Friday, 30 December 2011

Foodie Gifts

I am the sort of person who likes to make gifts of the edible sort, so this year I thought I'd make Homemade Peppermint Creams to give out as presents. I had wanted to try making these for a while, as the recipe seemed so simple and easy, and luckily, it was!

The recipe I used:

450g icing sugar
2 egg whites
peppermint flavouring
food colouring & dark chocolate optional.

Basically you whisk the egg white til it forms soft peaks, then sift in the icing sugar and mix til you have a dough that is kneadable. Then you can add your flavouring and colouring if you wish to do so. Then roll out the dough, cut out into shapes and leave to set on a lined baking tray for 24 hours. Then I added melted dark chocolate to them.

I made one batch and added a few drops of blue food colouring to half of it. I left the other half of the batch white. I used four different shaped cutters :
star :: heart :: circle :: flower

The chocolate part was the most fun, although I ended up ruining a few (so they had to be eaten, of course) I put them in the fridge for a couple of hours after doing the chocolate to help it set.

Then I packaged them up in these cute little celophane bags with a label. These went down really well as they taste exactly like shop bought peppermint creams, only they looked sooo much prettier!

I did a little handmade/homemade hamper for my aunt - some homemade strawberry jam, handmade heart, some chocolates, a pretty teatowel, crackers, cheese, homemade chutney and some homemade peppermint creams. The hamper basket was £2 from Tiger and I wrapped it all in celophane. It cost hardly anything to make but it was made with lots of love!

The chutney was made by me in November but I didn't get around to prettifying it up until last week. I picked polka dot red for the men and floral print for the ladies. Its Delia Smiths Christmas chutney recipe and the little jars are in fact spice jars from IKEA, which are the perfect size for gift giving.

I am so chuffed that I made this chutney, it was one of those things that I really wanted to make, but I thought I would never get around to doing. I ended up making it with two lovely friends, so we split the cost of the ingredients, the jars, and shared all the chopping and cleaning up! It turned out to be so much fun and worked out a lot cheaper than if I had made it on my own at home.

It also meant that the girls got to use up some of my extensive fabric stash for their toppers, which I was pleased about too, as its far too big and I'll never manage to use it all.

Now not a gift as such, but I made a couple of deserts to take round to my brothers on Boxing Day, and this one especially was soo delicious! Its a Raspberry and Chocolate Tart, made with shortcrust pastry.

I lined my dish and blind baked the pastry. Then added a layer of delicious raspberries.

The rest was 250ml double cream and 250g dark chocolate poured over the top of the raspberries and decorated rather messily with some chocolate curls!

The best way to do the curls is to warm the chocolate by leaving it somewhere warm, then use a vegetable peeler to shave the curls off!

Lastly, my blueberry baked cheesecake. Sooo yummy and went down a storm.

I must experiment with other fruits and flavours too, I like the idea of some sort of compote on top. I think that would be even yummier!

Hope you enjoyed my foodie treats!


  1. Mmmmm yum!!!

    The food is all so pretty and the hamper is gorgeous. I want to do hampers next Christmas. My charity/car boot mission this year is to collect baskests etc :)

  2. This is my plan for gifts in 2012, they all look delish, I can see why everyone was so pleased to receive gifts like these :) x x x x

  3. Oooooooh this is such a delish post Gem. LOVE IT!!! Will try making peppermint creams with the Princess.
    Hope you had a gorgeous Christmas and all the best for 2012. I agree with Gem above (We should sing "We Three Gems...") that 2012 is a good year for making gifts.
    Lots of love
    x x x x x

  4. I absolutely love all your foodie treats. The hamper is a gorgeous Christmas present, lucky aunty! The fabric covers are such a pretty touch. I didn't get round to making as many gifts as I had planned but was very pleased with my fudge.

  5. Delicious! I tried making peppermint creams a few months ago, but my icing sugar was lumpy and it went awful, you've inspired me to try again!

    Would you share your chutney recipe? They look fantastic!

    Such a fantastic idea to make hampers! Such a lovely gift! x

  6. Gem your peppermint creams and puddings look delicious.
    Love the hamper you made too. This is an idea to go in my notebook!

  7. Your little jars of chutney are so sweet and what a delicious looking hamper.

  8. This all looks delicious! We gave (and received) quite a few handmade gifts this year including a hamper of chutneys and pickled onions from my Mum. Love your little jars all decorated up.

    Have a great 2012! Beth (the linen cat)x

  9. Aww everything looks amazing! :)

  10. AWH love these! I also love the shape of the jars you used! I made lots of homemade gifts this year and too made chutney but mine was just off the good food website, it was SO easy tho and even cheaper than I ever thought it could be! It's really nice that you did it with friends tho, id love to be able to organise stuff like that! xxx


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