Wednesday, 10 October 2012

A Home Made Christmas

Each Wednesday from now until Christmas I will be blogging about a gift idea that can be made at home and I would love it if you would join in each week with your own contribution to "A Home Made Christmas".
I am sure that there are great projects to make, goodies to make, bake and bottle and ideas that you all have to share. I look forward to reading all about the things you make and being inspired by your ideas.

If you are worried about ruining the surprise feel free to post about something you have made in the past, something you saw or something you have received.

When planning home made gifts you need to consider a number of things:
How long the item will take to make? How far ahead do I need to plan?
How long will it keep?  What is the shelf life?
Does it need time to mature like Christmas Cakes/Puddings?
Can I make more than one at a time and give them to a number of people?

This week I want to talk about spice rubs.  Spice mixes or rubs make great gifts especially when teamed with a recipe or suggested ways of using them.  They are also able to be made quickly and cheaply.

Here are a couple of my favourites:

Cajun Rub
This Cajun-style rub that works well on any fish, meat or poultry. If you have a recipe that calls for Cajun seasonings, use this recipe.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Yield: Makes about 4 cups
1/2 cup paprika
6 tablespoons coarse salt
1/4 cup black pepper, coarsely ground
3 tablespoons basil, dried
3 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons onion powder
2 tablespoons oregano, dried
2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons white pepper
2 tablespoons thyme, dried
Mix and use for blackened dishes and any other dishes that call for Cajun seasoning.

 Ethiopian Spice Rub

There are a lot of flavors in this mixture and you might not have everything on hand, but it is a great spice rub for anything.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Yield: Makes about 1/2 cup
10 small dried red chilies
2 1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
2 teaspoons whole cumin seeds
4 whole cloves
1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon black cardamom seeds
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
In a small frying pan over a low heat, lightly toast whole cloves, cumin seeds, fenugreek, cardamom seeds, peppercorns, and coriander seeds for about 2 minutes. Allow to cool. Remove stems from chilies and grind with toasted spices. Add remaining ingredients. Store in an airtight jar.

What are you making this Christmas? I am looking forward to seeing your ideas so please link up below and leave a brief comment as well.


  1. Fiona, these are a great idea! I am so excited as my brother is extremely hard to buy for - he is very well off so can buy just about anything he wants - I love the thought of giving him something homemade, but have never come up with the ideal homemade thing...spice rubs are perfect! Thankyou!

  2. This is such a great idea. I am helping out at a community Christmas gift making workshop and these ideas will be great. I have a couple of ideas too so will get organised and join in next week. ; )

    1. Fiona, I just added the kids messenger bag that I made on the weekend. I have another three planned for Christmas pressies.

  3. Great idea! And very timely, i'm really into spice rub's at the moment and was literally sitting here thinking about what kind i was going to make this weekend. I think i found the answer! I'll have a think about christmas gifts and link up when i have inspiration.


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