The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Easy shortbread makes impressive gifts!

Shortbread is delicious and so quick to make. And it makes an impressive gift when you give it as a whole piece. You can cut it out and make individual biscuits or cut it into wedges and give it in cellophane bags or tins but making it in one large piece makes it so quick to make and so impressive to give.

I have already posted this recipe

Last week I made this doubling the recipe and using pizza pans as my base. I lined the pans with non stick baking paper and simply pressed half the mixture over each pan to fill it nicely and patted it smooth. Then score the way you want to to be divided and re do that once it is cooked. Then it comes apart so neatly with no crumbs.

I used a craft stencil I have to decorate it with some icing sugar. This took ten seconds literally! You could leave it plain or use a piece of lace, a paper cut out, a part of a lace table cloth or many things to lay across it as you sprinkle icing sugar over it. A simple heart paper cut out will leave a heart image. I had this stencil left over from cushions I made.

One I gave away with my pizza pan underneath knowing it will come back... but you could use pizza pans from a cheap shop or place it on a cake board or even heavy cardboard cut out. With the baking paper you can lift it out once cold and carefully re position it onto another board, plate or whatever.

Then I just wrapped the whole thing in cellophane and tied it up with a red ribbon.

I sent one into Chloe's office workplace and it got a very good reception!
It would also be a great family gift or a gift for a man. I operate on the premise that most men love home cooking so when stuck I give food!

It amazes me that something so simple and so cheap to make is so yummy and impressive. Something we need to do is to look in gourmet and gift stores at the prices they charge for these things. A few tiny pieces of homemade shortbread in a small box was $16 at our local store. The quantity would be less than one quarter of one of these. What would they charge for something like this?

The very stores we stay out of due to the mind boggling prices as the stores to go in and look, notice what is popular as gifts, what the prices are, get packaging and presentation ideas and, once you recover, make notes on your information and go home to make gifts! I even take photos on my phone so I remember!

We can easily underestimate the value of our gifts especially with cooking. Take a look at some of the stores hamper gifts... it might be five small things in a box with a ribbon and its $80. You can look online at some of the famous stores and what a hamper consists of and the presentation and prices. $100 does not buy much! It is an amazing exercise! But it makes you realise the value of things we can easily put together.

Over the Christmas period I like to make up little hampers of some jam, some biscuits, coconut ice, fudge, apricot balls... five or six things I've made in a box or basket. WIth cellophane and ribbon it all looks lovely. These are gifts that are LOVED. If I didn't do my annual coconut ice there would be a riot I think....

We had three days of solid rain last week so the garden is looking so fresh and things have grown so much!

Have a wonderful week! Not much on November left! xxx


  1. Thank Annabel, I had forgotten about shortbread for gifts. I've only got teachers & friends left to sort & this could be the perfect thing or closse to it. I agree that cellophane & ribbon make all the difference.

    1. Thanks Karen! This is pretty tough too ie it doenst shatter and look a mess by the time it reaches its destination! (important!)
      It keeps quite well too.
      Have a good

  2. Annabel, you have wrapped up that gift so beautifully. I am sure it would have been greatly appreciated not only for how good it would have tasted but because you took the time and effort to make it look so good.

    1. Thanks Nanna Chel. This year I am trying to spread all the cooking out so I have made a few things earlier than usual. I think it will help the last minute rush! Have a lovely week! xxx

  3. I made shortbread as Christmas gifts last year for the first time. It was so well received, I don't know why I hadn't thought of it earlier. I guess I always thought it too simple but everyone loves it.

    1. Brenda I know! I think its because so many people dont cook much or are so busy, that these things are such a hit! We underestimate how much these things are loved. Very handy really when its something so simple! Thank you for your comment, have a great week.xx


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