Whelp, it’s here. I know retailers have been threatening us with Christmas decorations since June but today is officially the first day of December and Christmas is just around the corner. Shopping days are very limited and nobody wants to spend their evenings or weekends at a store. My favorite place has always been the kitchen and the holidays are no different. Whether it’s baking a (now gluten-free) dessert, whipping up some sides or creating some delicious gifts, the kitchen is where I spend most of my time.
Yogurt is a staple at our home. Whether it’s used to marinate some chicken, stir into a creamy soup or eaten for breakfast topped with granola, canned peaches or fresh berries, it’s pretty much consumed on some level every day.
After my experiments with infused vodkas and homemade gin last Christmas, the requests have come in. Mostly from my husband. So when I came across this super simple Apricot Brandy recipe on Buzzfeed’s list of 30 Best DIY Food Gifts, how could I resist? PS–there’s a ton of other awesome suggestions as well like bacon salt, cinnamon honey butter and homemade dog biscuits.
I know it’s after Christmas, and perhaps much of your gift giving is complete. However, homemade gifts are not for holidays alone. They make fantastic birthday, housewarming, shower or just because I care gifts. I waited a while to post this recipe (along with the soon to come infused brandy recipe) because I wasn’t about to give away gift ideas to my Christmas recipients. I don’t know if they’re reading right now, but when it comes to surprises, you can never be too cautious.
Who doesn’t love tacos. If you tell me you don’t I already know you’re lying. And we don’t want to start this relationship based on lies do we? So, I’ll just move forward with the assumption that you’re as big a taco lover as I am.
For most of a life, my tacos came out of an Orega or El Paso box—there was a Taco Bell branded kit period, but I don’t think it lasted. Of course, the actual tacos didn’t come out of the box, but the magical sauces and powders to make them did. Brown the beef (or chicken), add some water, powder and cook it up. The first taco shack I went to in Philly was truly a college student’s dream. Cheap, with raw walls and tables made of old Pac-Man games (still playable for a quarter!). These tacos were magic. Sadly it closed a few months before I left Philly. I think it was in mourning that I was leaving. I’ve encountered many imposters and replicas ever since, some okay, some outstanding. But my boxed taco mix could never match any of these tacos and I never really thought about why that was.