In My Kitchen- December 2012

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Actually- I’m starting out with – Outside my kitchen window!

The sky last night was a riot of colors- this is pale by comparison-

but I can’t seem to get the whole scheme of color to show up when

I’m posed behind the camera.  It was so lovely!

In my kitchen…

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I’m geared up for Christmas- here are a couple of the “Santa Bags”

I’ve been knitting to hold the goodies I’m making!

In my kitchen…

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a boxful of goodies ready to send to my secret Santa exchange-

lavender wands and sachets, felted handmade soap and crocheted

dish cloths.

In my kitchen…

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Dinner!  Italian sausage and sauce over bow  tie pasta with avocado and garlic bread.

In my kitchen…

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TWO birthday cakes for my husband’s birthday!

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Red velvet layer cake with salted caramel chocolate garnish and a chocolate crazy

cake with dark chocolate and peppermint crushed on top.

In my kitchen…

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herbs for a kitchen holiday wreath.

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Wire them together- parsley,rosemary, thyme,fennel,sage, and bay leaf-

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Shape into a circle- add a bow.(I just noticed the old bandage on my thumb- sorry.)

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and hang up in your kitchen.  When it dries out- you can sprinkle the herbs into your recipes-

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or take off the bow and toss the entire wreath into a soup pot!

In my kitchen…

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are fruitcakes, getting their last basting of brandy!

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In my  kitchen…

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are roasted nuts packed in honey!

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I got the idea for this from the Bush Gourmet jar that my niece, Meredith,

sent me.  Delicious- but I’m an American and needed a little extra salt to finish up

the flavor- so I asked her to send me the honey and I added salted roasted nuts

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to this honey!  These are so good- I made up a lot so I could bear to give

some away as Christmas gifts.

In my kitchen…

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taking up valuable space on my kitchen table is this paper pile.  I started

making my own Christmas cards years ago- and try as I might- I just can’t send

out boxed cards anymore.  Although I have drastically cut down on my Christmas

card list- I’ve got to get these finished and send them off.

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In my kitchen…

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is this book my sister-in-law gave me.  I’d dearly love a masonry oven

outside my kitchen door.  I’ve been reading and trying to figure out

how to make this happen- but, well- it doesn’t look like it will happen

anytime soon.

So I took a picture of it next to my wooden tree to share with you!

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Merry Christmas from my kitchen to you and yours!

Check out other “In my kitchen” posts on Celia’s blog , Fig Jam and Lime Cordial.

41 thoughts on “In My Kitchen- December 2012

  1. Those wheat weavings are quite nice! And the idea of roasted nuts in honey, YUM!
    I have always wanted to make lavandar wands. I agree with you about making your own cards, bought ones seem to pale, besides it is a nice way to pass time. Your cards really look nice!

    • Thank you ,Pam. I do like the wheat weavings- I tried to make them, but I was all thumbs, it was kind of like a mathematical graph and I am VERY bad at math.
      The lavender wands, however, are just over and over basketry moves and quite easy enough for me to make. :)
      Thanks for visiting!

    • The band aid- and I have several more cuts- was covering up a sliced thumb from washing the sharp edges of the tins I baked the small fruitcakes in. Really sharp edges.
      :(

  2. Hi Heidi! Those herb wreaths are fantastic. What a great idea! They look absolutely adorable and I’m sure that they smell great too. Your cakes made me smile as my husband would love those 2 combinations. Caramel & peppermint are right up his alley! The roasted nuts look delish too :) Thanks for sharing your kitchen and I hope that you have having a wonderful holiday season. xx

    • The wreaths do smell wonderful, Emilie!
      I love using my herbs all year long- but rosemary does not winter over in Ohio’s climate- so I usually just cut it all up and use- I like to use lemon grass in the wreaths as well, but it can really cut if you aren’t careful.
      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a message- may your family also have a delightful Christmas and New Year!

  3. Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment, Lizzie! I do love hearing from all of my IMK friends!
    I love making these wreaths and then using them throughout the winter season.
    Spring is a long time coming. :)

  4. Hi Heidi, I love all of your pictures! They bring back fond memories of this past week. I would also like to make Christmas cards, but don’t have the strength. Yours look great. You are so very talented at whatever you do. Thanks for sharing. Love

  5. Happy Birthday Wishes to Frank ! What fabulous cakes!

    I love the dawn photo that you started this post with. One of the few times I understand pink is when I see it in the sky. I am visiting as many of my favourite blog friends this morning as I can and enjoying their preparations for Christmas. You all look incredibly busy and having fun too xx

    • Hi Joanna!
      I hope you are feeling better? I’m still ignoring the sniffles and covering up the cough and pretending I’m good. (Maybe faking it will make the cold go away?)
      I have been busy- but my extended family is getting together next week for Christmas so I have to get this stuff done early this year.
      Thanks for dropping by this morning- I love to see your comments, my friend.

    • Thanks Brydie- I will share all the good wishes with him.
      The honey in the nuts is called yellow box- and it is delicious with a hint of the beeswax from the comb- it pairs with the nuts very well.
      I feel like I’m handing out gold with these gifts!

    • Merry Christmas, Glenda!
      If I just do one project a day I feel like I’m accomplishing something this year.
      I have friends who tell me they get out their handmade cards and display them year after year- so it is hard to stop making what is so much enjoyed. I really hate stamping, though- it hurts my arm and wrist (arthritis)- so I am making less and less cards.

  6. Happy birthday, Frank! And Heidi, I can’t believe how glorious your homemade cards are! Mine always look like they’ve been made in a kindergarten! I’m madly in love with your wreaths (as you know) and your fruitcakes look divine too! xx

  7. Thank you, Celia- I have a small fortune invested in stamps, scissors, ribbons, specialty card stock, embossing powders and utensils, etc, etc, etc ! And many years of getting together with other people who make cards and exchanging ideas and tricks. I am so picky about how the cards look- so it can be very time consuming to make them.
    I wish I could run over and bring you some floral wire- do you have a florist shop nearby?
    Sometimes they will sell you some supplies for small projects!
    The fruitcakes are so good and so very much pleasure to make- my brother asked me what I do with all my baked goods now that my children are from home and I told him that good food is never hard to give away!
    Merry Christmas, Celia- this was a very enjoyable IMK to do!

  8. Happy happies to your husband. I love your wreath idea and you have been so busy with everything Christmas. I have done very little as it will only be Himself, our daughter and me, it doesn’t seem the same if the grandchildren aren’t coming.

  9. Thanks, Sue- I know what you mean about the grandchildren. I travel 10 hours to be with the grandkids- it is 6 hours for them- and we stay on the beach in my niece’s house.
    So I need to decorate TWO houses – and get all my at home gifts made and distributed before we go. I really don’t have much down time in December.
    …AND then I crash into depression in mid- January. sigh.

    • Thank you, Anne.
      Divine as in heavenly- yes- I love fruitcake- I’ve never understood all the nastiness people say about them- but then I’ve only eaten these cakes.
      Last year I made thousands of cookies for a wedding right before Christmas- THAT was busy- this is just a whole lot of organization and fun!

    • I am really motivated by scent- I make potpourri, lavender sachets, scented bath soaps- so an herbal wreath just makes a lot of “sense”!

  10. Wow, HeidiAnne, there are so many incredible and magical things happening in your kitchen. I especially love your wreath and your Christmas cards are exquisite – I love homemade goods. Your secret Santa box is jammed packed with extra special items too and your Christmas cakes look too good to eat. Happy Birthday to your hubby. Have a beautiful festive season.
    :-) Mandy xo

    • Thank you- I think the kitchen is the best holiday spot in the house! I used to put up a small tree in the corner by the patio door- but my kitchen is working hard at Christmas time and I have no space or time to mess with actual decorating in there anymore.
      As long as I have cookies and gifts in the making- it’s all good!

    • Hi Oz!
      Thanks for the comment- I love the season- everything and everyone is ready to celebrate! And I love this series. It is so great to be able to skip, hop, and blog into so many kitchens across the world.
      Merry Christmas and happy holidays, my friend.

  11. Oh such lovely things Heidi as well as that glorious photo of your winter sky. Your brandy-basted cakes reminded me of my Dad’s Christmas cakes which were not so much basted as dunked – in rum – they really needed to be eaten in a bunker with a sign alerting people to the fact that this was tin hat territory – they were practically incendiary!

    • Your dad’s cakes sound like my mother’s! :)
      I actually like them fresh out of the oven without any alcohol at all- but everyone else expect s the brandy!
      I’m making a rum cake for a Christmas family celebration tomorrow- we are putting together rum cake, cheesecake, sugar cookie, and chocolate cake layers with mascapone/whipped cream and chocolate ganache filling/icing. I will post some pictures of this one!

    • Thanks, Sally, for visiting. The herb wreaths used to be given away- but then I decided to decorate with them and keep them for my use.
      (Especially after a friend kept the gift I had attached the wreath to and threw away the wreath with the wrapping! Arrgh!)
      Have a wonderful Christmas season!

  12. I LOVE when you post In My Kitchen!!! It makes me feel closer to you. Plus, I imagine the smells and the warmth and the coziness, and then I get homesick, so I move on to the next photo. I also love your herb wreath, but was thinking that maybe that’s something I should do in the summer when they are actually fresh from my garden. :) I also realized, after this post of your IMK, that I did NOT inherit your creativity gene. Nope. Not one bit, but I think that’s why I appreciate your little attentions to details all the more. You are one amazing woman and I love you!

    • Hi Martha!
      Those herbs are fresh from my garden- it was just a little chilly harvesting them. :)
      Thanks- I love the IMK posts, too. They make me stop and take stock and see what riches I have. As for the creativity- I’ve seen your cookie trays and those are very creative!
      I love you, too!

  13. that view is stunning – thanks for sharing it with us :) I love all the things in your kitchen this month, but especially the wreath. Have a blessed Christmas :)

  14. Gorgeous things in your kitchen – am so impressed by your herb wreath and love your christmas cards – I’d love to make my own but this year I am struggling to send any – maybe next year

    • Hi Johanna!
      I’m impressed I found time to make the wreath and cards!
      I seem to have been working on Christmas for the last 4 months. I try to make most of my gifts- which means a lot of time in the kitchen AND knitting nonstop!
      I used to send out a lot more cards- now I only send about 25 to friends and family I don’t see often and then I have a cache that I send to anyone else who sends me a card. I should have started making them sooner this year.
      Hope your holidays are filled with blessings and joy!

  15. Pingback: Vintage Christmas dinner @ Not Quite Nigella

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