Homemade Christmas food gifts?

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Joined Jan 6, 2015
Hello all! Home cook on a budget here, and this is my dilemma: I have had a heck of a November/December (losing a job, getting a new job, basically emotional and financial whiplash!). Now it's <20 days until Christmas and I have NOTHING. PLANNED. For GIFTS. 

<panicked hyperventilation>

I'd like for the bulk of my presents to be homemade food gifts, but my only idea so far is lemon curd. I'd like a variety of things if possible. My inlaws are easy to please as far as eating goes, but my mother does not eat things with a lot of extra sugar (cookies, jams, the lemon curd is a no go). So I have come to the experts of ChefTalk for advice! 

I've got pancetta curing, but it won't be ready in time. Both my father and father in law prefer Budweiser to my all grain brews. No time for hard cider either. Curse my lack of planning! Save me, ChefTalk!
 
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Joined Sep 5, 2008
Lemon curd sounds like a great Xmas gift. 

Pickles? I like to make pickled turnips: use the following recipe but halve the salt and use a whole beet for a bright red color (I don't like the palish relish color he gets on his turnips, with a whole beet yours will look bright red): http://www.davidlebovitz.com/pickled-turnips-turnip-recipe/   - well you could pickle just about anything, for example a mason jar with pickled cauliflower, carrots and cucumber spears, with a bay leaf, would look very nice!

Sweets. Cookies. Chocolates, if you know how to make them. Chocolate truffles for example. Or, easier: dried fruit (prunes, dates, apricots...) stuffed with almond paste, you can even add a piece of walnut inside each ball of almond paste before you stuff the fruit. Rats, more sugar. 

 
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Joined Jun 5, 2015
Make homemade baileys

100 ml of espresso (nescafe if in a hurry)

500 ml of condensed milk

500 ml of irish whiskey or even brandy

200 ml of cream with about 30% fat

mix thoroughly and pour into some fancy bottles and cork them up. decorate with a lasso or something and give them out. 
 
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Joined Jun 23, 2015
"Both my father and father in law prefer Budweiser"

Homemade cheese balls. Or try an old southern favorite.

Cheese Straws

1 pound sharp cheese

1 stick butter

½ teaspoon paprika

2 cups flour

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

Grate cheese. Add all other ingredients to the cheese.

Work the mixture with hands. Press out strips with cookie press. Bake at 350 for 12 to 15 minutes. Cut while hot.

use the star shaped die on the cookie press.
 
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Joined Apr 3, 2008
Not sure if you're looking to give something in a jar or something more perishable than that but I truly believe that a beautiful loaf of homemade bread is the ultimate foodie gift.
 
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Joined Sep 21, 2001
I've made different rubs and spice mixes for gifts. Preserved lemons are easy. Cookies are a given. chocolate truffles. BBQ sauce. Mustard.
 
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I'm going to hand some folks bags of stock and some folks sausage.  I'm treating my two coworkers to rillettes, cornichon, caviar and warm baguette for lunch - hopefully when we're having present wrapping day at the shop . . . and enjoying adult beverages.   /img/vbsmilies/smilies/drinkbeer.gif
 
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Joined Dec 9, 2016
This year, a lot of people on my list are getting handcrafted finishing salts... especially co-workers. So far, I've made Sriracha Lime, Bloody Mary, Smoked, and Flavours of Tuscany. This weekend, I'll be making Maple Bacon and Mushroom Umami salts.
 
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Last year I did a trio of vinaigrettes; a honey balsamic, a blueberry lavender, and a rose hibiscus.
 
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Last year, I made several batches of salted caramels and gave them along with their main gift. Pecan tassies are also a big hit, as are spiced or candied mixed nuts.
 
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Joined Apr 3, 2008
 
Last year, I made several batches of salted caramels and gave them along with their main gift. Pecan tassies are also a big hit, as are spiced or candied mixed nuts.
Oh yes I received some hand rolled caramels last year and it was one of my favorite gifts!
 
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Joined Jan 6, 2015
Wow, I knew you folks wouldn't let me down. GREAT ideas, and I can't wait to try them. Maybe I'll have to keep some for myself... :D
 

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