Chef gifts sure to stir a bit of joy


Need a gift for the chef in the family this year? Tired of the traditional "Kiss the Cook" apron or stainless-steel spatula? After all the seasonal baking, dinner-party preparation and planning of family gatherings, shower your chef with the pampering he or she deserves.

Here are a dozen gift ideas for the frugal as well as the free-spending.

$100 and up

DeLonghi Rotofryer Cool-Touch Deep Fryer. Forget KFC. Use this portable deep fryer right at home. It's easy to use and comes with an internal rotating basket that absorbs 50 percent less fat from the hot oil than conventional fryers. ($140 -

Under $25

Le Creuset Silicone Whisk: A traditional kitchen tool with a contemporary twist. The silicone material won't scratch metal surfaces. The whisk is dishwasher- safe and also can withstand temperatures of up to 800 degrees. ($20 -,


Kyocera Ceramic Chef's Knife. Better than steel with ultra-sharp appeal. This 5 1/2 -inch knife can go without sharpening for months on end. It's lightweight, easy to clean and resistant to rust and stains. ($88 -


Solis Battery Mills. Leave your elbow grease in the jar. Quickly grind salt or pepper using this automatic, battery-powered mill. It features a noncorrosive, ceramic, fully adjustable mechanism that safely crushes spices, forming fine to coarse grinds. Comes in a stainless-steel or soft-touch black finish. ($35-$50 -

Under $25

KitchenArt Pro Adjust-A-Cup. You know your kitchen drawer that's filled with more measuring devices than could ever be necessary? This single tool replaces seven traditional measuring cups. It can be cleaned in the dishwasher and works great for liquid, dry and especially sticky ingredients. ($11 - and Target)

"The Food Substitutions Bible" by David Joachim (Robert Rose, publisher). No more last-minute, inconvenient supermarket runs required. Use what you already have. This book offers more than 5,000 substitutions for ingredients, equipment and techniques. ($20 -


Alligator Vegetable Dicer. Put that knife away! Chop your veggies like the pros and keep your fingers safe in the process. Use this reptilian-inspired kitchen device to produce tiny 1/4 -inch-square-dice cuts in two quick motions. ($30 - Williams-Sonoma stores and

Fork & Knife Earings. Show off your tasty sense of fashion with this sterling-silver fork and knife dangling earring set.

($48 -


Meditalia Pestos and Tapenades. Support world peace with these healthy, Mediterranean-style spreads. They're produced by a company whose objective is to encourage joint business ventures among different cultures in conflict regions of the world.

($96 for 24 jars, 6.35 ounces each -

Salter 1400 Nutritional Scale. A handy helper for the health-conscious. This scale weighs food and also calculates its nutritional value. Accurately weigh portion sizes while keeping track of your daily caloric intake. ($70 -

$100 plus

Combination Wine & Champagne Saver. Wait, before you chuck that half-full wine bottle left over from dinner. Here's a vacuum/pressure sealer that preserves the taste, color and aroma of wine and champagne up to 14 days longer than traditional corks. ($120 -

Convection Bread Maker. Make store-bought breads obsolete with this multifunctional kitchen appliance. This machine automatically adjusts the speed, timing and circulating air to cook a loaf that's bakery-fresh. The best characteristic of this tool is its low-carb and gluten-free preset menu options. ($100 -,,

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