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From Genius to Delicious: The Many Ways to Use Our Bags

Our bags can be used in many ways, and among our most versatile products is our 4×6 natural bag. Read on to discover our favorite uses for this bag, including a delicious corned beef recipe just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.

Protect Ripening Vegetables

Birds, deer, and rabbits can wreak havoc on your garden in the coming summer months. Slip a 4×6 natural muslin bag over your tomatoes, cucumbers, and other garden produce and secure the drawstring around the vine to keep scavengers from making a meal of your hard work while they ripen on the vine.

Bath Scrubs and Salts

We love a relaxing soak in aromatic bath salts as much as anyone, but salt crystals can be scratchy and irritating to the skin. Fill a natural bag with salts and toss in your bath water for all of the aroma and relaxation without any of the irritation.

Loose Leaf Teas and Ground Coffee

Disposable tea bags are not only less fresh and tasty than loose leaf teas, they’re also not entirely biodegradable. Fill a reusable natural bag with your favorite blend of loose leaf tea or freshly-ground coffee for an individual cup of fresh, delicious tea or coffee made perfectly to your liking.

Spice Bags for Soups and Stews

We’ve all been there: enjoying a delicious bowl of jambalaya when suddenly, you’re trying to gracefully spit out a bay leaf or peppercorn without betraying your manners. Our 4×6 bags can be used to hold your own blend of spices and seasonings while cooking any manner of meals, so you keep the full flavor of the meal without the mess and embarrassment of picking spices out of your teeth.

For a particularly-timely practical use of this bag, try the corned beef recipe below for your St. Patrick’s Day celebration.

Spicy horseradish cream and malty Guinness mustard amp up the flavor of this home-corned beef.

Ingredients

Brine

  • 6 cups water
  • 2 cups lager beer
  • 1 1/2 cups coarse kosher salt
  • 1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Insta Cure no. 1* (optional)
  • 1/4 cup pickling spices
  • 1 6- to 8-pound flat-cut beef brisket, trimmed, with some fat remaining

Corned Beef And Vegetables

  • 1 12-ounce bottle Guinness stout or other stout or porter
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 whole allspice
  • 1 dried chile de árbol, broken in half
  • 12 baby turnips, trimmed, or 3 medium turnips or rutabagas, peeled, quartered
  • 8 unpeeled medium white-skinned or red-skinned potatoes (about 3 pounds)
  • 6 medium carrots, peeled
  • 4 medium onions, peeled, halved through root ends
  • 2 medium parsnips, peeled, cut into 2-inch lengths
  • 1 2-pound head of cabbage, quartered
  • Horseradish Cream
  • Guinness Mustard

Preparation

For Brine

Pour 6 cups water and beer into large deep roasting pan. Add coarse salt; stir until dissolved. Add sugar; stir until dissolved. If desired, stir in Insta Cure No. 1. Mix in pickling spices. Pierce brisket all over with tip of small sharp knife. Submerge brisket in liquid, then top with heavy platter to weigh down. Cover and refrigerate 4 days.

Remove brisket from brine. Stir liquid to blend. Return brisket to brine; top with heavy platter. Cover; refrigerate 4 days. Remove brisket from brine. Rinse with cold running water. Can be made 2 days ahead. Wrap corned beef in plastic, cover with foil, and refrigerate.

For Corned Beef And Vegetables

Place corned beef in very large wide pot. Add stout and enough water to cover by 1 inch. Fill a 4×6 natural bag with bay leaves, coriander seeds, allspice, and chile, enclosing completely. Add spice bag to pot with beef; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until beef is tender, about 2 1/4 hours. Transfer beef to large baking sheet.

Add turnips and all remaining vegetables to liquid in pot; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and boil gently until all vegetables are tender, about 25 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer vegetables to baking sheet with beef. Return beef to pot and rewarm 5 minutes. Discard or empty spice bag.

Cut beef against grain into 1/4-inch thick slices. Arrange beef and vegetables on platter. Serve with Horseradish Cream and Guinness Mustard. Serves 6-8.

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Ohio Bridal Expo

February 8 was a banner day for Celestial Gifts, LLC. The Ohio Bridal Expo at Cincinnati’s Horseshoe Casino was our first opportunity to meet our customers face-to-face and display our products. We had a fantastic time meeting brides-to-be and other industry suppliers.

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We displayed many of our custom-stamped bags suitable for any bridal occasion: “thank you”-stamped bags for favors or thank-you gifts, bicycle and anchor-stamped bags perfect for summer nuptials, and our “throw me” bags to hold rice or lavender for the bride and groom recessional.

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We held a drawing to give away 100 of these lavender-filled mini-bags and received 125 entries. Our winner was bride-to-be Katie Paul from Hamilton, Ohio. Congratulations, Katie!

Our bags are a perfect complement for the bridal industry. In addition to holding rice or lavender, they can hold favors, bridal party gifts, the wedding rings, and we even have bags to keep the bride’s shoes clean and scuff-free before the big walk down the aisle. All of our bags can be custom-stamped with your choice of image, your name, and wedding date.

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Cupid’s history

Valentine's Cupid treat bags

With Valentine’s Day coming up I wanted to work on a few new bags and started thinking. Where did Cupid really come from? While doing a little research I discovered Cupid (Latin Cupido, meaning desire) IS the God of desire, erotic love, attraction and affection. He is often portrayed as the son of love goddess Venus, and is known in Latin also as Amor (Love) His Greek counterpart is Eros. During his chubby childhood he acquires a bow and arrow then whoever is shot with this bow and arrow will be filled with uncontrollable desire and romantic love, often as an icon of Valentine’s Day!

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Lavender Toss

Oh, my. I have just recently learned that showering the happy couple with lavender during the recessional, (making their way up the aisle as husband and wife) brings good luck and happiness. It is earth friendly, pretty and has a heavenly scent.

Did you know that throwing something has been a tradition at weddings since the ancient Roman and Egyptian times? People have used anything from rice, to bird seed and confetti and now lavender. We have a client that requested this all natural cotton bag to use at a wedding. How adorable and smart. The guests can even re-use the bags as a sachet or a keepsake.