Food Gifts for this Diwali

Diwali is all about food, food & only food  for me!  It is the time of the year to let go of your calorie count and indulge 🙂

Every Diwali I receive   3 very common gifts – mithai (Indian sweets), assorted chocolates or just plain dry fruits. It’s not that I don’t like any of the above. But Diwali is special and requires some thought while gifting your close friends and family members. Don’t you agree?

I’ve divided the gifting options into two categories:

  • Homemade/Handmade by you
  • Create your own Food Baskets – assortment of some hand made and some store bought

Homemade/Handmade

I love the idea of doing it yourself for simple reasons –  it’s different, made by you with love and your gift becomes the talk of the town 😉

Orangettescandied orange peel dipped in dark chocolate

It’s the most delicious thing to be nibbling on. I’ve made these and they are really easy and you really can’t go wrong with them even if you are an amateur cook. You can negate the chocolate  and gift them as plain ones too. They go great as a topping in salads or even on some of our Indian sweets – try using just the candied orange as a topping on gulab jamuns…..sounds yum right :).

Sesame Balls in Chocolate  – til ke laddoo dipped in chocolate

These will really surprise anybody. The combination is different and sure is a hit – don’t worry I’ve tried and tested this recipe at the Farmer’s Market and it was a hit!

Herb or Spice Infused  oilsuse your favorite spice or herb to flavor your oils

Recently I spotted them at a dinner during the Food Bloggers Meet. I love, love and love them!

Pickles – every house has it’s own special variety

We Indians love our spicy, tangy pickle with our food. You can bottle  them up in fancy bottles and proudly gift your in-house specialty, North – South doesn’t matter just add some spice this Diwali!

You can explore a wide ranging of gifting ideas depending on your personality. But remember whatever you gift, it sure does reflect your personality…….. So go ahead and put on your creative hats!


Few points to consider for your gifts:

  • If using glass jars, make sure you wash them properly and sterilize them.
  • You might want to include a card with instructions or ideas about how to use your fabulous gift. It might be completely new to the person whom you are gifting.
  • If using plastic bags, it’s advisable to use the food grade ones.
  • It’s always better to use biodegradable material for a safe and sound environment.

Create your own food baskets:

There are hundreds of combination that you can try while creating your own baskets. All you need is a good cane basket and  some attractive colored papers. Again put on your creative hats and lets begin to create some interesting combos 🙂

 


This was a basket created by me (all Organic) – a vanilla pod, homemade cinnamon salad dressing, homemade Indian fudge along with a recipe card for the dressing.

 

This is what I’m gifting this Diwali – i2cook’s Natural Peanut Butter & Mustard with colorful coasters from Freedom Tree.

Hope this post has given you  ideas/inspirations to start with your own food gifts. I’m sure you will do a good job!

I would love to hear your gifting ideas too 🙂

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Orangettes

My sweet craving since my last post seems to be continuing……
Orangettes are strips of candied orange peel dipped in dark chocolate.This is a great recipe and makes your house smells good too.They can be tedious to make but I can assure you that the hard work does pay off; in a very sweet and fruitful way…..

4 oranges
6tbs sugar
4 cups water for sugar syrup
250gms dark chocolate

Slice the ends off of the oranges, score the peel from one end to the other, and remove the peels off the oranges.Slice the peels into thin strips and trim the edges.

Using a medium size pot, place the peels in boiling water and blanch them for a few minutes. Rinse the peels, and repeat this process a second time (it’s best to use cold water again for the second time to repeat the process). This is done to remove the bitterness of the peels.

Prepare the simple syrup by combining the water and sugar in a pot. Bring the syrup to a simmer, place the peels in the pot, and simmer for 20 mins. Once the peels have cooked, remove them from the pot, and place on a rack to cool and drain.

Melt dark chocolate over a double boiler or microwave. Just heat the chocolate in short intervals in the microwave, stirring and checking the temperature after each time. If you go over the max. temperature, just add small pieces of the original solid chocolate until it drops back down to the max. temperature.Dip the candied orange peels in the chocolate, remove them quickly, and let them cool on a piece of parchment paper. Allow it to rest for an hour.

Store and refrigerate orangettes in an airtight container or pack them up to gift  your loved ones. This recipe serves about 30-40 orangettes.
This recipe is adapted from here.

My tastebuds: I loved them! Even now I’m biting into one while writing this post.

This is my submission to Gulten-Free Holiday, hosted by Tasty Eats At Home, to Choco-Delite’s Event, hosted by Taste Buds, to AWED – French, hosted by Priya’s Easy n Tasty Recipes and Chefinyou and to The Chocolate Fest, hosted by Cook-curry nook.