When putting together an Easter basket for a teenager, most parents probably would just fill it with candy and send them on their way. Do you really want to capture their attention, though? Giving them an Easter basket full of goodies they would find cool and actually use might make them think twice about rolling their eyes at you (okayat least for one day!).
Make some homemade candy
Keep some notches on your stems. You’ll use these later to secure your weaver stems when your wrapping them around the basket. Also, keep your stems as long as possible.
The container, whatever you choose, could match the teenagers room or just be a funky (yep, I said funky) patterned storage container, like the black and white striped basket I bought in the picture to the right.
The traditional container in which to give your Homemade Christmas Candy would be a Christmas themed box or bag but some of these can be quite expensive for something which is just discarded once the candy has been eaten.
Decide if you want a big or small basket. The length of vine will determine the outcome christmas hampers australia. Sometimes the grapevine itself will determine whether you even have a choice in the matter.
Buying for a girl? Here are some ideas for female teenagers:
You can personalise a mug in this way to give as a present for almost anybody for any occasion as there are just so many different mugs out there.
Now your ready to start assembling the basket. Lay out three of the six stems next to each other. Begin interlacing with the first weaver stem (over and under) across the three laid out stems. For the following stems you’ll need to weave those in an alternating pattern under and over. This secures all six pieces and will be the bottom of your basket. Don’t worry that it looks gappy. Later on you will go back and fill in the gaps with thinner and more flexible pieces.
For a creative teen:
If you’re lucky your host or hostess might use your candy to accompany the after dinner coffee and all the other guests will be bowled over by the special effort that you took to personalise your gift for the host or hostess.
A new lunchbox is a practical and useful present for little people and for those who are a little bigger as well. Imagine the look of delight when the recipient opens the lunchbox to find your delicious home made candy inside.
3. One less eye-rolling
Now I’m going to call the first six stems “spokes”. Take the next step by choosing another long stem and begin weaving it over and under the spokes forming a circle around the checker board base.
When your building rows with the weavers, sometimes you’ll end up with a pattern that departs from the over/under pattern. Don’t worry about it. In the final product, it won’t be noticeable. The grapevine has a mind of its own resulting in a unique basket with a charming free-form quality. Go with the flow and keep going. Simply make things fit according to the twists and turns of the vine. You’ll get a real feel for this the more baskets you make.
For the topping
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/Gas Mark 4.2. Mix the flour and sugar together and then rub in the butter until you have a fine crumbs.3. Press this mixture very lightly and evenly into the tin and bake for about 15 20 minutes until pale golden.4. Place the butter for the filling and the sugar into a large non-stick frying pan and stir over a medium heat until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves.5. Add the condensed milk, and stirr continuously until the first bubbles appear on the surface.6. Remove from the heat as soon as it comes to the boil.7. Spread the caramel evenly over the shortbread base and then cool and chill for about half an hour.8. Melt the milk chocolate in a small bowl and pour over the caramel, smoothing to the edges.9.When the chocolate has hardened a little cut into squares.
At this stage you’ll begin building the sides of the basket with each weaver piece.
TIPS FOR WORKING WITH THE UNIQUE QUALITIES OF GRAPEVINE:
You might end up with gaps caused by bends along the vines as you’re building up the sides of the basket. When that happens, simply fill them in when you come around with the next layers. Remember, it’s grapevine, not perfection.
Once in a while, you’ll break the spokes while making a basket. It even happened to me on the one I demonstrated with here. I just kept going, careful not to break it off completely, course that’s workable too. After you build layers over the damaged spoke, it won’t show and it won’t even compromise the strength of the basket.
Very important: Before tucking in the spokes, you have to choose the best two spokes you will want to leave out for the handle. They will need to be across from each other as balanced as possible. It’s not going to be exactly perfect.