I hope everyone had a great Christmas! I know I did, I’m still full from all the eating!
This Christmas was really great for me, because this year I had time to make homemade gifts.
For my mom, I knitted her this scarf. I’m not the best knitter, and the only stitch I know is the knit stitch, but it turned out pretty good. It was down to the wire though; I finished it at 3am the day before Christmas Eve!
For my brother, I made homemade marshmallows. A few Christmas’s ago he spotted some “homemade” marshmallows in a Williams-Sonoma catalogue, and he wanted them. Well when I went into the store, they were $16!! For 10 marshmallows! I love Williams-Sonoma, but sometimes the prices are a bit ridiculous! So I found some that were a little cheaper at Crate & Barrel. But this year, I had time to make them myself. They’re strawberry, peppermint, and vanilla flavored. I’m hoping to post the recipe one day soon. The wonders of vegetarian gelatin amaze me! I also made him some hot cocoa mix to go along with them.
For my Dad, I roasted him some cashews. My dad has always been a difficult person to buy for, but he loves cashews. Every year my brother and I would fight over who was going to get him the big jar of roasted nuts. Well my brother has moved on to other gift ideas, and I get to keep the cashews. Instead of buying some, I decided to make them myself. I left some just simply salted, and I put a spice mixture on the rest. The recipe is as follows:
Spicy Roasted Cashews:
2 cups cashews
1 tablespoons salt (You can put more or less, but my father has been dealing with some high sodium intake lately, so I decided to go lightly
1 tablespoon oil (I used olive because I liked the taste, but I’m sure any would work.)
Optional: (For the spicy ones) 1 tablespoon chili powder, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon paprika
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. (Less to clean up!)
First, toss the nuts in the olive oil, to gently coat them so the salt and spices will stick. Then add the salt and spices (if using) and spread out onto the baking sheet.
Bake for about 20 minutes. You’ll start to smell the nuts, that’s how I normally know that they are done. Take them out and let them cool, and munch away!
I also got really cute Chinese takeout containers for them, as well as a tin for my brother’s marshmallows from The Container Store. They have all sorts of containers, it’s a great website to check out!
Later this week I’ll be posting some cookies as well as more cupcakes!