Leftover dessert doubles as guest favors when packaged in boxes that are as pretty as, well, pie. Photocopy template at 400 percent; trace onto card stock. Cut out the image with scallop scissors along scalloped edges and regular scissors on solid lines. With a straightedge and a bone folder, score paper along dotted lines. Fold along scored lines, and secure tabs with double-sided tape. Line box with parchment paper, place a slice inside, and tie on a tag.
More Bright Ideas
Prettily arranged ingredients, add flavor, and turn simple foods into edible works of art. We topped flatbread with sage leaves, sliced onion, tomatillo, and yellow tomato. (Another option is to use only an assortment of herbs.) One batch of dough yields 12 delicate slices, enough to present in a basket at the table. Save time the day of your party by making the bread a couple of days in advance and storing it in an airtight container.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, July 2006
Be ready when friends stop by -- or make a family dinner more special -- with this warm, hearty appetizer made from grocery store ingredients that keep for weeks. Break 8 to 12 ounces of marinated goat cheese or feta into large chunks, place in a small ovenproof dish, and bake at 325 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown. Remove the dish from the oven, drizzle with olive oil, and garnish with fresh thyme (if desired) and 1/2 teaspoon whole pink peppercorns. Serve with sliced baguette or crackers.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, January 2006
Give drinks, dessert, and breakfast a seasonal spin with this classic spice blend. Mix it yourself or use a store-bought version. To make spiced whipped cream for topping hot coffee, Irish coffee, pie, or cake, add 2 teaspoons of the mix to 1/2 cup heavy cream before whipping. The sweetened spice mix is good sprinkled on buttered toast or French toast.
Making Your Own
Even if you don't have pumpkin-pie spice in your pantry, you may well have everything that goes into it. Stir together 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, and 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg. Add 2 tablespoons sugar for a sweetened version.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, November 2009
A childhood favorite grows up in this sophisticated update on applesauce, which boasts an intense caramelized flavor, thanks to a base of roasted apples. It's also an excellent way to make use of fruit left over from fall apple picking. Simply roast the whole fruit with brown sugar and butter until softened, and then use a food mill to puree and separate out the skins and seeds. Stir in your favorite spices and enjoy the sweet harvest.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, November 2007
Cooking can be messy business, but your cookbooks don't have to show it. To keep one pristine -- and open to the page you're using -- just place it inside a plastic envelope from an office-supply store.
Clear horizontal envelope, 18 inches by 12 inches, $3.50, paperpresentation.com.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, February 2011
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