When we approached the talented Jane Collins of Sizzle and Swirl mid year to create a food story for our festive feast it started out as marinated hoisin lamb pancakes with spring onion (YUM!) however as time went by we realised that it's the small gifts that stump us each year. It's the neighbours, the school teachers and the lady down the road that helps you out and deserves a little extra love. Without these people in our lives, life would be just that little bit harder.
So as our gift to you we have thoughtfully styled and compiled a 'How To' so you can create this goodness and package it off (in one of our tea tea towels) to those special ones over the festive season and get some real brownie points!
Check out our 'How To's' for a special Cinnamon Chai recipe and yummy Whiskey Nuts.
Home made Cinnamon Chai
Who doesn’t love a cinnamon chai? Created in bulk and packaged off into recycled jam or coffee jars makes for a great gift this season.
For individual gifting purposes grab a few recycled jars, muslin cloth and brown string. Section dry ingredients out based on recipe below, (we don’t recommend gifting the condensed milk), I'd leave that as an instruction on the outside of the jar.
Home made chai tea with cinnamon and spices (serves 4)
Prep time to make as gift - 15 minutes
Prep time to make tea - 5 minutes
1 cup loose tea leaves
2 sticks of cinnamon
½ cup of condensed milk
20 whole cloves
1 vanilla bean, split
1 To make the present, combine tea leaves, cloves, cinnamon sticks and vanilla beans. Wrap in a piece of muslin or linen.
Tie with a piece of string. Place chai tea bag in a tin with condensed milk.
2 To serve. Heat 2 -3 cups of water in a saucepan or billy and pop the muslin bag into simmering water, allow to simmer over low heat for 1-2 minutes.
Add sweetened condensed milk if desired .
These nuts are the best! And they taste better served with a lovely cold brewsky. They look mighty fine in a jam jar with a little note saying thanks for all your help this year! Super easy to make and are very festive in my eyes. Make sure you make extra because you wont be able to help yourself to nibble away.
Serves 10 hungry guests as a starter with a cold beer or chilled champagne
Time you need to get ready – 5 minutes
Cooking time- 30 minutes
8 cups (1 kg) mixed nuts of your choice – we used walnuts, cashews, raw almonds
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup (125 ml) whiskey or bourbon
1. Preheat oven to 180c or 160c fan forced. Line a tray with baking paper; this saves on washing up and keeps the nuts from sticking to the base of the tray.
2. Next in a small saucepan combine butter, maple syrup and whiskey. Cook over medium heat, stirring till melted and smooth.
Simmer for 1-2 minutes.
3. Pour whiskey syrup over nuts and stir gently to coat in a bowl. Flatten out in a single layer on lined baking tray.
4. Cook for 25-30 minutes untill golden and fragrant.
Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before packaging.
5. Pack the cooled nuts up into jars, with tight fitting lids.
We spray painted the lids matt black.
If you don’t have any kitchen scales the butter usually comes with a 50g segmented on the paper, just chop of 3 of those and throw in the pan with the maple and the whiskey. If you feel adventurous, add some sunflower seeds, or sesame seeds to mix up the nuts.