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Topic: Food-Gift Ideas for Christmas  (Read 5201 times)
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« on: October 20, 2006 01:16:15 PM »

Hi everyone! I am looking for ideas for neighbors, friends, etc. for Christmas gifts.  Everyone loves food, right?  I was thinking of making Chocolate Drizzled popcorn, or Chocolate dipped Chips and decorate both with Christmas candy sprinkles.  Does anyone have any ideas-tips-recipes for this?  I was going to post this on the food board but I thought that this board was more appropriate.  Here are the combinations I've considered:
Kettle corn drizzled with dark chocolate
Regular butter pc drizzled with white and dark chocolate and peanuts
Wavy lays chips dipped halfway in chocolate and sprinkled with christmas sprinkles

What do ya think?  And I was going to wrap the stuff in pretty celophane (sp?)  or put in nice christmas tins.  Help me brainstorm some ideas please for flavors and such
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« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2006 09:24:46 AM »

I have done the following:

Hot chocolate mix with homemade marshmallows (peppermint flavoured with a red swirl).  Presented in a mug wrapped in cellophane, with a peppermint candy stick as a stirrer.  I found snowflake mugs for this.  A small bag of gingerbread cookies attached as a tag.  One mug for an individual.  A set for a family (with matching amount of goodies).

Microwaveable popcorn in a popcorn bowl with homemade spice mixes - I made a gift set of this by also adding some novelty flavours, Christmasy napkins, and some movie rental gift cards.

I have done baskets of homemade jams and cookies, decorated with a beaded ornament - I made 125mL jars of jellys and jams one year - cinnamon apple jelly, a grape jelly, a cranberry port jelly, etc - very easy to do with store bought juices, pectin, sugar, spice, etc.

I have done candy packages - homemade peanut brittle, almond bark, white chocolate candy cane bark, and almond roca - pretty easy to make - and very much loved at work.

Easy fudge recipes too - there is one on the Ocean Spray site for cranberry fudge.

Also, I have made mini-loaves of poundcake, lemon poppyseed cake, etc and made platters of these with Christmas themed platters, and wrapping the loaves in nice Christmas cloth, napkins, or tea towels (and these can be wrapped in plastic, and frozen - so easy to make ahead of time).

Also, jars of spiced nuts, or snack mixes could be made too.  Chocolate dipped dried fruit.  Chocolate dipped pretzels, or other candies - like gummi candies.

Old fashioned caramel corn - popcorn/nut balls.

If you look up gift-in-a-jar recipe sites, you can find interesting recipes for different hot chocolates, flavoured teas, coffees etc - also other things like bath salts in a jar, cookies, muffins, soups, spice mixes in a jar - just give them a try before giving them out.

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« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2006 01:07:59 PM »

i've been doing food for gifts for about 5 years now
here's what i've done:

1.(this year) i'm making apple butter (basicly you keep cooking apple sauce untill its a smooth, almost creamy texture) and baking mini cinnamon bread loaves.

2. Mole(there should be an accent over the "e" but i dont know how to do that) brittle (spicy chocolate-ness...i'm sure you could find a recipe)

3.)thumbprint cookies with apricot jam in the middle (vegan: almonds, rolled oats, whole grain pastry flour, sunflower oil, and maple syrup)

4.) i actually made lolipops one year, just shugar, flavoring, and water( DO NOT ATTEMPT IF YOU HAVE SMALL CHILDREN OR PETS...i burnt myself SO MANY times, and my cat almost stepped in it)

5.)chocolates (filled with home-made carmel)

hope thats helpfull!

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« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2006 02:13:29 PM »

1.(this year) i'm making apple butter (basicly you keep cooking apple sauce untill its a smooth, almost creamy texture) and baking mini cinnamon bread loaves.

Have you considered making flavoured actual butter - like honey butter or maple syrup butter - both very yummy, great with loaves/sweet bagels/muffins/waffles/pancakes.

« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2006 04:52:42 PM »

My mom and I like to fill mugs with fudge for friends.  It always goes over really well.

You could always fill mugs with little cellophane bags of drink mixes.  You can buy some like apple cider and hot chocolate, or search the good ol' net to find some coffee drinks and things.

My boyfriend's family makes these delicious caramels every year.  They sent me home after New Years with a huge bag that made my sister break her "no sweets" resolution hours after she made it.

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« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2006 05:55:28 PM »

I'm going to do a gift basket this year for everyone.  I made apple butter already, so I'll include that.  Then I'm thinking of making toffee dipped pretzels (I've made these before, easy and yummy, you can also dip them in chocolate over teh toffee, double yummy)

After that I'm thinking of experimenting a little - I'm going to try my hand at fudge, homemade ribbon candy, peppermint bark and maybe some caramel popcorn balls (my husband says he used to love these as a kid)

My husband's family gets chocolate covered potato chips and other homemade candies every year in the mail from distant faimly - we eat most of it, but honestly the chips are gross, probably because they go stale.  I'm guessing fresh ones taste better.  I wouldn't do that if you are mailing or making them too far ahead of time.
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« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2006 06:29:54 PM »

I bake for everyone in my department and it goes over well.
Papermart.com has wonderful cello to wrap food gifts in all kinds of patterns. They also have nice big rolls (one usually lasts me the year).
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« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2006 06:36:52 PM »

In addition to what everyone's mentioned so far, you can really never go wrong with a good assortment of cookies - Sugar cookies, snickerdoodles, ginger snaps, etc.

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« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2006 07:49:33 PM »

I've made S'MORES CARAMEL CORN for a few years and it has been a huge hit. I can't remember where I saw this idea, but you use any caramel corn recipe* and add teddy-graham crackers (bear-shaped graham-cracker cookies) or regular graham cracker pieces (smashed into small-ish chunks), chocolate chips (or mini chocolate chips), and mini marshmallows to the caramel when you are mixing it into the popped popcorn. It turns out like a fancy gourmet popcorn without any extra effort on top of making the caramel corn.

I'm sorry, I don't know where my recipe is, so I can't give specific amounts, but I normally eyeball it anyhow. For a general caramel corn recipe (like from Better Homes Cookbook) I would add about a cup of chocolate chips, 1/2 a package of mini marshmallows, and a cup of graham cracker pieces/bears.

*I personally like gooey caramel instead of crunchy-ish caramel, so I undercook mine (well, cook it a few minutes less than the recipe calls for). It doesn't have any raw eggs or anything, so don't worry about that. The only difference is the hardness of the caramel. Just my personal preference.


« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2006 07:56:39 PM »

Ooh, I love the s'more caramel corn idea!  I'm going to try that out!
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