Our Mission

To live a self-sufficient and organic lifestyle for the next half century. With the Grace of God and the power of prayer, we will succeed. Nothing is impossible with His help. It wouldn't be us without laughter and joy at the Cockeyed Homestead.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Cooking with Chef Jo: Cockeyed Christmas Ornaments From the Pantry

For several decades I've made salt dough ornaments for my Christmas trees and wreathes. I happened upon a recipe for cinnamon ornaments this year and thought I'd combine the recipes. These are nonedible, but the combination of these two recipes will make them durable and smell good enough to eat.

For this recipe, I'll shop in my pantry and craft supply shelves to get everything I need. No special trips to the store.

The "Shopping" Trip
  1. From my pantry I'll need: flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, applesauce, and cloves. I'll grab my parchment paper and baking sheet pans, and holiday cookies cutter from the inside pantry.
  2. From my craft supplies I'll need: puff paints, a bottle of glue, a spool of 1/4" ribbon or elastic cording, two rubber bands, and a straw.
  3. From the workshop, a bit of sand paper.

I tend to stick with one shape a year. This year it's gingerbread men. If I still had children and grandchildren around, it would be multiple shapes to allow for more creative expression. Since I keep one and distribute the rest among other family members two dozen will be plenty. So that how much the dough I'm making.

The Recipe
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup salt
1 cup ground cinnamon
1/2 tbs ground cloves nutmeg
1/2 tbs ground cloves
1/2 cup applesauce
1/8 cup all purpose glue (Elmers)
1//2 to 3/4 cup water

The How-to
  • Add all ingredients in a bowl and combine until a thick dough forms. Similar to cookie dough consistency, but drier. Add or subtract water to achieve this.
  • Place a rubber band around the ends of your rolling pin. You want your dough to be rolled out to 1/8" to 1/4".
  • The rubber band thickness should give you this thickness when doubled or tripled on the ends of your rolling pin.
  • Roll out your dough to 1/8" to 1/4" thick. A dusting of cinnamon on your rolling space will help your dough from sticking to the surface. Or you can roll between two sheets of parchment paper. Remember, the thicker you roll the dough, the longer it takes to dry.
  • Cut out the shapes and place them on a parchment lined baking sheet about 1" apart. Unlike regular cookies, these will not rise and spread. They will shrink.
  • Now take the straw and punch a hole in the top of each ornament. Don't worry if the hole looks too big. This is where you will thread the ribbon through during the decorating stage.
  • Bake 200 degrees for two hours, or leave them on the sheet and let them air dry for 4-5 days. I have an older gas stove so I leave the ornaments overnight to dry by the pilot light heat within my oven. After the time has elapsed, you will notice the ornaments gave shrunk a bit because the liquid has dried.
The Finishing Touches
Once the ornaments have dried and thoroughly cooled, you can decorate them as much or as little as you want. I always put my initials and the year it was made on the back of each ornament with a sharpie pen. Every artist signs their
work, don't they?

If you end up with sharp rough edges, just take a bit of sand paper to smooth it out.

Oh that ribbon you pulled from your craft supplies, cut it into 8" pieces. One for each ornament. Thread the ribbon through each hole and knot to form the hanging loop.


Y'all have a blessed day!
Jo


2 comments:

  1. How fun that this is an annual tradition for you. I love the idea of doing a different shape each year, makes them all the more a Christmas keepsake :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. It used to be a yearly family tradition that we made ornaments each year to pass on. Decorating the tree was almost as important as Christmas. Each ornament had a story as it was placed on the tree dating back to our great-grandparents.

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