Do you enjoy giving homemade presents to your family and friends?
Do you sometimes spend a lot of time figuring out how to wrap and decorate the goodies you’ve made?
Read on to find out how you can jazz up your handmade edible gifts for the perfect surprise.
Just imagine all the possibilities:
• Make a baking mix for your friend’s favorite cake
• Create an individualized cereal to enjoy
• Prepare a personalized spice mix that makes a great base for risotto
All you need is a basic recipe for anything from cookies, cakes and tarts to pasta or rice dishes.
All you need to do is collect all of the dry ingredients that are used in the recipe, and layer them one after another in a nice transparent bottle or jar (Take a look at my “Dos” and “Don’ts“ below for tips on how to do this) .
By the way, this is also a great idea for a gift if the person you’re giving the present to has any allergies or food intolerances.
Simply cater your mix to their needs, and be careful not to cross-contaminate with any other mixtures you’re making that might contain no-no ingredients.
So, if you’re in need of a last-minute gift, whether for Christmas or a birthday, this should be your number one choice.
What to put in there
You can fill up your personal mixture with:
– All kinds of nuts (whole/chopped/sliced/ground)
– Dried fruits (cranberries, raisins, apples, apricots, dates…)
– Chocolate chunks/sprinkles/candy
– Sugar (white/brown/powdered…)
– Spices (cinnamon, aniseed, vanilla, salt, pepper, cardamom…)
– Seeds, grains and other ingredients like: poppy seeds, rolled oats, desiccated coconut, coffee beans, milk powder, cocoa powder, etc.
– Dried/freeze-dried vegetables and spices (onions, tomatoes, leeks, peas, thyme, rosemary, oregano, chili flakes…)
– Uncooked rice/pasta
Tip: The amounts of individual ingredients that you add to the jar or other container should match what’s called for in the recipe you have chosen.
What to leave out
All the wet and fresh ingredients a recipe could require, like:
- Any type of milk, juice or other liquids
- Butter or margarine
- Fresh fruits or vegetables
You’re not done yet! Finish up your gift with something decorative:
Write out your recipe, being sure to include a list of remaining ingredients that need to be added and the instructions (or a few baking tips and tricks for good measure). Stick it to the jar or bottle with a nice ribbon or cord.
Get some fancy stamps or colorful tags that say “homemade” or “made with love,” and add a loving note to give your gift that personal touch.
Decorate sweet mixtures with cinnamon sticks or vanilla pods, and use dried chili peppers or herb sprigs for savory dishes.
Use a jar or a transparent bottle with a swing stopper for a rustic look. A rinsed and dried milk bottle makes a nice container, too.
Keep in mind: It’s best to prepare the mixture as late as possible so the ingredients don’t spend too much time in the bottle. You can add a little note with an expiration date, too.
About Nina-Kristin Isensee
Nina lives in Iserlohn, Germany and holds an MA in Art History (Medieval and Renaissance Studies). She is currently working as a freelance writer in various fields. She enjoys travel, photography, cooking, and baking. Nina tries to cook from scratch every day when she has the time and enjoys trying out new spices and ingredients, as well as surprising her family with new cake creations.