Christmas is coming and the stresses of what to buy for your loved ones grows ever stronger! I know I’m not organised with presents this year… besides one thing! Hygge! One of my favourite aspects of hygge is cooking and baking. So after multiple nights of scrolling through Pinterest, looking at other people’s gorgeous Christmas decorations, sewing ideas and presents, I decided I’d start with the cooking!
Christmas cooking – Hygge Christmas Chutney
I’d bought some jars from Ikea with a plan to decorate them and make something to put inside to give as gifts but I struggled to decide what to make. At Christmas time my family’s favourite thing to do in the evening is to open a bottle of Port, get the cheeses and pate’s out and spread them on crackers. So what goes better with cheese and Port at Christmas than a Christmas chutney?
After a few more nights scrolling through Pinterest I came across a recipe for Cranberry and Red Onion Chutney! I wasn’t too keen on some of the ingredients so decided to make it my own. That’s the beauty of cooking, you can adapt anything to make it exactly how you want. So here’s my recipe for a lovely Hygge Christmas Chutney.
Red Onions – 3 or 4
Cranberries – 2 boxes or 800g
Mulled Wine – as much as you like… but no more than half a bottle!
Red wine vinegar – 300ml
Soft brown sugar – 500-600g (depending on how sweet you want it)
cinnamon sticks – 2/3
Oranges – 1 or 2 juiced
- Pour the mulled wine and sugar into a bowl and allow to boil until it slightly thickens into a syrup.
- Dice the onions, and add to the syrup, with the vinegar, cinnamon sticks, orange juice (and zest if you wish).
- Add the cranberries to the bowl, but be careful, they spit as they soften and split open. From experience, it hurts if they spit and catch your eye!
- Keep an eye on the bowl, and leave on a med-low heat and stir regularly.
- Once the mixture is no longer really watery and does not show the vinegar coming through, its time to put into jars!
- Leave the lid off until cool, and allow around 4 weeks for the chutney to develop in taste. If you start now it will be the perfect time to be ready for Christmas!
One of the most simple things you can do this Christmas is to infuse your own alcohol. It’s certainly a more hygge way of preparing for the festive season. I decided to start easy and make my own pink Gin, with a dry gin, raspberries and blueberries. The more fruit the stronger it will be so it’s really up to you how much you want to use. But it’s so simple. All you need is a jar or a bottle, fruit and an alcohol of your choice. Pop the fruit in the bottom of the jar, pour the alcohol on top and wait a few days to infuse. It helps to give the jar a shake every day! I wanted to add a bit of zazz to my jar so I painted white spots on my jar to look like snow! But let your imagination run wild!
It was my Mum’s birthday recently and I was struggling with what to get her for a present. But then I was, as always, inspired by Pinterest, to make a Hygge Birthday Box! I bought a wicker basket with some shavings in, and found some cute presents she would like, while trying to fit the style of hygge, such as cooking, light and cosy. So with winter coming, a very long fluffy hot water bottle, slippers, candles, homemade lemon curd and a few other little bits made the perfect present! Of course, this can be adapted to the person you are buying for, but making basket presents for people really is one of my favourite ways to give a gift as it feels so much more personal.
Decorating Christmas Presents
I wanted to Jazz up my jars (yes that was deliberate!)… there is so much inspiration on Pinterest! So I popped into hobby craft, and for less than £10 I bought some PVA glue, glitter and Christmas string I was able to decorate my jars ready to give as gifts. Giving handmade gifts was something I really wanted to do this year, as it’s far more personal than buying something random just for the sake of giving a gift and is totally hygge!
Let me know if you have any ideas for homemade hygge Christmas gifts, or have tried any I’ve suggested! I love getting inspiration for new types of gifts!
Love Jaz x