The yuletide is near and what better way to spread Christmas cheer than by whipping up a homemade edible gift for your loved ones? It's a great way to save money while still giving them something from the heart. Here are 7 edible jar gifts that are sure to delight:
1. Pickled Snacks
Pickled veggies always look very pretty in a jar and these are perfect for the sandwich lover in your life. We went along with the conventional pickles but you can pickle just about anything you’d like. Unripe mangoes and papayas give that warm orangey glow and spicy peppers are a pretty fiery red. Just play around with it and have some fun.
2 tablespoons black peppercorns
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
2 tablespoons hot red pepper flakes
24 bay leaves, crumbled
1 tablespoon ground ginger.
Combine peppercorns and mustard seeds in a small dry pan. Place over medium heat and stir until fragrant. Crack peppercorns and seeds in mortar and pestle. Add the remaining spices.
8 pint jars with lids
4 cups water
6 tablespoons salt
8 cloves fresh garlic
2 tablespoons pickling spice (see above)
8 fresh bay leaves (or dried if you don't have fresh)
1 large bunch fresh dill
Slice the cucumbers into the size of pickle spears you want.
Heat the water with the salt. When the salt has dissolved, bring to a simmer and then turn off the heat.
Put a generous clump of dill on the bottom of each of the jars. Stuff the jars with cucumbers, tightly.
Divide the garlic cloves, pickling spices, and remaining dill into the jars.
Pour the salted water (brine) into the jars so the cucumbers are completely covered.
Put the lids on loosely. Shove the jars into a dark part of the kitchen and wait for three days. Taste it, if you’d like it more sour then leave it to ferment for longer. Once it is to your liking screw on the lid tightly and keep in the fridge.
2. Recipes in a Jar
Is there a special someone in your life who loves food but doesn’t necessarily know how to cook? Layer a simple recipe in a jar for them. We made a special brownie mix which only needs the addition of oil and eggs and presto! Homemade brownies.
Who needs sand art when you can create this with brownie ingredients?
1 quart sized jar
2⁄3 tsp salt
1 1⁄8 cup flour, divided
1⁄3 cup cocoa powder
2⁄3 cup brown sugar
2⁄3 cup white sugar
1⁄2 cup chocolate chips
1⁄2 cup white chocolate chips
1⁄2 cup walnuts or pecans
Wash, rinse and dry canning jars then layer ingredients as follows:
2/3 tsp salt
5/8 cup flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup flour
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup white sugar
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup walnuts
Make sure you also print out a set of cooking instructions for your recipient.
Preheat oven to 175C. Grease a baking pan. Pour the contents of the jar into a large bowl and mix well.
Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla, 2/3 cup vegetable oil and 3 eggs. Beat until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
You can do this with any of your favourite recipes or even do it for a soup. Layer stock granules with pasta and spices and all your recipient has to do is add it with water and boil for a delicious treat.
3. Salad Dressing
This is a wonderful gift for that health conscious friend. Create your own brand of salad dressing using all kinds of oils and spices and pour it into a beautiful jar or bottle. This thoughtful gift will add a little pizzazz to your friend’s meal.
"These little jars of yummy things are sure to delight"
4. Yummy Body Scrub
Ok so this is technically not edible, but it is made with edible ingredients! This mouth-watering scrub is sure to please and not only does it smell amazing but it’ll also do the body some good.
1 cup sugar
1 tbs ground coffee
1 tbs cocoa powder
1 tsp cinnamon
Generous pinch nutmeg
Generous pinch ginger
1/4 to 1/2 cup almond oil (or other light oils, such as grapeseed or jojoba)
Mix all these ingredients in a jar. Label and top off with a pretty fabric.
5. Spiced Nuts
You can never go wrong with a jar of spiced nuts tailor-made to perfection with a gorgeous sweet caramelized crust and just a hint of heat.
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons water
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups mixed nuts, such as walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts and almonds
Mix spices and reserve.
Heat nuts in a dry skillet and cook, stirring frequently, until begin to toast, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside. Add the butter, sugar, water and spices to the hot skillet and cook, stirring, until a glaze forms, about 1 minute. Return the nuts to the skillet and toss to combine with the glaze. Cook for about 1 to 2 minutes, or until the nuts are glazed and golden brown.
Remove from the heat and transfer to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil, separating with a fork. Let rest until cooled and the sugar has hardened, about 10 minutes. Store in an airtight container.
You can always whip up a batch of your favourite cookies and put them in a jar with a pretty cloth covering and ribbon. This is simple but who doesn’t love getting a jar filled with yummy cookies?
This one is great for the breakfast nut in your life. You can use a variation of wheat flakes, rolled oats, rye flakes, barley kernels, wheatgerm and then add in seeds, nuts and dried fruit of your choice. You can’t go wrong!