Great Gifts From Sous Chef On Saturday Morning With James Martin

James Martin invited Sous Chef founder Nicola back for another episode of James Martin's Saturday Morning to talk about the best Christmas gifts for chefs and food lovers. Along with chef Paul Ainsworth, James and Nicola looked at loads of different ideas – including chef's gadgets, a fermenting crock, and a stove-top smoker... plus a few fun and quirky extras!

See the list below of everything that featured on the show. Or hop straight across to our Gifts section to browse them all. And you can watch the whole festive episode here with Johnny Vegas, Aled Jones and chef Paul Ainsworth. 

1. Great gadgets for cooks and chefs

Ravioli Rolling Pin

Shape perfectly uniform ravioli with this extremely simple and clever rolling pin. Modelled on the original tool used in Ligurian kitchens, the roller shapes rows of 10 filled pastas. Just finish by cutting the ravioli into shapes using a fluted pastry cutter for professional frilled edges.

Read our guide 'How to use a ravioli rolling pin' to get the best from your pin, and learn to make pumpkin and amaretti ravioli.

To turn this ravioli rolling pin into a complete gift, add a bag of organic 00 flour, the fluted pastry cutter, and a tapered rolling pin. You won't even need a pasta maker as you can roll out pasta dough yourself, and the classic Italian beechwood tapered rolling pin makes that even easier.

Browse our full collection of pasta making equipment for more clever tools and essential pasta ingredients.

Make your own ravioli with the ravioli pin

Pizza Peel, 30cm Square

Dust your pizza peel with a little semolina flour and stretch out your own pizza bases before topping and transferring to the oven. A pizza peel is also a great way to bring your homemade pizza to the table, laden with colourful toppings and melted cheese. 

Hold a pizza party, and give every guest a pizza base on a peel so they can add their own toppings, before taking it in turns to cook them in the oven.

And if you don't have a pizza oven, you can transform the barbecue by using a pizza stone, simply place it over the grill and you're away!

Springerle & Speculaas Biscuit Roller

Roll out traditional German anise-flavoured biscuits, with this beautifully carved pear wood rolling pin. The moulds are decorated with flowers, berries and squirrels.

Find the recipe for German Springerle here, which uses lemon zest and aniseeds – and explore the whole selection of springerle and speculaas moulds in the category page here.

Make speculaas biscuits and using the taditional German moulds

A salt plate is a really fun and fascinating way to cook. It reaches extreme temperatures (both hot and cold) and retains it's temperature for a long time. Fry eggs or bacon on the searing hot plate, and use to serve cooked scallops or fish. Or chill it right down and serve salted caramel ice cream and savoury sorbets.

De Buyer Kwik Mini Piston Funnel

For ultimate pastry precision, make sure you use a piston funnel. Pour in your runny cake batter or custard mix, then press the trigger to release a controlled stream of mix into your cake moulds, crème brûlée dishes, or even for pancake batter or blinis straight into a frying pan. There'll be no more dripping jugs! 

If you know you'll be working with larger volumes of batter take a look at the Professional piston funnel which features two nozzle sizes for even more precise measurement.

The funnel comes with a handy stand, so you can leave it upright on the worktop while you get on with other jobs.

SuperFast Thermapen ONE Digital Thermometer

The Thermapen is a vital tool in every chef's kit bag – with consistently rave reviews. It is incredibly fast, precise and reliable. Use the thermometer for meats, sugar caramel, jams and chocolate for perfectly cooked results.

A precise thermometer is an essential tool if you're learning how to melt chocolate correctly, or for cooking meat safely. Read our quick guide to meat temperatures to see how hot chicken, beef, lamb and pork should be before you serve.

Boleslawiec Fermenting & Sauerkraut Crock With Weights, 5 litre

Make your own sauerkraut in this crock pot, and enjoy your preserved veg all year round. The traditional crock design has a sunken rim, which is filled with water to form a tight seal, while the veg is weighed down with a stone weight to squeeze out moisture. Genius!

Preserving and fermenting have both been huge cooking trends in 2019. Take a look at our collection of preserving and fermenting products here, including the enormously popular vinegar making barrel.

ProQ Cold Smoke Generator

One of our most popular products, this one comes from American BBQ experts ProQ. This ProQ Cold Smoke Generator lets you smoke meat, fish, butter, garlic, nuts and cheese at home. All you need is a smoking chamber and you're away! Pair it with the ProQ Eco Smoker Chamber, and you're all set.

Earlier this year we revealed that smoking is one of the most popular techniques in Michelin-starred restaurants, take a look at the full collection of cold smoking equipment on our site and give the trend a go at home.

Cold smoke your own salmon, cheese and butter for Christmas

OXO Good Grips Hand-Held Mandoline Slicer

Essential for wafer thin potato dauphinoise, the OXO Good Grips Mandoline Slicer is one of the best on the market. Adjust the slice thickness, and use the easy-grip food holder to protect your fingers. 

Use the mandoline to finely slice half a cabbage and serve alongside BBQ ribs in a slaw, or carefully slice slithers of rainbow beetroot to dress a salad. The mandoline is dishwasher safe, so extremely easy to clean when you've finished cooking.

2. Great stocking fillers for food lovers

Mini Wooden Kitchen Utensil Set

The mini wooden kitchen utensil set is just the thing for little hands! With their very own set of kitchen utensils, it’s easier than ever to get the kids involved with cooking. It even includes a risotto paddle - specially designed for stirring extra creamy risottos - for budding Italian chefs.

If you're shopping for younger ones who haven't quite reached solids yet, you might like to meet Kendall the Kale baby teething toy – made with 100% natural rubber, Kendall has been tried, tested and loved by our very own Sous Chef baby.

Pink Geisha Bento Box, 640ml

Stack up lunch in this extremely cute geisha bento box. The top 'hat' doubles up as a bowl, perfect for instant miso soup. The middle section is tightly sealed for stews or dressed salads, while the bottom is idea for buns or rice.

Browse our full collection of bento boxes for some more traditional designs, as well as several different characters including purple and white geishas, a selection of samurais and a ninja warrior.

These sushi socks always raise a smile, and are just the thing for friends and family who love their sushi! Rolled to look exactly like salmon roe, these socks are a brilliant stocking filler. Wear them with pride in the kitchen while you make your own sushi! 

Choose from a selection of socks, made to resemble futomaki sushi rolls, shrimp-topped sushi, and salmon nigiri pictured below. And if you're shopping for a sock fan, you might also like these doughnut socks. Or even get the whole set and wear a different one every day of the week!

Sushi socks, great stocking fillers for foodies

For more gift ideas head to our collection of Christmas gift guides, or browse the full selection of gifts for chefs here


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

Latest Articles & Recipes

  • What is an Induction Plate? Everything You Need to Know

    What is an Induction Plate? Everything You Need to Know

  • What is a Cafetiere: A Comprehensive Guide

    What is a Cafetiere: A Comprehensive Guide

  • How to Cook with a Tagine

    How to Cook with a Tagine