With Easter upon us and with the inevitable jitters and headaches that all the formerly sugar-free Lent crowd will experience it seemed right to out together an Easter Shopping Guide. This is for all those people out there who suddenly realise they’re expected to turn up with something festively adorned with chicks, bunnies and ovoids.
The tricky part is what to get. So I’ve thought of all the various main people in my life who I *could* buy for (sorry guys, I’m not getting you anything for Easter this year…) to out together a list of Essential Easter Gifts.
For the person who doesn’t like chocolate
Now I can take or leave chocolate if it’s hanging about the house but that doesn’t mean I don’t like it. I do. Everyone does. Still, there are some strange beings out there that say they don’t. They’re lying. They must be. Anyway, this gift is for them.
For any of you’ve not sampled the delights of Kamps German Bakery, your life is about to change. Get over there now and order one of their pizza-style, bacon and cheese laden round flatbreads.
And whilst you’re at it, grab one of their limited-time-only Easter Bunnies. These bunnies won’t melt in the sun – they’re made from pastry and depending on how sweet-toothed your recipient is, they also come with a sugar glaze complete with flaked almond bobble tails and a hundreds and thousands base. Both have little raisin eyes.
As you can see, my official taste-tester was rather taken by these Kamps Easter bunnies and they didn’t last long. The fatty.
What are they? Cute limited edition pastry bunnies that come in two different styles.
Where from? Kamps German Bakery, 154/155 Tottenham Court Road and Kensington Arcade
How much? Plain bunny is £2.40, sugar-glazed is £2.90
Top tip: Eat as soon as you get it home. There’s nothing better than freshly-baked bunny.
For the chocolate-lover
Now, this may divide opinion and there are different types of chocolate for different occasions but the ultimate Easter Egg for 2014 has to be Guylian. Come on! Who remembers the excitement when a box of these appeared as a treat at home? And whoever thought of sea-shelled shaped chocolates? So random, it’s genius.
Guylian had several Easter delights available to chocolate-lovers but as I can’t choose between my two favourites, I’ll mention them both. The first is The Sea Shell Egg – a chocolate egg that comes with a mini selection of chocolates. Egg + extra chocolates = happiness.
The second is a pack of Mini Filled Eggs packed with praline. Mmm. And once you’ve removed them from the packaging they’re the perfect handbag size for nibbling on the go.
I also love Guylian because they support the Seahorse Project, which works towards the conservation of seahorses and other marine life (like cuttlefish – my favourite).
What are they? A series of Guylian Easter egg sets: The Sea Shell Easter Egg and the Mini Filled Eggs.
Where from? Lots of places; good supermarkets and independent retailers throughout the UK.
How much? The mini eggs are £3.49 and the Sea Shell Easter Egg is £5.99
Top tip: Determine your favourite sea shell shape by eating them all and seeing if they taste different according to shape.
For the dairy-free, gluten-free special needs person
Before the title given to this person gets your back up, chill out, this is me. I’m currently on an elimination diet following a visit to a nutritionist and so dairy and gluten are off the menu. At least for another couple of weeks.
Luckily for the special / fussy people, more and more retailers are realizing the demand for dairy-free consumer goods and so there’s quite a good choice of eggs out there this year. However, not all Easter eggs are equal (remember this) and it’s the same with the dairy-free ones too.
Out of all the dairy-free chocolates I’ve tried (believe me, I’ve eaten a lot of these), my absolute favourite has to be the Chocolate Pie Company. Now they did have an Easter Egg but it looks like, due to popular demand, these flew off the shelf. Not to worry though, I actually think that receiving a selection of their raw chocolate bars would be BETTER than their egg. I know, crazy. Yet hear me out. They have a terribly delicious Raw Chocolate Pie with Himalayan Salt. It’s a salted chocolate that’s rich and moreish yet not sickly.
I would quite happily chow down on a set of these any day, regardless of the time of year.
What are they? Little bars of deliciousness made from cacao nibs, coconut butter, agave nector, ground almonds and other natural ingredients.
Where from? Buy from independent retailers or online.
How much? From £2.25 from their online shop, or £15 for 7.
Top tip: Don’t share with anyone.
For the person who has everything
Nothing. Just kidding, that would be mean.
Give them something that money can’t buy – homemade raw chocolate balls. These are super easy and fun (messy) to make and you can either put them in a little jar, or in a fancy tub or something similar.
What are they? Dairy-free, gluten-free and vegan balls of yum.
Where from? From your kitchen of course!
How much? However much the ingredients cost. You can keep this to under £10 and make several batches.
Top tip: Keep refrigerated as these melt easily and you don’t want to end up with a brown sticky mess leaking from your bag.
For the boyfriend
I don’t know about you, but my boyfriend just can’t stop eating Cadbury’s Crème Eggs. I’ve gotten so fed up that pretty much every day is an Easter Hunt when these appear in the house. Yes, I admit it, I hide them whenever I can – from man pant drawers, to the bread bin to under the bed. That way, when he finds them, it’s all that more rewarding.
Still, after all these years, there’s nothing quite so satisfying as an ultra sweet and sticky Crème Egg.
What are they? A small, cheap milk chocolate egg filled with white and orange fondant.
Where from? Most newsagents and supermarkets.
How much? Be prepared to pay from 50p to a whole pound for one.
Top tip: Eat these slowly and don’t do what my sister once did – she gorged on too many when she was 5 and puked them straight back up. And yes, they still managed to look egg-like.