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Gift for Culinary Student?

Not sure if I'm posting this on the right board, but my best friend recently started a culinary program and is finally pursuing his dreams after years in the high tech business. His birthday is coming up, and I wanted to get him a gift that's around $50.

I've given him lots of wines in the past and also given him a bacon of the month subscription, and I'll be taking him to dinner, too. Any ideas on culinary tools or food essentials that I can get him? Thanks!

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  1. I'd suggest a high quality tourne (bird's beak) knife and a microplane.

    http://www.jbprince.com/CB7B80E2EC9B4...

    http://www.jbprince.com/wusthof-germa...

    or a subscription to "Art Culinaire"

    http://www.getartc.com/

    1 Reply
    1. re: almansa

      I second the knives. Nothing makes me happier than good knives.

      Conversely, nothing pains me more than cooking in a kitchen with lousy knives.

    2. We sometimes donate back issues of various food/cooking magazines to the local culinary school and the students are SO grateful and enthusiastic. For $50 you could get multiple years or multiple magazines.

      1. "Herings Dictionary of Classical and Modern Cookery", unbeleivable and indispensible reference book for anyone serious about professional cooking.

        ISBN 3-8057-0244-2

        1. A really good bottle of balsamic vinegar; a 5 lb. hunk of Callebaut chocolate; a subscription to an organic food box for a few months; a lb. or so of vanilla beans - basically some lavish ingredient that he might not buy for himself. I wouldn't get any "tools" because I suspect he probably already has what he likes to use OR knows exactly what he wants when he's ready to buy it.

          1. All Clad 10 inch sautee pan. It will cost a little more than $50 but it is worth it. You can never have too many pans.