Classic cookie exchanges may seem old-fashioned, but author Robin Olson adds modern flair to the traditional party concept. Using her decades of experience baking homemade cookies, hosting cookie swaps and running cookie-exchange.com, she covers everything from planning the party to cookie recipes in her new book, “The Cookie Party Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to Hosting a Cookie Exchange”. It is easy to mix and match ideas to create a memorable holiday party without the expense of a professional party planner. Get a sneak peek before the book debuts on October 12.
Planning a Cookie Exchange
Planning a party is usually straightforward, but some lessons come only through trial and error. This is especially true of cookie swaps. Avoid common mistakes, such as confusion over what constitutes “homemade”, with useful party-planning tips. Robin recommends a standard set of party rules so all guests contribute equally and everyone has a delicious experience. Although this may sound unfriendly, creative invitations convey the rules in a fun, light-hearted manner.
The book features detailed sample invitations as well as ideas for party themes, favors, decorations and games. The budget-friendly party tips include homemade projects and shopping tips that make it possible to have a luxurious party on a budget.
Two pages of shopping resources make it easy to purchase specialty baking supplies or party materials.
The 400-year-old Cookie
With nearly two hundred cookie recipes, the selection includes a diverse variety of cookies ranging from Christmas classics, such as Peppermint Pinwheels, to international treats from around the globe. Many of the recipes come from Robin’s readers. Others honor the legacy of her beloved mother-in-law, Sylvia Olson, who passed her love of holiday baking on to Robin.
Two of the gingerbread cookie recipes are particularly special. Robin’s favorite gingerbread cookie recipe comes from esteemed baking expert Rose Levy Beranbaum. Contributed by Kathryn Hey of West Yorkshire, England, another gingerbread-like cookie, Yorkshire Parkin Pigs, has a rich history dating back to England in the 1600s.
The book includes 25 sample menus suitable for a variety of party themes. Many of the party-friendly food suggestions, such as potato salad and muffins, are easily made in advance. Others, such as hot artichoke dip and barbecue, hold well in chafing dishes or slow cookers.
Where to Buy The Cookie Party Cookbook
The Cookie Party Cookbook is available for pre-order on several websites, including Borders.com and Amazon.com. Robin’s first book signing will take place on October 17, 2010 at Borders in Germantown, Maryland. Visit her website cookie-exchange.com for the latest information and tips for hosting a cookie swap.