Hand Me that Doo-Jigger
As a synonym for “thingamajig” and “what’s-its-face,” “jigger” is a great word with lots of applications. This Jigger, however, is a very particular whatchamacallit. The Jigger ($20 at Design Warehouse, 101 W. Marcy St., 988-1555) provides all those awkward measurements that most kitchen whizzes don’t have time to calculate (1.25 ounces, 1.5 ounces, 0.50 ounce and so forth). Next time your grandma complains about having no idea how much three-quarters of an ounce is, pass her this whatsiecallit and call it a day.
You Salty Dog
The body needs iodine, sure, but put away the Morton’s and find a better way to get it. Natural salt is the way to go, and some of the best stuff is from the Himalayas. This pure Himalayan salt ($8.95) is hammer-crushed and full of minerals, and is best enjoyed when ground in a ceramic salt mill ($17.95). Some say the salt even has vibrational properties that promote a balanced life, and who can argue with that? The saline-crazed epicurean in your life will appreciate this gift from Emerald Earth (328-K S. Guadalupe St.,
The Best in a Jar
It’s become Santa Fe tradition that The Shed wins Best Red Chile in SFR’s Best of Santa Fe competition every summer. Bring the fire home in a 15-ounce jar of red chile sauce ($9.95) from the kitchen of the perpetual fave. Another great reason to get this gift (available at the Santa Fe School of Cooking, 116 W. San Francisco St., 983-4511) for people you know is so that they can cook for you as thanks.
Everyone likes chai. It’s a scientific fact. We looked it up. Therefore, you’re bound to delight everyone on your list with Tsundue’s Chai Mix ($7.95) from the Ark Bookstore (133 Romero St., 988-3709), which obviously carries far more than books. Tsundue, a native Tibetan who now lives in Santa Fe, really knows what she’s doing and has crafted a perfectly delicious tea. A perfect companion is a vibrant teapot ($20.99-$24.99).
Instant Spice Cabinet
A store such as Ziggy’s International Market (1005 S. St. Francis Drive, Ste. 107, 986-5054) can easily overwhelm the beginning ethnic food cook. There’s just so much to see! Thankfully, this helpful packet of Tunisian spices ($5.99) contains all the basics in perfect starter amounts for that friend whose spice cabinet is exploding with too much cinnamon and not enough coriander.
You know someone is serious about food when you walk into the kitchen and spy a billion different kinds of olive oil. Augment the collection of your favorite foodie or start a wannabe on the right track with Badia a Coltibuono olive oil ($49.95) from Kaune’s Neighborhood Market (511 Old Santa Fe Trail, 982-2629).
It’s Chile in Here
From sweet preserves to fiery spices, The Chile Shop (109 E. Water St., 983-6080) has it all when it comes to those little peppers we so worship around here. Bring your whole guest list into the shop and the owners can either create chile gift baskets ($28-$129) to your specifications, or just get creative and make baskets they think are awesome. Plus, they ship their baskets just about anywhere, so you don’t even have to worry about buying a stamp.
Pulling into Port
Sweet, lush, complex and super-classy…No, we’re not talking about your girlfriend. Port wine (or, to be fancy, vinho do porto) is defined by W & J Graham’s, a fine company that has been making this alchemistic concoction for over 200 years. Graham’s 100 Years of Port set is not cheap ($492.99) but, when you think about it, that comes out to less than $5 per year. The four bottles come nestled in an attractive leather case, so you can save on gift wrap. Get yours (plus just about any other classy alcoholic beverage you could ever want) at Susan’s Fine Wine and Spirits (1005 S. St. Francis Drive, 984-1582).
Paella, that delicious, savory, versatile Spanish stew, is a European food that is quickly becoming a favorite in all eating circles in the US of A. For the kitchen whiz who has never tried paella for lack of tools, The Spanish Table (109 N. Guadalupe St., 986-0243) has the solution. The paella starter kit ($60) contains almost everything needed (even the pan!) to make a hearty meal for eight people—not to mention a cookbook to continue the deliciousness long past the holidays.
Slow It Down
“A slow-cooker! How thoughtful…Honey, go put this in the kitchen, next to all the other appliances we don’t use.” Don’t let this happen to you this holiday season. An All-Clad slow-cooker ($179.99) is a great gift, yeah—if your giftee has any clue what they should do with it. Problem solved! Las Cosas Kitchen Shoppe (in DeVargas Center, Guadalupe Street and Paseo de Peralta, 988-3394) can provide not only the appliance, but also stocks 101 Things to Do with a Slow-Cooker ($9.99), so there’s no excuse for your giftee to let that shiny machine gather dust.