Thursday, December 16, 2010

3 Wonderful Homemade Gift Ideas Straight From Your Kitchen

You can give out gifts using stuff or ingredients that are readily available in the house. Some great homemade gift ideas that can be found or made in your kitchen are chocolate-dipped nuts, molded candles and muffin mix in a jar.

Gift-giving does not have to be difficult or expensive. In fact, you don’t always have to step out of the house and hit the malls to look for presents for your loved ones. You can find and make your own gifts using stuff you already have at home, particularly in your kitchen. From wrapped nut gifts to homemade cookies, the great thing about homemade gifts is that you can add a personal and unique touch to it and make the person feel that it really comes from you.

Chocolate-dipped nuts

For the friend or special someone who is a chocoholic, chocolate-dipped nut gifts will definitely satisfy their sweet tooth. For the recipe, you will need a cup of semisweet chocolate chips, 2 tablespoons of butter, 1 egg, 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted, ½ teaspoon vanilla, ½ cup chopped peanuts, a dash of salt and flaked coconut. Over low heat, melt the chocolate and butter into a medium saucepan. After melting, allow it to cool until lukewarm. Beat in the egg until smooth and mix in the sifted sugar, salt and vanilla. Mix in half of the coconut flakes and peanuts. Let the mixture cool for an hour. After cooling, roll them into 1 inch balls into the remainder of the coconut flakes. Chill the balls for three hours. This recipe is fairly easy to make and yields about 30 chocolate-dipped nuts. You can put these sweets into a personalized jar or box. Add a ribbon and a sincere note to make it even sweeter.

Molded candles

Candles make cute presents and are functional as well as decorative. You will only need to buy the paraffin candle wax and candlewick if you don’t already have it. Or, use old, used candles. The other things you need may be readily available, like a heavy pot for melting the wax and a cupcake or jelly mold. The first thing to do is to melt the wax in the pot. Make sure it doesn’t get too hot and, when the wax is ready, prepare the wick by dipping it into the wax a few times. This will give it a ‘wax coating’. Make a small hole into the jelly or cupcake mold for the wick to be inserted in. Pull the wick through and pour the wax into the mold. Make sure it doesn’t spill or reach the brim, then allow it to cool. In a while, you will notice that the top part will “shrink”, pour a little layer of wax on it and leave it to cool. To remove the finished candle from the mold, you can run the outer part of the mold with hot water and it will easily slip out. You can make as many candles as you want. Just put them in a fancy box with a special note attached to it.

A jar of muffin mix

A jar of muffin mix is a wonderful gift idea for people who love to bake but may not have the time to do so. You will need a cup of vegetable shortening, 1/3 cup of baking powder, 2/3 cup of sugar and a tablespoon of salt. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Cut the shortening into the mixture and distribute evenly. Put the mix in an airtight container or jar. Decorate the jar with ribbons and paste fancy paper on its surface. You can write notes and the muffin recipe on a fancy paper, too.

Gifts do not have to be expensive or bought from a store. Usually, people pay more attention to the thought behind the present. Homemade gifts are a great way of expressing yourself and letting the other person now that you actually made a gift just for them.