Amaretto Recipe: Low fat cookies

Homemade Amaretto Makes an Extra-Special Gift.
In-home chef Katie Habib provides tips
on giving baked goods as gifts.

There is nothing like a homemade gift to say you really care about someone. At the holidays things are always busy, but its so nice to make someone feel extra special. When you’re baking your favorite cookie recipe, make an extra batch of dough, freeze it, and bake them for a special gift for someone–-tie them in a pretty box, put them on a festive plate (look at yard sales and flea markets year-round for odd plates), or put them in a jar with a nice ribbon.

What could be better than a thoughtful gift that’s also easy? The following Amaretto recipe takes all of a half hour-–even if you multiply it, then just pop it in a pretty bottle (pick these up through the year too) with a stopper (also in abundance in kitchen stores) and a ribbon. It stores at room temperature, and you probably have all the ingredients in your house already! It’s perfect for a hostess gift or a special friend. The nuts take a little more time, but they’re well worth it. Wrap them in a pretty jar or can or a festive cellophane bag.

Amaretto

(from allrecipes.com)

1 cup water
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 cups vodka
2 tablespoons almond extract
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Combine water, white sugar and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Heat until boiling and all sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let mixture cool for about 10 minutes. Pour in vodka, almond extract, and vanilla. Mix well and store in a sealed bottle.


If your loved one is not a cookie fan, consider this recipe:

Roasted Rosemary Cashews

(from The Barefoot Contessa)


1 pound unsalted roasted cashews
2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary
½ teaspoon cayenne
2 teaspoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350°. Spread cashews out on a sheet pan. Toast until warm, about 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine rosemary, cayenne, brown sugar, salt and melted butter. Thoroughly toss toasted nuts with spiced butter. Cool and package as gifts.


Katie Habib of in home cooking Personal Chef Service (www.inhomecooking.net) prepares high-protein, low-fat meals for you to enjoy in your own home at the end of a long day.

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