Looking for a holiday present for a food- loving friend or family member? Here are five fabulous ideas, all tasted and tested by the Clean Plates staff—and all for less than a Benjamin.
1. Ecoficus Fig Bombóns:
The family-run confectioner that makes these bite-size USDA organic treats grows diminutive calabacita figs, which they fill with almond praline and then coat with dark chocolate. Our office echoed with “oohs” and “aahs” when we tried the just-sweet-enough morsels. ($19 for 12)
2. Matcha Source ‘WhiskIt’ Kit:
If, like us, you’re obsessed with matcha and want to spread the love, consider this starter kit from L.A.-based Matcha Source, which has everything a person needs to give the green tea powder-based drink a try: a tin of smooth, pleasantly grassy matcha; a bamboo whisk; an attractive whisk stand; a matcha prep guide and a coupon for ordering more matcha. Visiting L.A.? Try Matcha Source at the company’s tea shop, Matcha Box. ($59-$72, depending on chosen tea)
3. New Moon Pantry Starter Kit:
Readers of Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop will be familiar with Moon Juice products—they show up in such recipes as Sex Bark and Beauty Milk. Help your loved one emulate Gwyneth with this starter kit: a tote filled with New Moon products, including maca, tocotrienols, almond butter, pink salt, cacao and cardamom ($90).
This tool that turns just about any veggie into noodle-like strands wins our vote for kitchen gadget of the year; if your friends or family don’t own one yet, it’s time. There are numerous brands to choose from; we’ve had great success using the inexpensive Spiralizer that’s a top seller on Amazon ($30), as well as the Inspiralizer ($50).
5. Jacobsen Salt Co. Six-Vial Gift Set:
Help your favorite food lovers amp up the flavor in their lives with this selection of infused sea salts sourced from Oregon’s Netarts Bay. The big, crisp flakes in these vials are infused with natural flavors, including lemon zest, ghost chiles and cherry wood smoke, as well as more surprising flavors, such as coffee and vanilla. The packaging includes pairing suggestions (e.g. try the coffee salt with steak or brownies and the vanilla with caramels, cookies and— genius—scallops). ($30 for a set of six)