The Gift Of Food

Dec 16, 2017

Headshots-TracyMiller.jpgby Tracy Miller

Colorful Cooking gives you recipes for spice mixtures, flavored olives and slime (that’s right, if there is a kid in your life).

colorful christmas memories

christmas-cookies.jpgOne of my favorite presents to give and receive is the gift of food.  A nice olive oil, vinegar or a homemade treat is the ultimate kind act of giving.  My kids and I just did the traditional sugar cookie decorating night with friends and we had a blast. We prepared sugar cookie dough, frosting, icing and purchased a whole bunch of sprinkles. The afternoon stretched into the night, the house was a disaster and the echoes of kids giggling and sugared squeals were all worth it. I think our yield was about 20 cookies after dough & cookie eating and the rambunctious dog that gobbled down the last balls of dough. These cookies will be gifts we will share with teachers and other friends and it was stress free and low cost giving.  It was well worth all the effort and mess as we built a colorful Christmas memory!

Last year, my daughter wanted to give her dad and grandparents a nice gift so we decided that spices would be a good idea. Reusing old jars, she painted them and we made spice mixes for his grilling and smoking rubs. I am lucky enough to have a spice grinder so she got to experience that culinary technique and now mixes my spices for dinner quite often. That’s a gift that keeps on giving! Not only did she feel confident about her gift giving, but also we got to spend quality time together.

Spice Rub

  • 3 teaspoons turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons ginger
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Mix all spices together and use for a chicken or pork rub for an Indian flare with a little spice.

Everyday Spice Mixture

  • 1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Mix all ingredients together and put in a small jar. This spice rub is great for chicken, pork, fish or shrimp.

Holiday slimes

holiday-slime.jpegCookies and spice mixtures are great homemade culinary gifts. This year, we have added homemade slime to our gift packages because the spice-making daughter has now become a pro slime maker. Plus, you can add glitter and food coloring to really make this slime sparkle! So fill up a basket for a family you love and enjoy the gifts of the season. In order to have authentic Christmas slime, sing “Holly Jolly Christmas” while mixing ingredients – the louder the better.

Christmas Slime

½ cup glue
1 ½ cup thick and rich shaving cream
1 ½ Tablespoon saline solution
Green food coloring (optional)
Pour glue into bowl.
  • Add shaving cream and stir until well mixed.

  • Slowly stir in saline solution with a spoon.

  • When the slime forms, go in with your hands and knead until not sticky. If it’s too sticky, add more contact solution. If it doesn’t come together, add more shaving cream.

  • Add glitter for decorations. Package in a well-sealed jar, container or baggie.

gifts that keep on giving

Orange Fennel Olives

  • 12 oz. Castelvetrano Green Olives
  • 1 fennel head, sliced thin
  • 1 large orange, zested
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • Salt & Pepper
  • In a skillet, heat olive oil over medium low and add sliced fennel. Cook for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  • While fennel is cooking, using a balloon zester (also a great gift), zest long strips of orange until you have about 1/8 cup. Place zest in pan and squeeze a splash of orange and cook for 3 minutes.

  • Stir in almonds and olives, a pinch of salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.

  • Mix well, cool and package for gift.

Christmas Quiche

  • 1 pie crust 
  • ½ cup frozen chopped spinach
  • ½ cup diced roasted red peppers 
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1 ½ cup heavy cream
  • 4 oz. cream cheese or goat cheese
  • Heat the oven to 350 degrees and place the pie crust in oven and pre cook for 1 minute.

  • Whisk the eggs in a bowl and add the flour and mix well.

  • Stir in cream and cheese and whisk until well combined.

  • Place custard in pie crust and cook for 25 minutes.

  • Remove from oven and evenly spread roasted red peppers and spinach on top of the custard, cook another 20 minutes until cooked through.

Homemade christmas gifts are fun and festive. Grab some holiday jars and get gift giving!



Follow us on Instagram at @tv8vailcolorado and use hashtag #VailTV8 to share pictures or videos of your homemade holiday treats!



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