2015 Grilling and Foodie Gift Guide
As someone who loves to shop and discover new cool products, I always get giddy when it is time to put together my Holiday Gift Guide. Here are some of my favorite picks for the foodies in your life, and those who love to cook over fire. This year’s list has a lot of new contenders as well as a few favorites, but notice I’ve put a lot of time and energy into introducing you to new cool finds! I’ve tested out all of the products in this list so no fear in giving them a try! You’ll see everything on this list ranging from bigger ticket items like a grill to vintage finds that would make great thoughtful stocking stuffers… Happy Shopping!
Grills and Bigger Ticket Items
1) Of course, I have to include The BGE on this list because; anyone who LOVES to cook would LOVE to get a Big Green Egg for Christmas. The BGE is the “ultimate cooking experience” because it is a grill, smoker and convection oven and everything cooked over the egg tastes fantastic. The ceramic keeps everything extra moist and also maintains temp better than other grills which means you use less charcoal while maintaining steady temperature. I am secretly hoping hubby will get me a table for my egg this year!
2) Ranch Kettle: There are plenty of grills I could have put on this list (and you can read my previous gift guides from the past) but I think the Ranch Kettle is just one of those grills that garners envy with anyone. If you grill enjoy grilling on charcoal, and for large crowds, then this is the grill for you! You can grill for a crowd or even cater smaller parties on this and have plenty of surface area. Keep in mind with a grill this big though that you’ll always be having the parties at your house! ☺
3) The Pit Barrel Cooker: This grill is getting attention by all kinds of people these days- from the Competition BBQ circuit to Steven Raichlen. What I love about this grill/smoker is that it is super easy to use and produces excellent results every time. Something about the height of the barrel and the hanging of the meat produces moist, juicy meat, with overall short cook times as well. Hard core bbq people may have trouble with this because it is so easy, you don’t need to fuss with it too much (but I like that). I did a turkey on this and took a nap while it was on. Yes it is that easy.
4) The Fuego Grill is a Silicon Valley designed grill (it was designed by the design house who did the packaging for APPLE). For apartment or condo dwellers who are looking for a sleek grill that doesn’t take up a lot of room and looks nice on their patio, this is the grill for them. This grill comes with cast iron grates which makes for nice char marks and searing. This grill doesn’t have a ton of surface area so it is best for cooking for no more than 4 people at a time. This would also be a snazzy addition to a tailgate based on it’s smaller size.
5) The Mojo Grill/Griddle: I love plancha style grilling, as introduced to me by Francis Mallman and his cookbook 7 Fires. Cooking over a griddle over fire is one of the tastiest and most efficient ways to cook over fire. The Mojo griddle is made of carbon steel which is a better cooking surface than cast iron for wonderfully heat efficient cooking, and it also provides of 3 square feet of cooking space. This griddle fits over a kettle, a propane stove or a campfire. Achieve a sear while locking in juices like nothing you’ve seen before!
6) The Biolite Basecamp is the most innovative grill related devices I’ve seen all year. It runs on wood that fuels the battery that charges small electronic devices such as your cell phone or ipad. This This is perfect for camping as there is no need to haul charcoal or wood, just use what is around. And then you have a place to charge your electronics as well. A purchase of a biolite product helps them offer those living in “energy poverty” around the world have access to a cleaner way to cook and get electricity.
1) The Smoking Gun: If you love adding the flavor of smoke to all foods, then this is the gadget for you. This little handheld smoker now makes it easy to add smoke to soups, side dishes, cheese- really anything you can think of. It’s much easier to add smoke than lighting up your smoker, especially for unconventionally smoked food like a casserole or a cocktail. I bought this as an early Christmas present for myself and was have had so much fun with it!
2) Smoking woods: I love getting my hands on unique woods for smoking outside of the normal hickory, oak, cherry, etc. Lately I’ve become obsessed with Pimento Wood from Jamaica. If you LOVE true Jamaican Jerk, it is really only authentic with Pimento wood. Other woods you can try include Guava from Hawaii on Etsy or the myriad of different sustainably sourced planks for grilling and smoking at Outdoor Gourmet. I love their planks made for smoking cheese! Talk about a conversation starter at your next party!
3) The Slow and Sear is an attachment that turns a standard kettle grill into a smoker and searing station. This thing works miraculously well, enabling you to smoke food easily on a weber kettle, while also being able to sear on the opposite side with where the charcoal is concentrated so you have maximum heat exposure. At $$$ it’s a great investment versus having to spend money and space on a separate smoker!
4) The Flame Boss: For anyone who does a LOT of smoking, a smoker controller is a must in their smoking repertoire. The wireless flameboss monitors the internal temp, ambient temp, and has a fan that plugs into your smoker that maintains temp so you can essentially set your smoker on cruise control. Set the timer and it will notify you when you’ve reached your desired internal temp. I’ve used this gadget to smoke a pork but and was so confident in it’s baby sitting skills I even went to the beach while the pork butt was on!
5) YETI Cooler: This is like buying the Cadillac of coolers. The company claims this is the last cooler you’ll ever buy. They are thicker, sturdier and ice lasts much longer in a Yeti than other coolers on the market and they come with the price tag to prove it. But, if you are looking for a gift that will really impress someone, this is it. This is the equivalent of buying a Louis V for your guy. I bought my husband the Hopper 30 for our 5 year anniversary and he took it fishing on a hot day in South Florida and had the cooler sitting out in the sun for 8+ hours and he brought it home with the ice still cold and barely melted. This is the kind of gift that someone loves to receive because they probably wouldn’t spend this much on themselves which is why they are great for really special occasions.
6) The Thermapen is always on my list every year because it is the bomb and temperature is so important when grilling, smoking or even cooking indoors. Never second guess if something is done again with 3 second readings of the thermapen. Newly redesigned it is now waterproof, comes with a backlit reading (for grilling in the dar) and has a rotating display. I’ve given a Thermapen to every important person in my life. It is the gift that keeps on giving!
Thoughtful Foodie Gifts
1) Artisanal Cutting Boards: A nice cutting board is not just a utility piece but can act as a nice piece of artwork for display in a kitchen or even as a cheese and charcuterie board. I’m in love with these multicolored wood cutting boards on Etsy.
2) Le Souk Cermique Dishware: Ever since I went to Morocco I have been obsessed with this style of ceramique serving pieces. Le Souk offers Turkish/Spanish dishware in various beautiful patterns- I’m currently adding more and more pieces every major holiday! You may have seens these pasta bowls (which are perfect for everthing!) in my food pics.
3) Birds Nest salt cellars: Any serious foodie loves different types of artisanal sea salts and this is the perfect way to display them
4) Oyster shell salt Cellars: Garden and Gun, one of my favorite magazines, has G&G Mercantile, with all kinds of awesome stuff for Christmas! These are on my Christmas gift this year!!
5) Copper and Brass Pepper Mill: This would look beautiful on my kitchen counter!
6) Cork Holder for Remembering Special Occassions: I have a few people on my list that will be getting one of these this year!
7) Alligator Salt and Pepper Shakers: Could anything be cooler!?!
8) Jacobsen is the first sea salt producer on the West Coast since the Lewis and Clark Days! They make flake sea salt, infused sea salts and everything in between. I think these salt tins would be great gifts for neighbors and friends to say “I’m thinking of you!”
Vintage, Kitschy and One of a Kind
ALL FOUND ON ETSY:
Vintage Tea Towels
Vintage Salt and Pepper Shakers
Homemade and DIY
Everyone appreciates something made from the heart! Embrace your inner Martha Stewart and making something cool and thoughtful to gift for the Holidays!
Cool Food Products:
1) Butcher Box: The latest in the “Box of the month” club, the Butcher Box ships an assortment of great cuts of grassfed and finished beef right to your door. It’s pure heaven.
2) Bourbon Smoked Spices: Everything is better smoked in bourbon barrels which is why Bourbon Barrel foods has been in my gift guide 5 years in a row!
3) La Tienda: They offer Authentic Spanish goods, like high quality Prosciutto, shipped right to your door! Yes, please give me huge leg of Prosciutto and I will be one happy happy girl! If you can ever score Padron peppers from them when they are in season I highly recommend!
4) Zingermans: ship any awesome food item to anyone, including homemade Cinnamon Rolls, from their catalog or website. Zingermans is a famous deli that also started their wares, including their fantastic baked goods, via catalog/online. Their stuff is a real treat to receive in the mail! I sent the Cinnamon rolls to my grandparents for Christmas last year and they loved them!
5) Bourbon Aged Sriracha from Sosu: If you live Sriracha style hot sauce, give these guys a try. They also make a Srirach Ketchp that is pretty darn good.
6) Ubons Pitmaster Bloody Mary Mix: The Ubons are friends of mine and I have honestly never had bloody mary mix as good as theirs. For your friends who love a good bloody mary, this is the perfect gift. It is also a great hostess gift for your next brunch.
7) Raw Spice Bar: This is a cool concept- have Global Chef driven recipes with fresh ground and curated spices shipped to you once a month for $6, and quarterly options as well. It’s a great way to try new things. Thanks to them I can now say I have cooked Ethiopian food!
I hope everyone enjoys the Holidays this year! If you have gift recommendations- please do share! I love hearing your ideas!