Easy gifts from the kitchen are always welcome this time of year. If you need a quick hostess gift or just want to give a small tasty something to someone who has been good to you, try one of these recipes. Seek out small pretty jars or bottles or remember to buy a few when you see them for sale.
Chocolate peanut butter sauce
2 squares unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
Melt chocolate in milk; stir until smooth. Add brown sugar; continue cooking until it boils.
Cool slightly and then stir in vanilla and peanut butter.
Serve over vanilla ice cream.
Serves six, store in a jar in the refrigerator.
Tex-Mex spice mix
3 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons ground red pepper
Stir together all ingredients and store in an airtight container up to six months.
Sprinkle on chicken, beef, potatoes, corn and popped corn.
Makes 1/2 cup.
Easy sweet-tangy mustard
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 (8-ounce) bottle prepared mustard
2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
Stir together all ingredients until blended. Store in refrigerator for up to three months.
Serve with pretzels or egg rolls and as a sandwich spread.
Makes 3 cups.
Susan Woody has been a food writer for more than 20 years and is a member of the Association of Food Journalists.