So it's the first day of December and I've decorated our tree, put up the lights, and made Bon Appetit Christmas trees with old magazines. There's still more decorating to do, and baking to be done, but to kick off this month and the hunt for holiday gifts, I wanted to share my Baker's Holiday Gift Guide with you all!
It seems like I'm a William Sonoma advertiser over here, but these are all totally my opinions that haven't been swayed by any means, they just make really great quality stuff at a reasonable price! (And you can get a lot of these in any store!)
Okay so let's start off with the basics. Any baker is going to need good quality equipment to make all of their pies and cookies this season (and next year), so there's nothing wrong with starting their new year off right with the perfect set of everything they'll need!
Another basic tool that makes a huge difference is a straight rolling pin. The thing I like about this shape is that there's no room for error on rolling out even dough. (And easy clean up without all those nooks and crannies like in traditional rolling pins).
Dan's dad gave him one of these a few years ago and now that I've discovered it's magic powers, I use it for all sorts of things. It makes working with dough a breeze, and scraping up ingredients from your countertop a cinch. Really a bakers best friend.
I'm not one to cough up money to continuously buy parchment paper to put underneath all of my baked goods while they're in the oven, so Silpats are a fantastic investment, (especially for this time of year with mountains of cookies to be baked). No black bottomed gingerbread cookies, or overly toasted treats!
That old trick of putting foil around the crust so it doesn't burn in the oven? A thing of the past. Grab one of these awesome silicone shields to keep your crust perfectly golden every time.
I used to think that cake strips were a bit of a silly tool. Can they really make a cake layer cook evenly? Well it turns out they sure can and it's an amazing thing. No more cutting down cake to uneven shapes and dealing with messy frosting.
A flour sifter is another tool that I thought I could go without. I've whisked using a sieve, and stirred bag upon bag of flour with a wooden spoon, but nothing compares to this hand held sifter. Faster, less clean up, and an even sift; your cakes will never look better.
One of my biggest pet peeves while making cookies is getting the dough stuck to my hands when I roll it onto the pan. But by using a 2" cookie scoop, you avoid the mess, and get an awesome shape for scooping the perfect cookie. And with Christmas cookie making season in full swing, this is crucial.
I just discovered this pretty recently, but it's an extremely handy tool that works as a measurement guide and a shaper for all kinds of doughs. So your pies and pizza's will be the perfect size every time.
10 bowls might sound like a lot, but when you're in the midst of a recipe and all of a sudden you're missing a big enough bowl to sift all of your dry ingredients in, these sure come in handy. And who needs a small cup for cracking eggs into before they go into the mixer? Anyone who bakes.
If you're like me, and really want to get your friends something they'll get a ton of use out of, stainless steel measuring cups are the way to go. They'll last forever, always be needed, and require little clean up.
This is a pretty cool gift idea, and now you can find them virtually anywhere. My iPad stand is a metal cell phone stand from Target that was a dollar...so there are plenty of options out there for your needs. I never realized how convenient it was to be able to bring this into the kitchen, yet it would remain out of the way (and out of danger). Definitely a fun gift for someone who's constantly bring their laptop into the kitchen to cook their next recipe.
This Kitchen Aid is probably the most obvious gift on this list. It's the most expensive, but if you're going to make the investment for you, or for someone special, the holiday season is the best time to do it to get a good deal. William Sonoma in particular has a few stores that offer refurbished machines for more reasonable prices than we're all familiar with seeing. And you can definitely make do with a hand mixer or a food processor for most recipes, but the power is unmatched.
This gift idea is geared to all my food bloggers and pastry friends out there. This slab is the perfect back drop for food photography, can make mean melted chocolate curls, and will keep those buttery doughs nice and cool during prep time. A pretty, and functional addition to your baking arsenal.
This is still on my list of things to purchase, but if you're without a food processor and need to blend dough, this should be on your wish list this season. Your pies will never taste better.
I'm in need of a cake stand or 20 for this upcoming year. And there are these beautiful stands on William Sonoma's website that are wonderfully simple. The perfect present for your avid cake baker.
So what kinds of gifts are you on the look out for this season? Or have you gotten all of your shopping taken care of already?
Happy Holidays friends!