift box with their wide array of Southern made, artisanal goods.
A true Memphis specialty can be sent anywhere – Rendezvous barbecue. If you don’t want to send a full box of meat, try a gift pack with the famous sauces and seasonings and barbecue popcorn. Chef Felicia Willet makes a mean preserve in Flo’s Homemade Goodness, I love the Tomato Jam and Chow Chow. Pretty packaging and inventive combinations make flavored salts and sugars from Beautiful Briny Sea make lovely kitchen gifts. Working in the kitchen drys out hands, so one of these natural Lotion Bars by Made on Acorn Hill will always be appreciated. Thistle Farms holiday room spray will spruce up you kitchen, plus it is made by a community of woman who’ve survived trafficking.
This culinary calendar is a fresh and fun reminder to eat your vegetables. Memphis made jewelry from Shari Dixon includes these lovely seed packet charms featuring favorite culinary herbs. I’m enamored with these little pottery egg scramblers from 1818 Farms – make a mini omelet in the microwave or use them to serve sauces. I think I recommend Scout bags every year, and this is Bagette of my favorite for grocery shopping, a firm bottom that folds flat with short and long carrying handles. The grocery checkers are always complementing them! The charming Staub Tomato cocotte is almost too cute to hide in a cabinet. Add a Tomato Leaf and Basil Candle from Southern Firefly for a full tomato package. If you want a showstopper of a gift for the true cook on your list, Middleton Made Knives are it. Hand forged by Quintin Middleton outside Charleston, South Carolina, these knives are works of art.
Of course, I think "Pimento Cheese The Cookbook: 50 Recipes from Snacks to Main Dishes Inspired by the Classic Southern Favorite" is the best gift you could give or receive. (OK, I am a little biased). There are some other great cookbooks out there this year, too. Perfect for the chilly days ahead, Nancie McDermott’s "Southern Soups and Stews" will keep you warm. Any of the books from the Savor the South series are perfect for the Southern cook, look for new titles Beans and Field Peas by Sandra Gutierrez and Crabs and "Oysters" by Bill Smith. Or start the New Year of right with "Lighten Up, Y’all" by Virginia Willis. For another take on healthy Southern cooking, try "Soul Food Love" by Alice Randall and Caroline Randall Williams. And "Southern Cooking for Company" by Nicki Pendleton Wood is a welcome addition to any Southern cookbook shelf.
But maybe the best gift of all is giving on behalf of someone you love to someone in need. There are so many great organizations to give to that will create special cards you can wrap up for your recipient or have it sent directly to them. Women for Women International is an amazing organization that works to raise women and girls out of poverty around the world. They have a whole selection of gift donations.
And as food banks are under more strain than ever, Give-A-Meal through Feeding America to a family in need in honor of a family you love. And remember your local food bank with monetary donations or canned goods.
For some more ideas about my favorite fun kitchen finds, book and movies – check out The Spoon’s Store, powered by Amazon.