It's day three of Thrifty Christmas here at the shorehouse.
I found these jars filled with apple crisp "supplies" at a craft show the other week. Pair it with a vintage cookbook you pick up on a thrifting venture and you've got a gift that will make the baker in your life squeal. In a good way!
The jar has everything needed for an apple crisp (except the apples, which would have been hard to jam in that jar. Oh, and the butter. Because that would be rancid.). A crisp is the perfect thing to prepackage since most of the ingredients just get mashed up with butter and you don't need to whisk, separate, sift, etc. Just throw it in a bowl. My kind of recipe.
This is an easy idea to replicate. Canning jars, or any jar with a tight seal, can be found on the cheap (they're available at many dollar stores, including Jack's 99 Cent Store in Manhattan) and the crisp ingredients are for the most part already in your pantry. The Neelys over on Food Network have a very good crisp recipe, click here to get that one. (The addition of pecans is well worth it, I promise you.) I have tons of fabric scraps, and I think I'd rather use a fun retro fabric than a Christmasy one...I may even go crazy and top-stitch it. And the recipe card is calling out for a funky font and some retro clip art.
Speaking of recipes...yesterday there was a comment from the lovely Pat at Mille Fiori Favoriti asking about the recipe used for the brownies on my cake stand.
Good point! I actually love the recipe, and found it many years ago on a tin of cocoa powder. It's the shortbread crust that makes them super duper. So here it is...another suitable holiday foodie gift:
Brownies with Shortbread Crust
1-1/4 c. unsifted flour
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 c. cold butter
14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
1/4 unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
8 oz semi sweet chocolate broken into pieces (or chips)
3/4 cup chopped nuts (I use pecans, or omit)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl combine 1 cup of flour and sugar; cut in butter until crumbly. Press onto bottom of 13" x 9" baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
In a large bowl beat sweetened condensed milk, cocoa, egg and remaining 1/4 cup of flour, vanilla and baking powder. Stir in chocolate pieces and nuts. Spread over prepared crust. Bake for 20 minutes or until center is set (so not overcook). Cool before cutting.
I used a heart shaped cookie cutter for a couple of the ones above to dress the plate a little, but adding a dash of ginger to the cocoa and using a gingerbread man cutter would be fun...in fact I'm filing that idea away in my mental Rolodex.
Thrifty week ideas from the shorehouse:
Monday - Tie one on! Bags from vintage men's ties.
Tuesday - DIY cake stands.
Coming Thursday - Tea for two (that was supposed to be today...whoops.)
Coming Friday - Jeez, I better get working on that!