Wednesday, December 12, 2012

:::{Cinnamon Applesauce Ornaments}:::

This year I was looking to have a classic look to my Christmas tree, and these ornaments fit the bill.  I remember making a version of these little ornaments when I was in elementary school...  I like this particular recipe because (1) it doesn't call for a bunch of Elmer's glue and (2) the drying process is sped up by baking them at low temp.  They were very easy to make and while they were baking my whole house smelled like cinnamon spice; and they continue to smell delicious even after they have dried.  Plus, they are pretty adorable, if I do say so myself!


Cinnamon Applesauce Ornaments 

(adapted from katy elliott)
Makes between 30-40 ornaments depending on the size of your cookie cutters.

Ingredients
1 cup of applesauce
1 1/2 cups cinnamon (look for a big containers at the Dollar Store)
2 tablespoons ground cloves optional

You will also need: cookie cutters (I used mini-Christmas themed ones) and string for hanging (I used red embroidery thread)

Directions
  1. Preheat your oven to 200ºF
  2. Mix 1 cup of applesauce with 1 cup of cinnamon in a large bowl. This is the kinda recipe you’ll need to use your hands to really incorporate the spices. Make sure you don’t miss any wet spots. 
  3. Add the additional 1/2 cup of cinnamon, cloves and continue to incorporate. If it’s too wet add more cinnamon, too dry add more applesauce; keeping in mind, it takes time to mix so don’t add cinnamon or applesauce till you’re absolutely sure it’s well mixed.
  4. Scatter some cinnamon (like if you were rolling out cookies with flour) and roll out applesauce/cinnamon dough to ~1/4″ thick. If the dough is too wet it will make a huge mess and stick to your rolling pin.
  5. Use your cookie cutters to cut out your shapes. If you have added enough cinnamon, the edges will be clean and even.
  6. Place the hearts on a cookie sheet with parchment/wax paper. The hearts can be really close together but not touching; they won’t rise in the oven. 
  7. Using a skewer carefully make a hole through each heart. Stick the ornaments in the oven for an hour or more. The juice from the applesauce needs to evaporate.  I had them in the oven for ~1.5 hours and then I turned the oven off and left them to set overnight. They should be rock hard. If they’re not, give them some more time in the oven.
  8. The next day loop a string through each of the holes to hang on the tree, string together to make a garland or attach to a package.
  9. Enjoy!

Dough should be about this consistency when ready to roll...

The dough should easily form an even ball; if it's crumbly, add more applesauce.
Ready to roll it out, with cinnamon on your rolling surface.
Keep rolling and cutting until you've used up all your dough.
Don't forget to makes holes so you can hang them!
After baking, they should be hard and dry all the way through.

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