Host a holiday cookie swap

kids in santa hatsOne particularly enjoyable part of any holiday season is the cookies and baked goods that are part of gatherings and celebrations. The bake tables at Christmas bake sales, open houses and pot lucks are eagerly anticipated and quickly depleted. For many families, traditional recipes are saved for just that time of year enthusiastically awaited.

With today’s busy schedules, it can be difficult to find the time to bake many different varieties of cookies and squares. A Cookie Swap is one enjoyable solution that can stock freezers with a delicious assortment of cookies for the holidays, combined with a little social time with friends, family or co-workers.

As host, there is generally very little to do in advance. It helps to select a date and time that is many weeks prior to Christmas before social and shopping schedules fill up.

You need to provide liquid refreshment appropriate to the group and time of day, little plates and napkins and the ambiance. Depending on the event, some groups incorporate gag gift exchanges or fun games, while others simply enjoy the time together to chat and indulge in sweet treats.

Each guest bakes one specific cookie recipe that can be easily frozen, calculating one dozen for each guest in attendance plus a dozen for sampling on the day of the swap.

An online event page where each person indicates the type of cookie they are planning to make can help to avoid duplication.

Each guest should provide an appropriate number of copies of the recipe for their treat in case of any allergy or dietary requirements. It can be helpful to tactfully suggest that the cookies be homemade.

Remind each guest to bring a container or containers in order to transport their cookie assortments home.

At the swap, each person takes home a dozen of each of the other guests’ cookie treats. This means having a varied assortment in the freezer for the holiday season, while having only had to bake once!