Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas Baking Party-12 Days till Chirstmas

There is nothing like receiving a box of homemade goodies in the mail that are packaged cute for your enjoyment!  So this year Cherry Kissed and Friends teamed up to make amazingly delish goodies to send all over the country (to our neighbors and close friends) as their Christmas gifts.  It was a way to give something special, cute, and inexpensive to a lot of people we love.

Click Picture to get the Peppermint Stick Cocoa Jar recipe!

   The goodies we made included: White and Dark Chocolate Dipped Pretzels with Toppings, Cookie Cutter Fudge, Saltine Toffee, Grandma's Tomato Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting Jars, Mom's Pumpkin Can Bread, and Peppermint Stick Cocoa in Jars!

Some of all the goods! You will need LOTS of space, it’s helpful to set up stations)

 Just to give you an idea, it took three of us ladies approximately 7 hours to complete this task.  Baking, making, creating, decorating, making tags, wrapping, cooking, cleaning, and separating!! With probably another couple of hours for grocery shopping the week before.  We also had to multiply our recipes to get the amounts we wanted.  It was a good lesson in math and creative skills.  None the less, you can do this. It’s super fun and we were all REALLY thrilled with how much we got to take home and send off as adorable gifts that you can't buy in the stores.

Out of everything we made, my favorite (and the items I will continue to make) are Michelle's Saltine Toffee.  It was sooo good and incredibly easy, fast, and inexpensive.  

Click for Recipe: A MUST try! Packaging:Zip-locks with Scrap-booking paper printed on,cut, then stapled:)

The Cocoa Jars were so adorable and took no cooking time at all. They may be a little bit more expensive then some of our other goodies, but still not bad considering they’re tasty and cute!

My other favorite was the Dipped Pretzels because you can make them look so darn cute and the few ingredients can make a TON.

No recipe needed, just dip pretzels in chocolate, almond bark, or candy melting chocolate.  Melting chocolate worked better than regular chips. Right after you dip them in the chocolate put them down on parchment paper and decorate them with anything you like! Coconut would have been cute or mini white chips!  We used Andie’s mint chips, mini chocolate chips, mini M&M’s, Heath chips, and Gingerbread crumbs.

The last but not least favorite of mine was the Cookie Cutter Fudge because we poured the fudge right into foil lined cookie cutters and then decorated, refrigerated, and wrapped them up. After they cool you can remove the foil lining the bottom of each cutter and wrap it up in whatever you want to give out.  It also made a ton!! And the cookie cutters come with the fudge as part of your gift!

Click for Recipe! Easy Peesy fun!

 For the Cookie Cutter Fudge, we got our cutters at Trader Joe’s.  You can get three for a dollar! Wal-Mart couldn't even beat that; there's sold for $2.99 for three cookie cutters.

Fun picture of our Pretzel Stick Assembly Lineup! Shows you how much space you REALLY need!

Those were my top favorites. I loved that we did my Mom's Pumpkin Bread Can's and Kendall's Grandma’s Tomato Spice Cake Jars but I feel they were a lot more work for what you get. But they are really special, so it was worth the extra work! Just start saving up good cans from soups or coffee way in advance for the Mom's Pumpkin Bread recipe.

Finished Pumpkin Breads! They are so cute! My mom would be proud:)

Kendall's Grandma's Layered Spice Cake turned out AMAZING! Gosh, these  little guys are so cute, it’s hard to eat them! Because they have cream cheese frosting, keep them refrigerated. WE scooped the cake and frosting in layers into mason jars.  They are an amazingly special gift to give and especially to receive.  I'm sure there are lots of other cakes you could do this technique with of layering in a jar.  *What we found out to work the best is to use the smaller wide mouth mason jars. That way you can really get your cake in the jar as clean as possible. *It would have also been nice to have a pastry piping bag to get the icing in there a little easier too! Already I had friends see the pictures of these and they hoped they were receiving this as a gift.  Maybe we should have made more.

Finished Pretzel Sticks Bagged up! 

Don't forget the parchment paper needed to cover everything as you prep and lots of cute tags and bags to label all your cute goodies. It really adds that special unique touch! Good luck with your baking extravaganza's this Christmas season. Can't wait to hear what you create.  Do you have any good ideas you want to share?  Please comment on our blog or facebook so that others can learn from your good ideas as well.  

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