1. Alice Eats is an amazing cookbook. It is equal parts story, beautiful illustrations and fantastic recipes. Want to throw a Mad Hatter tea party? You will have recipes for that and they will be recipes from the fantastic Julie van Rosendaal so they will be amazing! Buy it – at Chapters or most other places that sell books.
2. I have lusted after Le Creuset for YEARS. They are functional and so darn pretty. I’m not 100% sure how long they have this Mini Round Cocette set for sale for $80 but if you can still find them it is a great deal. Plus all proceeds go to Community Food Centres Canada. If not, take in all the beautiful colors in their store. I can’t decide which is my favorite….maybe the cobalt blue. Buy It – If you are in Calgary, you have to check out their store in Chinook Mall or google to find the many fine retailers where it is carried.
3. Snackbox is an awesome delivery service that delivers a box full of healthy and delicious treats right to your door. You can sign up for a one time delivery or for a 3 or 6 month subscription. The longer you buy, the cheaper each box is. Pictured above is my second Snackbox and it has been awesome. Each time I got products that I had never tried and that I will definitely buy again. Currently this is available in Canada only but there are similar services in the US as well. They have a standard $6.95 shipping rate across Canada. 1 box is $33 plus shipping & tax.
4. Knife Skills Class – as any chef will tell you, one of the giant differences between a chef and a home cook is knife skills (myself included). Take a class and learn how to develop the skills to make cooking and prepping easier and more enjoyable. If you are in Calgary, I’ve heard great things about the knife skills classes at Knifewear. If you are not in Calgary, just Google “knife skills class” and the name of your city.
5. Chocolate and Wine – When all else fails, there is always chocolate and wine. Throw in a nice wine tool and call it a day! The bottle above is one of our favorites. It is quite inexpensive and very tasty. Definitely pick up a bottle (or a case like we did) when you see it. The chocolate bar is made here in Calgary at Choklat, Alberta’s only chocolate maker (they also have a store in Edmonton). You can buy their chocolate in bars or they will custom make truffles for you while you wait. All of their chocolate is dairy free so perfect for the vegan on your list. If you don’t live in Calgary or Edmonton, go to your local chocolatier and pick up some there.