With the holiday season fast approaching, the annual debate begins: what unique presents should we give to give those whom we love and cherish? What will stand out from the usual, store bought items that may (or may not) go over big? Gifts that come straight from the heart are remembered long after they’re unwrapped and the season is over — but what exactly is a gift from the heart? And who should you give them to?
Furthermore, how can you be sure your gift will be one-of-a-kind and truly appreciated?
We have some ideas about that, some edible treasures that anyone can make. Once you wrap them in pretty recycled paper and festoon them with ribbons and bows, your gift is sure to stand out under any Christmas tree. And best of all, many of these treats can go in the freezer and be saved for some time in the New Year.
Here are some reasons you should consider giving edible presents this year – they are the gifts that truly keep on giving!
The Recipes Are Easy and Easily Doubled
Let’s say you’ve got neighbors who watch your home and cat when you go away for a few days each year, and thanking them at Christmas is a must. But buying personal items may not be appropriate; you don’t know them that well, right? Making a batch of cookies and storing them in a pretty jar is a great solution to this dilemma. And if there are two or three neighbors who do this chore, you can double (or triple!) the recipe so that each person gets a dozen cookies. Whether it’s a sweet treat like this or a savory treat like a jar of homemade pasta sauce, the principle is the same. You’ve made a gift that is 100 percent original, and one that is tucked away for a later date. A much better “thank you” than a bouquet of flowers.
Everything Is Homemade — Even the Wrapping
Much as we all love that glossy paper Christmas gifts come wrapped in, it often ends up in the trash. Why not wrap your edible gifts in colorful newsprint, perhaps the weekly comics? Even plain brown paper does nicely if you draw festive decorations on it, or tie ribbons around it. And don’t forget to reuse containers you already have at home, like cocoa tins and peanut butter jars. This cuts down on costs, too, always a bonus at this expensive time of year. Be sure to get a piece of colorful construction paper at a craft store and make your own tags, in the shape of snow angels, perhaps, or a sled. These shapes are easy to draw, or you can use a cookie cutter to make the tag’s outline or a candy cane. Simple!
You’re Sparing The Environment
We are all concerned about the planet these days, and giving edible gifts in reusable jars is a small gesture toward helping it. Once the cookies or other treats are gobbled up, the container can be used for a bubble bath, or as a container for toothbrushes, or for items bought in bulk for the pantry, and for so many other things. It’s one less thing that goes into the recycle bin, and we all feel better when we create less waste.
Edible Gifts Are Less Expensive
No matter the item — sweet or savory — it’s always less expensive to make it yourself. Homemade edible gifts come in at least 50 percent cheaper than store-bought versions; anyone who has made Christmas shortbread can attest to that. If your family loves one item in particular — fruitcake, perhaps, or Christmas pudding — buying one for each person gets pricey very quickly. But doing it yourself helps you cut down on costs, and of course, you get to wrap it, too, which means you can opt for colorful jars, or boxes, or any other type of container that be made fancy in no time. And it will taste better than a store-bought item that may have been on the shelf for weeks — we guarantee it!
These Are Gifts from The Heart
Whenever someone receives something homemade, they know it’s been made with love, care, and affection. Showing someone you love them by giving them a homemade, edible gift is almost as good as saying “I love you” right out loud. Not quite, but almost!
Christmas is just around the corner, and before you know it, the tree will be up, there will be talks of Santa, and choirs will be singing carols in the neighborhood. The spirit of the season is upon us, and it’s time to get making homemade treats for everyone you know — friends, neighbors, folks at the office, and of course the family. It only takes an evening or two, or a Saturday afternoon, to get easy, edible gifts ready for everyone in your circle. Our cookbooks of homemade recipes will have you baking in no time, and soon you’ll be all set for the rush of the season that’s about to begin. You can find them below.
Edible gifts aren’t just great for the Christmas season
Edible gifts are wonderful year-round. Any time you’ve got someone’s birthday coming up, why not make a jar of fresh pesto from basil you’ve grown in your garden during the summer? Or double up on the recipe for your husband’s favorite cookies, and freeze a batch so you’re ready to surprise him on Father’s Day. Every season “tis the season” for easy, edible presents!
Giving folks edible gifts says so much more than you thought of them during the holidays. It says that you made an effort, that you wanted them to enjoy something totally original, and you planned it in advance. You didn’t just rush to the department store to buy a present at the last minute; you gave thought to what they would truly enjoy. Gifts like these are 100 percent unique, just like each person you know is unique. Offering them a delicious, homemade present says you think the world of them — and took a little time to prepare a special gift that shows it.
We have three books designed to give you all the ideas you need for easy, edible gifts this year. All from Louise Davidson, these include Gifts In Jars;Easy Homemade Edible Holiday Gifts, and Celebrate Christmas: 75 Sweet Treats Recipes For The Holidays.