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Christmas Cookie Exchange
By Marcia Passos Duffy

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The details of the very first Christmas cookie exchange remains buried in the
annals of cooking history, but my bet is that it started as: 1) a reason for women
(or men – I found a men’s cookie exchange group in Seattle, WA) to get together
during the stressful holiday season and decompress, and 2) the best way
to get a wide assortment of home-made cookies for the holidays that you don’t
have to make yourself.

Right now there are probably a baker’s dozen (or more) cookie exchanges going
on right in your own neighborhood.  Most are similar in the way they operate:
Typically each person brings ten cookies for each member – so if you have 10
members that’s 100 cookies you need to bake. Certainly a lot of baking, but in
return each gets a huge assortment of cookies all shapes, sizes and flavors to
give away as gifts or to bring out after your Christmas dinner.

Thinking of having a cookie swap?  Here are some tips on hosting one:

1.        Invite group (10 is a good number – any more than that makes the swap
difficult to manage) of cookie-loving friends and neighbors to bring a batch of
cookies – about 1 dozen multiplied by the number of guests. The invitations can
be sent by mail or email, but make sure you ask each participant to make 10-12
copies of the cookie recipe they will make (and to bring them to the party), and
their own tins to transport 100+ cookies home.

2.        Make sure you include an RSVP number to call – you’re going to need to
find out what cookies they are going to bake; make sure no one makes the same
type of cookie – a successful exchange aims for variety!

3.        Make sure guests know the cookies need to make cookies that can stand
up to being transported easily – no paper-thin fragile recipes!

4.        Select an evening about a week or 10 days before Christmas for the
exchange.

5.        Decide if you are going to serve appetizers, drinks and cookie sampling.  

6.        During the exchange organize the cookies buffet-style so guests can easily
gather up their cookies into their containers.


Click on Links Below for
Several Good Cookie Exchange Recipes:

Dried Cranberry Biscotti
Cream Cheese Candy Cane Cookies
Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies
Snickerdoodles
Haystacks
White Chocolate Bark

About the Author: Marcia Passos Duffy, is a freelance writer & author, and  the
publisher of The Heart of New England online magazine,a free monthly online publication
that celebrates the unique character of northern New England.  
The Heart of New England
Celebrating the unique character & culture of Maine ~ New Hampshire ~ Vermont
©The Heart of New England online magazine
...celebrating the unique character & culture of Maine, New Hampshire & Vermont!
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