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National Cookie Exchange Day

With Christmas three days away, most of us probably have already baked our Christmas cookies—maybe even having done so on Bake Cookies Day. But what good are cookies if we don't get the chance to share them and their recipes? National Cookie Exchange Day was created so that cookies and recipes could be shared and swapped at home and office parties. The day was created by Jace Shoemaker-Galloway, "the Queen of Holidays."

Christmas cookies date back to Europe in the Middle Ages, when biscuits with ingredients like cinnamon, ginger, and dried fruit were made. By the seventeenth century, different types of Christmas biscuits were popular in different European countries. The Dutch brought Christmas cookies to the United States in the seventeenth century. Many cookie cutters were being imported from Germany by the end of the nineteenth century, which led to the proliferation of cookie recipes in cookbooks. Christmas cookies made with cookie cutters often depict candy canes, angels, stars, Santa, and Christmas trees.

How to Observe

The day should be celebrated by hosting a cookie exchange party, which also can be planned, and held on an upcoming day. According to Jace-Shoemaker Galloway, a few rules should be followed when planning for and celebrating the day:

  • a guest list should be made, and invitations sent out
  • cookies should be homemade, and the recipes should be brought to the party
  • packaging materials should be brought by guests to bring cookies home in
  • bake your own cookies if you haven't yet done so; use an old cherished family recipe or find something new
  • during the party: play holiday music, have something to drink available, and encourage guests to wear ugly Christmas sweaters
  • have a sampling, swapping, and packaging area at the party
  • when guests arrive, have them put folding cards that list their name and the name of the cookie in front of each cookie platter, and have them place a stack of their recipes next to their cookies as well

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