Last year I participated in a cookie swap from a message board I'm on. I had fun with that swap, so when I heard about the Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap I knew I wanted to be a part of it this year. The concept of it is that food bloggers from all over join in for a small donation to Cookies for Kids' Cancer, then you are assigned three bloggers to send a dozen cookies to and you'll receive three dozen cookies in return from other bloggers. Doesn't that sound like a great swap?!
There are so many food blogs out there, so it was nice to be connected to blogs I otherwise wouldn't have known about. The bloggers I was assigned were:
The Crafty Foodie
Cardio Cats and Cooking
Knowing I needed to make at least 3 dozen cookies (with a few extras for us to enjoy here) and knowing that this was to raise money for Cookies for Kid's Cancer, I turned to my Best Bake sale Cookbook, which happens to give all proceeds from book sales to the same charity! I wanted to make something "holiday"-ish. One of my favorite holiday flavors is gingerbread, so these molasses cookies are the perfect holiday treat! And my favorite part of these cookies is the sugar coating they get before going into the oven. It helps bring out the sweetness from the otherwise spicey cookies.
I baked them, packed them up and sent them off to the recipients. Then as I was on my way home from the post office I realized that I hadn't taken a picture of them! What is a girl to do?? Bake more, of course! I knew that I wanted to make holiday treats for our neighbors, so I whipped up another batch for them, and this time I remembered to take a picture before giving them away. And another thing about making the extra batch was that I adjusted the bake time so they didn't come out quite as well done as the ones I had sent to my swap recipients.
Oh, and the best part of this swap? Receiving cookies! I was sent walnut sable cookies from La Peche Fraiche which I think lasted 2 days in our house, Ritzy Peanut Butter Crackers in Chocolate from Crackers on the Couch (when I opened this box the scent of chocolate and peanut butter wafted through the air...every box should have this scent!) and yummy jelly cookies from Mooshu Jenne.
I'm looking forward to doing this swap again next year!
Crunchy Molasses Cookies (slightly adapted from The Best Bake Sale Cook Book)
1 1/2 sticks (6oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar, plus additional for rolling
1 large egg, at room temperature
1/4 cup robust molasses
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and beat until smooth and creamy. Add the egg, molasses, and vanilla, one at a time, beating well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Place the flour, baking soda, salt, and spices in a separate bowl and mix well. Add to the butter mixture. Beat until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat again.
- To form the cookies, break off small pieces and roll into 1 inch balls. Roll the balls in sugar and place 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheets. Using your hand or the bottom of a water glass, press down until flattened. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies begin to brown at the edges (approx. 10 minutes). Cook on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.