I’m sure  you’ve all seen the Christmas decorations in the store windows already; the small displays or the blown out red and green stores.  Its slightly annoying as its not even Thanksgiving, much less Halloween yet.  But I thought I would jump on the bandwagon and give you some Christmas ideas ahead of time so you can prepare for your parties which I am sure most of you will attend.  And I was raised being told that you can’t show up to a party empty handed.  Bringing a gift or a plant can always work, but if you are trying to impress family or friends, something creative and clever will do the trick.  It also helps if it is edible.

I love to make crafty edible things out of chocolate.  Last Easter I made a chocolate cake and transformed it into an Easter basket by simply outlining it with Kit-Kat bars and m&ms tying it together with a purple ribbon. As I was stumbling around online I found an easy new recipe at tastykitchen.com.  They have so many recipes that are fun and easy.  I found something that will work for Christmas as well that is clever and easy:  Strawberry Christmas Trees!

Supplies are very important because you don’t want to start a project and realize half way through that you don’t have everything that you need.  Here is what you will need to grab before you start:

 1 box of brownie mix ( 2 eggs – water – oil)
Approx. 24 Strawberries
Powdered Sugar
1/2  c. butter
8oz  cream cheese
1lb   confectioners sugar
1/2  tsp Vanilla
Green Food Coloring
Stars/Sprinkles to decorate

Begin with the Baking
Mix together your brownie batter.
Separate it equally into greased cupcake pans or a brownie edges pan.
Bake for shortened time because you will be baking individual brownies.
(baking time is about 15 minute)
Watch your brownies to make sure they don’t burn.
Test them with a tooth pick to make sure they are fully cooked.

While the brownies are baking you can prepare the rest of your supplies.

Chop up the Berries
Rinse your Strawberries well.
Cut off the top of your strawberries.
Set aside the berries until you need them.

Mix your Frosting
Combine all of the frosting ingredients into a large bowl.
Make sure the butter and the cream cheese are soft for easier mixing.
Mix well.
Add green food coloring and mix until you get your desired shade of green.

Now you can start building your forest.’

Growing your Tree
Start the base or trunk of your tree with a cooled brownie
(so that your frosting doesn’t melt)
You can sprinkle powdered sugar over the brownie to look like snow.
Place a dab of frosting in the center to hold your strawberry on top.
Position your strawberry upside down on your brownie…like a triangle /\
Switch to a star tip and start creating your pine needles.
-Place tip of frosting bag against the strawberry and squeeze while pulling
away to form the point of the needles.
– Cover the whole strawberry.

Decorate your Trees
Bring out the sprinkles and stars to decorate your tree.
Each one can be unique because no two trees are alike.
Have fun with it.

Now that you know what to make, what you need, and how to make it you can make your own forest to impress friends and relatives. You could also take it one step further. If your relatives have kids make it a holiday project.  It will show them that you are not only clever in the kitchen but you can entertain kids with fun projects as well.  This can win you brownie points as well….pun intended.

I hope you enjoy your edible holiday crafting fun!