Homemade glue for the gift box can be made from household products.
Cherry Chocolate Scones (makes 8 to 10 scones)
1 cup unbleached white flour
1⁄2 cup whole-wheat flour
1⁄2 cup multigrain cereal
2 tablespoons raw or natural cane sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1⁄2 cup low-fat yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2⁄3 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
2⁄3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, coarsely chopped
1⁄2 cup multigrain cereal
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Lightly oil a cookie sheet; set aside. Mix flours, cereal, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl.
3. Work in butter with fingers until mixture resembles coarse meal. Set aside.
4. In a separate bowl, lightly beat eggs. Add yogurt and vanilla. Whisk. Add this to the dry mixture and stir to combine. Lightly fold in cherries and chocolate.
5. Turn dough on to floured surface and knead, about one minute. Pat dough to ¾-inch thick and cut into hearts. Place scones on cookie sheet. Combine ingredients for streusel topping and sprinkle on scones.
6. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes.
Cool thoroughly before packaging.
1 cup water
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons corn syrup
1 tablespoon white
1⁄2 cup cornstarch
2 cups cold water, divided
1. Combine water, salt, corn syrup and vinegar in a saucepan over high heat. Stir until it reaches a rolling boil, then reduce to low.
2. Put cornstarch and 1 cup cold water in a covered jar and shake thoroughly. Pour cornstarch/water into heated mixture, whisking constantly. Remove from heat and cool before proceeding.
3. Thin mixture with remaining cup of cold water to make a yogurt-like consistency. Use immediately or store, covered tightly.
Box of Love
Package your heartfelt gift in an earth-friendly manner. Make this pasteboard box from layers of newspaper and nontoxic, homemade glue.
You will need:
About 16 newspaper sheets
Homemade glue (see recipe above)
Paper clip or clothespin
Colored paper cutouts
To make the pasteboard:
1. Cut 16 newspaper sheets into individual pages (12 by 23 inches).
2. Crease pages in half lengthwise so you have a finished size of 12 inches by 11½ inches. Unfold page, apply glue to half the sheet and refold. Press page together to glue firmly. Proceed through remaining 15 sheets.
3. Apply glue to one side of a glued sheet and stack another glued sheet on top. Continue to add sheets until you have 8 laminated together. Repeat to make another stack of 8. Lay your newspaper “pasteboard” aside to dry (this will take several hours). If your sheets begin to wrinkle or curl, place a pressing cloth over them and press flat with an iron set on high.
4. Cut pasteboard sheets so one is an 11-inch square and the other a 7½-inch square. Set aside. Fold a 3-inch flap on each side of the larger square sheet. Fold a 1-inch flap on each side of the smaller square. The creases will form squares at the corners (3-inch square on the large sheet and 1-inch square on the small sheet).
5. Cut one side of the corner squares to create a flap. Repeat on all sides. Fold the sides up with the flaps inside. Glue to the outside wall and fasten with a paper clip or clothespin and let dry.
6. Decorate the box with colored paper cutouts from the newspaper. Each box will hold four scones.