Thursday, December 12, 2013

Great Christmas Gifts For Healthy Cooking

These are some of my favorite things for a healthy kitchen!

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Things for the Kitchen Make Wonderful Gifts
I'm always buying things for my kitchen and I especially love buying these kinds of gifts for people who enjoy cooking - especially young adults who are just starting out. When you buy an appliance, kitchen tool, or ingredient that allows someone to cook healthy meals, you are giving them the gift of longevity. I can't think of anything better than that. 

So if you are still making your Christmas list, you might want to include some of these gifts for your special someone. Or, feel free to put one of these under the tree for yourself! 
I've included links to Amazon because they generally have the best prices (and I hate going to the stores at this time of year) but if you can find these items locally, that's always a great way to shop.

$ - under $50
$$ - from $51 to $100
$$$ - from $101 to $200
$$$ - from $201 to $300
$$$$ - from $301 to $400
$$$$$ - over $400

Knives ($)
All cooks need a good knife. This 4-inch Stainless Steel Paring Knife is a good start. 
JA Henckels International Classic 4-inch paring knife

A nice serrated edged knife is needed to cut tomatoes, like this 5 1/2 inch Tomato Knife.
Wusthof Gourmet 5 1/2 inch Tomato Knife

A good high-speed blender is my most important appliance. My favorite is the Vitamix. I have given one to each of my children. They are used for making healthy smoothies, raw and cooked blended soups, dips, nut milks, salad dressings, the preparations for healthy frozen treats, non-dairy "cheese" sauces, hummus, cashew cream, and so much more. They can even be used to make your own flour and to grind nuts and seeds. The Vitamix 1782 TurboBlend, 2 Speed, is the less expensive model and works great. If you want one with a variable speed, get the Vitamix 5200.

2-Speed Vitamix $$$$

Variable Speed Vitamix $$$$$

Pomona Pectin ($)
Here's a stocking stuffer for anyone interested in making healthy jelly and jam. Pomona's Universal Pectin allows you to make jelly and jam with little or no sugar. It's a must for those who like to can! I love this product so much I devote an entire chapter to it in my eBook.

The healthy way to make jelly and jam!

Le Creuset Cookware ($$$$)
Every chef needs a high-quality 5 1/2 quart Dutch Oven (or as Le Creuset calls them, "French Ovens".) For years I used non-stick Dutch ovens but the non-stick coating tends to scratch and can become toxic. I also adore my All-Clad stainless steel pots. But my life changed when I finally broke down and bought my Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron 5 1/2 quart French Oven. At first I was reluctant to buy such a heavy pot (it's 11 pounds), but then I realized that using it served two purposes. Healthy cooking AND keeping fit! The enamel coating keeps food from sticking and makes it very easy to clean. It cooks evenly and will last forever. I use it all winter for making soups, stews, grains, and spaghetti sauce. It is truly a magnificent pot! 

Le Creuset 5 1/2 quart French Oven

Microplane Zester/Grater ($)
Here's another very important tool that I use almost every day. It's a Microplane 40020 Classic Zester/Grater. I use it to zest lemons, limes and oranges. I also use it to grate ginger and garlic. It's so much more convenient than a big grater and cleans easily. It makes the perfect stocking stuffer!


Food Processor ($$$)
I absolutely adore my 11-cup Cuisinart food processor. I use it to make raw pesto, hummus, raw walnut meatballs, raw chocolate truffles, pizza dough (or bread dough), and for shredding veggies for coleslaw or other salads. 

Cuisinart 11-cup food processor

Citrus Juicer ($)
This inexpensive, glass citrus juicer comes in handy every time a recipe calls for fresh lemon or lime juice. I use it all the time!

Glass Citrus Juicer

Ice Cream Maker ($$)
What's more fun than making ice cream or sorbet - especially when it's healthy and you get to control what's in it! I make all kinds of concoctions in my Vitamix and then toss them into a my Cuisinart 2-Quart Ice Cream maker . In about 20 minutes I have a healthy, non-dairy frozen dessert! 

Cuisinart 2-Quart Automatic Frozen Sorbet, and Ice Cream Maker

Healthy Recipes ($)
My eBook, Health Begins in the Kitchen: Delicious and Easy Vegan Recipes and Seasonal Food Plan is a great gift for someone wanting to include healthy vegan recipes in their diet. From morning smoothies, to frozen desserts, these recipes will help you kick off the new year with delicious recipes that will help you get healthy and stay healthy without sacrificing taste and enjoyment. You get 160 vegan recipes (most are gluten free), 145 beautiful photographs, plus critical nutritional information, menus, and instructions and recipes for a raw food cleanse - all for only $9.99. 

Buy it on Amazon or
Buy it on iTunes

Happy Shopping!!!

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