Gifts from the kitchen
Matthew Kadey, MSc, RD
Skip the mall! Make a tasty, thoughtful, and unique holiday gift in your very own kitchen.
This holiday season, forget battling the mall crowds and spend more time in your kitchen. Whether you need a hostess gift that is more imaginative than a bottle of Pinot Noir or some stress-free presents for the in-laws, edible gifts are guaranteed to please. After all, everyone likes to eat, but not everyone needs another gift card. A homemade condiment or a jar of pancake mix is a delicious way of saying “from my kitchen to yours.” Cook your way through your gift list with these tasty delights that prove the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach. Warning: you may find yourself under the mistletoe more often.
Holiday parties and indulgences can equal poor food choices, with the average adult gaining 1 lb (0.5 kg) between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. We might be tempted to “conserve” calories on the morning of a party, but this can lead to overeating later on. Instead, eat a fibre- and protein-rich breakfast that includes complex carbs such as oats. This Maple Hazelnut Granola is healthy and filling, especially when dressed up with fresh fruit and plain Greek yogurt.
An unfortunate part of the holiday season is the large amount of packaging waste associated with gift giving. So do one better and package many of your edible gifts in reusable and recyclable glass jars such as ye olde Mason-style ones.
But think of the jars as a blank slate upon which you can express your creative side and dress them up for the season. For example, if you have colourful fabric stashed away, you could cut out circles from it and place the fabric on top of the jar, then put the jar lid on top of the fabric and tighten. You can even repurpose paint chips for imaginative (and bright) gift tags to tie around the jars.