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One of the hottest trends in gift giving is gourmet goodies – be they for people who love to cook, or those who love to eat! If you’re thinking along these lines, know that you need not spend a fortune to make or find things that really have that gourmet feel.

For example, you can blend kosher salt with parmesan cheese and garlic powder to create a fresh, gourmet tasting popcorn blend! This is but one illustration of how to dress up a simple idea or item.

But let’s back up. If you’re giving a gift to friends who are new to gourmet, then maybe a magazine subscription is the best choice. There are tons of journals on various types of food and wine, and you can pick out a subscription that fits your budget and their tastes! Cooks who are constantly looking for new recipes to try will really appreciate this idea.

Meat and seafood shipped fresh is a second gourmet trend. While these have been around for a while, companies are now specializing in high-end meats like Kobe. The key to shopping is to educate yourself and really look around. I recently found a company for meat that had an Ebay presence and managed to save $30.00 that way and by combining shipping.

Note: if your gifts are all going to local people definitely consider having them come to your house then repackaging from there to save on postage no matter what you’re buying!

Another gourmet goodie comes with an organic label. You can have fresh produce and herbs sent by mail on a regular basis from various companies. Alternatively, you can get pre-made organic food for people who are time-challenged. This is a really nice option for your green friends and family, or people with a lot of allergies to additives.

Fourth is what can best be labeled decorative condiments. There are a slew of gourmet oils and vinegars that come in beautiful bottles filled with bright peppers, lemons, whole coves of garlic, herb sprouts, etc. These look awesome in any kitchen, but also serve a function. Better still, this is another item you could make yourself to save money and really personalize the gift.

Then there are a plethora of sweets. I’ve found everything from amazing cheesecake and gourmet candied apples to rich chocolates and desert wines on line at reasonable costs. Nonetheless, I tend to veer away from ordering confections simply because there’s so much of them during the holidays that it becomes overwhelming.

Finally, how about giving a collection of personally favored recipes done on decorative cards that can be filed for use over many years? Package this up with a variety of nifty kitchen tools that make cooking easier or more creative. There is no such thing as having too much kitchen equipment – just ask any chef!

Happy hunting!


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