Loss of a special friend, not through death, but circumstances. Employment for me. A new lease on vision for my husband. Another year older for all. Learning new crafts and revisiting some old ones. And becoming inspired by some absolutely amazing artists of all kinds. Just to list a few things.
I truly hope that 2010 will be a year that finds us all safe, secure and happy.
As some of you may notice I have gotten into the holiday spirit by creating a new playlist, just for the next couple of days. I hope you enjoy the music. I also hope you all have a fantastic Christmas and enjoy spending it with friends and family.
Well I'm not sure it struck or was just tempted(grin)
I was reading through the blogs the other day I ran across this post, at maya* made. if you haven't ever poked around her blog, I seriously suggest that you do. Well I saw these little gift boxes that she urged everyone to try. I loved the idea of recycling and the idea of the "gingerbread" look. I thought about the milk carton I had in the fridge that was almost empty and remembered that I had seen some brown paper recently. Was it under the stair storage? Hmmmm? Gripped with the idea that I wanted to try this small project, I set about getting started. I prepared the carton as described.
When I went to get the brown paper, I discovered the Minahounies had obviously decided to use it for something. Heck, maybe they mailed off all of my socks that have gone missing. Minahounies? I hear you ask. They are the little mischievous house elves that move things or take things when you are looking for something. You know the ones. Anywho...
Since I couldn't find the brown paper for a gingerbread look I decided to go with white butcher paper. Luckily the Minahounies hadn't gotten to that yet. But to be honest I could hear a small snap of fingers and an aggravated growl when I picked up the paper. While I was planning how my little house was going to look I began to try and figure out what I was going to put in the box after it was finished and who would get it. I decided I would surprise my dearest and oldest friend with a hot chocolate gift box. I can't remember if I have mentioned about Our Best Bites recipe for the Ultimate Hot Chocolate. I love this recipe. What better gift box for hot chocolate than a converted milk carton? So here is my version of Miss Maya's gift box...
And the other (that's a chair at a table and a light above it in the right hand window)
And then the items to go in the box. Sans the marshmallows, yup I am going to send those along as well. I created the the packaging for the ingredients, so that it would be coordinated. Yes I know very Martha Stewart of me. Scary, I know. It's not perfect but I am proud of it and how it turned out. And it was actually wicked fun to do, as far as drawing the house details and such.
Ok, so the Brown Eyed Baker is hosting an amazing giveaway. And I want to win. To enter you create a post on your favorite holiday recipe. Well, during the holiday season I usually bake more cookies. So that will be the recipe I share today.
The recipe is for my all time favorite cookie. It's different and unusual. It comes from a cookie cook book my mother has used for years, ever since I was a wee girl. It calls for one ingredient that I can no longer find. If anyone knows of how to get a hold of it please, PLEASE, contact me. Even though you can't find the exact ingredient you can substitute. Curious? Just read on.....
Egyptian Rose Leaves* (and yes they taste like a rose)
1/3 cup of shortening (I use real butter) 2 eggs 1 tsp rose soluble liquid (this is the ingredient that I can no longer locate. So if you have any ideas let me know. Rose water, cooking quality, is what you will need to use as substitution, but I would increase it to 1 1/2 to 2 tsp depending on how strong your rose water is) 2 cups of all purpose flour 1/4 tsp salt red or pink or green decorators sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Mix shortening, sugar, eggs and rose soluble until fluffy. Stir in flour and salt. Mix thoroughly. Chill for several hours or overnight. Using 1/3 of the dough at a time (keep the rest refrigerated) roll into 1 inch balls. Place on lightly greased baking sheet. Flatten with the heel of your hand to about a 3/8 inch thickness. Cut two slits 1/2 inch down at the top. Pinch the bottom to form base of leaf. Sprinkle with decorator sugar. Bake for 8-10 minutes until very light golden brown. Then enjoy!
You will note when eating these cookies that at first you will not note really any strong flavor. That is until you breath in. Then you will find that your head will fill with the most delicate, lovely rose scent. Ahhhh, heavenly.
If any of you happen to try these I would love to hear what you think of them.
Good luck to anyone else that enters the Brown Eyed Baker's contest and wish me luck too!
* This recipe comes from the Betty Crocker Cooky Book. My mother received hers well over 40 years ago as a gift. Here is the modern version. Whether it contains the same recipes, I'm not sure.