Wrapped homemade biscotti is just one way to get crafty this holiday season with homemade gifts from the kitchen. We've compiled 25 great ideas, ranging from quick and simple gifts (perfect if you're working with kids) to more intricate projects that call for a little extra time and patience.
Some gifts will last for weeks, perhaps more. Others are best eaten within a day or two.
Not only are homemade gifts a great way to save money during the holiday season, they're a thoughtful and creative way to show how much you care.
CHEWY GINGER-SOUR CHERRY BISCOTTI
Total Time: 55 minutes. Makes 24 biscotti
Note: From Michaela Rosenthal, Woodland Hills
1/3 cup oil
1/4 cup dark molasses
1 cup sugar, plus more for rolling
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped macadamia nuts or peeled hazelnuts
1 cup dried sour cherries
1/2 cup minced crystallized ginger
1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Beat together the oil, molasses, sugar and egg.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, ground ginger, cloves, cinnamon and salt. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet. Stir in the nuts, cherries and crystallized ginger.
4. Divide the dough in half and form each half into a log about 12 inches long and 2 inches wide. Press down on the dough to flatten slightly. Roll the logs in a little sugar. Place them on a nonstick baking sheet and bake in the upper third of the oven, 15 minutes.
5. Cool the logs 5 minutes, then cut them on the diagonal into 3/4-inch-thick slices. Lay the biscotti on two baking sheets and bake until they are still somewhat soft to the touch but dry, another 15 minutes.
6. Transfer the biscotti to a wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container. 24 biscotti.
Each biscotti: 159 calories; 104 mg sodium; 9 mg cholesterol; 6 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 28 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams protein; 0.96 gram fiber.