Want to stand out for your exquisite taste this holiday season? Show up at every party with one of these outrageously delicious hostess gifts—from handmade marshmallows to decadent macaroons and red-velvet pancake mix (oh, yeah). And the best part is, you won't break the bank: They're all priced around $30-$50.
Malvi Marshmallow Sandwiches
Malvi, short for malvavisco (the Spanish word for marshmallow), are heavenly homemade cubes of fluff that are infused with real ingredients—like dried hibiscus, whole vanilla beans and fair trade cocoa—then sandwiched between homemade cookies. Your host or hostess will love the Malvi Original Sampler of 20 marshmallows: It comes with four each of five flavors, including raspberry-hibiscus, spiked espresso, vanilla salted caramel, 80% chocolate and mint-chocolate ($30).
A few Passovers ago, Danny Cohen was lamenting that his mother never made macaroons, those gloriously sweet, chewy coconut treats. That’s when she suggested that if he really wanted them, he should make them himself. They turned out to be so awesome that relatives and friends cornered him, demanding more—and now he’s got his own artisanal macaroon mini-empire. Give a dozen in a sampler pack that includes salted caramel, chocolate almond, plain, chocolate dipped, chocolate, double chocolate macaroons, chocolate caramel, double chocolate almond and four seasonal flavors ($39.99).
One Girl Cookies
Founded by husband and wife David Crofton and Dawn Casale 10 years ago, One Girl Cookies is one of Brooklyn’s most beloved bakeries, serving buttery jewel-sized cookies, elegantly frosted cupcakes and legendary cream-filled whoopee pies. For the holidays, they've created a sampler of cookies perfect for gifts, including the Dorothy (a triple-chocolate drop tossed with Jacobsen's sea salt), the Ingrid (spiced gingerbread sandwich with lemon cream filling), and the Margarita (orange, almond and olive oil biscuit), all boxed in beautiful vintage wrapping ($46).
Zingerman’s Italian Wild Cherries
Dark, plump and sweet, these beauties are imported from Piedmont, Italy, where they're prepared in small batches and packed with syrup in a resealable glass jar. The cherries are pitted and perfect for topping ice cream, yogurt or toast, for pairing with a nice ripe cheese, or for dropping into an Old Fashioned. While they'll last indefinitely if stored in the sealed jar, we doubt they’ll make it through the weekend ($49).
Hatchery’s Fireside Package
This artisanal food site sends members an individually-curated sampling from more than 600 all-natural ingredients each month. For the holidays they’ve put together The Fireside Package, a gift set that includes the kinds of treats people go crazy over but rarely buy for themselves. We're talking red-velvet pancake mix, gingersnap honey, truffle mustard, and more ($50). Your hosts will never want to leave the house.
Mouth’s Indie Hot Chocolate Kit
Mouth, the indie online retailer specializing in wonderful, locally sourced foods and drinks, has assembled an essential Hot Chocolate Kit that includes a trio of hot chocolate pops on a stick (made with peanut butter, peppermint and salted caramel), a tin of mini-mallows, dark hot chocolate, and a peppermint stick—key for getting through those blustery winter nights ($53).
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