Hal-Ho Hal-Ho:Filipino Flavored Gifts
The image of a heaping cold Halo-Halo may not conjure up visions of a traditional holiday treat, but it will. Let me explain. For the sake of being super creative and worldly , how about adding a Filipino twist to your gift giving this year? Take a gander at the following flipped up ideas. Extra treat: you can do all your shopping online!
1. Let’s take that halo-halo idea and go with it. Halo-halo is the popular Filipino dessert made of shaved ice, condensed milk, and toppings including fruits, sweet beans, ube ice cream, etc. I’m lucky living in Southern California because of all the Filipino stores and restaurants around, but we all have family and friends where there’s not a single Filipino (nor Asian) store nearby. Thoughts of halo-halo are just dancing in their head…but never in their bellies. Sigh. So, GIFT IDEA #1: A care package with all the makings of halo-halo (link leads to an online Pilipino store), search the recipe (Google’s your buddy), buy all the non-perishable ingredients, box it with a print out of the recipe and any other helpful hints, place a big bow on that sucker and send. Tita Baby in BuFu, Nebraska will be reminded of you when slurping a colorful, chilly halo-halo in the Spring.
2. Maybe shaved ice is not your thing but you’re liking the idea of giving something sweet to your peeps. Why not support a Filipino-owned business and share a treat that’s straight out of your childhood. Who doesn’t love cotton candy??? No one! Okay, maybe diabetics, but that’s what Christmas sweaters are for. Tasty Clouds, based in So. Cali. and Pinay-owned (big ups to Nina Rodecker), offers gourmet cotton candy in 20+ flavors, including Philippine mango (yum) and my favorite, banana cadabra. They also currently have holiday flavors available (candy cane, cinnamon apple). Check them out: www.tastyclouds.com
3. Because life is like a box of chocolate (thanks, Forrest), we should take heed and hug the idea of giving chocolates for the holidays. Check out another Pinay-owned business based here in the U.S. Chocolatier Tonet Tibay’s Marti chocolatt sells beautiful and delicious boxed goodies. With chocolate flavors like buko pandan (coconut) and mango caramel, you can’t go wrong. Warning: your recipients might have to run, (insert names here), run on the threadmill, after they eat too much of these.
4. This was just too cute to pass up and since everyone and their mamas and papas use iPhones, this phone cover would make the most adorable stocking-stuffer. There’s also one available with fried lumpias, but this piggy one was really adorable. Gotta’ represent the lechon. You can buy it here.