Food for Friday

Do you like to bake and share homemade goodies for Christmas?  I remember once managing to acquire M&Ms® in the colors of a friend’s tartan (she plays in a bagpipe band), and putting together a cookie-mix-in-a-jar gift layered with those special candies ~ it was a real hit!

If you like to personalize your gifts with a handmade touch, check out Homemade Christmas, a collection of recipes, gift, and decorating ideas to help plan everything from tinsel at breakfast to your holiday open house and the gifts under the tree on Christmas morning.  There are even gift ideas for the beasts of both the field and the hearth.

This book includes a very wide range of recipes for all tastes and occasions, including some rather unique dishes.  Have you heard of Callaloo (crabmeat & coconut milk), Luku (starts with 8 hard-boiled eggs), or Lefse (Norwegian flatbread)?  There are also some very fun sweets recipes that kids would love to help with in the kitchen, such as this one.

Lincoln Logs

Ingredients
1 C chunky peanut butter
2 T butter, softened
1-1/4 C sifted powdered sugar
3 C crispy rice cereal
Chopped peanuts

Combine peanut butter, butter, and powdered sugar.  {They say that like it is so easy to incorporate things into peanut butter, don’t they??}  Add cereal; mix well, and crush slightly.  Shape into three 7×1-1/4″ logs.  Roll logs in crushed peanuts.  Wrap in plastic wrap and chill.  Slice in 1/2-inch thick discs.  This sounds awfully yummy to me!

C = Cup; T = Tablespoon

As I was flipping through the book, I noticed a letter from a contributor  about her family’s holiday traditions; gift opening did not commence til after a breakfast of homemade biscuits and chocolate gravy.  Chocolate gravy?  Here’s the recipe.

Chocolate Gravy

Ingredients
2 C sugar
4 T cocoa
1 stick butter or margarine
3 C milk, divided

Mix sugar, cocoa, and butter in large saucepan over medium heat.  Add 1/2 C milk; let mixture come to a boil, and cook for 10 minutes.  Add the rest of the milk, stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil.  Reduce heat to simmer, and let cook for 30 minutes.  Serve over hot homemade biscuits.

I’m just thinking that maybe someone left a pan of hot chocolate on the stove a little too long, and then figured out how to salvage it – and chocolate gravy was born!  I’m just not sure I can handle that much chocolate at dawn, but maybe I’ll get a chance to try it one day.

Have a sweet weekend!  R.J. McDonald, Santa and wildlife painter, will be here Saturday and Sunday for a signing of his prints – he’s bringing a cookbook with him, too – I hope I’ll get to see what it’s about.

~Janet @ The Christmas Place

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