As the holidays approach, you may want to spark a new tradition with extended family members or friends and neighbors. Plan a Cookie Swap. Every invited guest (or family) brings a dozen cookies for each of the other guests (or families). One family, for example, could bring 6 dozen cookies, one for each of the other 6 invited families.
To ensure no recipes are repeated (especially in family gatherings), the host can call each guest and find out what recipe they'll be baking for the Swap. Any necessary changes can then be made in advance so that an assortment of cookies will be available at the party.
The recipe for the cookies could be included, along with any special stories or traditions the cookie brings to mind. Guests take turns sharing their whimsical cookie stories and passing out the batches and recipes to the other guests. The host provides bags, aluminum foil, or other means for guests to transport the cookies home . . . should there be any left after the party.
What to do with all the treats that do make it back to your house? Freeze them, leave them on the doorsteps of neighbors, send them along in school lunches or drop a plate in the employee lounge at work.
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