Infused olive oil, homemade pancake mix... what are some cheap, nice make-ahead food gifts?
I'm trying to figure out what to give my co-workers for Christmas. I have a few requests for simple syrups (they're kind of my thing), but also wanted to do stuff like make an infused olive oil, or something like a pancake mix.
Here are my questions:
1. I've been seeing contradictory information for how long it will keep. For example, some sites say that you have to use basil-infused olive oil within the week. Others say it'll keep for a month. What factors impact how long it will last?
2. I've seen in a few places now that you have to brine garlic, lemons and chilis before using them to infuse the olive oil. Is that just letting the clove or sliced chili chillax in some vinegar for a bit?
3. How do I present this lovingly without making folks sick? I was going to use empties
of the bottles we use at work, thoroughly cleaned. Will using a bottle that's not sealed make folks sick?
1. I'm pretty much in love with the Naptime Chef's pancake
mix. Do you have one you prefer?
2. I like the idea of a soup-in-a-jar like this
one from Food.com, but was wondering if there are some that incorporate noodles? Would using dried noodles instead of beans reduce their shelf life?
If it matters: I work at a coffee shop. My coworkers are a mix of college students (most of whom are returning students), military spouses, knitters, and writers working on the next great American/urban fantasy novel. I like the idea of making sure this crazy bunch of dames (and two gents!) can have an easy breakfast/dinner on me, or can jazz up something they eat using a slightly fancy thing. They're awesome and I <3 them muchly.