The Great Cookie Experiment- Cookie Exchange!
A few weeks ago, I had the great delight to attend a holiday cookie exchange hosted by a neighbor friend. She had never hosted a cookie exchange before, but let me tell you, she did a great job, and I hope she does it next year!
Her husband is a chef, and he made an appetizer buffet for everyone. That was worth skipping dinner over! I could pretty much eat the candied bacon for every meal forever.
If you ever decide to host a cookie exchange, consider an appetizer buffet. You may want to marry a chef first.
Then, everyone had such wonderful contributions to the variety of cookies! We were asked to do a cookie display along the theme of holiday cookies. I had my girls help me with a display, and they offered all kinds of advice, and randomly tucked fabric for fine effect. Mine was hardly the most elegant. There were trays decorated with cranberries, wooden elves dangling off of tiered dessert stands, and clever people who individually packaged their cookies as cookie dough, and decorated the packages with clever tags and ribbons. I was lucky that the best display was chosen at random, because I ended up winning the prize- a lovely cookie platter!
The best part was the company, and the chance to chat with all the ladies there, but close following was the opportunity to take home a variety of cookies, which I immediately put in the freezer to save for Christmas events! With seven dozen cookies and my regular homemade chocolates, I’ve got a dessert buffet covered!
If you are freezing a bunch of cookies for future events, I do have some advice for you. Some popular holiday cookie flavors are contagious. By this, I mean that their flavors spread to other cookies and affect their flavor the longer they sit together. Mint and cinnamon are the worst culprits. If you put mint cookies in a container with sugar cookies, or pecan squares, you will soon have mint flavored sugar cookies and pecan squares. I took three containers. One container had all of the mint flavored cookies. The second container had all of the cinnamon flavored cookies. The third container contained the sugar cookies, butter cookies, chocolate chip cookies and other contagion-free goodies!
Here’s a recipe from the cookie exchange from my friend Brittany. I did not experiment on this myself, but can vouch for the yumminess! Remember, store this one separately!
Chocolate Mint Cookies
½ cup shortening
½ cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 ½ tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 ½ cups flour
6 Tbl unsweetened cocoa powder
Andes mints, chopped
Preheat oven to 350. Cream together the butter, shortening, brown sugar and white sugar. Add in eggs one at a time and the vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, soda, baking powder, salt and cocoa powder. Add to the butter mixture to combine and then mix in the candies. Drop onto a cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.