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Wild Gratitude Gift Jar

Wild Gratitude in a Jar

I know that jars are all the rage (or has that shark been jumped?) but we’ve been all about mason jars in our home for the past few years. After getting into canning and pickling, they just slowly also began migrating into our glasses cabinet, and now they are my preferred beverage vessel. There is just something so comforting about a Ball jar and how it fits in my hand, the raised lettering on the glass, and, well, drinking out of one sort of makes me feel like an Iowa farmwife and somehow, that amuses me.

Edible gifts in jars are another rage these days; they can be so pretty to look at, a little universe in a glass. Creating such a jar for someone you appreciate is a thoughtful, unique and economical gift that won’t be forgotten. This gift, using three hearty, wholesome items that cook well together, a savory Thanksgiving spice blend and vegetables, makes a great gift for a hostess or even guests at a holiday meal. (Consider putting name tags on wooden skewers and setting these out for a unique and festive table with the metal ring and top next to it.) The name references the wild rice featured but it could just be a state of mind: couldn’t we all use a little wild gratitude?

Cooked, this is delicious. With just a little effort from the recipient, the Wild Gratitude dish is savory, rib-sticking and an excellent side dish in the chilly season. I wrote the recipe using the vegetables I thought of, but pretty much anything would be nice, like shaved Brussels sprouts, leeks, kale and so on. Because this dish is so beige and brown, I was thinking color. Top it off with a few toasted, buttery pine nuts, and I believe whoever receives this gift will understand the meaning of its name. If we can’t be grateful for a bowl of delicious, healthful food, we need to reexamine our priorities. By the way, this is a great meal to make just for yourself, too.

Wild Gratitude in a Jar
(1 jar makes 4 - 6 side dishes servings)

You will need:
1 16 oz. mason jar with ring and top (or you can use an empty salsa, pickle, or marinara jar of the same size with the label removed)
Small sealable plastic baggie

1/2 cup wild rice, divided
3/4 cup short grain brown rice, divided
1/2 cup green lentils

Spice Blend:

In the small baggie, add the following dried herbs and spices:

1 T. nutritional yeast (optional)
2 t. dill
1 t. thyme
1 t. rosemary
1/2 t. onion powder
1/8 t. cayenne powder

Pour 1/4 cup of wild rice in the jar, using the funnel to direct the grains. Gently bump the jar on the counter to make it level. Next, pour in 1/2 cup of the brown rice, then the lentils, then 1/4 cup of the wild rice and 1/4 cup of the brown rice, bumping on the counter between additions to make it level. At the end, fold the baggie with the spice blend in it and fit it in the top. Screw on the top of the jar and fasten with the ring.

Print out the instructions, label and give!

Wild Gratitude Print-out label and recipe

To make things a little easier for you, we have created a handsome label and matching recipe card that you can print out and send with your gift. Simply click the link below to download the artwork and either print it out on your home printer or take the file to be printed at your local copy store. We recommend printing on card stock and adjusting your print settings to "Actual Size - Do Not Scale."

Download label and recipe card (pdf file)


You will need
4 cups low sodium vegetable stock
1 T. low sodium tamari or soy sauce
1 T. olive oil
2 large shallots, chopped
2 large carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, sliced
Salt and pepper to taste
Toasted pine nuts for serving, optional

In a medium pot with a lid, heat the stock and the tamari or soy sauce on medium-high until boiling.

Pour in the rices, lentils and spice blend. Lower the temperature to a low boil, cover your pot, and set the timer for 45 minutes.

In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat for a minute or two. Add the shallots and carrots; sauté for five minutes. Add the celery and sauté for two more minutes.

When the wild rice blend is done, stir in the vegetables and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with toasted pine nuts and enjoy!

the prepared dish

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