Homemade gifts are, in my humble opinion, some of the best to receive. Give me something homemade that I can eat and now we're really talking.
If you are running short on time or you found out last minute that you have to give someone a gift, these home made goodies are a few great options.
Bloody Mary Vodka + Home-made Bloody Mary Mix
For the Vodka: Infuse 4 cups of vodka with 6 green olives, 1 tbsp. olive brine, 1 tsp. horseradish, 2 cloves chopped garlic, 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 a lemon juiced, 1 lime juiced and 4 jalapeno peppers (2 diced and 2 left whole with just the ends cut off).
For the Bloody Mary Mix: I used this recipe.
Bottle in pretty bottles and make some cute labels (I used paper bags, some festive stickers and markers).
Peppermint Cookie Bark
1/2 a package of mint oreos (I used Trader Joe's Peppermint Joe Joe's)
1/2 c. chopped candy canes
24 oz. white chocolate,melted
In a foil lined 9"x13" baking pan, first layer the cookies, then the chocolate and finally sprinkle with the candy canes. Place in the fridge for several hours, or until hardened. Break into pieces and store in the fridge.
Chocolate Covered Coffee Beans
3 c. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
12 oz. coffee beans
Toss chocolate with the beans and lay out on a wax paper lined tray. Place in fridge to cool, then break a part and place into a zip lock bag to store, or divide into individual bags for gifting.
6 tbsp. butter
1 c. brown sugar
dash of salt and nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
8 oz. of pecans and 16 oz. of peanuts (or whatever combination of nuts you would like)
Melt butter and sugar together. Next stir in spices and then the nuts. Mix until the nuts are coated then spread onto a foil lined baking sheet. Bake at 300 degrees for about 20 minutes or until browned. Let cool and then bag the nuts.
Chocolate Toffee Squares-I used this recipe.
Homemade Cappuccino Mix + a cute travel Mug
1 c. of coffee creamer (whatever flavor you would like-I like hazelnut or vanilla) + 1 c. instant coffee granules + 1 c. chocolate drink mix + 1/4 c. white sugar + 1/2 tsp. cinnamon- Mix together and then bag or pour into 2 12 oz. jars. Use 3 tbsp of mix for every 6 oz. of hot water.
In a 1 quart glass jar, layer the following:
1 c. of pasta shells
3/4 c. each split peas,kidney beans,pinto beans,great northern beans
1 package of onion soup mix
2 bay leaves
1 tsp. of each garlic salt,pepper,basil,rosemary leaves
Instructions and remaining ingredients to include on the card:
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
3 medium carrots, chopped
3 celery stalks,chopped
1 can of chopped chicken (can be omitted)
Salt to taste
Parmesan cheese to top off
Place beans and seasoning along with 4-5 cups of water into a large pot. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and then continue to simmer until beans are cooked,about 4 hours. (You may need to add water throughout to keep the beans from getting too dried out). Add all remaining ingredients, except for the pasta. Cook for 30 more minutes. Add the pasta and cook 10 more minutes. Serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, if desired.