A Cornucopia of Ideas for All Those Last-Minute Gift-Giving Needs : Holidays: From sausage to sushi, exotic foods make gifts of good taste.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

You've decided to give exotic food gifts this year, but what kind, and where do you find the ingredients? Here are some last minute food gift-giving ideas.

SAUSAGES--Wursts and sausages (whole, halves, large quarters), might include Finnish/Danish summer sausage/Italian capocolla or homemade hot Italian sausage, German sausages, French or New Orleans andouille or fresh Russian veal sausages. Or stick to one kind and round out a basket with accompanying crackers, a beautifully wrapped cutting knife and board.

Source: Sausages are available at any gourmet food shop. Russian sausages, Ron's Grocery Co., Hollywood; Dutch, Jaynel Dutch Imports, Los Angeles; German, European Deluxe Sausage Co., Beverly Hills, and Weihnachtsmarkt, Woodland Hills; Spanish sausages, La Spanola, Lomita.

DIPPED FRUIT--Bottoms of large, plump dried figs, apricots, peaches and pears are dipped in fine melted Belgian chocolate.

Source: Homemade or purchase at most any fine candy store.

CHEESE--A dome-covered cheese dish with knife. Inside place a hunk of English Stilton. Supplement the gift with a bottle of good Port wine to go with the cheese.

Source: Any gourmet cheese shop or supermarket. Cheese Shop, Beverly Hills.

MUSTARDS--A collection of homemade mustards, including Champagne mustard, Chinese hot mustard. Use beautiful jars or jugs (antique or new) and arrange them on a tray or wrap them in colorful paper and ribbon to present in a decorative shopping bag.

Source: Homemade; use basic cookbook or other source for recipe or any gourmet food shop or supermarket.

JELLIES- Wine jelly or aspic presented in a beautiful or antique mold. Requires quick delivery with instructions to refrigerate at once.

Source: Homemade; use basic cookbook or other source for recipe or any gourmet food shop or supermarket.

BREADS--A group of freshly baked international type breads, such as Pumpernickel or other black bread, Italian Tuscan bread, Russian rye, or Dutch black bread.

Source: Italian bread, Il Fornaio, Los Angeles; Dutch, Jaynel, Los Angeles; Russian, Ron's Grocery Co., Hollywood, or European Gastronome, Hollywood.

CROQUEMBOUCHE--A large or small caramelized cream puff pyramid to give as an edible centerpiece ready to crack into for a holiday party.

Source: Paris Bakery, West Los Angeles; Federico's.

PERSIMMONS--A basketful of gorgeous, ripe persimmons decorated with lemon leaves makes a pretty host gift.

Source: Los Angeles Produce Market, or supermarkets.

RED AND GREEN--A basketful of Fuerte avocados and hot house tomatoes decorated with lemon leaves.

Source: Supermarkets.

GAME BIRDS--A brace of ducks or flock of game birds, plucked and ready to cook with a recipe card added. A brand new enamel roasting pan can double as the container, decked with boughs of holly.

Source: Irvine Ranch Market; Specialty Foods International, Santa Monica; or other gourmet poultry stores.

COFFEES--Several bagfuls of luxury coffees such as Blue Mountain, international coffees and/or blends for coffee aficionados. Add a filter coffee pot or mugs.

Source: Coffee shops or any gourmet food store; Yaohan market, Little Tokyo, for Blue Mountain.

CHINESE TEAS--There is nothing like a beautiful tea caddy filled with exotic Chinese teas from a Chinese tea house for aficionados. Add a miniature antique teapot for individual servings.

Source: Ten Ren Tea, Chinatown.

THAI TEA--Thai tea and coffee. Add a set of handsome tall glasses or a can of sweetened condensed milk, plus a recipe.

For Thai Tea: Steep one teaspoon Thai tea in hot water. Fill glass with ice cubes and add tea and sweetened condensed or evaporated milk to taste. Stir until frothy.

Source: Any general Oriental (Chinese/Vietnamese/Thai) grocery stores.

SUSHI--A gorgeously decorated tray of sushi from a favorite sushi restaurant or shop or brought in a bento box.

Source: Katsu restaurant, Silver Lake; Yaohan market, Little Tokyo.

TEA CAKES--Japanese tea cakes packed in a Japanese lacquer tray.

Source: Mikawaya, Little Tokyo; Yaohan, Little Tokyo.

TIGER PRAWNS--A basketful of air-flown tiger prawns from Indonesia would make any shrimp lover happy.

Source: Specialty Foods International, Santa Monica; Irvine Ranch Market; Gelson's; Bristol Farms.

ONIONS--A package of Maui onions from Hawaii for making onion rings. Add a recipe for battered onion rings and a skillet for people on your list who love fried onion rings.

Source: Irvine Ranch Market; Gelson's, Supermarkets.

CURRY--Pack makings for Indian or British curry and condiments in a large copper or other saucepan.

Source: Bezjian's Middle Eastern market, Hollywood; C & K Imports, Hollywood.

ARBORIO--Anyone who loves risotto will love to get a bagful of fine arborio rice from the Po region of Italy. Add a saucepan, wooden stirring spoon, a few cans of good quality broth and a recipe.

Source: Sorrento Market, Culver City; Bay Cities Importing Co., Santa Monica; Domingo's Encino.

TAMALES--Homemade tamales packed in a decorated basket lined with an oversized linen napkin.

Source: Lolita's, East Los Angeles.

PROSCIUTTO--Tie a big, beautiful bow on a big beautiful leg of prosciutto from Parma available for the first time in decades.

Source: Sorrento Market, Culver City; Bay Cities Importing Co., Santa Monica; Italian grocery stores.

PASTA--An oversized basket of fresh pastas of all kinds with a few recipes for sauces to go with them.

Source: Most Italian grocery stores and supermarkets; Guido's Pasta, Burbank; Pasta Shop, Los Feliz.

BARBECUE BEEF--A big rack of beef or pork ribs tied with a pretty bow. For do-it-yourself cooks, tie a ribbon around several pounds of raw pork rib racks wrapped in butcher's paper and add a few cans or jars of Korean bul kogi sauce or other barbecue sauce.

Source: Any favorite rib place; for raw ribs, any fine meat market; for Korean barbecue sauces, Hankook Market, Los Angeles, or other Korean food stores.

CHILES--Give potted chile plants for chile aficionados. Lacking live plants, try a pound each of assorted dried or fresh chiles including the harbanero, the hottest chile in the world.

Source: Boutique florists for plants; any Mexican food market for dried or fresh chiles.

NOODLES--Anyone who loves Japanese or Chinese noodles would thank you for a care package of assorted fresh and dried Oriental noodles. Add a noodle bowl or two plus chop sticks to the package.

Source: Any Oriental food market. For bowls, Rafu Bussan or Bunka-do, both in Little Tokyo. LOX--Give a whole fillet of cured Irish or Norwegian salmon (gravad lax) on a cutting board with a straight salmon knife.

Source: Any Jewish deli; For cutting board and knife, any housewares store.

SMITHFIELD HAM--What a luxurious gift, a leg of cured Kentucky ham would be. Hook a bag of biscuits or crackers to the brightly tied leg.

Source: Any fine meat market; Farmer's market.

CHOCOLATE--Oversized letter of the alphabet in solid chocolate packed in a box decorated like a child's letter block.

Source: Jaynel Dutch Store, Los Angeles; Ann's Dutch Store, Studio City.

CAVIAR--A tin of Black Sea caviar in several fine grades, tied and ready to splurge on a favorite person.

Source: Ron's Grocery Co., Hollywood; Caviarteria West, Beverly Hills; Avak Trading Co., Encino; Caviar and Fine Foods, Los Angeles.

CHEESE LOG--Make your own oversize cheese log and place it on a cheese board to give.

Source: For homemade cheese log: Combine 1 pound sharp Cheddar cheese and 1 pound blue cheese, add 2 tablespoons Sherry, 3/4 teaspoon curry powder and 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt. Form into roll and roll in chopped pecans, macadamia nuts or filberts.

Correct Name for Deli Los Angeles Times Thursday December 21, 1989 Home Edition Food Part H Page 38 Column 4 Food Desk 2 inches; 46 words Type of Material: Correction Weihnachtsmarkt, meaning "Christmas market" in German, was erroneously substituted for the name of the deli where German cold cuts are sold in an article on last-minute gifts in the Dec. 14 Food Section. The name of the deli is German Cold Cuts International, 6019 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Woodland Hills; (818) 883-8051.
Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World
66°