Friday, December 17, 2010

Make it. Gift it.



There is a light at the end of the December madness tunnel- I know there is. I can’t see it, but I’m crossing my fingers that it is actually there.

As cheerful and happy as December may be, it is stressful and tiring and consuming. Countless Christmas gatherings, frantic holiday shopping, home decorating, greeting card writing, , party hosting, mad traveling, and crazy eating – all to the tune of Christmas music can frazzle even the most cheerful December-lover.



In the whirlwind, taking a deep breath, a step back, and making at least some of your gifts can actually take some of the pressure off (skipping the mall really helps!). If the holiday season gives you lemons, jam them and give them away! Easy as 1-2-3.


One: drive to your local grocery store (you are probably going there anyway) and buy the following: 12 lemons, olive oil, 2 bunches marjoram (or oregano). Also, get the smallest canning jars you find (aisle 12- ) 4 oz each old fashioned pattern or not comes in a box of 12.


Two: wash lemons. Cut into halves, quarters, then eights.



Remove seeds- it’s just much better if you don’t have to spit seeds out when you eat. Place lemons in the food processor along with 1 cup olive oil, 8 tablespoons chopped marjoram (or oregano), 1 cup sugar, 4 teaspoons kosher salt, 1 tablespoon fresh ground pepper.




Chop it until the lemon is chunks and put it in the jars you bought. These quantities will make twelve 4 ounce jars.. You adjust to your needs- more or less.



Three: make a cute tag with what’s in the jar. Done.



Save the rest of the story- where the recipe comes from (Teri Ripetto at Potager, published in Colorado Organic) and what to serve it on (a grilled ribeye, a baked fish, a bresaols-topped crostini topped with bresaola, or like I did tonight, as a base for dressing for a shaved fennel salad).



Photography by
Jennifer Olson.

14 comments:

  1. Great idea! Homemade foods make the best gifts.

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  2. Great easy gift idea. It's a nice change from the usual sweets.

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  3. This is a fantastic gift and also something I'd want on hand for the very ideas/suggestions you've mentioned. It sounds like it would be perfect on fish and must smell amazing!

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  4. What a sweet idea! I'm always on the look out for homemade gift, I despise going to the mall and this will be the second year in a row I have avoided it.

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  5. I would love to receive a gift like this. I am with Evan homemade gifts are always the best to receive, it's always made with love and to me that's what Christmas is all about!

    Happy Holidays!

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  6. Beautiful photos here, and I love this idea! It is so quick and easy, and the lemon flavor is probably so bright since you dont boil it down. And jams for use in savory eats are very welcome! Enjoy the rest of your holiday!

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  7. Great idea -- just got a bowl full of kumquats that are quite sour == I bet I could make this jam with them -- thanks for posting!

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  8. Probably a good thing I didn't see this earlier; either yesterday or today cause I've been doing operation food gifts. It's what I do for everyone every year and this will be a keeper to remember.

    This year JUST cookies, a fruit and nut bread and some rum cinnamon caramel sauce. Right now I'm going to relax a bit since I just finished packaging all 12 gifts and dropping 6 off at FedEx a bit ago but tomorrow is another day and I want this!

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  9. I agree. After spending an exhausting day at the mall...I so wish that I had made more of my gifts at home. There is nothing like doing something I already love (baking/cooking) to bless one of my friends or family members! This jam looks great...and I know I would love to receive it. Thanks for sharing, my friend!

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  10. I like this- very different and easy and colorful. And i could have used some with tonight's salmon.

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  11. I love the idea of homemade presents but I'm never organized enough to actually make any. I love that you were able to make something so fun and unique! :)

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  12. Perfect! This is a great idea to add flavour to so many things! This is a great addition for salmon and so easy! The decorative jars are a nice touch!

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