Wednesday, November 11

Seasonal Gifts?

I have been trying to come up with some new ideas for gifts this year. Things that are consumable or reusable and not just "stuff".

A few years ago, gifts in a jar were all the rage, but it's not incredibly special to just layer the ingredients, right? Why not take this a step further and do some sand art? It isn't difficult if you have a little patience, some small measuring spoons, a bamboo skewer, and a sense of humor.

First, an online video showing how an artist in Petra, Jordan, creates images in sand.

Simple, right?!

My first attempt, making a pine tree from the Mexican Spice mix. I highly recommend you make a lot of practice attempts, perhaps while mixing up enough spices for your own consumption, because it isn't incredibly easy, and you'll need to play around with it. Also, I suggest you don't forget an ingredient (like I did with the corn starch - you can see it piled up on the top). Pick out a design that is simple, and hide the unneeded colors in the middle of the jar for 'filler' - the chili powder and red pepper are stuffed in the middle of this jar since the design didn't have any red in it.

Simple holiday designs could include:
Snowman, Tree, Christmas Tree Ornament, Star, Candle, Candy Cane - if you're ambitious try a scene or a decorated tree? Please let me know how yours turn out if you make these.

Mexican Spice Mix
3/4 cup dried minced onion OR 1/4 cup onion powder
1/4 cup chili powder
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
2 Tablespoons dried red pepper, crushed
1 Tablespoon oregano
2 Tablespoons dried minced garlic
2 Tablespoons ground cumin

add 2 Tablespoons mix and 1/2 cup water to 1 lb browned, drained, ground beef, heat through until water mostly boils off.

Spaghetti Spice Mix
1/2 Tablespoon celery seed
1 Tablespoon dried parsley
1 Tablespoon dried basil
1 Tablespoon dried minced garlic
1 Tablespoon ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
2 Tablespoons dried minced onions OR 2 teaspoons onion powder

Add 1 Tablespoon mix per 1 cup spaghetti sauce.

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