Thursday, December 1, 2011

Holidays on a Budget: Cinnamon Ornaments

Cinnamon ornaments are a classic Christmas activity. We've all made them in school, and I love making them at home. They fill the whole house with a seasonal scent even while kids are rolling and cutting out their precious works of art. If you use an oven to dry them out, even better!

To make the dough, start with a hefty amount of cinnamon. The 2 for $1.00 jars work great ;-)
Mix in spoonfuls of apple sauce until the dough is smooth, and thick enough to hold its shape. It should be a but firmer than cookie dough, kind of like pie dough.

Roll your dough out to 1/4 inch thick, and cut with cookie cutters.
Some helpful tips:
  • Dust with cinnamon to roll out, especially if a little sticky. Flour will lighten your ornaments/leave weird spots.
  • Lay down as many cutters as you can/will fit. Then use a spatula to help you transfer them to a cookie sheet to dry. This helps them keep their shape. 

  • Too thick and they will take years to dry, too thin and they'll break like nothing. 1/4 inch seems to be just right. 
  • You can dry in a VERY mild oven (lowest setting, or until your oven on light pops on), or air dry for a couple days.
  • If poking a hole in the top to hang, remember to do it before they start to dry! 
  • Even though gingerpeople are the common shape for these because of their color and scent, other shapes are super cute too. We like stars too.
 Let dry in the manner you prefer. Turn as needed, but try not to handle TOO much.
Decorate with white puffy paint "icing".

 We like to glue our hangers on the back, rather than a ribbon through a hole. Both wire hangers and ribbons work nicely.