November 19, 2009
Roasted Cinnamon nuts – just click the link to see the recipe I used. You can find other recipes online. Some are spicy too. They are easy to make, and most people enjoy nuts. Nuts can be expensive. I bought large bags of them at BJ’s which made it more economical.
Herbes de Provence – For some reason I can’t find the recipe I used for this, but recipes abound on the internet. Most use lavender, which I wasn’t able to find, so I used one that contained thyme, basil, oregano, and rosemary. I specifically bought spices in jars that I liked so I could use them to package the mix. I made the labels on the computer and printed them onto label paper (which I happened to have). The bottle show is the one I’m using, but the ones I gave away were full.
Vanilla extract – It takes several months for this extract to reach a good flavor, but even though it wouldn't be completely ready in time for Christmas, you could still give it as a gift and tell them is needs to sit a couple more months before use. I started making vanilla well before Christmas, but had trouble deciding how to bottle it. I looked in craft stores and didn’t find anything I liked. I ended up buying salad dressing just for the bottles. I don’t have a picture of them, but they were round glass bottles. The salad dressing was put into canning jars and the bottles were cleaned thoroughly.
I think food gifts are an excellent way to go at Christmas, especially if you don’t know what some one has/doesn’t have or what they need/don’t need. Everyone eats! Just remember to take into consideration special diets and eating preferences and whether or not someone is likely to use it. A single man who never bakes isn’t likely to appreciate the vanilla extract, but might love home made cookies!
For more edible gift ideas see Gluten-Free Holiday: Gifts of Good Taste and The Holiday Food Fest (not necessarily gluten free).
Oh, and thanks for the reminder on the nuts--I love making sugared pecans. :)
Herbs de provence--I need to look up that recipe and make some. And, what everyone else said ... lovely labels. I know mine would not look that perfect after a year.
I actually make my vanilla in less time than that. I just made some a few days ago and it's already turning that lovely amber. It will keep getting better even after giving. ;-)
Some great gift ideas, Linda!
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