Posted on | December 19, 2011 | 146 Comments
I’ve been brainstorming handmade crafts I could make with my nieces. When I was a kid we made these simple heart ornaments. Made of cinnamon and applesauce this craft is kid-friendly and fun for all ages.
I streamlined the recipe—omitted the glue—and stuck them in the oven to shorten the drying time.
Makes about 30 heart ornaments using two different size heart cookie cutters
What you’ll need:
1 cup of applesauce
1 1/2 cups cinnamon (look for a big containers at $1 stores, bulk stores or amazon.)
2 Tablespoons cloves optional (grind with a spice grinder)
heart cookie cutters in different sizes
string for hanging (mine is from Studio Carta)
Mix 1 cup of applesauce with 1 cup of cinnamon in a large bowl. Mix, mix, mix. This is the kinda recipe you’ll need to use your hands to really incorporate the spices. Make sure you don’t miss any wet spots. Add the additional 1/2 cup of cinnamon, cloves and continue to incorporate. If it’s too wet add more cinnamon, too dry add more applesauce. But be patient. It takes time to mix so don’t add cinnamon or applesauce till you’re absolutely sure it’s well mixed.
Scatter some cinnamon (like if you were rolling out cookies with flour) and roll out applesauce/cinnamon dough to 1/4″ thick. If the dough is too wet it will make a huge mess and stick to your rolling pin.
Use your cookie cutters to cut out the hearts. I noticed the first time around my dough was too wet and the edges were straggly. Once I add more cinnamon the edges were clean.
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the hearts on a cookie sheet with a silpat. The hearts can be really close together but not touching; they won’t rise in the oven. Using a skewer carefully make a hole through each heart. Stick the ornaments in the oven for an hour or more. The juice from the applesauce needs to evaporate. The range in cooking time depends on your house, humidity and climate. My house is cold so I had them in for 1.5 hours and then I turned the oven off and left them to set overnight. They should be rock hard. If they’re not, give them some more time in the oven.
The next day loop a string through each of the holes to hang on the tree, string together to make a garland or attach to a package. Enjoy!
p.s. the hearts are not edible.