We all have that one friend who seems to be the living incarnate of Julia Child—completely obsessed and effortlessly talented at all things food. So what do you get for the home cook that seems to have everything? Read on and find out.
1. Miracle Whisk
In the world of As Seen on TV products, there are more duds than wins. The Miracle Whisk is one of those rare wins. While the claim it will whip 2% milk into whipped cream is questionable (it requires a tiny bit of milk, a deep-walled bowl and lots of elbow grease), it will get your cake batters and sauces smooth as silk with just a few quick pumps.
2. Levoons and Levups
Dreamfarm is killing the “useful kitchen gadgets” game (see the Oni later in the post). By far the most useful are the Levoons and Levups are clever names for the leveling spoons and cups. With one hand you can scoop your flour, sugar or spices and level it off with a simple squeeze.
3. Manual Food Processor
When you just need a quick chop, it’s a hassle to pull out your entire food processor—plus the amount of time it takes to wash the thing after. Enter, this useful little tool. It’s perfect for chopping up herbs or garlic, and makes a simple salsa in seconds.
4. Instant Pot
Hands-down one of the most useful kitchen gadgets any home cook can own, whether you’re a seasoned chef or total newbie. It’s a pressure cooker, it’s a slow cooker, it’s a rice cooker—it does it all!—with easy directions and buttons to lead you to culinary success.
Dreamfarm does it again with this multipurpose knife. One side slices, one side spreads, and the handle has a small blade to cut open packaging. Your friend may have a set of expensive Japanese knives already, but we can bet they don’t have this.
6. Single cup French Press
Sometimes, all you need is a single cup of coffee. No need to brew the whole pot. Simply put a few tablespoons of your favorite French roast in the pot, saturate with water, and let sit for a few minutes. Fresh, delicious coffee is all yours.
7. Odor “Soap”
Nobody likes garlic hands after making a meal. Strangely enough, “washing” your hands with stainless steel neutralizes the odor better than ten pumps of hand soap ever will. A simple gift, but one your home cook friends will appreciate.
8. 12-inch Cast Iron Pan
Here’s a gentle way to tell your friend to graduate from Teflon pans: get them cast iron. Lodge is the best, and you can find many pre-seasoned. For the beginner, a simple 12” pan will do. For the expert, the griddle will be a welcome gift—you can create an entire brunch on this one pan alone.
9. iPhone Lenses
Is your friend less of a cook and more of an eater? Then it’s likely they’re filling their Instagram with food photos. Get them some lenses for their phone to take those pix to the next level. These clip-on lenses are a great stocking stuffer and will work on most phones.
10. Their Favorite Food Blogger’s Cookbook
Bloggers are a step or two removed from the chefs on the Food Network—their fans feel a personal connection that can’t really be beat. This thoughtful gift will excite any food blogger fan.
Ashley Blom is a New Englander and haphazard foodie living in Austin, Texas. Her book, “How to Eat a Lobster” is coming from Quirk Books in 2017, and you can find her recipes and ramblings at forkingup.com.