11 Easter gifts offering more than just chocolate
Chocolate’s good and all, but so are cheese, babka and Colomba cake.
We thought we’d give you a bit of a break from the cocoa bean with our Easter gift guide offering more than just chocolate. Have a scroll through our top picks from around the web, from cheesy hot cross buns, to bottled cocktails, cheese and dosas…
Ease the lid off this pretty tin and you’re greeted by a conker-brown, plaited-top babka, smelling of sweetness and spice. Created by Sarit Packer of Middle Eastern restaurants Honey & Co, the enriched bread is moist and studded with marzipan, candied peel and dried fruit – a glorious treat of a bake to open the front door to. Limited Edition Easter babka, available from Honey and Co (£35).
For bringing a bit of Easter whimsy to your home, we’re loving this garland of eight leaping pastel bunnies. It’s made of padded felt with fetching pom pom tails, and you can re-use it every spring (storage bag included) or decorate a child’s room with it – the sturdy cord is three metres long. There’s a wooden mini-bunny version (£19.50) with the vital fluffy tails, too. Available from Meri Meri (£30).
A soft boiled (or ‘dippy’) egg is one of life’s simple pleasures. Inspired by 1970s design, the pleasing assortment of finishes on Dutch brand HK Living’s egg cup quartet brings personality to the breakfast table. Available from Mint House Home (£20).
The Colomba di Pasqua, or the “Easter Dove’ is Italy’s traditional Easter cake. It has much in common with the Christmastime panettone and pandoro, with the same fluffy texture, buttery richness, and time and care of preparation. This recipe is filled with indulgent pistachio cream, and topped with chocolate, then studded with top quality Italian pistachios. Available from Sous Chef, £27.99.
Dabbadrop was inspired by by co-founder Anshu’s family recipes from all over South Asia, and the team brings you plant-based dinners to your door, like this: their dosa kits. This South Indian fermented rice pancake can be an intimidating and lengthy process to reproduce, but not with the prepared batter and instructions provided here, which make it a doddle to prepare at home. Also included is a ladle to get the all-important dosa swirl, and their famous ginger jam and crunchy gunpowder topping make great accompaniments. Available from Dabbadrop (£22).
These divided Twitter, but M&S’ take on the savoury hot cross bun are loaded with Red Leicester and Cheddar, and they really impressed our tester. Toasted and slathered with butter and/or Marmite, they’re a treat of a snack, and crucially they aren’t lying when they call them extremely cheesy. Why not grab for the cheese-lover in your life and make a lunch of it by filling them with bacon or ham? Available from Ocado, £2.
We’re fans of London deli Melrose & Morgan for the high quality of its produce, and its compact Easter hamper is a wicker-packaged treat. It contains a simnel cake (one of the best we’ve tried), a mini trug of spiced biscuits in bunny and star shapes and a pot of sharp-sweet marmalade for your Easter weekend breakfasts – also wonderful spread thinly on the cake. Available from Melrose and Morgan, £65 including delivery.
Okay, we’re kind of cheating with this one. But it’s more about the date than the chocolate here. It’s hard to improve on the succulent caramel sweetness of a quality date – but that’s what The Datery does, enrobing them in chocolate spiked with hazelnut, coconut, pistachio and more. Its smart giftsets are popular for Ramadan, in which dates hold special significance, with a stunning mosaic-inspired chocolate Ultimate Experience platter (£49.95) for Eid Al-Fitr (2-3 May this year) available too. Available from The Datery, £22.95.
The Cheese Geek’s The Dean Box
Flavoured gin fans take note: distiller Sipsmith has produced a gin to pair with cheese exclusively for cheesegeek. Order The Dean Box and you’ll receive a damson cheese jar, generous 200g each of lincolnshire poacher, cropwell bishop stilton and creamy perl wen, and 20cl bottle of Sipsmith’s Cheeseboard Martinez. A punchy 29 per cent gin and sweet vermouth blend, it’s made with figs, grapes and orange, and has shades of port and sherry. Available from cheesegeek, £50.
Leave the chocolate to the kids this Easter and sip your way through World of Zing’s sweet treat-inspired cocktails instead. This quartet of 50ml serves includes a hot cross ‘bunhattan’, chocolate orange negroni, black forest sour and salted caramel espresso martini – something to suit every spirit drinker. We take our hat off to the sweet, subtle cinnamon take on the manhattan, a traditionally bitter drink. Available from World of Zing, £15.
A platter is a kitchen essential: for salads (way better for showing off ingredients than a bowl), or for cakes… This large, attractively-priced Pom Pom platter in palest grey stoneware – robust and dishwasher safe – is perfect for your Easter roast. Available from Truly Gifted (£38).
And if it’s just chocolate you want, we are happy to bring you our tried and tested Easter egg guide too.
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