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DEC. '08 DISCUSSION: Best Gift Ideas For The Food Enthusiast
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Sierra-bear
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 7:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow Laura,

Your rosemary-apple cider jelly sounds absolutely wonderful... I've never heard of that combination before and it just sounds heavenly... Hope you have a wonderful Christmas in Australia.
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Debbie



Joined: 21 Feb 2005
Posts: 861
Location: Paris

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can you share the recipe for worcestershire sauce with us all please? (in an appropriate thread of course).

That is something we miss and if it is that easy to make I will whip up a few batches to share.

Funnily enough, I made apple and rosemary jelly this year for the charity sale. Made nearly 20 jars of it and it sold within an hour. Here I was worried that it would not sell at all. I had kept one jar back and we had some on the weekend with a rack of lamb. It was delicious - even if I say so myself... Laughing

Would be interested to know how you did yours with apple cider. I just used whole apples.
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If you cannot feel your arteries hardening, eat more cheese. If you can, drink more red wine. Diet is just "die" with a "t" on the end. Exercise is walking into the kitchen.
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wdillsmith



Joined: 29 Jul 2008
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the past when I've had time, I've gone with homemade chocolate truffles. We actually had some fun with different flavors and coatings, and bought little craft boxes at Michaels to give them to people as gifts. I was pleasantly surprised both by how good they were and how positive the response was. They really are not that hard to make and you'll find an endless variety of flavors to stir in, coatings to roll them in, etc.
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sweetbabyjames



Joined: 05 May 2006
Posts: 357

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 4:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My winners this year are Panforte and pears poached in spiced port/red wine.

I used the panforte recipe from Epicurious.com, adding a little cocoa and substituting prunes for candied citron. The flavor is deep & mysterious.

For the pears, I used the cold-pack canning method, fitting as many raw large pear slices as I could into small Weck jelly jars, then pouring the spiced port/red wine mixture over & processing for 25 minutes in a water bath. The result was amazingly delicate, fresh & juicy.

Both were new recipes and definite keepers for future years.
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Jennifer K



Joined: 08 Jan 2008
Posts: 16
Location: Paris

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One year I was really poor so I made flavored vinegars and olive oils. For the vinegar, I put some peeled garlic cloves, dried hot red peppers and cilantro sprigs (that had been cleaned and zapped in a microwave) in a bottle and filled it with rice vinegar. It created a lovely mix of flavors and made the best raw carrot or cucumber salads. For the olive oils, I put garlic cloves and an assortment of cleaned fresh herbs in the bottles and filled them with virgin olive oil. At first I felt bad about only spending pennies for these gifts, but I felt much better after seeing people happily use them, and it was fun to see all the creative uses people had for them.
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madameshawshank



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Penrith (where jacarandas remind me of change), New South Wales, Australia

PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 8:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

my pals love my plum puddings...this year with unsalted macadamias...'n duck pate...I could so easily be a vegetarian..so the liver work is a true work of love!

lovely idea for this month's question Clotilde..simply lovely...the joy and gifting is coming through loud and clear...

as for the homemade vanilla...today, while browsing in a cookbook section of a store...one of those meetings with strangers...we talked books and food for ages..and hugged...and swapped emails etc...

she makes her vanilla essence..and gifts it as gifts..

so there you are..

puddings for all! or pate! or both Wink
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rowenaf



Joined: 02 Feb 2009
Posts: 4
Location: UK

PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:56 pm    Post subject: For gadget addicts Reply with quote

If you know - or are - anyone who likes quirky little kitchen gadgets (and are also feeling rather health-conscious this year), there's something called a Fat Magnet that removes excess fat from the top of casseroles and the like.

It works by being filled with ice and skimmed across the top of the pot; the fat solidifies on the bottom of the 'magnet' and is taken out of the dish. It's available in the UK from Lakeland, may well be available internationally too.

http://www.lakeland.co.uk/F/keyword/fat+magnet/product/11642
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Jennifer K



Joined: 08 Jan 2008
Posts: 16
Location: Paris

PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rowenaf,
What a clever idea! So much faster than refrigerating something and then skimming the fat off after it has congealed.
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rowenaf



Joined: 02 Feb 2009
Posts: 4
Location: UK

PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 11:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm a sucker for gadgets Smile
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