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Gift Giving – What do people really want?

Gift giving can be an angst-provoking event. So many decisions. So many choices.  But what do people really want? Since so many of our customers buy gifts from True Treats, I decided to research the matter – we are research-based, after all. What I found was surprising, in part, because it wasn’t surprising. My sources ranged from professional gift-giving companies to Ph.D.’s weighing in on platforms such as Psychology Today.

So, here are the top five best recommendations from gift-giving experts.

Top 5 Recommendations from Gift-Giving Experts

The Gift of Experience

  1. Experience. Without a doubt, people enjoy gifts that give them an experience, something engaging and memorable. That experience can be an outing, of course. But it can also be interactive – a present they open and can immediately use. We recommend experiences that engage as many senses as possible – taste, sight, sound, touch…plus engages the mind, whether they learn something new or reawaken memories. All True Treats’ products are made for a full-experience from the cards that tell the story to the images on the labels that match the time period inside.

 Thoughtfulness Counts in Gift Giving

  1. Thoughtfulness. With all due respect to re-gifting (a truly bad idea when it comes to food!) thoughtfulness counts. It shows that you care about the person is a meaningful way, and that the gift, even a professional gift, has an element of caring and love. With candy, teas, and other foods, the most thoughtful gift is one that taps into the recipient’s interests and values. For elderly people, a gift of old-time penny candy or hard-to-find flavors from their past, such as horehound or sarsaparilla, might be perfect. For the history buff, a gift from their time period of interest would be amazing, as it creates a uniquely visceral experience of history.

 Evaluate Personality Type in Gift Giving

  1. A match to their personality type. One size definitely does not fit all. But often we forget to look at the personality of the person involved. Are they hands-on, ever exciting about doing things? Or are they introverts, eager to hunker down for a good think? In matching the gift to the nature of the person, you’ll express true generosity intended just for them. Our recommendations: for the adventurous, try some of our do-it-yourself kits, such as our Small Beer-Making Kit. For the introvert, how about giving one of our old-time cookbooks with a selection of sweets?


 Quality of Gifts Matter

  1. Quality. The quality of a product can be a measure of respect. Quality does not mean expensive – by the way! It means getting the best of whatever you give – the best wrapped, the best presented, the best materials…and so on. True Treats gift boxes can range from $14.00 – $60.00 and range from candies, rich with sugar, to healthy, all-natural and naturally sugar free. Regardless, the quality is always the best, from the stories on our cards to the products within the rapper.

 Know when the gift should be a Suprise and when it should NOT

  1. A surprise (Or not). Most researchers indicate that people love surprises. Of course, the fit needs to be a happy one. Gag gifts, while well-intended, are the least appreciated gifts while positive, up-beat and focused surprises are the best. Make sure the surprise isn’t something they’re likely to buy themselves – the idea of gifts is akin to spoiling someone, giving something over the top of the usual into pure enjoyment and, even, fun. The “or not” part? One writer said it’s better to ask what people want. But you might end up gift-wrapping boxes of socks. And really, what kind of a gift is that? Looking for something unexpected? As True Treats is the only research-based historic candy and snacks company, you’re bound to find something old that’s entirely new!



Amazing Popcorn Recipes – Not What You Thought!

Amazing Popcorn Recipes – Not What You Thought!

Popcorn is the second snack food in U.S. history (the first was peanuts). It’s tasty, crunchy…well, you know the rest. AND – just about all Americans agree on one thing: They like popcorn. BUT, we modern Americans may be missing the popcorn boat. Not only is popcorn a great snack, but it is more versatile than you can imagine. Here are some recipes – we’ll supply the popcorn, ground or freshly popped.


This lunchtime popcorn delight is perfect for the kid – or even grown-up – who wants to add fun to function mid-day, with just the right health benefits. This recipe is from 1915 – you can definitely change the filling.

Recipe: Put the popped corn through the food chopper and make a paste of it mixed with cream cheese or peanut butter. Spread this paste between thin slices of bread.

TIP: Forget the paste and chopper – it’s too much work. Just chop up popcorn and mix it in the peanut butter or cream cheese for a satisfying crunch. Don’t be shy – add raisins, tiny marshmallows, even chocolate chips to the mix, as the spirit moves you.

Comment: THIS IS DELICIOUS! I couldn’t stop eating the peanut butter sample. You can use other breads – even wholegrain would be great.

Popcorn Pudding

For Old Souls (from 1915). You’ll want to call this porridge it’s so old school.

Recipe: Use the finest blade of the chopper and put through enough popped corn to make two cupful’s. Cover the corn with three soak an hour. Beat three eggs. Add half a teaspoonful of salt, a tablespoonful of butter and half a cupful of brown sugar. Stir in the corn and milk, and cook in a slow oven forty minutes. Serve hot.

TIP: In the days of old, recipes changed depending on who was making them, often passed down orally. So this perfect comfort food may be even more perfect with a dash of vanilla extract (new and hard to find at the time) or a sprinkling of cinnamon. Or both. I vote for raisins here, too – they’ll plump up nicely and…mmmmm.

Sounds great, but you don’t want to chop the popcorn? Why not get some our Popcorn Cereal, where we do the chopping for you! If you have extra you can use it for the recipe just below.

Popcorn Cereal

From the 1940s, precisely like the ones starting in the late 1800s.

DO NOT scoff at this! It’s WONDERFUL – just like oatmeal but with more texture! You might be thinking it would be too soggy. Soggy? Think about Corn Flakes or Rice Krispies after about 15 seconds swimming in milk. Soggy? No – mushy. Popcorn cereal – textured, with a very subtle crunch. If you don’t like it, we’ll double your money back! Just kidding. That’s what they used to say – not now.

Recipe: The cereal recipe goes like this: Pop the corn, run it through a food chopper and add four cups of the corn to two cups of boiling water. Then cook until thickened. They say the cereal will come up fluffy, something like oatmeal that isn’t over wet or underdone. What’s left over you can slice and fry for next morning’s breakfast.

Tip: We provide the cereal – you add the water. PS: this is really good with butter, salt and sugar. Eat while hot.


Popcorn – the Garnish

Simple, but true! Esteemed Master chef Louis P. DeGouy of the acclaimed New York Waldorf-Astoria (1930s to 1950s)  recommended popcorn as a garnish for salad and soup. For soup, he explains: “Serve the soup in heated soup plates, each plate garnished with a little popcorn, lightly toasted.” From: The Gold Cookbook, 1947.

Tip: Get some of our Baker’s Popcorn. It’s only slightly salted so it won’t interfere with other flavors. OR go all in and get…maybe… Breakfast Crunch? But don’t use that on Tomato Soup 🙂 .