Buying for a ‘Foodie’ is pure joy this time of year!
Although it comes with the added issue that you might be tempted to eat your gifts before Christmas Day arrives!
I advise wrapping everything as early as possible and storing them away from both yourself and any children!
So if you’re looking for gifts for a lover of all things Italian, or someone with discerning tastes, you can impress them with these.
Yes there is a classic Panettone but I think you’ll also find some items you’ve never heard of…
Before you balk at the thought of gifting someone Penne! Let me show you what I mean. I am not talking about just any pasta!
This is the world of Garofalo. An award-winning master pasta maker of superb quality with over 76 different shapes.
I know that Spaghetti is one of THE favourite pasta shapes here in the UK, but did you know that you can buy super long Spaghetti from Gragnano a place synonymous with quality pasta production.
This spaghetti is made from only high quality durum wheat semolina and high in protein. It is created using a bronze die cut resulting in a rough and porous surface to hold and absorb the sauce.
It’s 50cm in length! Here’s my tall 3 year old demonstrating how long the pasta is! It comes beautifully wrapped and makes a wonderful gift.
2. Premium quality Olive Oil
If you’re looking for a genuine premium quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil try Olio Gorrasi. Here you can buy the farms’ oil directly from them and they will ship it to your door!
Not only is the colour of this oil incredible and so vibrant (no camera filters used!) the taste is so delicious and rich. It makes you realise what we are often missing with the mass produced oils we get in the UK.
Oilo Gorrasi will be shipping their 2018 Harvest from mid-December and will be offering 10% OFF orders until 30th November. So don’t hang around if you’d love to try it or gift this to your Foodie!
Who can have Christmas without a Panettone now? Rumour is many Brits are having this instead of the traditional English Christmas cake with marzipan and icing.
Made by the Colavolpe family in Calabria. Three generations of this family make all of their own panettoni, chocolates and other artisan delicacies.
Here they are brought to us by Vorrei, who import authentic Italian products to the UK. A bit like us, Vorrei are owned by a family with an Italian husband, an English wife and two children. They've lived in Rome for many years and now are back in the UK. Due to this mix of Italian and English culture they know full well how to find the highest quality products and what might suit a British taste.
Another foodie product I love having in Italy at Christmas is Torrone. This is similar to our idea of nougat. The Italian version is either with a soft nougat and often pistachios. Or this type which is a bit firmer and full of seeds, nuts, honey and sugar.
This variety has sesame seeds, Avola almonds and a wild flower honey ‘Hyblean’ from the mountains around Siracusa and Ragusa. (Think Inspector Montalbano country!).
Produced by Donna Elvira, an award winning family run company from Modica. They are also producers of the famous Modica chocolate and have their own shop in the centre.
5. La Cedrata
This is completely new to me! La Cedrata, another creation from the kitchens of Donna Elvira above!
A moist, sweet, Sicilian lemon cake made with citrus peel, honey and sugar.
The Cedrata roll can be sliced and eaten as a dessert or as an accompaniment to afternoon tea. I actually think it’s delicious warm with cold cream or ice cream.
It tastes like a very lemon-y much lighter version of a Christmas pudding. Definitely one to have at the table to give people something unusual to try or as a perfect stocking filler!
6. An Italian Cookbook for La Famiglia!
It takes a fresh look at baby weening and the idea that your child needs separate meals to everyone else. You’ll learn how to cook one meal for everyone and use the same dish to create your baby purees!
You’ll maximise your time by doing this so everyone eats a healthy, hearty meal together. And your child learns from early on the joy of eating as a family and is encouraged to eat real food!
Brought to us by the wonderful Chiappa Sisters, raised in Wales with Italian parents. Food and enjoying it with those you love is central to their philosophy.
If you’re wondering why you recognise Michela, Emi and Romina! They have appeared on TV in many brilliant programmes such as Simply Italian, Michela’s Tuscan Kitchen, The Welsh Italians and much more.
This would be the perfect gift for a food loving family!
7. Personal Chef!
How would you like to have someone come to your home and whip up a romantic meal? Maybe you could invite over friends and family and not worry about the cooking and clearing away?
Would you like to host more gatherings but you can never face the organisation?
AmoChef could be the perfect solution! They have more than 70 chefs, from many different nationalities, in 36 different locations, from London to Lisbon, New York to Los Angeles! So pretty much they’ve got you covered!
They pride themselves on helping people share wonderful moments with their friends and loved ones. Creating an occasion and allowing you to just enjoy the moment of being together over a delicious meal.
With a private chef everything is taken care of. You don’t have to worry if you burn something! Or spend all your time in the kitchen instead of with your guests which is what happens to me!
With the run up to Christmas AmoChef have launched some gift vouchers which will make perfect present for someone who loves food, entertaining and being a bit pampered!
8. Christmas spices for bakers!
Do you know a Great British Bake Off fan? Someone who bakes regularly and enjoys finding special ingredients?
The children and I recently did some Christmas baking we made gingerbread biscuits with Vandotsch Speculaas spice mix, the whole house smelt divine!
Launched by Steven Dotsch, Speculaas Spices comes from the desire to replicate his Dutch grandmothers recipe for warm, sweet tasting biscuits.
I love the nostalgia of Steven’s story and how this inspiration and wonderful memory has driven him to setup his own business.
Vandotsch spice mix is a combination of real high grade cinnamon from Sri Lanka, cloves, ginger and of course a few secret ingredients!
There are no artificial flavours, colours or preservatives and where possible all spices are either organic, Fairtrade sourced or both.
It’s such a distinctive taste and gave our little attempts at snowmen a really warming and intriguing flavour.
Steven also sells biscuit molds and other items to help your super star baker create something really special.
9. Saving the best
Who could enjoy all of the above without a cheeky tipple?
Welcome to The Summerton Club! A membership which brings you interesting, flavoursome aged brandies, rums, whiskies, and more from around the world.
Every month you are sent a different bottle complete with the story of origin and how it’s produced.
This bottle’s sweet story begins in a ski resort in the West of Sweden. Eight friends met in a snow-covered cabin bringing a bottle of whisky to enjoy. After much discussion and I imagine drinking! They decided to create the first Swedish whisky as there was no such thing at the time. For two years they kept their day jobs whilst trying to learn the trade!
Their Swedish Malt Whisky is a limited edition spirit not yet available in the UK except for Summerton Club members. It’s called ‘Gruvguld’ meaning ‘Gold from the Mine’.
What an incredible gift to give to someone each month! A delicious product and the chance to gain knowledge of these small, excellent producers.
Buon Natale! Happy Christmas!
Have any of these inspired your Christmas shopping?
**I have been gifted some of the items in this post, in order to review them.*