2015 Cyber Holiday Gift Guide
Is it that time already???
I know, the turkey is not on the table yet, so it doesn't seem quite right to be talking about holiday shopping, but the sad fact is Cyber Monday is just a week away and December is roaring right behind it. The good news is Amazon is my best friend when it comes to holiday shopping. In an hour I can knock off a good chunk of my list without ever stepping foot in a mall. And to me that is a thing of beauty. Below are Something New For Dinner's 2015 gift picks.
Environmentally Friendly Gifts
These Do-Good gifts are practical and help preserve our environment and personal health.
I am the queen of the water bottle and always have one or two within reach. I am adamant about three things: 1) not buying disposable water bottles that create mountains of trash in our landfills and oceans, and 2) drinking lots of water throughout the day, 3) avoiding plastic containers whenever possible to minimize BPA and other plasticizers leaching into my food and drink.
That is where these wonderful water bottles come to the rescue. They are made of double walled insulated stainless steel. If you add a few ice cubes to the bottle your water will stay cold overnight even if you leave it in your car. The bottles come in four different colors and are about half the price of a very similar product you may have seen in stores. Going beyond water, these bottles also hold a full bottle of wine. That's what I like - multi-purpose products! This is a great stocking stuffer, teacher's gift or hostess gift. Price: $21.97.
I am working hard to minimize my use of plastic containers and plastic wrap for two reasons: 1) to minimize my waste and 2) to reduce my family's exposure to plasticizers. These bee's wax coated cloths can be used to wrap sandwiches and cheese or used to seal bowls. They are reusable and washable. Price: $18
These produce bags are reusable and machine-washable. wouldn't it be nice to buy your produce without bringing home a pile of plastic bags? These disposable bags are the answer. Price: $11.95
Gifts for the Cook
If there is one key investment in your kitchen it is a good knife. There is nothing that will make you want to sidle up to a pile of vegetables more than a sharp knife. Conversely, there is nothing worse, than having to struggle with dull knives. The reason most people don't invest in knives is that a good knife can be very expensive. The Victorinox Chef's knife is a fabulous knife at a phenomenal price. It has been highly rated by a number of expert's including Cook's Illustrated. It gets 5 stars for over 3,660 Amazon reviews. You simply can't go wrong with this knife and it makes a wonderful gift. Price: $33.55
It is almost time to put together your New Year's resolution and one of the most popular resolutions is to eat healthier. We all know the key to eating healthier is to eat more vegetables. The Paderno Spiralizer is a great tool for getting more vegetables into your diet. Plus, spiralizing vegetables is plain fun. The Paderno Spiralizer lets you transform a zucchini into a mountain of vegetable noodles, or an apple, cucumber or beet into a delicious salad. If you want more inspiration as to what to do with your spiralizer consider purchasing Inspiralized, the cookbook 100% dedicated to cooking with a spiralizer. Price: $29.97
Whether cooking meat, poultry, yogurt or candy, a good cook needs a good thermometer. Lavatools makes two great models: the basic model has a 2.75" probe, and a Pro model with a 4.25" probe. Price: $24.99 and $49.99
If you want to wow the cook in your life you will always please with a Le Creuset Dutch oven. These gorgeous, multi-functional workhorse pans will provide a lifetime of meals. Mine are the most cherished items in my kitchen. They come in and 5.5 quart, 7.25 quart and 9 quart sizes. Always buy the biggest one you can afford because nobody ever said "my Le Creuset is too big!"Prices: $294.95, $349.95 & $374.99
Gifts for the Cocktail Aficionado
I found these glasses when looking for oversized pinot noir glasses for Spanish-style gin and tonics. I was blown away by the quality of these glasses for the price. Nachtmann Vivendi is owned by Riedel and these glasses have the same Riedel quality. At 30 ounces these glasses make a fun and elegant presentation whether using them to serve wine or artisanal cocktails. So far I only own the Pinot Noir glasses, but the company makes a variety of sizes and shapes. Their champagne glasses are next on my personal wish list. Price: $36.99 for a set of 4
Last year my youngest son Mikey gave me this cocktail shaker for Christmas, with the explanation that I had been using the wrong kind of cocktail shaker all these years. I was grateful to know our college tuition paid for some very practical knowledge! And in fact he was right. I had been using a cobbler shaker. You know the one with the metal lid that always gets stuck? The Boston shaker is preferred by professional bartenders for its simplicity, speed and avoiding the problem of separating all the metal pieces. You will also need a cocktail strainer to use with the Boston shaker. Price: $35.99 plus $6.95 for the strainer
A nylon tipped muddler is an essential mixologist tool, particularly if you like to infuse your cocktails with fruit and herbs. This OXO brand muddler is my favorite. I particularly like its extra long length that allows you to work directly in tall Tom Collins glasses. Price: $13.95
Ice Sphere and Cube Mold
A beautiful cocktail needs great ice. Oversized ice spheres and cubes not only look great, but they keep your cocktail icy cold without diluting the drink. Get creative and add herbs, fruit or juice to the ice molds and you are on the verge of creating a very fancy cocktail. I like these Tovolo ice sphere molds and these Arctic Chill oversized square cubes molds. Prices: $8.73 & $12.95
Everyone loves a Moscow Mule served in an icy copper mug. There are lots of copper mugs out there, but these are still our hands down favorite. Made by Sertodo, these oversized, heavy-gaged, 20-ounce mugs are spectacularly crafted from recycled copper. Also great for serving ice cold beer. Price: $130.85 for four mugs
This gorgeous 76-ounce hammered copper pitcher is perfect for serving up a big batch of Moscow Mules or for keeping your water chilled. Price: $120
Coloring books are a pleasurable way to destress an activity that is going viral. Coloring is a calming, meditative activity after a stressful day. Color alone, color with friends and family or color with a glass of wine; you may find it surprisingly pleasurable and relaxing. Choose from several coloring books: Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns, Doodle Dogs, Colorful Cats, Adult Coloring: Stress Relieving Floral Designs. Don't forget colored pencils and colored pencil sharpener.
Have a wonderful holiday season. Enjoy your family and friends and take time for yourself. We hope these gift ideas make your holiday shopping a little bit easier.