Thus far, we have received the following: 3 tins of cookies, a large tin in the shape and designed look like a streetcar, of pralines, several small loaves of breads, 2 bottles of wine, one bottle of limoncello, a basket of various cheeses and crackers.
I have cranked out a dozen jars of lemon curd, six jars of Morrocan Preserved lemons and a vat of limoncello, (yet to be bottled up). Also, the 10 boxes of whole lemons which were shipped out ten days or so ago.
Oh, and our dog Papi has received some special treats as well. Some homemade dog cookies and a couple of rawhide chews and a very cool bandana.
Bereft of a lemon crop this year due to last year's hard freeze that literally nipped the blossoms in the bud I am having to get more than a bit creative in the kitchen with making gifts .
I have been making some herbal vinegars and oils and I still have about a dozen pint size jars of preserved figs that I put up this past summer.
I guess I'll have to start baking soon. Quick breads are easy and not too expensive to make.
I do have a huge bag of pecans that I have yet to crack so, I can get creative with doing some things with them.
This will be the first year in 25 years or more that I have not had lemons this time of year. I had to break it to my brother and some other loved ones up North gently as they so look forward to getting a box of lemons each year.
I was thinking what I have been given in the food department over the years, and I would say that about 80% of the time it is spices and maybe 20% of the time chocolate. And when I give things, I would say it is about 80% chocolate and 20% spices. I think I almost never give actual "food."
My favorite food gifts that I receive every year at Christmas time are a meat pie from my mother-in-law and a tin of butter tarts from my mother. I frequently gift chocolates, candy, jams, cookies or wine. Nothing homemade but I try to find unique treats when I travel for our parents. I also search the grocery stores for specific spices my mother-in-law can not get here.
Thanks Lagatta. At least the trees are not dead and I recently cleared the grove, did some pruning and heavily mulched them. Here's hoping for a banner year in 2019.
Mich, spices are really great gifts to give to the right people who you know will use them. I so wish I had bought more exotic spices when I was in Istanbul. The Spice Bazaar there would blow your mind. Overwhelming but goodness gracious the display and selection was heavenly and the aromas sent one off into an olfactory near overload.
A friend of mine just dropped by a couple pint jars of pickled mirlitons. Made with white wine vinegar, rice vinegar, cider vinegar, black peppercorns, salt, coriander seeds, dill, mustard seed, garlic, chili peppers, shishito pepper and carrots. The raw mirliton sticks take on this fabulous medley of flavors.
I received a lovely gift of food today. A friend who has been starting up a boulangerie had been making some rye bread (100% or nearly so) and gave me half a loaf. I also have a knife to slice very thin slices. Yum!
Casi the Spice Bazaar sounds amazing and yes, something I would really enjoy! What an experience that must have been. Before I went to Northern Ireland in September I did some research on unique shops in Belfast and found this delicatessen named www.sawersbelfast.com that had so many interesting and local products, I could have spent hours in there! That is where I purchased spices and jams.
Lagatta I now have a huge craving for some rye bread! I gave up all bread, rolls, bagels, buns etc. about 6 months ago and combined with a 40 minute walk (outside or on my treadmill) approximately 4-5 days a week, I have lost 30 pounds and am still losing. My skin has also changed dramatically. But, for a Christmas treat I think I might gift/treat myself to a half loaf of rye bread! Enjoy your thin slices!