smart spending

Great holiday gifts for $10 or less

Gourmet cheese
Gourmet cheese | Mara Zemgaliete - Fotolia.com

Gourmet cheese

Got a cheese lover among your family or friends? Give them a taste of what they love, a new variety to try or a handy gadget.

For cheese fans, consider a half-pound of something creamy and delicious such as English Stilton or Irish Cashel Blue, says Laura Werlin, winner of the James Beard Award, food writer and author of "Laura Werlin's Cheese Essentials: An Insider's Guide to Buying and Serving Cheese."

Depending on the price, you might also be able to include a jar of something sweet, such as preserves or fig compote, or something salty, such as nuts or crackers, she says.

Another great combination: a salty selection, such as blue cheese or a good Parmigiano-Reggiano, and a small jar of honey, Werlin says.

If your cheese lover has a fondness for Brie or Camembert, consider giving a whole wheel of Camembert (standard size is about 8 ounces) or a wedge of Brie, she says.

Or go for one of the cool tools. Werlin says to buy a cheese planer, a knife specifically for slicing hard cheeses, or one designed for soft cheeses. Find them online or in stores for $10 or less.

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