I really can’t remember the last Christmas Justin and I exchanged “gifts”...it has been quite a few years. It all started years ago with my need to simplify. Justin and I had everything we needed and we didn’t really want for anything (yes, Justin would love to have a Porsche, but that just isn’t in the cards...ever), so we decided to try something different for Christmas.
Over the years we have done the $20.00 Christmas where we can only spend $20.00 on each other – you have no idea how much fun this can be. We have done the make something for each other Christmas. We have skipped it all together and just enjoyed being together. We have enjoyed each Christmas since we started being more creative with our “gifts” and most importantly we have enjoyed our time together.
Over the years we have also seen our gift giving to others change. First of all, we have really limited who is on our Christmas list, this is both for monetary reasons and because we know “we” all have too much stuff. Second, when gift giving we really take time to think about what each person we are giving to would really appreciate.
A few years ago I gave the gift of meals and time. Reece’s godmother was commuting to work and finding her days long. She would prepare meals on the weekend for the week ahead. So I decided to cook her up a week’s worth of meals. She came for a lunch one Sunday just before Christmas and I sent her home with meals for the week for her and her family. It gave her the weekend free of cooking (I told her in advance what I was doing so she had the weekend free to enjoy it) and warmed her heart to know meals were waiting each night for her when she got home.
This year, we have decided to have a handmade, homemade Christmas. Handmade means I have been doing a lot of knitting, sewing and beading, and Justin has been doing some creative artsy stuff in the garage with different mediums. Homemade means I have also been in the kitchen creating two delicious recipes to share with those I love.
Today, I will share with you one of those recipes...a healthy, sweet, delicious treat.
Chocolate Covered Dates
Pecans (2 to 3 per date)
Sea salt (optional)
***I have not included amounts. The first time I made them, I made ten to try them out. When I make them again, I will be making about forty, for Christmas presents. So use as many dates as you need to for your needs.
Gently open the dates and remove the pits. You will be closing the date up again, so be very gentle.
Gently place 2 to 3 pecans inside each date, where the pits use to be.
Close the date and set aside.
You now need to melt the chocolate. I do this by bringing a pot of water to a boil and then reducing it to a simmer. Put chocolate in a glass bowl and put the bowl in the pot. The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Gently stir the chocolate as it melts.
Once melted, removed from heat, and dip one half of the pecan stuffed dates in the chocolate.
Place on baking tray covered with wax paper.
When finished dipping all the dates, sprinkle with sea salt and place in the fridge for 30 to 60 minutes.
And that is it, super easy and really delicious. In fact, my inspiration for these came from Justin’s favourite holiday treat – Turtles...chocolate, pecans and caramel, I just switched out the caramel for dates, and believe it or not, it works!