Semi-Homemade and A Little Something for You.

I had a small group of people to give a gift to this year. They all needed to be the same (equal) and they needed to be gender and age neutral. So I copped out and got gift cards to a store that I know they all shop at. The gift cards alone seemed very impersonal so I tried to come up with a more Christmas-y delivery system.

Thank Goodness for the "Gift Basket"

I found myself with the same problem as before. What to put in the basket with the gift card.

Well this is what I finally came up with.

The Anatomy of a (my) Gift Basket.

I started with a plain bushel basket from Michael's and hot glued some ribbon around the sides and added a bow.

To accompany the gift card I added:

A small bag of mini candy bars.

2 sample bags of flavored coffee.

A small bag of my homemade Snickerdoodle cookies.

A music CD that my husband put together of Mannheim Steamroller Cristmas songs.

And last but not least....drum roll please..................................

My Grandma Deen's FABULOUS Applesauce Cake!!

I just wrapped it up tight with plastic wrap and a velvet ribbon.

The baskets looked quite nice and they didn't break the bank!

Now that little something for you:

My Grandma Deen's FABULOUS Applesauce Cake Recipe!!


  • 3 1/2 c flour
  • 2 t baking soda
  • 2 t cinnamon
  • 1 t salt
  • 2 c sugar
  • 1 c shortening
  • 1 c raisins
  • 1 c chopped dates
  • 1 c chopped walnuts
  • 2 c applesauce

Mix together the flour, soda, cinnamon, salt and sugar. Cut in the shortening. Mix in the raisins, dates and walnuts. Add the applesauce.

Don't worry, at first, you will think you are going to end up with a dry, powdery mess. Have a little faith and keep stirring.

Grease and flour a large tube pan (like for angelfood cake) or spray 3 foil loaf pans with pan spray (Pam).

Bake at 350° for 1 hour for the loaf pans or 1 to 1 1/2 hours for the tube pan.

Check with a toothpick. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean.

Hint: If you are using a dark colored pan drop the temp to 325° and still check after the 1 to 1 1/2 hours. The dark pans seem to bake hotter.

Enjoy and I hope you all have a

Very Merry Christmas!!


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