It’s that time of year. Frosty nights, branches hung with red berries, twinkling lights and lots of presents to buy. There are lots of great gift guides out there for Christmas but if you are looking for some gourmet gift buying inspiration these are my suggestions.
1. Herb tags for your Mum who loves to garden even more than she likes to cook.
$17 (£10.75) on Etsy. These herb tags would look great in a windowbox herb garden. The name of each herb is hand-hammered into a vintage silver plated fork, knife and spoon.
2. A Christmas cheese box for your boyfriend so you are stocked up for loved up winter evenings with a bottle of red wine and a cheese board.
Three cheeses for £24.50 from The Cheese Shed. I sometimes get sent products to try and this selection of Christmas cheeses is certainly one of the best ones. The cheese arrives beautifully presented in a red box. What you get varies but I feasted on a crumbly, soft Blue Vinney, a mould-ripened peppercorn covered, creamy Black-Eyed Susan and hard, slightly nutty Curworthy. The cheese come complete with tasting notes.
3. A pretty apron for your little sister who always looks stylish even when she is in the kitchen.
£28 from Anthropologie. If you haven’t discovered Anthropologie you must – the store opened in London last year and is a real treasure trove but best of all you can also order some of the stock online like this beautiful “Jitterbug” apron.
4. A sunny yellow lemon squeezer for your Dad who loves gadgets.
£12.95 on Amazon. You know what they say, if life gives you lemons, make gin and tonics. This sunny yellow lemon squeezer would be perfect.
5. An egg cup set for your self since who doesn’t like to buy themselves a present at Christmas time.
£14.99 for the set on Make International. I first came across these quirky, what came first the chicken or the egg, egg cups at Mark Hix’s restaurant Hix Soho and was delighted to discover you can buy them at Selfridges or online.
6. David Thompson’s Thai Street Food for your best friend who loves to travel and only thinks a meal is good if it is so spicy she cries when she eats it.
£22 on Amazon. I got sent a copy of this book to review and it has got to be one of my favourite cookbooks of the year. It is a cross between a coffee table book and a cook book thanks to its impressive size and beautiful photography. Much more accessible than David Thompson’s Thai Food, Thai Street Food displays the same scholarly approach and has some amazing recipes.
7. Chocolate brownies you made yourself for unexpected visitors.
£0 recipe from the archives. Of course the best presents are often home-made. These brownies are spiked with raspberries and make a perfect gift or accompaniment to a cup of tea.
All photographs, except for the brownies, taken from the linked websites.