Helena's Holiday Picks for Your Favourite Foodie

Among the many things I love about living in South Granville, is that I can fill most of my shopping needs just steps from my front door. And at this time of year, when it comes to holiday gifts, you can get it all done with a  quick walk up the street. Here are my top 5 picks for your foodie friend.

1.  An inspiring cookbook never goes unwanted by food lovers, and this year, I pick this one. Mimi Thorisson is known for her wonderful blog Manger where she chronicles her idyllic rustic life in the Médoc region of France all while looking like she just stepped out of the pages of Vogue. Her first cookbook, A Kitchen in France, features her favourite French recipes and is beautifully photographed by her photographer husband Oddur Thorisson. With recipes like Grilled Entrecôte à la Bordelaise and Poires à la Médocaine Medicine (red wine poached pears) the lucky recipient won't want to wait to get cooking. And rest assured, with a gift like this, there will always be a place at your friend's table reserved for you.

A Kitchen In France: A Year Of Cooking In My Farmhouse by Mimi Thorisson, Published by Random House, $46.00 at Chapters

2.  A Beautiful Serving Bowl

Equally perfect for piling with pasta or pine cones, these beautiful examples are made in England with beautiful details like the hand-finished edge and individual markings.

Hermit Serving Bowl 8 1/2 inch $45.00, 6 1/2 inch $24.00 at Bacci's Vancouver

3.  Help with the Washing Up 

A foodie can never have too many tea towels. Fact. This gift will always be appreciated, especially if it's in beautiful linen. Linen drys quickly and wipes lint free and lasts longer than a cheap cotton one. There are selections up and down the street, but I'm quite partial to this one. Perfect for stuffing in a stocking or wrapping a hand-crafted gift of your own making. 

Feather Tea Towel, $14.95 at Country Furniture.

5.  A beautiful, functional work of art

This beautiful hand-made rolling pin It will last forever and will be passed on for generations. And there's always the bonus that you will be repaid by the recipient with a beautiful pie with an exquisite pastry crust. I found this one at Bacci's and there are several different colours to choose from. This is the Maple version.

Lostine Large Maple Rolling Pin $97.50 at Bacci's Vancouver


5. Give the Gift of Caffeine. What could be more festive on Christmas morning than this jolly Italian-style coffee pot in Pantone 186 otherwise known as Red. And just as Santa always left batteries with your toys, it's only right  to throw in some coffee so this gift is ready for immediate use. Local roasters, 49th Parallel's French Roast Organic is my own personal favourite and in my opinion perfectly matched to this method of coffee making. Finally because Santa may have eaten all the cookies, these Cranberry & Orange Shortbread from local artisan makers Péché Mignon, will keep your foodie friend sustained until the turkey is ready.

Pantone Coffee Maker in Pantone 186, $49.95 at Moulé, 49th Parallel French Roast Organic $12.69 and Péché Mignon Cranberry Orange Shortbread, $7.95 both at Meinhardt


Photos by Helena McMurdo except for Mimi Thorisson Book Cover by Odder Thorisson/Random House.