I do. Especially at work and with fellow thrifty friends.
This year 2 people are getting home-canned bone broth. They are friends and we often exchange canned or dehydrated food from our pantries. makes a nice change from our own stock. Last year I got dehydrated apples and cherries from one, and brandied peaches from the other. Major treats!
For work I got a pound of locally made chocolate truffles for 24$ (about 30?) and divided them up among 10 people at work. Fancy wrap (from thrift stores and dollar store) and I'm at about 3$ per gift.
My gramma LOVED sardines and fancy tuna so we'd send her that type of thing once she got into her 90s.
One year for work I did cookie mixes in jars. They were a big hit. I gave them a week before the holiday and I believe most were consumed that same year. The bummer was not getting my jars back.
I have made chocolate covered caramel corn in the past. It's a bit of work but about 1/3 the cost of buying it in tiny bags. The year I worked for a major snack food company everyone got giant bags of chips or pretzels, bought from the company store, lol. I had so many 'free' jars of penzey's spices one year I put tiny bows on top and handed those out as gifts. This year I picked up a couple of their small gift sets very cheap or free during promotions. I have given HM jam or pickles in the past, but I don't get my jars back either, so I've stopped that.
I grew up in a family that gave food as gifts..... and thought it was the normal thing to do. Mom would make Swedish Tea Rings..... a huge circular pastry filled with nuts and fruits and frosted. She gave them to our teachers, our neighbors, the mailman, etc. When we kids grew up and were out of the home, sure enough..... Swedish Tea Rings came our way. We would do all sorts of canning of special goodies, baking special breads, making candies and cookies and wrapping them to look special. I enjoy getting those kinds of homemade treats.... and also giving them. In fact, I just finished wrapping gift bags of cookies to take to shut ins. I made sugar cookies and stamped them with a cookie stamper, lace cookies, peanut butter/chocolate cookies, dipped and decorated oreos, coconut/orange drops, pecan/chocolate drops, and decorated giant pretzel rods. Made enough of the pretzel rods to give one to each guest that comes to our house during the season. Made a plate full to take to Hospice and the nursing home. Will be taking another plate of them to our neighborhood Christmas party, and still another to our retired teachers Christmas party. My college roomie and friend gave me a really unique gift this year: a homemade kit that is like Hello Fresh. It had all the ingredients in it for a pot of Italian Wedding Soup, everything prepped and ready for me to cook at home. We loved it. My brother makes 70 pounds of fudge every year to give away, and we love it. My son loves various kinds of seafood, so we give him a seafood package each year: sardines, oysters, mussels, etc. It's a treat for him and we are glad to do it. Some people think it's tacky to give food as a gift, but I have always loved it.
Some of us here in my condo got together and made our specialty cookies for the cops and firefighters here in town. The cookies that were left were given to the maintenance staff. I made Amish ginger cookies and one of my original creations. The cops and firefighters were filled with gratitude. We made enough to cover four shifts and their support staff.
I usually don't gift food because there are so many people who are on restrictive diets. If I bake or cook throughout the year, I offer whatever I made to my brother or friends.
Mom made Hungarian cookies every so often for the family. At family gatherings, the relatives cooked but we never left with goodie bags or anything.
I started gifting food baskets 15 years ago as we live very far away from relatives. I do ask what they eat, though. Glad I asked- I was told that MIL likes seafood but not mussels. My sister made and sent us caramel apples with different coatings but she used stuff that was processed in a nut facility. She asked if the kids ever had these and I said no. She then became worried about the nut allergies and said to throw the apples away. I told her that gift certificates for the kids were the safest thing to do.
I think the best way to approach food gifts is to ask about food restrictions and likes/dislikes. Then a decision can be made to gift it or not.
I have done it in the past. spiced nuts for inlaws and neighbours. or truffles/candy cookies. my mom makes almond sticks..dutch thing. my mil gets one too and eats it all at once lol I think if you know the people will appreciate it and can eat it then do it.
movie baskets are good too dvd candy, popcorn etc.
Sorry I am extremely late to the party but, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this thread. It’s never too late to get gift ideas for next year. I love getting food gifts as presents. I know someone took the time to make it for me, that’s special. Making food gifts for people is fun for me. Home grown tomatoes canned into salsa, pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce is a thoughtful gift. Especially if you put it a gift basket. My sister makes delicious apple bread. Her clients always hint to her before Christmas, hope we are getting some of your delicious apple bread!
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