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Clodagh Mckenna’s edible Christmas gifts

If you're struggling with ideas for Christmas presents then fear not - Clodagh’s here with some easy edible ideas that won't break the bank! Think ready made slice and bake gingerbread dough, Christmas Chutney and hot chocolate stirrers - they’re easy to make, taste delicious and guaranteed to spoil your loved ones.

Download the jar labels here.

Christmas chutney

Serves: 12


For the packaging:

4 x 500ml Kilner or jam jars


Label tags

Cinnamon sticks, slices of dried oranges, or a sprig of fir

For cooking:

3 kg cooking apples, peel, quartered and cored 

3 onions, finely chopped

600g brown sugar

20 cloves

5 inches fresh ginger, peeled and grated

600ml cider vinegar

2 tsp chilli powder

2 tbsp turmeric

80g butter

Salt and pepper


1. Chop the apples into small chunks and dice the onions. 

2. Place a large saucepan over a low heat and melt the butter. Then stir in the apples and onion followed by the brown sugar, cloves, chili powder, turmeric, fresh ginger, cider vinegar, and season with salt and pepper. Mix well. Cover the saucepan, increase the heat and bring to the boil. Then reduce the heat leave to simmer over a medium heat for 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes. 

3. Take the lid off, turn down the heat and leave to cook for 30 minutes until the apple has broken down and the chutney has turned a rich, golden brown colour. Use the back of a wooden spoon to crush up the apples. Take it off the heat and allow it to cool, the chutney will thicken more as it cools. 

4. Once the chutney has cooled, spoon into 12 sterilised jars.

5. Wrap a pretty ribbon around the top end (under the lid) of the jar and attach a gift label with Homemade with love Christmas Chutney written on it and also attach a cinnamon stick, slice of dried orange or a sprig of fir.

6. The chutney will keep for 3 months in a sealed jar, once opened store in the fridge.

Hot chocolate stirrers

Serves: 12


For the packaging:

Silicone ice cube tray

12 x lolly sticks

Cellophane bags


Label tags

For cooking:

200g dark or milk chocolate

200g white chocolate

Mini marshmallows


1. Melt both chocolates in separate bowls suspended over a pot of simmering water or in the microwave (be careful not to overcook it).

2. Place the ice cube tray on a baking tray, so it is easy to transport once the chocolate is in.

3. Pour each of the melted chocolates into the ice cube tray moulds, the chocolate should fill each section about two-thirds of the way up. Add a lolly stick to the middle of each mould, pushing it right to the bottom of the chocolate. Fill the moulds to the top with mini marshmallows.

4. Carefully transfer the moulds to the fridge and chill for 2-3 hours. Once the chocolate has set, pop them in cellophane bags and tie with a ribbon and a small label.

5. Write on the label - To serve, stir into a cup of warm milk to turn it into delicious hot chocolate. 

6. Store the chocolate stirrers in the fridge and keep for up to one week.

Christmas cookie dough crackers

Makes 24 cookies


For the packaging:

Greaseproof paper

Christmas wrapping paper


Gift tags

For the cooking:

250g Butter, softened

120g Caster Sugar

300g Plain Flour

1 Teaspoon Baking Powder

80g White Chocolate

70g Dried Cranberries, chopped


1. Put the butter and sugar in a large bowl and cream together with a wooden spoon until pale in colour.

2. Sift the flour and baking powder, then add the white chocolate and dried cranberries. Bring the mixture together to form a dough. You can of course also do this in a food processor.

3. Cut the dough in three. Roll up each third into a sausage shape. Wrap in greaseproof paper and twist at both ends. Place in the fridge for an hour to set.

4. Remove from the fridge and wrap in Christmas paper and tie at both ends with some pretty ribbon.

5. Write a little note on a gift card to say that the cookies should be cut into 8 pieces and cooked for 10-15 minutes in a preheated oven at 180oC/Gas mark 4. The dough should be stored in the fridge and will keep for up to a week.

6. Tie the card onto the ribbon.

7. Store the cookie dough in the fridge.

Rosemary Clodagh bread in a jar

Serves: 1


For the packaging:

1 litre Kilner or jam jar


Brown address label tags

Sprig of rosemary

For inside the jar:

350g wholemeal flour

200g white flour

2 teaspoons of bicarbonate of soda

1 teaspoon of salt

2 tablespoons of fresh rosemary, finely chopped


1. Fill the large in layers with the dried ingredients, starting with the wholemeal, flour, chopped rosemary, then the white flour, soda and sea salt.

2. Write on a brown address label tag: Mix the dry ingredients with 600ml of buttermilk. Shape the dough into one round. Place on a floured baking tray. Brush the round of bread with the milk. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 220°C, 425°F, Gas Mark 7 for 25 minutes, then reduce the heat to 180°C, 350°F, Gas Mark 4 for a further 25 minutes.

3. Tie the sprig of rosemary and label with instructions around the top end of the jar (just under the lid).

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