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Flavorful Fridays: Christmas Gift-Giving Guide

December 4, 2009

After last week’s coma-inducing food fest (sorry about the no post last week…I couldn’t upload pictures!), it’s time to begin planning for Christmas. Don’t worry…I’m not talking about Christmas dinner. I know I’m not quite ready to think about more tables full of food. I am, however, excited to begin filling the space beneath our Christmas tree with lots of beautifully wrapped surprises for our family. Whether you are shopping for a home chef, a food snob, or just need a nice hostess gift for one of the many Christmas parties you will be attending this season, I have some great gift ideas. Have fun shopping!

Essentials for any Italian American kitchen:


The Microplane (or other brands like it) are traditionally meant to be used as lemon zesters, but they make the best Parmesan cheese graters. Everyone in my family has one of these that they use almost exclusively for grating Parmesan. This makes a great gift on its own, or tie it atop another wrapped gift as part of the bow/decoration.

You can find this at any major retailer, such as Macy’s, Crate & Barrel, Williams Sonoma, and Sur la Table.

Essential Italian American Cookbook

If I could have only one cookbook in my kitchen, this would be it. The author, Marcella Hazan, is credited with introducing Americans to Italian cuisine, therefore I refer to it as the Bible of Italian Cuisine. This cookbook captures over 500 of her best recipes, along with special sections on fundamental knowledge for any Italian cook and special occasion menus.

All the recipes I’ve cooked from this cookbook have been huge hits with my family and friends. It’s also been fairly easy to adapt the recipes to fit the tastes of my eaters. This is a good gift for the person who is always looking for new recipes to try or for anyone who love Italian food.

You can find Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking online or at Barnes & Noble Bookstores.

Ravioli Tray & Tiny Rolling Pin

The ravioli tray is an absolute must in any Italian American kitchen. I have made old-school, free-hand cut ravioli, but the ravioli tray makes life so much easier. Besides that, they look very elegant and cook evenly when they are perfectly equal in size. Even my Nonna uses only the tray now.

You can find ravioli trays at specialty kitchen stores and at Italian delis.


Now, the Silpat isn’t necessarily just for an Italian American kitchen. I’ve included this because it’s such a wonderful kitchen tool that I’m convinced everyone should have one in their arsenal of kitchen tools.

The Silpat is a rubber-like mat that helps cook evenly without any burning. It’s amazing! You can find Silpat at Williams Sonoma and other specialty kitchen stores.

Next week, I will share a few more Christmas gift ideas for the foodies in your life. Until then, happy shopping and Merry Christmas!

One Comment leave one →
  1. December 4, 2009 3:35 pm

    I’m adding the ravioli tray to my kitchen wish list — I think it will inspire me to make ravioli more often. 🙂

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