Baked Good Gifts Everyone Will Love

Being an avid baker, people usually ask for the recipe once they’ve sampled the goods. I’ll usually bring cookies or cake to my neighbors, my son’s class and work, depending on what I’m making. One day my boss asked me for the recipe for a carrot cake I make and I thought, “What a great gift idea!” If you have a special recipe or dish that people absolutely love, why not include the recipe along with a dressed up dish and give it as a gift. Although some recipes can get pricey, find one suitable to your budget and do the following. I’m going to use good ol’ Chocolate Chip Cookies as an example.

Start by making your shopping list. For Chocolate Chip Cookies you will need:
� 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
� 1 teaspoon baking soda
� 1 teaspoon salt
� 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
� 3/4 cup granulated sugar
� 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
� 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
� 2 large eggs
� 2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) Chocolate Chips

PREHEAT oven to 375�° F.

COMBINE flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

BAKE for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Bag of Flour -$2, Baking Soda – $1, Salt – $1, Butter – $2, Granulated Sugar – $2, Brown Sugar – $1, Vanilla – $3-$6, Eggs – $1.

While the cost for this recipe does exceed the $10 dollar budget, it’s almost inevitable that you have at least flour, salt and eggs at home. I usually only have to buy butter, brown sugar and vanilla. Prepare the cookies as directed.

Now that you’ve made the cookies, you need a container. You might want a pretty box like a bakery uses, which you can buy at any arts and crafts store for about $2 dollars. Now go to your computer and write the recipe in a Word Document. Add Clip Art or a decorative edge to the recipe and print this out. If you want the recipe to stay in good shape for years to come, use heavy paper, cardboard or even laminate your recipe. I cut my card to about a 4 x 4 square and paper hole punch one corner, now slip onto the twine with a decorative flower and you’re ready to go. This gift is usually a big hit because people know you’ve taken the time to prepare something especially for them. I think with any gift, it’s the thought that counts.

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