Gifts From the Kitchen: Save a Penny, Please Many

Every year, we try to make at least some home-made gifts.  The kids love to make things and I do too.  I think there is intrinsic value in a homemade gift and thus intrinsic value in making them especially with my children.  I often invite friends to help, especially friends who describe themselves as craftaphobic or craft-challenged.  The children have fun, I have fun, and there’s another adult to help clean up the mess.

This year our recipe involves vanilla, salt, coloured sugar, baking soda, and citric acid.  “Eat it?” my son asked as he held the sugary mix toward his lips.  “No!”  The salt in question was Epsom salts and the recipe was for making bath fizzers/bombs.  It’s been messy and fun and the results are really fabulously fizzy.  If you’re interested check out Not Martha’s great recipes and more.

In the “to do one year” section of my recipe binder, I have some great recipes for food mixes to give as gifts.  These are great mixes that you can make with the kids.  I think half the fun is in the packaging.  Older children can help brainstorm cool packaging ideas and younger children can help with the decorating of labels and containers.  These are good gifts for people who like to cook a little.  If you want to give it to someone who doesn’t cook, I would say don’t.  Some people are just happier with a plate of something ready to freeze, eat, or serve.  But for everyone else, these give all the pleasure of fresh baked goodies with only a fraction of the work.

The recipes for some of these home-made mixes will be up shortly.  In the meantime, you can check out some fun packaging options at China FairPlum PartyThe Container Store, a Thrift store, or your local grocery store in the “housewares” section.  I am a huge fan of the classic mason jar topped with some fabric, a rubber band and a ribbon.  Remember when packaging that you do want to keep it food safe.  If you use something from a Thrift store or a tin of unknown finish, make sure you wash it carefully and well first, then package the mix in a Ziploc bag to keep it food safe.

Bon appetit. ttyl your BFF (Boston Family Foodie)

For more info: Not Martha blog

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