|Your official Christmas Shopping Recommendations
||[Nov. 28th, 2006|10:21 am]
I'm a firm believer in giving food items for Christmas -- sure, it's near and dear to my heart, but also, it eliminates two of the biggest problems with holiday gifts. If they don't really like it, they can give it away, use it at a party, bring it to the office, whatever, guilt-free. And, I don't ever expect to see it when I visit. I don't have to worry that it won't match their decor, whether they have room on the wall. And they won't to keep it in a drawer or closet so that they can drag it out periodically when I visit. (I know, some of you are thinking, what? Who the hell would keep crap they didn't want and then feel compelled to display it when the gift-giver came to visit? You're not a New England WASP, are you? If you were, you'd have a drawer or closet full of this stuff. It's what we do...)|
So, anyway -- here are some fabulous food vendors that I've used in the past -- if you're looking for a gift idea, these are perfect.
Cherries, chocolate, what's not to love? Good dessert sauces, fabulous chocolate covered cherry and nut assortments.
King Arthur Flour makes a fabulous coffee cake, at a great price. Ditto other baked goods and breads. Lots of bread and baked good mixes for your baking-impaired friends, plus cool goodies for those less-impaired.
Especially fab for your friends who need to watch sweets. Some really, really cook grain mixes that are easy to cook and are really interesting looking and tasting. I use a lot of their blends and grains for my clients as well as for gifts. Do NOT get the SEASONED mixes. Euuuwwww. My favorites: Kamut blend, Black pearl Medley, Caviar medley, Golden Jewel Blend, Sunset Blend, Whole Grain 5, Aztec Blend, Jade Blend, Tuxedo Orzo and the Bamboo Rice, the latter two are just cool-looking, if not necessarily as good for you as the other whole grain stuff. Other than the Whole Grain 5, these will not offend people who think that brown rice tastes like dirt. I've made a lot of whole grain converts from these guys. Gateway grains....
Not exactly dirt cheap...but the penguins and mice are to die for. Really. They even taste really good. And the presentation is...wow.
Okay, I love making cookies, so I don't patronize them that much -- but sometimes, I gotta just log on and get things delivered. Good product, fabulous presentation.
Caramels and chocolates to die for. The salt caramels...if it sounds weird to you, get over it, they are incredible. The macadamia, caramel and chocolate bar...hang on, I'm having a private moment....whew.
Again, great for the "watching the sweets" people. Spices and spice blends. A store will be opening in Rockville soon (bestill my beating heart!) but in the meantime, it's all mail order. You can order pre-packed gift sets. Fussy, controlling bitch that I am, I like to order their "Do-It-Yourself Gift Box Kit" And here are my top preferences to put in it: Cake Spice (good in any baked good or mixed with sugar for interesting cinnamon toast), BBQ of the Americas (any meat or fish), Bavarian Seasoning (pork, potatoes, vegetables), Greek Seasoning (fish, poultry, pork, lamb), Fox Point (vegetables), Pasta sprinkle (anyplace you'd use Italian), Poultry Seasoning (if you like the flavor of KFC, here it is), Turkish Seasoning (to die for on steaks, hamburger and lamb)
I'm sure I'll have more as I roll into this season, but these are ones that I've used in the past and while I have to move on to new vendors, since everyone has gotten these already, I thought I'd pass 'em on.