Make a ‘Cozy Cocoa Gift Basket’

cocoabasket_ksimeck

‘Tis the season of cocoa and gift baskets, so there couldn’t be anything more appropriate to combine them. The marriage? Dee-light-ful! The folks at Fiskars tell us how they did it, using Fiskars products, of course, but a bit of free hand cutting could produce equally cute results if you don’t have all the suggested tools on hand. Here’s a few things you’ll need to start construction:

  • a small wicker basket
  • card stock for trim, several colors and one coordinating print would be nice*
  • paper punches, if you have them
  • glue or sticky-back tape
  • a recycled cup cozy to use as template (love this idea!)
  • a couple of colorful paper cups and a few packages of ‘gourmet’ cocoa

That all being said, you could also *recycle last year’s Christmas cards, finding a motif that would work as a focal point for the basket’s center. Continue Reading

How to Make Marshmallow Snowflakes, From Scratch

Marshmallow Snowflakes

I can’t think of a sweeter way to top off a cup of hot chocolate than with these snowflake marshmallows. Martha tells us how to make the marshmallow mix from scratch (so you know it’s yummy). Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

  • 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • vegetable-oil cooking spray
  • snowflake-shaped cookie cutters

After mixing the ingredients, you basically roll the mixture like dough and cut out the shapes with cookie cutters. Continue Reading

How To Make a Chocolate Facial.

With Valentine’s Day and Easter over, the candy company’s get to take a break until Halloween, with a brief resurgence for Mother’s Day, perhaps. So, someone has to use all that chocolate, so it might as be you! This video tutorial from Reuters and Skindalous provides instructions for a DIY cacao face mask.

Ingredients:

1/3 cup cocoa powder
3 tbsp. heavy cream
2 tsp. cottage cheese
¼ cup honey
3 tsp. oatmeal

Mix
all ingredients together (a bullet blender is ideal) and smooth onto
face.
Continue Reading

How to make heart marshmallows for your Valentine.

Nothing says love like a hot cup of cocoa with one or two of these ‘Valentine’ marshmallows floating in it! The trick to making them is the tiny fondant heart cutter. I found a set of three at my local craft store for about $2.50. For the marshmallow part, go for the big ones. Before you cut the marshmallow, flatten it a bit OR cut it in half. Then, dip your cutter in a little warm water, position the heart in the center of the marshmallow and cut away.  Continue Reading