Monday, December 30, 2013

lovin' on our neighbors.

I go back and forth in my love of homemade gifts.
Some years I think it's the effort that counts.
Other years I am convinced that gift cards are way more fun than my creativity.
This year we decided to opt for homemade presents for our neighbors.
[Have I mentioned lately that we have the best neighbors EVER?]

We survived through the Christmas craze and focused on making New Year gifts.
Our go-to this year was Homemade Hazelnut Hot Cocoa and Cinnamon-Sugar Pecans.
I'm pretty sure they are going to be a hit... especially with invites to come skating in our backyard!
Hazelnut Hot Cocoa
1 cup cocoa powder (Dutch-process preferred)
2 cups powdered sugar
2½ cups powdered milk (or non-dairy milk)
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons corn starch
1/3 cup dry Hazelnut creamer
Mix dry ingredients all together. Serve 1/3 cup of cocoa mix with 1/2 cup of hot water.

Cinnamon-Sugar Pecans
This is our GO-TO gift anytime we are in a time crunch. Always a crowd-pleaser.
2 lbs pecans (we use the Costco bag)
2 egg whites
3 tsp. vanilla extract
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup white sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup cinnamon
Wish egg whites and vanilla until frothy. Mix in nuts and coat evenly. Pour over mixed dry ingredients and toss. Pour on baking sheet and place in 275 degree oven... 20 minutes on one side, then flip nuts and 20 minutes on the other side.

1 comment:

Tina said...

Wish I were a neighbor! Love the baking idea, pan toasting can be tricky.

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