By Genoa Barrow | OBSERVER Senior Staff Writer

The kitchen is a communal space. The cooking and conversations that go on in the kitchen help sustain families and communities. With Christmas fast approaching, I put together a short list of things that would make great gifts for the kitchen. I typed them out with the words of Eartha Kitt’s classic, “Santa Baby” dancing in my head.


The Multo food processor by CookingPal is more than 10 devices in one. (Andrew Cebulka Photography).

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways the CookingPal Multo can make food preparation a joy. The Multo has multiple uses. This thing does everything from knead bread and blend drinks to steam vegetables and cook meat. The “smart food processor” offers “connected cooking,” and comes with its own computer to help you use it. It takes you through all the steps to creating a great dish, whether you’re cooking your family’s treasured gumbo recipe or trying something new. It had me at the promise of cleaning itself. The Multo costs a whopping $899, so if you’re especially good, or naughty—wink, wink—you might find one of these under the Christmas tree this year. It’s available at and

Curry With The Pot 

Some people know her as Golden State Warriors’ star Stephen Curry’s wife, but Ayesha Curry is scoring points and building an empire all her own. The cooking show host and restaurateur has her own line of cookware and bakeware that is available at stores like Macy’s, Kohl’s, and Bed, Bath & Beyond. The Ayesha Curry Home Collection includes pots, pans and cutlery. There’s even a Bacon Grease Can that is a definite step up from a used Crisco can. Any one, or more, of the goodies in her collection would make awesome gifts. The Ayesha Curry Home Collection is manufactured by Meyer, a company that also creates products for Rachel Ray, Cake Boss Buddy Valastro and Paula Deen. 

If you want to buy yourself a copy of Tabitha Brown’s book, that’s your business. (Andrew Cebulka Photography).
Mind Your ‘Business’

Social media sensation and vegan foodie Tabitha Brown kept us smiling during the pandemic with her naturally-positive vibe and endearing catchphrases like “That’s Your Business,” and “Like So Like That.” Brown, who has millions of followers on Instagram and TikTok, now has her own Caribbean-inspired Sunshine Seasoning through veteran spice maker McCormick. While this all-purpose seasoning would be a great little stocking stuffer, it jumped off the shelves when it was introduced earlier this year and is now perpetually out of stock. There is now a “black market” for the spice blend, with resellers on Ebay asking for as much as $120 for a two-pack. Not in your Christmas budget? Give a copy of Tabitha Brown’s book, “Feeding The Soul: Because It’s My Business: Finding Our Way To Joy, Love and Freedom,” instead.

A Cut Above
Rule the kitchen with a custom blade from South Carolina-based artisan Quintin Middleton of  Middleton Made Knives. (Andrew Cebulka Photography).

Stay sharp in all your cooking and food preparation with some custom steel from Middleton Made Knives. The beautiful blades are created by Quintin Middleton in Saint Stephen, a small, rural and predominantly Black town in South Carolina. Middleton can customize a knife to meet your needs, from type of cooking knife to size and handle design. These won’t stay in the drawer, you’ll want to show them off. Visit for information on how to purchase.

Guard Your ‘Grill’

Former boxing champion George Foreman continues to knock out the competition with his home grills. I have been gifted two of them, most recently the 5-Serving Removable Plate Grill and Panini Press that is reviewed online as “the easiest to clean.” Foreman’s latest versions include his Smokeless Grill Series that offer “all the sizzle without the smoke.” George Foreman has cooking gadgets for indoors and outdoors. Grills are sold everywhere from Target to Home Depot and HSN (Home Shopping Network) and they wrap up nicely.

Knock Out

Laila Ali, boxing champ and daughter of the iconic Muhammad Ali, entered the food realm as part of her Laila Ali Lifestyle brand.  She released the cookbook, “Food For Life: Delicious & Healthy Comfort Food From My Table To Yours” in 2018 and has an e-book of holiday recipes that compliments her line of spice blends. Spices include a Goddess Garlic seasoning and a G.O.A.T. blend in honor of her father.  Her cookbooks seek to offer healthy twists on our favorite foods. Be a champ and score the health-conscious person on your list  a special gift set. Offerings include a Food For Life Gift Set that includes a trio of spice blends, a signed copy of the cookbook and an autographed photo of Laila Ali.

Booked And Busy

Actress and brand darling Tia Mowry also has a few books that would make great gifts. Mowry is best known for starring with her twin sister Tamera in the sitcom “Sister, Sister.” Her cookbooks include “Whole New You: How Real Food Transforms Your Life For A Healthier, More Gorgeous You” and “The Quick Fix Kitchen,” which shares the name of one of Youtube cooking shows.  Mowry also hosted a show, “Tia Mowry at Home” on the Cooking Channel. The multifaceted mom recently launched a cookware line, The Spice By Tia Mowry, which is available at Walmart. 

What’s on your holiday wish list?