You can't go wrong with kitchen gear. It's a solid, platonic gift, good for people who cook and encouraging to those who don't. Here are some things I think would be nice to have around!
I've only used one of these once, but I really liked it! Very quick for chopping parsley, or anything, and so zen. Or maybe tao? I like this model, from the Nigella Lawson line, but it's proving pretty hard to track down. But of course there are plenty on the internet, just google mezzaluna or ulu knife.
These tiny rubber-dipped wooden bowls are adorable! And you can put anything in them. Spices, dips, small snacks... Anything! I like this marbleized set of four, but she offers them in lots of colorways and combinations. Starting at $8, Wind & Willow.
Speaking of adorable, how sweet is this little hedgehog potguard! Also available in moose or owl. $7
I checked this out from the library some months ago and I really loved it. It includes plenty of tasty and not-so-tricky recipes for things like salty chocolate sablée, Rose gelée, and how to make your very own sea salt. Equally appealing is the inspiration: author Caitlin Freeman is head pastry chef a the Blue Bottle Cafe at the top of the San Francisco MoMA, and all of her desserts are modeled on works of modern art featured at the museum. I loved the Kudless smores, and of course, the Thiebaud cakes! This book is for anyone who appreciates sweets, art criticism, and the challenge of negotiating two distinct media in order to create a cohesive work of art. Starting at $13.87
To serve up their resulting creations, why not this adorable glass pie plate? Something they almost certainly don't already own. $35.90.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: dishtowels are a good gift! Considering their visible and quotidian presence in one's life, it only makes sense to get the most beautiful ones you can find. I like the selections at Huset, Zara Home, and, if you're lucky enough to live in the UK, of course Liberty London.
Plants are nice to have around, especially if you can use them in your recipes! A rosemary tree is festive and seasonal, and will make any kitchen smell amazing. Aloe plants are nice too, and easy to care for! $49.99.
Do they have a butter bell? An olive jar? A honey pot? Probably not, but how sweet and wonderful! Or what about mustard jar--just the thing to hold a batch of this delicious tart cherry mustard I made for thanksgiving that I just wanted to tell you guys about because its real easy to make and so tasty! Le Creuset accessories, around $30 each on Amazon.
How handy is this cookbook/tablet stand? I especially like the splash guard, it would make me feel a lot better about using the ipad in the kitchen. $24.99