I’ve warned my entire family that everyone will be receiving homemade gifts for Christmas because I’m a poor law student who can’t afford anything else. Plus, my last final is 5 days before Christmas and I can’t put myself through the stress of last-minute shopping this year. I just can’t do it.
I found some great DIY project ideas that I’ll share soon, but I was reading Cupcakes and Cashmere yesterday and got some great ideas for edible gifts as well. For example, homemade Peppermint Marshmallows! These would make such a great gift for anyone with children. I’d pair it with a Hot Chocolate mix and put it in a cute box or basket.
For a more grown-up gift, try making jalapeño and pineapple infused tequila. If your gift recipient isn’t a fan of tequila, play around with different flavors/liquors (there are other flavor/liquor combinations at that link). Strain the infused liquor into a pretty jar or bottle. And don’t forget the jingle bell!
I’ve always found that I’m amazed by even the simplest homemade gifts. Tell someone you made it yourself and it becomes an instant hit. Which brings me to my next idea…
Since I won’t be wowing anyone with my designer gifts this year, I should probably try to wow them with a looks-really-impressive-but-is-actually-super-easy dessert. Enter The Barefoot Contessa.
When I first started cooking, I downloaded a bunch of old Food Network episodes and my absolute favorite one featured a Holiday menu by Ina Garten. She made a simple stuffed chicken breast, roasted carrots and parsnips, pasta with truffle butter and finished it off with a gorgeous red berry trifle.
I’ve been waiting for the day when I could attempt this recipe. I will definitely be making this for Christmas dinner. You can find the recipe here and a short video recipe here. The video doesn’t include the pound cake recipe, but it’s included in the full recipe. I also recommend downloading the full episode on iTunes and making the entire meal as a pre-holiday dinner for your family, friends or boyfriend. It’s called Perfect Holiday Dinner from Season 2 of Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics.
Let me know if you have any other homemade gift ideas and/or recipes and stay tuned for a DIY:Christmas post coming soon!