Kathy Maister's Start Cooking

5 Steps to Perfect Home-Made Gifts from the Kitchen

posted in Sweets by Kathy Maister

This is the year for you to WOW! all of your family and friends with that perfect home-made gift from the kitchen. There is no reason to spend money on gourmet-shop treats when you can make them yourself at a fraction of the cost. All my recipes are designed for the novice cook, so there is no need for you to feel like you are heading to an area outside your comfort zone.

1. Start by making a list of everyone who would really appreciate a decadent and truly delicious home-made gift.

This is not just the “naughty or nice” list. Any hand-made gift will be seen as a gift from the heart just because it shows a bit more effort than a store-bought gift. Let’s face it; some people would be just as happy with a beautifully wrapped jar of olives!

2. Choose the recipe

This is not as difficult as you might think! Have a look at these recipes and decide which one fits your skill level:

Decide how many cookies or pieces of fudge will make up a gift. Four is a good number to start with for an individual. Many cookie recipes, including my Hershey Kiss Cookie recipe, make 48 cookies. That’s 12 potential gifts right there! (By the way, the cookie jar in the above photo was my Mom’s cookie jar. From the age of about 5 years old, I was always the one who got their hand caught in the cookie jar!)

Of course there may be someone on your list that would prefer savory treat! Chicken Soup anyone?

3. Make up a grocery list

Check your food cupboard for the ingredients you may already have on hand. Be sure your ingredients are still fresh. Things like sugar and vanilla extract have a very long shelf life, but flour and walnuts will eventually go off even if stored properly. (Are those miniscule black dots in my flour actually moving????)

4. Decide on what’s the best way to wrap your food gift

This is a REALLY important step. You want your gift to stay fresh and still look fantastic.

Gift wrapping does not have to break the bank. Discount houses and craft stores sell really inexpensive and festive tin cans that are perfect for keeping home-made cookies fresh. A package of clear, cellophane, gift bags is also an option. You can synch the bags together with some festive yarn which is much less expensive than using ribbon. Your gift will look just like the way the gourmet shops wrap their sweet treats.

5. Startcooking!

All of my recipes are in a video or a photo-tutorial format. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words!

Happy Holidays!

Kathy Maister

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4 Comments

tafkajp said:

Your recipe for chocolate bark is way to complicated, if you want to make chocolate bark all you need to do is step on its tail. Sorry, I just can’t resist a bad joke.

startcooking.com said:

I LOVE it!

That was my BIG laugh out loud moment of the day!

Cheers,
Kathy

small home plans said:

Thanks fir the tips. I always give food as presents for Christmas. I believe that it is the most personalized thing that you can ever give!

Frieda said:

I’ve been looking for something to give my favorite waitress who lets me use free wifi at her coffee shop. Thanks for the tips!