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I have been lucky to receive a free copy of the Cookie Swap: Creative Treats to Share Throughout the Year book. The book immediately caught my attention, as I have never hold a cookie swap party, or been to a cookie swap party before. So I was very curious to see what this book was all about.
It is written by the author Julia M. Usher who is a celebrated pastry chef, food writer and stylist. You can find eight cookie swap theme parties in the book, along with over 50 different cookie recipes. You can also find decoration and invitation ideas for the cookie swap parties as well in this book.
The great things about the book, is that I wanted to hold a cookie swap party right away, after a quick browse through the book. I love the fact, that it can be used for so much more than just cookie swap parties. Take small parts from the book and you can hold a perfect tea party, make a fantastic dessert table (just add the cupcakes) or find new inspiration for your iced sugar cookies.
It also have some very sweet crafty ideas, like the gorgeous wedding cake boxes shown in the photo below. The “rescource” list in the back of the book is very detailed, which makes it easy to find cookie cutters and special ingredients.
The less great things about the book is that I that I really miss more detailed step by step directions with photos in the book. Also its a bit disappointing that I could not find any directions for some of the cookies that was pictured in the book, like the owl cookie from the cover.
In my point of view, directions on how to make the creations is just as important, if not more, as having beautiful inspiring photos to look at. The last less great thing is, that it would have been really nice to have some templates for the unusual shaped cookies in the book.
Overall this book a fantastic scource for your next party if you love cookies. Still I think the book is for the more experienced cookie baker/decorator as it can be hard for a beginner to use it, because of the lack of detailed directions.
Photograph by Steve Adams from “Cookie Swap” by Julia M. Usher. Reprinted with permission of Gibbs Smith.