okay perfect #14: last minute gifts that last all year & can be gifted anytime
(PLUS! For paid subscribers: My Favorite Holiday Kumquat & Pomegranate Relish Recipe)
As we round out the end of the year, and we’re dangerously close to the deadlines for holiday gifting, I figured it was a good time to dive into my favorite things you can gift now or all year long for yourself or someone you love.
Because who doesn’t love the idea of gifting someone (yourself or otherwise) with a gift that can be used all year long? And will show up on doorsteps time and again to remind yourself or those you love, ‘Hey, this gift lasts awhile’. This is one of the reasons why I love subscriptions, as they just magically show up on your doorstep. While the below aren’t all subscriptions, they are companies we use ourselves for the Courageous Cooking School.
So! Here’s my roundup of last minute gifts to give to anyone you love, or to yourself because you deserve it after the past two years. (This is a personal pep talk to myself)
A Recipe-Free Cooking School Membership for a WHOLE YEAR with me and the Courageous Cooking Crew (and a spice club membership)!
Our online school has been closed for enrollment for a minute, as we’re working on expanding it to make it even better. And when it does re-open? It will be $100 a month.
BUT! Until January 1st, we’re running a little special where you can get a full 12 months in the Courageous Cooking School Online program AND a single origin spice club membership (It’s a secret which one….Shhhhhh….) AND your pick of a La Pitchoune apron from our website AND a super special top secret discount to our in-person school.
(The FOUR together is a $2000 value)
The cost for all four? $1000.
SO! If you’re hoping to join us in-person in the future, this is a GREAT way to make a small deposit…now.
(Your friend/you will automatically be enrolled into the online school on January 2nd. You’ll get your first spice club in by February. And the apron will ship the week of January 2nd.
AND we will email you a printable gift card to gift that you can gift to your friend/loved one exactly what you’re gifting them!
We’re offering these memberships (for you, your friends, your colleagues, whatever) for a hot minute…Until our new platform opens and we’re back to month to month memberships. (Where the school will be $100 a month again without all the bonuses!)
I’m a single origin spice fan, almost to a fault. And all of these companies are marvellous and very different in their approaches. They all have their benefits, and I adore them all. We use mostly Burlap & Barrel at the Courageous Cooking School, simply because their wholesale and diversity of choice work best for us. BUT we also use a lot of Diaspora Co. and I’m a member (x3) of Curio Spice’s club too.
Suffice to say….We use a lot of spices in my household.
Curio Spice Co’s Secret Society Spice Club….Shhhhhh….It’s a secret
Since it’s a secret society I won’t say much. BUT it’s available on their website, and you can track it down. It’s a VERY good deal. And a really fun offer. And it’s one of my favorites I’m a member of.
Burlap & Barrel’s Quarterly Spice Club:
This is something we gift to each of our in-person cooking school students, AND it’s a DELIGHT! (Yes, I am also a member. #spiceproblem, I feel like I am a member of the house of Atreides and have a spice issue.)
The boxes ship quarterly, include three spices and a fun spice collaboration product with someone else. The Cardamom Extract from this past months was FIRE. And I am still waxing poetic about it to anyone who will let me.
If you don’t want to commit to a year long membership, the weeknight three pack is a favorite around here. The Cured Sumac and the Black Urfa Chilli are literally favorites of everyone who comes to the cooking school.
Diaspora’s A Year of the Good Pepper:
Magical pepper delivered straight to your door? Four times a year? Yes please! This is my favorite pepper we use at the Courageous Cooking School. It’s the ONLY black pepper we keep on it’s own, in it’s own container. Because we love it so much. The rest of our black peppercorns we blend, but this one? *mwah* Only love and floral and spice and perfection.
You can subscribe for a year, or buy a one-off.
Condiments Worth Their Weight in Salt:
Adopt a Truffle or Olive Tree from Les Pastras
A Tart Vinegar Gift Certificate (and try to get a subscription the next time they open)
When I say that Tart Vinegar changes how I cook, I cannot emphasise enough how much I am not exaggerating. I am obsessed with acid, and utilising acid in my cooking is what I think makes my flavor profile the most interesting. So anytime I can find a new way to place with acid, and find a new profile within the acidic elements of my cooking I am quite enamoured.
Chris (the proprietor of Tart Vinegar) also sometimes has membership open to a Vinegar Club. I am a member. And my first box blew me out of the water.
Here’s my current vinegar collection from Tart:
Jealous? Well, you can get a friend a gift certificate to buy tart vinegar when things come back in stock. And you could even get yourself one to remind yourself that HOLY GUACAMOLE DO YOU EVER NEED these in your collection.
Best Place to Source a Fun Box of Ingredients as a One-Off Gift or an On-Going Subscription
Beans from Rancho Gordo:
When I say I am in love with Rancho Gordo’s products, I am not exaggerating. My favorite hobby when I come back to the USA is to buy a one pound bag of EVERY SINGLE OBJECT they have in stock at that point in time. Every. Single. One. I then cook feverishly and at the end of my one to two month trip, I gift what remains to those that I love.
Now, they also have a subscription. THE Bean Club. But the wait list is an enigma. I’ve been offered a spot to their coveted bean club ONCE and I missed the enrollment opportunity and it sold out. So, what I am say is…Go buy beans for your friends, and then enroll yourself onto the waitlist for their bean club.
(Admittedly my Lock Screen on my iPhone is BEANS. Sooo…I’m really into pretty beans. If you or your friends are too, you’ll love them)
Produce Subscriptions and One-Off Boxes from Girl n Dug
I miss very little about the United States. I will be honest. BUT I do miss Girl n Dug. Every. Day. And while produce is beautiful in France, this produce is over the moon perfection. Each box is a bit pricy, but honestly? For the quality, it is worth all few thousand pennies. Promise.
When we host US cooking school experiences, we get two boxes for every week. Even if we’re in the lands of perfect produce (which we often are). I just can’t resist the beauty of it all, and it’s a must have when I’m playing with fun new dishes. Even if I can’t create them again, I can find something worth coveting and writing down for later. (If ever I open say…A restaurant in the US. Which if you missed the news…We ARE opening a restaurant in France in 2023. ;) )
FOR YOU! Or an eventual loved one. (Their gift subscription is down, but you could just sign up for a normal one…And make the mailing address a friends…)
Hardcover Cook’s Cookbook Club:
I collect cookbooks. Sure, we’re a recipe-free school but we’re not MONSTERS! Cookbooks are stunning. They are amazing ways to learn new cuisine, and recipes are incredibly useful. ESPECIALLY when they come WITH THINGS TO HELP YOU MAKE THEM! There are CHOICES for what theme you’re interested in, and if I weren't in Europe I would be IN EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE CLUBS.
For each category and quarterly…This amazing club sends you…
Things you need to make the cookbook sing in your own kitchen
Now that is all they wrote for the free side of this week’s instalment. If you’re a paid subscriber (or want to become one) below is my recipe for the BEST holiday treat….And a sneak peak from my cookbook (WHICH MIGHT FINALLY HAVE A NAME!)
Kumquat and Pomegranate Relish.
Why might you ask? Because…It’s a far superior replacement to cranberry sauce.
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