Thursday, December 10, 2009

It's Begun . . .

Yes, the holiday season is upon us which means what for Patti? Yep, lots of hours in the kitchen "making and baking". I'm not complaining at all as most of you know I love this stuff. And my office mates love it too as I usually bring the fruits of my labors to the office for all to consume.

As well, here at work we customarily volunteer to keep a munchie table fully stocked for the last two weeks leading up to Christmas. It's actually called the "grazing" table. I think I've signed up to bring something at least four of those days, if not more. But I love it! I think I missed my calling - I should have been a pastry chef!

In any event, the first thing I made this season really isn't edible at all - well, not unless you're a canine. And, yes, my Greyhound Lucy ate her fair share of these last year hence why I'm making more this year. The item in question is Cinnamon Ornaments!

No Christmas tree should be without these fabulously aromatic ornaments. Cinnamon is a fragrance that is so typically associated with the Christmas holiday season and I, for one, love that aroma when I walk into my home. It's a comfort thing for me as I vividly remember the scent of cinnamon wafing through the air of my childhood home. Such memories!

The ornaments are fairly easy to make - you just have to be very careful with them because they are very delicate. Here is the recipe:

Cinnamon Ornaments

1 C. ground cinnamon
1 t. allspice
1 t. ground cloves
1 t. nutmeg
1 C. applesauce

Mix dry ingredients. Add applesauce a little at a time. Mixture should have consistency of playdough. If too dry, add 1-2 tablespoons applesauce. Roll 1/4 inch thick on ungreased surface. If too sticky, sprinkle with ground cinnamon. Cut with cookie cutters. Place on level surface to dry 4-5 days. Insert fine wire at top of ornament before drying. Tie with ribbon. Yield 2 dozen.

Here is the blob of spices after mixing.

Here is the blob rolled out. This does get a bit messy but the end result is well worth it!

Here are my little Gingerbread boys and stars all ready for the drying period.

I added a few white buttons for the Gingerbread boys and lastly I have to add ribbon bows. The wire hooks were inserted in the beginning prior to the drying period. They will be ready to hang tonight! Once the holiday season is over, be sure to carefully pack these away in Zip Lock bags to ensure their aroma keeps for years and years to come.

Each day until New Year's I'll be able to enjoy the robust fragrance of these delightfully easy to make ornaments. But alas, after the holidays they are packed away with the other ornaments until next year when I'll pull them back out for another season of reminiscing.
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