Shirley’s holiday food gift ideas

iStock_000009883750MediumGifts of food are welcome by most people.  At this time of year you can still do some home food preservation and give it as gifts.

Pickled beets are loved by some family members and even though they are long gone from the garden, canned beets work just as well.  Actually they are easier because the cooking and peeling are already done for you!  Just buy some Mrs. Wages Pickled Beet Mix and you are ready to fill the house with the aroma of cinnamon and cloves.

But your holiday-motivated generosity in the kitchen doesn’t have to stop there!

Even though the tomatoes in the garden are long past, you can still make some pasta sauce, pizza sauce, and salsa for gift giving.  Just use canned tomatoes (I know they aren’t as good as fresh but with Mrs. Wages mixes they taste great!)  Give quart jars of pasta sauce as a gift along with the pasta and recipe for making your favorite dish.  Add a loaf of French bread and your recipient will have a meal almost ready.

Recent additions to the line of Mrs. Wages are the Fruit Pie Filling Mix and the Spiced Apple Mix.  I gave these away at the National Association of Family and Consumer Sciences meeting in Albuquerque in September and they were a great hit!  You might consider making apple pie filling or applesauce for gifts too.  The pie filling is wonderful to have on hand for last-minute desserts and the taste is outstanding!  Use a mixture of varieties of apples to give your filling the best flavor.

If you have a family member who is diabetic, think about making some sugar-free or reduced sugar jams and jellies with Mrs. Wages Light Pectin.  Use frozen fruit or canned juices to make these products.  Of course with the citrus fruits available, don’t forget the marmalade…just be sure to watch it carefully – it burns rather easily (that is from my experience!)  Herb jellies and those made from wine are also popular this time of year.  Of course you can put together a basket of some of the things you did over the summer and add a mix for some specialty bread or salsa and chips that will please most families.

No matter what your traditions – I wish for each of you a great holiday season filled with family, friends, and good health!  See you next year.

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