WARNING: this spice blend is like Christmas fairy-dust in a jar. Seriously.
Well, it is if warm spices make you think of gingerbread and mulled wine and tree decorating all other sorts of holiday festivities…
On the other hand, if warm spices make you think of drinking a cocktail while sitting on a tropical island then please revise aforementioned warning to apply to your own happy spice memory. Either way, everybody wins.
Working on the assumption that everyone has a happy spice memory it’s only logical to conclude that a jar of Holiday Mixed Spice would make a fabulous homemade gift for pretty much any occasion.
And if by chance you are partaking in a Secret Santa (Kris Kringle / Hanukkah Harry / Non-denominational Gift Swap) said spice mix would fit in just fine.
It so happens I was participating in one such Secret Santa exchange a few days ago and this spice mix was not only one of the gifts I sent off (packed up in adorable little jars with even more adorable little spoons) but a key ingredient for the other present that went to my three lucky recipients.
Of course you’ll have to wait another day or so for that other recipe but it gives you plenty of time to make this up in anticipation — nudge nudge wink wink.
If you’re wondering what I received in return you can see the edible goodies here, here and here. The Chivda, an Indian street snack, is nearly gone but the Cranberry Sauce, Cherry Chutney and Spiced Apple Sauce are biding their time for Christmas lunch — I can’t wait.
Now I must warn you, this recipe makes a fair amount of spice mix — but once you pack up a few little jars, making sure to keep a bit for yourself in the process, you’ll be wondering why you didn’t just double it in the first place.
And of course Holiday Mixed Spice also does a darn fine job at standing in for hostess gifts too, which is terribly convenient when one does not want to show up at a girlfriend’s house empty handed.
Holiday Mixed Spice Blend
Makes a scant 1 cup
- 6 Tbsp ground cinnamon
- 4 Tbsp ground ginger
- 2 Tbsp ground allspice
- 1 Tbsp ground nutmeg
- 1 ½ tsp ground cloves
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla powder or half a vanilla bean, optional
Combine all ingredients and mix well. Store in a sealed jar.
Use spice blend to give a suitably festive twist to Pumpkin Pie, Apple Pie, Oatmeal Cookie Dough Bites, Spiced Rum Caramel, or pretty much anything else really. (Stay tuned for a special spiced nut recipe coming soon!)
- Vanilla: the blend will work just find without vanilla but it does add something special. If you don’t have vanilla powder you can cut a vanilla bean in half then split the half-bean lengthwise to expose the seeds. Store the split half-bean in the jar with the spice blend.
To multiply or divide the recipe you may want to use ratios:
- 1 part vanilla powder
- 1 part ground cloves
- 2 parts ground nutmeg
- 4 parts ground allspice
- 8 parts ground ginger
- 12 parts ground cinnamon
vegan // vegetarian // gluten-free // dairy-free // soy-free // nut-free // sugar-free
A special thanks to Claire for organising the Secret Santa swap! Like Claire, one of the only things I miss about working in an office is the holiday season festivities — so receiving a couple of (delicious and not at all gag-gifts) presents from around Australia makes it feel a bit more like Christmas. You can check out what everyone else made in the link list below.