GIFTS IN JARS: SAVORY AND SWEET AND ONE FOR THE KIDS TO PLAY WITH
CONFETTI BEAN SOUP MIX
1 pound bag each: dried navy, great northern, red kidney and pinto beans and green split peas
12 beef bouillon cubes
3/4 cup dried minced onions or bit more if needed
4 teaspoons dried savory
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
4 bay leaves
Additional ingredients to make soup
12 cups water, divided
1 can stewed tomatoes or tomatoes with Italian seasonings (like oregano, garlic and basil)
Salt to taste
Hot pepper sauce to taste (optional)
Red wine vinegar to splash on each serving (optional)
Combine beans and peas.
Place 3 cups in each of four large jars or baggies. Set aside
In each of 4 snack size baggies, put in 3 bouillon cubes, 3 tablespoons onions, 1 teaspoon savory, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon pepper and 1 bay leaf.
Yield: 4 batches soup
Place contents of one bag of beans in a Dutch oven; add 7 cups water. Bring to a boil; boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat; cover and let stand for 1 hour.
Drain beans and discard liquid. Add remaining water and contents of one seasoning bag. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until beans are tender, about 1 hour.
Add tomatoes, salt and, if desired, pepper sauce. Simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Pass vinegar.
Add a ham bone!
When you cook beans for soup, add a ham bone in with beans and seasoning.
From: Taste of Home adapted slightly
CRANBERRY/CHERRY DARK CHOCOLATE TRAIL MIX
1 bag dark chocolate chips
1-1/2 cups each: dried cranberries or cherries or combo and sliced or slivered toasted almonds
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1/2 cup salted pistachios
Easy peasy! Mix everything together. Store in 8 oz or larger jars.
Yield: 6 cups.
GINGERBREAD PLAY DOUGH
No worries about kids eating this. It tastes just like regular play dough that you make - super salty! But the aroma is yummy and so is the color.
Fun to roll out and to cut into holiday shapes and decorate with beads, buttons, etc. Poke a hole into each one, let air dry and insert a ribbon to hang on the tree as ornaments.
1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
1 tablespoon cream of tartar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
1 cup water
Mix everything together. Let the little ones help.
Put in a saucepan and, over low heat, stir continually until it forms a ball.
Remove from heat, dump onto parchment or wax paper or even the counter. When it’s cool enough to touch, knead until smooth.
Pack into airtight container. Keeps 2 weeks.
From: Buggy and Buddy