Friday, 18 December 2015

Christmas Countdown Week 9 - Christmas Bakes

I love to bake. Every year I have found that I bake something. Although it's usually something like my banana bread. A few years in a row I have made cheesecake for dessert for Christmas dinner. I miss baking although it's maybe just as well as I wouldn't be allowed to eat it (thank you slimming world). Still, my last Christmas countdown post had to be dedicated to baking. If you have a free day (unlikely I know) set it aside to get some baking in. Everything I have picked for this post I chose because they could also be bagged up and gifted to someone. Obviously more prettily than I made it sound.

Of late I have been admiring The BBC Good Foods webpage. I follow them on facebook and they are always updating with yummy foods ideas that I can't eat. They have a whole section for Christmas and I thought I should link something from there. I narrowed it down to these gingerbread Christmas trees for two reasons. First of all I love all things gingerbread. Secondly they can be used as cookies on their own or packaged into gifts or to decorate your Christmas cake. So versatile.  They look quite simple to make too. If you want more ideas definitely head over to the BBC website.

More gingerbread. This time gingerbread fudge. I've never had gingerbread fudge before but I have no doubt in my mind that it's my new favourite. Just need someone to make it for me and then tell me it's syn free. This recipe comes from Cravings of a Lunatic (loving the blog name). I should warn you that it is American. However, with the internet it's easy to interpret ingredient quantities. That and you can buy American measurement tools. So you have no excuse not to make this for me. These cute little gingerbread shaped pieces are the result of a mold. Don't let that stop you. I am sure they will be just as tasty cube shaped.

Even if you aren't a baker the blog is worth checking out as there are lots of recipes on there. If you decide to give them a go I would love to hear about it.

I promise that this will be the last gingerbread themed item. I saw something very similar to this a few years ago and had it listed in my head as something I would never be able to do. Remember my rubbish decorating skills people. It looked so elegant and pretty and sadly there was no tutorial even if I wanted to attempt it. Well I came across this version by Modcloth. It has the recipe (again American) but also the pdf template to cut out the little shapes. I've seen it on Bake Off. It looks well easy (so long as it's not me doing it).

Modcloth seems to be more of a fashion/lifestyle blog but it has lots of interesting pieces including some festive ideas. Might not be for everyone but definitely worth it just for these little gingerbread houses.

I must be the only person in Scotland who doesn't like shortbread. But there it is. My confession is out there. I have never liked it. I always found it too rich, think and sickly. The gist of it is I don't like butter which makes up a large proportion of shortbread ingredients. I would be remiss though if I didn't have shortbread on here somewhere. It would feel like I was letting the side down. So here are some shortbread stars. The recipe is posted on a publishers page - bloomsbury.  What I love about this recipe is that it has one for glittery salted caramel at the start (now that's more me). I'm kidding, kind of. What is good about this is that you can do lots of different shapes and the rest of Scotland loves it. Make mine gingerbread though.

Jammy biscuits on the other hand? LOVE them. Who doesn't love a jammy dodger? Better yet, a homemade version? The Pretty Blog has posted this recipe and I think even I could follow it. Not a novice at baking but I haven't made that many biscuits in my life. If you don't think hearts are particularly festive then get some star shaped cutters. Plus they look so fab in these jars I think most people would enjoy receiving them.

The Pretty Blog is more like a lifestyle blog too with lots of different contributors. There are food and home sections in there with lots of DIY ideas.

When I said earlier that there was no more gingerbread within this post I lied. And I'm not sorry in the slightest. Mainly because this is a brilliant idea. This is a little bit of a cheat in that you are not really making anything. Well, you are but there is some DIY involved for the recipient. But if someone you are gifting to loves baking then this is perfect. This is a jar filled with all the dry ingredients to make gingerbread biscuits. I found this on the BBC Good Foods page but have seen other versions around pinterest. Brilliant idea. Plus you can decorate the jar. Just don't forget to write out the instructions on the label. I say that because that's something I would most definitely do.

And that folks is my Christmas countdown. I want to remind people that the only work I did with these is put the lists together. The owners of the images and the tutorials did all the hard work. You can find every tutorial listed under Christmas Tutorials on my Craft tutorials page. It's quite a long list now and I hope that the owners of these pages don't mind and that you all get something out of it. If the owners had blogs (providing they are still going) they have all been linked on my Craft blogs page. Not under Christmas though, they are under whichever heading I felt that better represented the blog.

Thank you for taking the time to read these. While it hasn't really made me feel better about this year it has taken my mind off things and I like to think that my mum would have enjoyed them. After all, this is her season. It has even given me some ideas. There were things that I wanted to have on these lists that just weren't available as a free tutorial. Something for me to work towards for next year. I think it will encourage me to be more creative.

Anyway, here is my entire countdown linked below.

Advent Calendars
Christmas Cards
Gifts for Crafters
Christmas Bunting
Christmas Decorations
Christmas Gift Tags

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