Monday, June 24, 2013

Cookie Party

We celebrated my daughter's birthday at our local pool with a cookie themed party in early June.  I baked hundreds of cookies to prepare for the party and learned a few tips and tricks to share with you if you ever plan to host a cookie themed party.  These tricks would also work wonders during the holidays to prepare cookies for cookie swaps or have a batch ready at a moments notice when you have unexpected company coming.
I made 8 varieties of cookies and pretzel treats for the favor table.  Each guest was able to take a paper bag and pick out a half dozen of their favorite cookies to take home at the end of the party.  The kids and parents seemed to enjoy the large selection of goodies.
I bought these petite paper bags at Hobby Lobby and printed the word "Cookies" in a cute font on the bag.  At some point the printer started to jam so I cut one paper bag apart and printed "cookie" on the brown paper a bunch of times and then cut and pasted it onto the rest of the bags.  Either way they looked cute.  A mini clothes pin and a piece of cute ribbon dressed them up even more.
 I arranged the cookies in a variety of different ways to add a little visual interest.  Decorated sugar cookies fit perfectly on the three tiered rack towards the back giving the table some height and my big wooden crate was perfect for the 8 dozen peanut butter cookies we had made.
We served ice cream treats instead of doing a cake at her party, but this cookie cake we made the week before would have been the perfect treat for her cookie themed party.

Cookie Baking Tips and Tricks for a Cookie Themed Party or Swap

  1. The first thing I did was to pick out exactly what cookies I wanted for my display.  I tried to pick a variety of colors and textures to make my display visually appealing.  I made chocolate crinkles for their dark versus light color, peanut butter for their texture, chocolate covered pretzels for the  festive sprinkles and packaging, and decorated sugar cookies for their cuteness.
  2. Plan to prepare and bake your cookies well in advance because you will be busy with so many things the day or two before the party.  I baked the sugar cookies a week before the party and stored them undecorated in the freezer.  The day before the party I took them out to decorate. 
  3. Collect display or serving pieces from around the house that coordinate and offer visual interest.  My mom happened to have some table runners and basket liners that tied everything together perfectly.
  4. Cookies freeze beautifully.  I originally made a double batch of chocolate chip cookies.  I froze half of the dough and I baked the other half and then stored the cookies in the freezer.  I found that the frozen cookies tasted identical to the freshly baked ones so it would be wise to go ahead and bake all of your cookies and store them in the freezer.  That way you are not trying to bake batches of cookies the night before your party. 
  5. Bake all of your cookies on parchment paper.  Use three cookie sheets and then you can bake one tray, have one tray cooling, and you can prepare the cookie dough on the third tray.  Let trays cool completely before using so your cookies do not spread too much on the hot tray.

Links to recipes:

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