Gifts in Jars, Elsewhere

December 3, 2009(updated on October 3, 2018)

e's low-sugar jam

I have a bad habit of leaving my computer on for days and days at a stretch (although since my two-year-old MacBook stopped going to sleep, I do shut it down more than I once did). Part of the reason that my computer rarely powers down is that I collect canning recipes in the tabs along the top of my browser, sometimes having as many at 15 or 20 open. Right at the moment, I’ve reached critical mass and need to clear out some of those tabs, so I thought I’d share some of the recipes that have recently caught my eye. All would make excellent gifts in jars.

And, two recipes for baked goods that utilize jam (if, like me, you happen to have something of a glut).

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18 thoughts on "Gifts in Jars, Elsewhere"

  • Thanks for an excellent list of inspiring things to do.
    Our quince tree has given us the grand total of two quinces this year, and ones already rotted on the mantelpiece while I get round to doing something with it. I may yet get it together to make some of the delicious sounding marmalade – I like the idea of just drinking it as well.

  • Thanks so much for including me in your round-up Marisa! I’m still hoping to test those PB & Jelly Thumbprints out with grape jelly 😉

  • I’ve made the Barefoot Contessa PB&J Bars on numerous occasions. They are a highly requested item out of my kitchen.

    I’m anxious to try the dulce de leche and the mandarin dust. Thanks for the links,

  • That homemade dulce de leche sounds yummy. I grew up in South American where a lot of women made it to give away for the holidays. Instead of packing in jars though, they’d put it in hollowed out coconut shells (usually a half a shell). They usually put a few raisins or prunes on top and give as gifts. We often had a few of these in our kitchen around the holidays. It’s so good.

    It’s more authentic if you use rapadura or sucanat, which is the traditional sweetener they use in many Latin American countries.

    I’ve still got a few things in jars to make for my baskets, including your cranberry apple jelly from last week, meyer lemon marmalade, apple butter and I think I’ll be making mulling spices in jars to add as well. Now if I can only find the time to get it all done 🙂

  • I make Herbs Salees from a recipe I picked up in Quebec. It essentially preserves fresh herbs in salt. The first batch I made lasted a year in refrigeration with the herbs remaining fresh and fragrant to the end. To use it you simply replace the salt in a recipe with the salted herbs. I loved it so much that this year I used the technique to make Caribbean, Herbs de Provence, Fines Herbes, and Tuscan blends. So easy, and makes a great gift. Contact me if you like and I’ll be glad to share.

    I’m definitely going with the Mandarin Orange Dust!

  • Sounds like you need a web browser that can save your tabs. I’ve been quite happy with firefox in that regard.

  • oh my, thanks for de-stashing your finds on here, they all sound great! I really like the idea of jar gifts, think I will do so this year, thank you!

  • That Dulce De Leche sounds AMAZING, and it just changed my tactics for this holiday season. My only question: since the recipe says to turn the jars upside down to get a shelf stable seal, and that is known to be unsafe, do you think you could can these with a water canner? If so, how long would one process this?

    I’m not sure I’d trust it, because it’s not acidic at all, but I’m wondering what your take on it would be?

  • Thank you, Marisa, for including my mandarin dust in your round up. I don’t know exactly how you do all the things you do, but I am in awe. Superwoman.

  • So totally cool. But now I have ten more things that I want to make! At least I can just save the link to this post for now…

  • Clearly, I need to make all of these for all of my loved ones. Any update on the dulce de leche preservation process?

  • I had the same question as Kelly….Any thoughts on how long to process the dulce de leche in a boiling water bath?

  • Kelly and Elaine, I’ve done a lot of looking into methods of safely canning dulce de leche and I’m not finding anything. The USDA does not recommend canning milk products. However, it’s still a lovely gift to give, you just have to gift it with the recommendation that it’s stored in the fridge, even before it’s opened.

  • My MacBook stayed open for days at a time for exactly the same reason. I even avoided doing the mandatory software updates because it would involve taking time to decide what to do with all the open tabs and windows I had before the necessary restart.

    BUT…have you ever heard of Evernote? It has changed my life. You can clip an entire page or just a screenshot into the database, and save tons of recipes, design ideas, and wish lists, etc. It also has text recognition, so even if you don’t title or tag a recipe with a particular word, if it’s in the body of the entry you can find it. Even if that word is in an image. Seriously. Try it.

  • When I don’t have time to read something on a website, or I want to grab a recipe or other tidbit, but I don’t want to bookmark it I use a Firefox add-on called “read it later” it’s GREAT! I have also been trying out a few different ways to “clip” pieces of web pages, recipes & the like and seems to be shaping up to do that pretty well.

  • I use the Print to PDF function to print recipes that I’d like to try to a pdf document. Of course now I have hundreds of recipes that I often forget about, but at least when something I saw comes to mind, I don’t have to go searching for which blog it was one.

  • I just came across your site and was reading some of your recipes, which I will be trying soon! I had to laugh at your comment above about having 15-20 tabs open at one time and leaving your computer on way too long. I totally do the same! Anyway, I’m happy to have come across across your site! – Dennis

  • I’ve made the Barefoot Contessa PB&J Bars on numerous occasions. They are a highly requested item out of my kitchen.

    I’m anxious to try the dulce de leche and the mandarin dust. Thanks for the links,