Every year I try to find unique gifts with universal appeal for the foodies in my life. And let’s face it, who isn’t a foodie? For me, the perfect gift is something that lasts long after the holidays and enjoyed even after you’ve had your fill of cookies and candy. Something utilitarian but special. Last year I gave out slabs of thick cut bacon and Iberico jamon purchased online from La Tienda. This year I purchased everything in person, so if you’re a last minute shopper like me, no worry. Still get chance.
Left: Hand crafted ceramic dishware from the Honolulu Academy of Arts students and the Hawaii Potter’s Guild. Unique pieces from local artists that can turn even the most epic culinary failures into works of art. Filled with every day food stuffs from Nijiya Market, R. Field or even Chinatown. If you can’t find anything handmade try to find something that reminds you of the recipient. It’s the thought that counts. It should be large enough to use for serving. Add a little raffia filling, wrap with cellophane, and tie with a big red bow from Ben Franklin Crafts.
Top Right: Aloha Tofu partnered with Kawanaka Shouyu in Hiroshima to bring their tasty dashi shoyu to Hawaii. This is not shoyu to cook with. Instead splash over fresh sashimi, buttery avocados, or runny eggs on hot rice. Package with some quality green tea to end the meal.
Bottom Right: Bees Knees Spicy Honey. Chili infused honey bottled in Brooklyn. Fancy up your holiday cocktails and cheese plates or drizzle over fried chicken and biscuits. Haven’t tried it, but it’s supposedly amazing on pepperoni pizza too. You can buy it online, but I found mine at Bloomingdale’s Home Department, right next to the biscuit mix. Tie it up with a gift card for Zippy’s chicken or a slice at JJ Dolan’s.
And like all Christmas gifts, whatever you get, don’t forget
one two for yourself. I serve mine with the other obvious pairing–a block of factory fresh soft tofu, topped with sweet savory nametake mushrooms. A quick and easy side dish packed with umami. Perfect with some fried fish and farmers market veggies. And maybe even a cookie or two.