Sunday, December 2, 2012

Monster Cookies in a Jar

Around the holidays you can make a list and check it twice and still not have everyone covered.  Those are the people who give you gifts when you're not expecting them.  For instances like this, you should have "emergency gifts": something on hand that you did in fact put some effort into which you can give without it having been extremely coordinated/specific to that person.
The Emergency Gift Book: More Than 100 Instant Gifts to the Rescue!
Apparently there's entire book dedicated to this.  Not sure you can claim any level of effort here.

Also, sometimes you need a gift that can be given to a bunch of people that's exactly the same.  Like party favors.  Or a white elephant for an exchange.  The universal gift is food, and the most welcomed food is desserts!  The only downside to food is spoiling so you've got about a 1 day window in which you can give it and it still work.  Else, trust me, those tears are not of joy.

Exhibit A

The best way to get foodstuffs past the food rule is to only partially assemble it.  Much like Diet Coke and Mentos, if you keep the dry ingredients apart from the wet, the only thing you have to worry about is leaving the can in the car on too cold of a night.  Since presenting someone with a concoction of liquids is only really acceptable in alcohol or coco form, we're going to rediscover sandart and mix up the dry ingredients.

Jar with cookies, and hand-turned ornament

Glass jar
Card with recipe

Cookie mix ingredients:
1 cup rolled oats
1/10 cup sugar (it's not going to hurt if it's a loose 1/8 of a cup)
1/10 lb (1.6oz) (1/4 cup packed) brown sugar
3/8 tsp baking soda
1 oz mini chocolate chips
1 oz nuts (I used peanuts)

First, let's find some jars to store the dry ingredients.  I don't know if you've heard of this little thing called "Biscoff Spread" but my spoon has entered the crunchy variety jar.  Biscoff are the airplane cookies that you can get on Delta flights and offer a crispy, cinnamon cookie.  They also offer the spread in glass jars which are perfect for gifting.  Thoroughly clean the jars with your spoon and the dishwasher.  Let's make the jars pretty!

Yes I did a lot of spooning
Cut the length of ribbon to fit around the lid of the jar.  If you're lucky enough to have ribbon with sticky backing *high five* otherwise glue in place.

Using clear craft glue works fine.
While that's drying we can begin assembling the mix.  You probably want to set up some sort of assembly line for this.
It gets to be a lot
I did the layers in the following order:

Hit the top a few times to get it to settle in the jar.  We want all the room we can get
Brown sugar
Pack it well, this way there's more room and it keeps the oats down
Baking soda
So small you can barely see it
Chocolate Chips
Pretty lid!

Resist the temptation to eat too many chocolate chips!  Type or hand write the recipe onto cute tags so your recipients can actually bake the cookies.  You can only look at art for so long; it's meant to be experienced.  And if they have the wet ingredients, it then becomes up to them to eat them raw or in cookie form.  Here's what the folks will need at home:

1 1/2 tbs butter
1/2 (1/8 cup) egg
1 1/8 tsp vanilla
 2.4oz (~1/3 cup) peanut butter

Preheat oven to 350.  Combine all ingredients.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Makes about 16 cookies.

And maybe make a test batch.  Just to make sure they'll be ok.
I hand wrote these out for the extra personal touch.  I really like when someone takes the extra time to handwrite it.  I also really like cursive a la 2nd grade.  The teachers told me I'd be using it for the rest of my life.  Though I'm glad to report that I still have both my hands after using print in a professional environment. They were definitely wrong about that one.

One of the few times handwriting will ever make an appearance on a blog
Punch hole, tie recipe card to jar.  Stash a few on the gift shelf just in case.


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