My favorite part of giving gifts is that moment when the person opens the package, sees what the item is, and you can tell from their expression that you nailed it. I spend a lot of time carefully thinking about the right gifts for each person we give to, and even when I go a little over budget, it's usually worth it to achieve that perfect fit.
I still have a lot of shopping to do for my own family, but I put together a few things that I hope can help you as you shop for yours. Let me know what you like!
images via retailers listed
There seems to be an inherited Bleier family trait for finding something we love and then obsessing over it ad nauseam, whether it’s a TV show, a song, or some other thing we have to continually consume—at least until the next shiny object catches our attention.
I think the Short Stack cookbooks might be the foodie version of this feeling. Each edition is passionately dedicated to a specific food; they celebrate the simplicity and complexity of one specific ingredient and every recipe within incorporates that item.
The diminutive size and retro graphic covers give the hand-bound (with baker's twine!) volumes a special feel, and I love the idea of having an arsenal of recipes, from drinks to desserts, featuring a favorite ingredient. The recipes come from established chefs and food experts and the collection is published by Nick Fauchald who raised money for this project through Kickstarter.
Some of the delicious-sounding recipes included are: Egg Drop Soup with Edamame, Red Chile, and Scallions, Portuguese Egg Tarts with Burnt Marshmallow Frosting, Curried Tomato-Lamb Stew, Tomato Tart Tatin with Caramel, Roasted Strawberry Frozen Yogurt, and Strawberry Sangria.
The cookbooks are sold individually or in sets. Eggs, Tomatoes, and Strawberries are already available, and Buttermilk, Grits, and Sweet Potatoes will be out any day but can be ordered in advance.
Short Stack cookbooks, $12 each, $35 for three, or $70 for six, shortstackeditions.com
I hope everyone had a great weekend. I wasn't originally going to take a break from posting, but then I decided to give myself the days off, especially since I was in a temporary lull from deadlines for my freelance work. I felt guilty about it, but I'm glad I did. We spent a day at the state fair, cooked out twice, swam, and had a good time. My mom even made homemade funnel cake, yum!
But school starts tomorrow and it is already jeans and long-sleeve weather here today, though I hope that doesn't last.
Most of you probably know about the brand OXO, and you probably have some of their kitchen and storage solutions in your house right now; I do. Of course, they do more, but one of the best things OXO does is partner with Cookies for Kids' Cancer, a non-profit organization founded by two of their employees, Gretchen and Larry Witt.
Many of us in magazines know Gretchen from her PR work for OXO. I was working at O Magazine in 2007 when her then-two-year-old son Liam was diagnosed with a rare cancer. At Traditional Home, we had just months before honored Gretchen (as a Classic Woman Award recipient for her work raising money and awareness for pediatric cancer), when Liam lost his courageous battle in January 2011.
When starting the treatment process with their son, the Witts were surprised to learn that despite pediatric cancer being the #1 disease killer of children, there was a significant lack of funding for research and development of safer, more effective treatments. They dedicated themselves to raising money for the cause, and have done so through huge bake sales. The foundation provides the tools and support for fundraising bake sales of all sizes and their own gourmet cookies are for sale at their website.
September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and OXO is partnering with Cookies for Kids' Cancer for their annual program: for each specially-marked OXO baking product sold, 25 cents goes to Cookies for Kids' Cancer as part of its pledge to donate up to $100,000.
I know it's a little early to think about the holidays, but if you plan on upgrading or replacing any of your baking tools prior to cookie-baking season, please consider the specially-marked OXO Good Grips products.
I am thankful to have two currently healthy daughters, but I know others who are, or have been, where the Witts were, including a friend of mine. I was honored to meet the unfailingly positive Liam, and his parents are a constant inspiration. Each year, in honor of my daughters' birthdays, I make a donation to Cookies for Kids' Cancer.
Please be a "Good Cookie" and participate! Click here to buy online.
images via OXO
mom, wife, market editor, crazy person.
© 2014 | mrkt