Thursday, December 17, 2009

Thrifty Gifty #15—Last Minute Gifts and Linky Party

Linking up with The Inspired Room and Funky Junk's Saturday Night Special, and Frugal Friday at the Shabby Nest.

Click on the button to see all 15 Thrifty Gifty posts. There's still time to make a few if you still need some gifts!

Okay, guys, as I hinted at yesterday, I’m suddenly in a Christmas crunch…I don’t know how it always sneaks up on me like this! Plus, my creative well is running a little dry at this point. So I’ve just collected a few quick ideas for gifts from the kitchen.

Always popular, gifts of food can be very economical as well as delicious! I’ve never heard of anyone saying “rats! another plate of cookies/truffles/cinnamon rolls!” Well, maybe fruitcake, although I don’t know, has anyone really ever eaten fruitcake?

Here are a few ideas that are perhaps a little more unique than the usual:
How about pretty jars of homemade granola? Melissa at 320 Sycamore posted a recipe her whole family loves.

These Cran Crackle Bars from BHG have pretzels and salted nuts in addition to dried cranberries and chocolate chips. I love a sweet-salty combo!

Soup mix in a jar would be appreciated on a cold evening. Here is a list of about 2 dozen soup-mix-in-a-jar recipes.

Here’s one of our family favorites: my grandma used to make gumdrop cake every Christmas. It’s pretty, it’s delicious, and mini loaves would make nice gifts.
Grandma’s Gumdrop Cake
  1. Cream together 1 stick of butter and 1 c. sugar
  2. Add 1 egg and combine
  3. In separate bowl, put 2 c. small spice gumdrops, 1/2 lb white raisins, and 1 c. pecan halves (which have been fried first in a little butter)…set aside
  4. Sift together 2 c. flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  5. Put about 1/2 c. flour mixture over gumdrop mixture…stir well to coat
  6. Add remaining flour mixture, alternately with 1 1/2 c. applesauce, to creamed mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture…add 1 tsp vanilla extract
  7. Dissolve 1/2 tsp baking soda in 1 1/2 tsp hot tap water and add to batter
  8. Fold gumdrop mixture into batter
  9. Pour into well-greased or lined loaf pans and bake @ 275 for 2 hrs
My recipe says this makes more than 2 regular loaves; I’m not sure how many mini loaves. You may need to adjust baking time for minis. I personally skip the raisins, but must have the nuts!

This picture is from MidWest Living; we don’t make it in cans, and I can’t vouch for their recipe, but gumdrop cake photos were scarce.

Last chance to link up!
Please follow the linky party rules. If you don’t I will have to delete your link, and that makes me feel like a big meanie. MckLinky will be open until midnight Sunday
  1. use the code on my sidebar (upper right) to put my button in your post
  2. your post must be an inexpensive (let’s say under $10, approximately) DIY gift idea or something you made using one of my ideas
  3. link to your specific post, not your home page


Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

Love the ideas, Holly. :) If you do this series next year, I'll be able to link up with several projects. I can't post about them this Christmas b/c the people who are receiving them read my blog. ;) ;)

Angie @ The Shabby Chic Cottage said...

Thanks for posting! I had never heard of or seen gumdrop cake. That would be so pretty as a gift!

Angie @ The Shabby Chic Cottage said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage said...

I would be happy with any of the food gifts you've listed. They sound yummy!

Kim said...

The cranberry bars look wonderful (I have a soft spot for cranberry), and the gumdrop loaves will be on our "try out" list - I love having baking projects that will entice the kids.

Funky Junk Interiors said...

Wonderful ideas! I doubt any would make it outside the door if I created that kind of delight in my kitchen. :)

Thanks for linking up to SNS!

FJ Donna

Amy said...

I found you from the link up at Funky Junk. I'm so glad I did, I will for sure be hanging out at your blog!

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

Oh these are all great ideas~thanks!

Dianna said...

Foodie gifts are fun to give as presents.

I like giving decorative containers that can be saved and used year round.