Tuesday, December 31, 2013

One more thing...

... before we go into the new year and I forget about this craft! As you may know, I have a crab cookie cutter, and while I got my fill of crab-shaped cookies this year I wanted to make one more craft during the holiday season. That's when I saw this craft and modified it for you to make:

Nautical Cinnamon Ornaments

(I looked up "cinnamon crabs" to see if I could tie it into a Crabday, but no luck there, folks.)

What you need:

3/4 cup applesauce
1 cup + 2 tbsp cinnamon
Tools: bowl, cookie cutters, a straw, and ribbon or string

That's it!

Mix the applesauce and cinnamon in a bowl. You can use a spoon or your hands. This stuff is messy! I used a spoon first then finished kneading with my hands at the very end before rolling it out.

Total honesty moment here: I didn't know if my mixture was perfect. I watched this video and the woman says, "If this mixture seems too dry to you..." and I was all, "How do I know if it's too dry or wet?" I based it off of how frustrated I got when cutting the shapes out: if they crumbled (which they did), I added a bit more applesauce. If they stuck to the inside of the cookie cutter (which they did), I added a bit more cinnamon. It wasn't pretty, but at least I smelled good while doing it.

So, back to rolling out the dough: put the mixture between two sheets of plastic wrap then gently roll out to about 1/4-inch thickness.

Cut your shapes and place them on a baking sheet. Once they're on the baking sheet, you can use the straw to poke out little holes for your string or ribbon. You need to do this before they're baked!

shapes set and ready to be transferred to the baking sheet

Bake these bad boys at 200 degrees F for 2.5 hours. You can also simply leave them someplace dry for 1 or 2 days if you don't want to run your oven for that long. I did a slight combination of the two (I ran out of time with this craft and needed the oven to bake our Christmas ham!) so I let them dry for a day after they had baked for an hour and a half.

Once they're nice and dry, you can decorate them with paint or metallic markers, or leave them plain. Hang them on your tree and enjoy the warm scent of cinnamon for holidays to come! (Just don't eat 'em! Seriously. Don't.)

Some of the finished ornaments! (See the other crab ornament back there?)
Adam wanted the crab to have different colors
on the tips of its claws like a white-tipped mud crab:

Rhithropanopeus harrisii, aka cute little mud crab!

We saw these little guys all over the place when we lived on Long Island. I'm also a bit smitten because some of them are Polish (albeit invasive from North America), just like my husband and me! (We're Polish, not invasive.)

Oh geez, this post got away from me. Onward to the New Year!

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