Festive Gift Wrapping

By this time in the month your presents should be bought and ready for wrapping. But lets be honest, this probably won’t be the case for most! The week of Christmas is full of last minute Christmas shoppers, rushing around the shops, which is normally where I find myself. However, this year I have manage to get it all done and wrapped before the week of Christmas even began! Not bad if I say so myself.

Wrapping presents has always been a highlight of Christmas for me. Pop on a good Christmas playlist and your good to go! I thought I would share some of my wrapped presents with you for some wrapping inspiration and where to get some nice finishing touches to make your presents just that little bit more special.

 

Wrapping paper – Next

Gift bows – Next

Mini bauble present toppers – Marks and Spencer

Ribbon – Next

Gift tag – Next

Alphabet gift tag – Marks and Spencer

Pine cone present topper – Marks and Spencer

 

Good luck with the shopping!

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American Style Pancakes

Watching Elf over and over had me craving something sweet, not quite the sugar covered spaghetti he makes for breakfast but how about sugar covered pancakes! I used the American pancake recipe from Jamie Oliver which is super easy and the results are amazing! Proper fluffy pancakes.

To make them you will need:

3 large free-range eggs

115g plain flour

1 heaped teaspoon of baking powder

140ml of milk

pinch of salt

First sieve the flour into a large mixing bowl, adding the baking powder and milk in too. Next separate the eggs, the whites in one bowl and the yolks in with the flour and milk mixture. You then want to mix the flour mixture together into a smooth thick batter. In the other bowl, add the salt to the egg whites and whisk until stiff. Fold this into the mixture and your ready to go!

Heat a non-stick pan on a medium heat and ladle the mixture into the pan, frying for a few minutes until it looks golden and firm. The amount of mixture you use for each pancake depends on what size you like to make them. Use a spatula to loosen the pancake before flipping over and continue until both sides are golden.

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You can serve the pancakes with anything you like! I have a terrible sweet tooth so I would always go for something like Nutella and banana. However you could also go for bacon and maple syrup, fruit, jam .. the options are endless!

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Enjoy! x

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Christmas Shortbread Cookies

Christmas is the perfect time for a bit of baking and what better than some festive Christmas cookies. These are so easy to make and are a perfect treat for when anyone comes over during December. It’s also a really fun activity to do with your friends, children or boyfriend, especially the decorating part.

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The recipe is really straight forward and you can make them into any shapes you’d like! I went for stars and circles, which were meant to be decorated as Christmas baubles but that didn’t really go to plan.

What you will need:

90g unsalted butter

100g caster sugar

2 large eggs

300g plain flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

teaspoon of vanilla extract

pinch of salt

Start by mixing the sugar and butter together in a bowl until it is light and fluffy. Next crack two eggs and the vanilla extract into a separate bowl, gradually adding this to the sugar and butter mix. Once they are mixed together you want to start adding the flour, baking powder (not a lot as it may effect the cookie’s shape) and a pinch of salt, mixing it all together until it forms a dough like constancy. I had to add a bit more flour, but if you do this remember to even it out by also adding some sugar.

Wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate for an hour.

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Next you want to pre-heat your oven to 180oc and slightly flour the surface you will be working on. You will then roll out your dough and use your cookie cutter to create the cookie shapes before placing them on a lined baking tray. Bake them in the oven for around 20 minutes until they are a pale golden colour.

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Now its time to decorate! This is the stage where you can do whatever you like. I decided to make some icing by simply adding some water to icing sugar, then decorating them with some silver balls. For a even simpler but effect look you can just add a dusting of the icing sugar on top of the cookies, giving them a festive snowy feel.

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