The Good Things guide to last minute Christmas gifts for the foodie in your family. Happy shopping.
A luscious treat every summer - and more so this season, with cherries being in short supply to the unseasonally cold and rainy weather. What better gift for a loved one, than a box or basket of fresh cherries from your local farmer's market or greengrocer?!
Books for cooks...
Food as Medicine by Sue Radd, Signs Publishing, $55.
A beautifully-presented collection of 150 nutrituous plant-based recipes, this tome also provides guidance on safer cooking methods, everyday medicinal ingredients, and how to set up a wellness kitchen at home.
Eat to Beat Cholesterol by Nicole Senior and Veronica Cuskelly, New Holland Publishers, $32.99.
Heart disease is said to be the leading cause of death in Australia, which means that we should all take an interest in looking after the ticker by eating heart-friendly foods. This book offers mouthwatering recipes, daily menus, shopping tips and loads of important information about looking after your heart.
A Cook's Life by Stephanie Alexander, Lantern, $24.99.
Prosaic and deeply personal reminiscences from Australian food icon, Stephanie Alexander, AO, restaurateur and author of The Cook's Companion. A brand new addition to my reading pile, this memoir was first published as a hardcover in 2012, with the paperback released in April this year.
Gather by Gill Meller, Quadrille Books, $49.99.
This is the first book from River Cottage chef, Gill Meller, and it is an absolute cracker. Chapter titles are as ecclectic as the recipes found within the book's pages. Farm, seashore, garden, orchard, field, woodland, moor, and harbour. Subtitles cover a range of foods, from cheese and honey to gooseberries, wild boar, trout, damsons, squirrel, corn, oats, blackberries and crab apples.
Istanbul Cult Recipes by Pomme Laymoyer, Murdoch Books, $49.99.
A travelling food writer takes hungry readers on an adventure into the diverse cuisine of the former Constantinople. 'Eating [in Istanbul] is like putting together a beautiful mosaic, because Ottoman cuisine is a vast gastronomic culture that spans epochs and influences from Europe, the Middle East, Central Asia and the Mediterranean,' the author writes. From breakfast to meze; soups meat and rice; street food; sweet things and family recipes.
Potted Citrus australasica...
If you have ever had the pleasure of eating tangy pearls of Finger Lime 'caviar', you will appreciate that a potted Citrus australasica is something that gourmets and food enthusiasts might well covet. Finger lime shrubs are available from hardware stores, garden centres, and online.
Cookware by Solidteknics...
Invest in a few pieces of high quality Australian cookware that not only looks great, but performs brilliantly. AUS-ION seamless, rivetless iron pans are formed entirely from one sheet of wrought iron. They cook and season just like cast iron, but come in at half the weight, which is a good thing, especially for people (like me) who no longer have strength in their arms and hands. Home cooks and professional chefs alike are raving about AUS-ION from Solidteknics.
Stainless steel saucepans by Rena Ware...
Sleek, elegant and designed to last well over a lifetime, Rena Ware is the type of stainless steel cookware that makes me purr like a kitten. Regular readers will know that I'm still using my mother's vintage RenaWare saucepan set from the early 1960s, but I must say I love the latest in the Classics range. The 'water-less' function is amazing. Other features include a no-drip lip, long ergonomic handles. All are oven and dishwasher safe and can be used on all stovetops, including induction.
Cuisipro - tools for cooks...
My most favourite cook's tools from the days when I co-owned the cooking school and kitchenware shop, Cuisipro These Tempo stainless steel utensils are virtually indestructible. In my humble opinion, this is the Rolls Royce range of kitchen gadgets. The heavy-based measuring cups, ergonomic potato masher/ricer, mesh skimmer and small ladle are must-haves for any discerning cook.
Note: While a handful of these items were sent to me to review, others are treasures from my own kitchen.
This is not a paid or sponsored post. Opinions expressed are my own.
What last minute goodies will you be buying for the foodie in your family, dear readers? Do tell.
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I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.