Tag Archives: diy gifts

DIY GIFT- Christmas Cookies

10 Dec

BLOG-Mas DAY 10

Welcome to day 10 and the 3rd edible DIY. Today I will share 5 Christmas cookie recipes…sort of. What if I told you that you could make as many types of cookie as you want with just one base recipe? Ca-razy right?  Not only crazy but totally possible . From a simple sugar cookie recipe I will demonstrate how to make: Chocolate ,  Red Velvet, Peanut Butter, Apple Spice and of course a regular sugar cookie.

PREP

So you need to begin with a good sugar cookie recipe and make up as many baches as you require. I used a recipe from Joy of Baking which I have linked. I will still briefly  go through the process of making the batter but hers is far more in depth, so check it out.Her recipe makes approx 20, 4 inch (10cm) diameter cookies. I made up one batch which I divided into 5 parts.

PART 1- Making the Batter

WHAT YOU NEED 

1 3/4 cup flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 cup butter (unsalted)

3/4 granulated sugar 

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract 

Sugar cookie ingredients



WHAT TO DO 

1) Combine and whisk dry ingredients in a bowl.

Dry ingredients 


Whisk


2) Beat sugar and butter together then add egg and beat until smooth, adding vanilla extract.

Butter, sugar and egg


Vanilla extract

3) Slowly add flour then beat until smooth batter forms

Add flour


Batter


Place the batter in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour. This part is very important for cookies!

PART 2-Flavouring the Batter

Remember this is for 1 batch divided into 5, however the amount of flavourings you add is subjective depending on your preference.

WHAT YOU NEED 


Peanut Butter

1) 1 tbsp of smooth peanut butter- This gives a moderate peanut flavour, you can add more or less to suit you.

Chocolate

1) 1tbsp Cocoa powder- This makes it very chocolatey, if you prefer a milder chocolate flavour use less.

2) 1/4 cup chocolate chip morsels/ candy melts- I used both milk chocolate and white chocolate . 

Red Velvet

1) 1/4 tsp cocoa powder

2) Red food colouring (I had only a few drops so mine came out pink 😦

3) White chocolate morsels/candy melts

Apple Spice

1) 1/4 cup diced apple – I used a gala apple.

2) 1/2 tsp spices- I used cinnamon and nutmeg .

Flavouring ingredients .



WHAT TO DO

Peanut Butter

1) Mix in the peanut butter until batter is homogeneous in colour.

Mix



2) Replace in refrigerator for approximately 15 minutes to firm up again.

3) Portion into circular cookies in the size you wish (remember cookies always spread) and create the iconic peanut butter cookie crisscross with a fork.

Peanut butter cookie


Chocolate 

1) Mix in cocoa powder until fully blended.

2) Form you cookies then add the chocolate chips on top.

Chocolate cookie


Red/Pink Velvet

1) Add cocoa and food dye and completely mix in.

Mix



2) Form cookies and add white chocolate chips

Red Velvet Cookie


Apple Spice

1) Add apple bits and spices and mix

2) Form Cookies

Apple Spice cookie


Sugar Cookie

1) Use a cookie cutter and cut out cookies

Sugar cookie

Bake at 350 f (175C) for 10 minutes or until edges start to brown.

Remember, cookies like most baked goods continue to cook for a bit after coming out of the oven so the cookies may seem a bit soft at first but they will harden.

Finished cookies


Cookies



Package and gift!

Wrapped in wax paper


When I think of sugar cookies I think of Christmas time, the super sweet vanilla smell makes you feel warm inside. If you’re wondering how all these flavours work with a sugar cookie, the answer is they work beautifully. The background flavour and texture of a sugar cookie lends to sweetness and provides a light cookie with a good crunch but does not in anyway take away from the added flavours.

These make great gifts, my sister gave everyone sugar cookies about six years ago and it was fantastic.If you are thinking of doing this as with most DIYS I recommend making large amounts to cut down on overall cost. You can package off a few (like pictured here) and use them as stocking stuffers or fill up a tin or jar and give as a gift.

I hope you enjoyed this post and found a flavour you might like to try. Thanks for reading and have an awesome day.

 DIY GIFT- Christmas Bark

8 Dec

BLOG-Mas Day 8

Welcome to Day 8 of Blogmas and welcome back to DIYS . This is one in a series of edible DIY gifts , if that’s your thing. As with crafty DIYS ,  sometimes baking your own gifts can be more costly and definitely time consuming BUT if  you are savvy and do it in bulk it can turn out more budget friendly and of course it is made with loads of love.

Today’s DIY is Christmas Bark which is essentially chocolate filled with many things and broken into shards of deliciousness. Please stay tuned…

Ingredients 

WHAT YOU NEED 

1) Chocolate – I chose Cadbury milk chocolate .  You can use chocolate chips or candy melts as well, I personally find candy melts a bit too sweet in large amounts hence my choice of regular eating chocolate.

2) More chocolate – To compliment your main chocolate . I chose white candy melts but you can use any colour or type of chocolate you wish. I think peanut butter chips(like chocolate chips but out of peanut butter)  would go well with this.

3) Stuff– What I mean is, miscellaneous morsels such as dried fruit, nuts, candies etc. I used a trail mix I had containing dried cranberries, salted cashews, almonds and dark chocolate chips.

4) Wax/Parchment paper– To line the container you use.

5) Pan/Cookie Sheet– Alternately you can use a silicone mat.

WHAT TO DO

Line your sheet ahead of time and clear some space in the refrigerator . 

1) Melt the chocolate in microwave in 30 second bursts  (or use double boiler technique )

Melted chocolate 

2) Spread milk chocolate onto sheet.

Chocolate spread

3) Add white chocolate  (or other colours ) in marble fashion . 

White chocolate added

4) Press in additions (nuts, candies etc) throughout chocolate . 

Add “stuff ”

5) Refrigerate and let harden-I left mine overnight . 

Hardened bark

6) Using hands or long sharp knife, break into shards.

Broken up bark




7) Wrap and gift!

Wrapped in wax paper

The bark tasted delicious ,  the contrast of the very sweet cranberries with the salty cashews and the mild cocoa flavour from the milk chocolate is a winning combo.

This is a cute gift. It’s great as a stocking stuffer or for a large group of persons e.g coworkers. The cost varies depending on the chocolate you use and what kind of toppings you add but no doubt it can be a fairly economical gift.

Be sure to try this one out and have an awesome day!

DIY GIFT- Candle

3 Dec

BLOG-Mas DAY 3

Hello  and welcome to day 3.  I am continuing my gift DIYs and today I am making a candle. There are two ways I do DIY candles, one is using wax from white candles and the other is using shortening. I never use kits sold in craft stores as they are just too expensive.

Apparently, shortening is an excellent burning agent and in post natural disaster zones people use a can of shortening with a wick and get light for up to 22 hours. #whoknew So this makes CRISCO the star of this show. I was so enamored with the idea of making g candles from shortening that last year I gave EVERYONE  homemade candles for Christmas.

WHAT YOU NEED 

1) Shortening  (the white thick stuff )

2) Fragrance – either fragrance oils or scented was cubes

3) Colouring agent- either coloured wax, maybe from an old candle or wax crayons.

4) Wick- This is the tricky bit. Wicks  are sold at craft stores and are a bit expensive ,  you can alternately use craft cord/twine but it needs to be soaked in a flammable liqiud (e.g olive oil or borax)and/or coated in wax. I learnt this the hard way.

5) Container- I chose a large jelly jar because they are so affordable and lend to the homemade vibe but you can use any heat resistant container e.g a mug or glass.

6) Duck tape (you’ll see why)

7) Scissors

Some of the ingredients : shortening , jelly jar, scented wax melts,wax crayons, wax coated craft cord.



WHAT TO DO 

1) Prepare your container

  a) Store bought wicks: Place wick and end into jar, glueing down if needed.                       

  b) Homemade wicks: 

i)    Cut a length of your cord (pre soaked and waxed) slightly longer than needed

ii)  Cut a small square of Duck tape.

iii)  Fold over tape being careful not to let it stick to itself, and cut a slit in it.

  iv)   Insert cord through slit in tape and allow it to stick to the tape.

  v) Place wick into jar and stick to bottom of the jar    

   

Cut slit into tape



Place wick through slit and allow to stick to tape



Stick onto bottom of jar



Ensure tape is stuck



  Wick secured     




 c) Take two pens/pencils/crochet needles (anything slim and cylindrical ) and tape them together at either end and feed the wick through the space in the centre – this will help keep the wick centred while the candle hardens.

Place pens on top of jar


2) Place shortening, scented wax melts (if you are using them) and crayons in a microwave safe bowl.

Notes:

 If you aren’t using wax scent but liquid instead don’t add this until the shortening has melted.

 Use highly pigmented crayons (I used Crayola) because the colour does get diluted once the candle hardens.

Use a bowl you aren’t attached to because there will likely be waxy residue no matter how well you clean it.

Shortening, scented wax and crayons


3) Melt in microwave in 30 second bursts stirring each time . 

Melted solution


4) Pour into jar, reposition wick ensuring it is central, place into refrigerator to harden.

Pour wax into jar


5) Allow candle to firm up completely, it takes about an hour but you can leave it longer.

Hardened wax of first layer


For my candle I wanted to make a two toned or bicolor one, so this was just part 1. If you only want one colour stop here, if you want multiple colours continue.

PART 2

6) Melt  shortening (along with scented wax melts and colour) – For this step I added no colour and decided to add a fragrance oil.

Melted shortening and scented oil



7) Pour carefully over already hardened wax- If your first layer isn’t completely set the colours will mix.There is likely to be some mixing regardless but if you are careful it will be minimal.

Pour second layer


8) Allow to harden.

Hardened second layer



9) Cut wick down.

Cut wick




EXTRAS


Name/Label

You can write on the label that usually comes with the jars or print one aND add it to the jar or the lid. You can give your candle a name or just write the name of the recipient on it. I named this one which is a mixture of vanilla sandlewood (coloured brownish red) and coconut (“white “) Merry and Bright -it was pretty random.

Decoration

Feel free to add some extra flare to the top of the candle e.g coloured wax shavings, coffee beans, dried flowers or whatever suits your scent or colour scheme . 

Add name



10) Add a bow and gift! OR keep it for yourself and light!

It’s lit!


Review

As far as being a candle, this works. I made a bunch last Christmas and kept one for myself which stayed solid all year round and burnt well. In terms of the scent, once you use wax melts or essential oils there is a good convincing scent. In terms of burn time they seem to burn more slowly than for example a BBW or Glade candle.

Cost

In terms of cost, the priciest item was the jar costing just under $2US, however if you are making multiple candles you can buy the jars in bulk or use other containers you already own. The shortening is extremely affordable and a large container can literally give you dozens of candles, the crayons cost less than $3 US for a box and you can get colours for multiple candles from one box. The wax scented cubes and essential oils are also very affordable and again you get so much use out of just one package or bottle. By my calculation this candle cost me approximately  $3.50 US to make and for that you get a one of a kind gift.

Try this and tell me how it goes and have an awesome day!

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