Christmas is nearly there and that means now it’s the time to wrap the presents and put them under the tree. And for this reason I’d like to share some inspiration with you.
Surely you all know the game Scrabble, which is about trying to score with words you come up with. I thought about how fun it would be to use these letters to label my gifts and maybe even start a little game under the tree: ‘Let’s see, whose name scores the highest?’
But for this DIY we’re not using the real pieces of wood but simply make some of foam rubber – I’ll show you how it’s done:
Letter Gift Wrap
Active Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Play some Scrabble under the Christmas tree? No problem with this simple DIY!
white foam rubber
one thin and one thick black marker
Pencil, scissors, ruler, glue
Use the pencil to draw small squares à 2 x 2 cm onto the foam rubber and then cut them out.
Take the thick marker to draw the capital letters on the squares, then use the fine pen to add the numbers on the right side below the letter indicating the value. You can find lists on the internet for your respective language.
Allow the marker to dry for a bit and then stick the squares onto your presents, ideally wrapped in simple paper and enjoy the look on people's face when they get the presents!
Simple and effective – I’m really looking forward to giving away those presents!
Today’s recipe will be sweet, chocolaty and very christmassy. Especially in the UK (and also in France) it is a Christmas tradition to bake sweet sponge and buttercream tree trunks and serve them as Yule Log (or Bûche de Noël respectively).
This version is closer to the British recipe, but instead of making one big log I decided to go for many many small ones. That way each of your guests can get their own and additionally, I think they are pretty adorable, don’t you think so?
Mini Yule Logs
Yield: makes 8
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Cooling Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour45 minutes
Turn the classic 'Yule Log' into miniatures and you have the perfect sweet treat for Christmas.
For the sponge
3 large eggs
75 g sugar
1 pinch of salt
25 g cocoa powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 pinch of ground cloves
For the buttercream
60 g chocolate
100 g softened butter
150 g powdered sugar
2-3 tbsp milk
For the ganache
115 ml cream
150 g chocolate
Preheat the oven to 180 ° C and line a baking tray (25 × 35 cm) with baking paper and lightly grease it.
Separate the eggs and beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt and 25 g sugar until stiff and set aside.
In a second bowl, whisk the egg yolk and 50 g of sugar until light and creamy. Combine cocoa, cinnamon, ginger and cloves and sift onto the egg mixture. Stir in gently, then gradually fold in the egg whites.
.Pour onto the prepared baking tray, spread evenly and bake for 10-12 minutes.
Remove it from the oven and place a second, likewise greased piece of baking paper on top. Now turn tha tray over onto the work surface and carefully remove the upper baking paper. If it keeps sticking, it helps to put a wet cloth on the paper for a while.
For the buttercream, beat the butter until creamy and melt the chocolate. Stir together, then add powdered sugar and milk until a thick cream is formed. Spread evenly on the cooled sponge cake.
Now divide the spone into 8 rectangles (Cut 1 x lengthwise and 4 x crosswise). Roll up the rectangles from the short side and place them on a large plate. Put in the fridge to set for about 30 minutes.
In the meantime prepare the ganache, chop the chocolate and place it in a bowl. Heat the cream until it almost boils, then pour it over the chocolate and let it stand for about a minute. Now stir well and cover the tree trunks with it.
Allow to set briefly, then use a fork or a toothpick to add a 'bark pattern' to the chocolate and lightly dust with powdered sugar before serving.
Aren’t they cute? Really great to go with your Christmas coffee or maybe even as a dessert – it’s up to you! Have you ever tried Yule Logs or Bûche de Noël?
Time for another quick Christmas recipe – but this time it’s nothing sweet. After all the feasting on cookies and nonstop gingerbread-snacking, it’s a welcome change to have something savoury in between. 😉
This delicious Christmas mustard is quickly whipped together and makes such a great gift from your kitchen. In Germany it’s a tradition for many families to have sausages and potato salad for dinner at Christmas Eve and so the mustard can be put to good use right away. But even without a large side dish the mustard will shine, for example in a delicious salad dressing or to season sauces and gravy – try it for yourself!
Yield: makes about 2 small jars
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Spicy, christmas-sy and a fancy gift idea from the kitchen!
2 tsp ground cardamom (or gingerbread spice)
3 tsp honey
1 tsp chilli flakes
10 g ginger
the zest of one orange (about 3 tsp)
100 ml English mustard
100 ml Sweet mustard
Peel ginger and chop it finely, then mix it in a small bowl with orange zest, cardamom, chilli flakes, honey and English mustard. For a smoother texture you can blend the mix at this point. Finally, stir in the sweet mustard and mix well.
Fill into in sterile jar, close tightly and decorate the jars or add nice labels. Stored in a cool place it will stay fresh for at least three months.
I think it’s great to have a hearty gift idea from the kitchen up your sleeve and I’m sure I will give away some of those jars at Christmas. Would that be something for you as well?
The deadline to send out this year’s Christmas mail is approaching. I really so love handwritten cards – they are so special to me and I’m happy about every single one that flutters into our mailbox. But if you want your cards to arrive on time before the holidays you have to hurry up a bit.
That’s why today I want to share with you a super easy craft tutorial and show you how you can create very nice Christmas cards from craft paper and some left over gift wrap in no time.
Quick Christmas Cards
Active Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Left it to the last minute to send your Christmas Mail? No problem at all: the cards are made in no time!
Kraft paper / card blanks made of kraft paper
Glue (sticky tape is easy to use)
Pencil, scissors, thin black marker
On the back of the gift wrap use the pencil to trace a small house with a chimney - if you like you can put a little heart in the middle of the house.
Carefully cut out the design and place it on the card.
Secure it with glue, then draw a curved line above the chimney with the pencil.
Write a Christmas greeting in capital letters along the pencil line. Let it dry, then erase the pencil and the cards are good to go!
We all have some gift wrap leftovers at home anyways, don’t we? So just go ahead and recycle them into Christmas cards! Do you even write Christmas cards at all? Or is it maybe not that important to you?
I hope you’ll have a happy 3rd Sunday of Advent! Slowly but surely things are getting serious – Christmas is coming! Time for a little checklist:
Christmas tree 👉 done (we actually did that 2 weeks ago already)
Organise gifts 👉 I think I’m on a good way, quite a bit earlier than usual so I feel prepared
Planning Christmas dinner 👉 here I’m still a bit undecided, but at least the aperitif is sorted
Before dinner starts, I will serve utterly delicious spiced apple sorbet topped with fantastic apple champagne to my guests! Only a few weeks ago I came across this apple champagne and absolutely totally fell for it – love at first sip. So of course it had to be part of my Christmas menue this year.
Anyway, the cocktail is a wonderful starter: fruity & fresh with slight Christmas flavours. It doesn’t need much preparation, just a bit of time for the sorbet to freeze in peace – sounds easy? Is really is and therefore perfect for Christmas!
Spiced Apple Sorbet with Apple Champagne
Yield: makes 6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Freezing Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 12 hours20 minutes
A fresh & fruity aperitif paired with Christmas spices - it will make you want more!
80 g brown sugar
300 ml apple juice
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground star anise
a little vanilla
some lime juice
1 bottle apple champagne
For the sorbet, wash the apples, remove the core and cut them unpeeled into small chunks. Put them into a saucepan together with the brown sugar, apple juice, spices and a dash of lime juice. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 10 minutes.
Remove from the heat and purée thoroughly. Pass the mixture through a fine sieve and pour it into a shallow plastic bowl. Close and freeze for at least 12 hours (preferably overnight).
Take the sorbet from the freezer about 15-30 minutes before serving. Put one scoop of sorbet in a glass, pour the apple champagne on top and serve immediately!
Fast, easy and delicious! Also really unique and probably not something you’d serve every day. But to be honest: the apple champagne is so good – I could definitely drink it every day.
This amazing drink is made by Johannes from Adams Apfel. His dream: bottles filled with a delicious drink that will never empty. And as long as that doesn’t work yet, he lovingly produces a steady supply of his Apple Champagne. And speaking of bottles – have a look at the lovely label! ♥ It makes my little design heart beats a bit faster!
The Apple Champagne is available in two varieties: dry and semi-dry and both taste very delicious! To give you the chance to taste it yourself, I will give away 4 x 1 bottle to you!
HOW TO ENTER:
You can participate by commenting on this post, via Facebook and on Instagram – you can thus secure 1 entry on each platform (that a maximum of 3 entries per participant). My question is the same everywhere: Which is your favourite Christmas tradition?
The raffle starts on 16.12.2018 at 10:00 and ends on 19.12.2018 at 23:59 (CET).
Eligible are readers from Germany, who are at least 18 years old.
Participation is via the submission of a comment on the blog and under the corresponding on Facebook and Instagram posts.
The raffle is not affiliated with Facebook / Instagram and is not sponsored or organized by Facebook / Instagram in any way.
Today is once again all about decorating the Christmas table. To me, a nicely set table is almost as important to me as delicious food and it’s just so much fun to collect and combine decoration elements, plates & dishes.
I also have another small DIY for you to go with the table decoration inspiration. How about simply monograming a few simple cloth napkins instead of place cards and this way guiding your guests to their seats in a simple and stylish way?
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
With just a few simple steps you can transfor plain cloth napkins into smart place cards.
scissors, baking paper & iron
Find yourself some paper napkins in a nice pattern or colour that will go with your decoration later. Then cut out letters in the desired size and shape. You can trace them beforehand, preferably on the back - just don't forget to mirror the letters for this step.
Carefully split the different layer on one of the edges, so that all the individual layers become visible and then remove only the top, printed layer.
Place it between two pieces of cling film and press together firmly. Cut around the letters leaving a bit of foil around it.
Now position the letters on the cloth napkins, place a piece of baking paper on top and then iron your design. Iron until the cling film melts and fuses well with the fabric. Then carefully peel off the baking paper and the napkins are ready.
I like this idea so much – multifunctional, chic and if you want, you can give the napkins to your guests as a gift at the end of the evening!
Matching the napkins, I created a second table decoration look for you – this time brighter, a bit simpler and with a lot of ‘greenery’ … just scroll along 🙂
I got this small porcelain truck at Rossmann and I adore it! ♥
The candles in the jars are from Hema, the small stick candles are from kik, as are most of the small Christmas baubles. The small candle holders I made from air-drying clay and the lovely eucalyptus is from Blumigo ♥
Maybe there are some ideas that you can use for your own Christmas table!
How tidy are you? I must confess, I’m usually living in a least a bit of a mess and things tend to leave the place I assigned them to.
That’s why I love small bowls, containers and dishes to quickly stow things away and feel like you’ve got your s**t together. For those bits and pieces little dishes made of airdrying clay are the perfect solution! Just shape them as big or small as you need them, let them dry and finish it off with a bit of paint. Et voilà, there you have your pretty, handmade trinket dishes!
Active Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 1 day
Total Time: 1 day30 minutes
Perfect for storing small things - a stylish way to organise your chaos!
air-drying modeling clay (stone effect)
bowls in different sizes
craft mat & knife
golden acrylic paint
Take a bit of the modeling clay and press it into a clean bowl - the shape of the bowl will be the mould for your dish.
Carefully remove it from the bowl and finish shaping it with your hands until you have your desired shape.
Thin the edges evenly and then cut off the uneven bits with a knife to create a smooth edge.
Let it dry according to package instructions (mine took 24 hours).
If needed smooth the surfaces with sand paper.
Paint the edge with gold paint, let it dry and the dishes are ready for use!
Simple and super effective! I’ve got a whole bunch of them in my office – they keep things organised and look so pretty!
Christmas is approaching fast and therefore I would like to give you some nice gift ideas in the next few days.
In our family we (at least the adults) agreed to only gift eachother small presents, preferably homemade. So last year, I put together a box of handmade chocolate for everyone – from salted caramel to berry cream and spicy marshmallows, it had everything your heart could desire. It also included the pralines that I want to share with you today: Delicious Crème Brûlée chocolates with a crunchy caramel crust and sweet white chocolate.
Crème Brûlée Chocolates
Yield: makes about 15
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Cooling Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours
Just as tasty as the dessert classic & a great homemade gift idea from the kitchen!
80 g cream
the pulp of half a vanilla pod
150 g white chocolate
storebought chocolates cases + some extra chocolate
200 g white chocolate and a silicone chocolate mould
40 g sugar
1 tbsp golden syrup or honey
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Put cream, vanilla and the chopped white chocolate into a small saucepan, heat on medium temperature and allow to melt until it's smooth. Remove from heat and let it cool at room temperature.
In the meantime prepare the chocolate shells. To do this, chop the second part of white chocolate and melt in a water bath and (ideally) temper the chocolate. Put some chocolate into the silicone moulds, distribute well and then turn over so that the excess chocolate can drip out. Scrape off the excess and then let the chocolate set in the refrigerator.
Now fill the hollow chocolates (either the homemade or storebought ones) with the cooled vanilla creme, leaving a small gap at the top. Place in the fridge for half an hour, then top with the remaining white chocolate, level and scrape off the excess to seal the chocolates. Let them set for at least one hour in the refrigerator.
In the meantime, make the Honey Comb. Heat the sugar and honey in a small saucepan and simmer on a medium flame until it turns into a light caramel. Now stir in the baking soda (be careful, it will foam up!) and pour the mass directly onto a sheet of baking paper. Even out a bit and let it cool down. The mass will turn very hard and then can be broken into small chunks.
Remove the chocolates from the mould and grind some of the honey comb with a mortar and pestle. Lightly melt the surface of the chocolates with a lighter or flambé burner and dip into the caramel powder. Lastly, caramelise the top lightly with the flambé burner, allow to cool and the chocolates are ready to serve.
Did you make chocolates by yourself before? If so, which is your favourite recipe?
Christmas time is a lot about consumption. Technically our whole year kind of is. Most of us can usually afford what they need (or often don’t really need), throw away things that are still good, and just don’t think about their consumption habits. But there are a few small steps you can easily follow to have more sustainability in your life.
One of them is banning ‘disposable products’ like foil – more specifically, aluminum foil and cling film – from your life. Use a bit here to wrap half that onion, use another bit there for the sandwich to go. An environmentally friendly alternative – easy to make and a really fun DIY project – are reusable beeswax wraps. Choose a few nice cotton fabrics and then you’re almost good to go – I’ll show you how it works:
Yield: makes about 6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Save our planet - or at least try to help reducing the plastic madness!
100 g beeswax
3 tsp jojoba oil
6 pieces of cotton cloth (à 30 × 30 cm)
Old pot & brush
Baking tray & aluminum foil
Cut the fabric to the desired size.
Put the beeswax in a small (old) saucepan and melt on medium heat. Add the jojoba oil and stir well.
Preheat the oven to 100° C.
Lineout the work surface as well as a large baking tray with aluminum foil. Lay the pieces of fabric flat on the prepared work surface.
Brush the fabric evenly with the hot wax using the brush. Place the cloth on the baking sheet and let the wax melt for 5 minutes in a preheated oven. If it is not soaked through evenly after this time, put it back in the oven for another 3 minutes.
Then remove the fabric from the tray, hold it briefly up with your fingers to let it cool down and set . Now the wraps are ready for their use.
Do you think that could be something for you? Replace cling film with wax wraps? I think the concept is great and I’m really trying to implement my lovely new beeswax wraps in my daily routine ♥
are you #TEAMDOG or #TEAMCAT or maybe even #TEAMSTAYAWAYFROMME? A cat girl named Bailey has been living with me for many years now, so I am very used to cats. Then, almost a year ago, a black ball of fluff moved in with my sister and her family. He answers to the name of Campino (more or less acurately) and since then the cat has to share her food from time to time with the dog – as you can imagine she is not thrilled about it.
Meanwhile, the small (or by now rather large) bugger has stolen all of our hearts and to celebrate his first Christmas as part of the family, I baked him a large portion of dog treats. They are super easy to make and his happy tail wagging made it worth the effort ♥
Yield: makes about 50
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
A tasty snack for our four-legged family members.
200 g rolled oats
150 g cottage cheese
100 g liver sausage or pâté
5 tbsp olive oil
Put all the ingredients in a bowl and knead into a smooth dough.
Place the dough on a floured work surface and roll it out evenly. Cut out the desired shape (e.g. little bones) and place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
Put the tray into the cold oven, then turn the oven on to 200° C (180° C convection) and bake for 30 minutes.
Allow the treats to cool well and then feed them right away or store in a air tight container for up to 3 weeks.
And now the ultimate taste test… do you think he liked them? Let’s see: