Even though life can become crazily busy, It seems that everyone wants to slow down just a bit during the holiday season and enjoy some comforts of life that often elude us during the rest of the year. For foodies, those who love to cook and/or eat, Christmastime brings pleasures to quite literally be savored. Give some comfort and delight to a friend or loved one with one of these delicious homemade gifts.
1. Mixed Berry Jam. A beautiful and savory gift that can be enjoyed for quite a long time, jam is not difficult to make and is not expensive. All you need is one pound of strawberries, 1 pound of mixed berries, a fresh lemon and sugar. Buy some canning jars and lids and print out free labels which you can customize here.
2. Bodacious BBQ Sauce. Most men love to grill. Many men can be difficult to shop for. Solve your male gift-buying dilemmas by making your own savory barbeque sauce! It will be free of the preservatives found in commercial brands, and you can customize the spices to your (and his) liking. Create decorative jars for a special touch. Watch the "BBQ Pit Boys" video here to see just how it's done!
3. New Orleans Pralines. A sweet and nutty Southern favorite, pralines are delicious and easy to make. Stack some in a tower, wrap with colorful holiday plastic wrap and tie up the top with a curly ribbon. These are perfect for teachers, office co-workers, and others you want to remember with a holiday treat.
4. Rosemary Infused Vodka. All you need for this unusual and surprising gift is vodka, rosemary and 3-5 days for the infusion to complete. Martini, anyone?
5. Spice Rubs. Good spice combinations can make ho-hum meals come alive. Consider making several spice rubs and give them as a gift for a busy friend or family member who likes to cook but is pressed for time. He or she will thank you all year!
6. Raspberry French Chocolate Macaroons. Ahhh… the combination of raspberry and chocolate is so delicious. Make some of these beautiful and festive macaroons for someone special. They look more difficult to make than they really are. You don't even need a real pastry bag to do so… an improvised one will do.
7. Zesty Cheese Straws. Light and delicious, this gift is sure to be gobbled up by its lucky recipient. All you need is butter, cheddar, salt, flour and cayenne pepper. And a decorative jar for giving, of course!
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