Cookie Exchange Extravaganza

One of the most fun (and delicious) traditions of the holiday season are cookie exchanges. This custom of trading recipes is a great way for beginning bakers and master chefs to get new ideas and connect with coworkers or old friends. We got together at the Big Basket and found some mouth-watering recipes that will be as fun to make as they are to eat!

Chocolate Snowball Cookies

Bring the snowballs inside this winter for a tasty treat! These cookies have a delicious outside with a rich Hershey Kiss in the middle for the perfect cold-weather snack!

Directions:Start by beating the butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla in large bowl until blended. Then stir together the flour, cocoa, baking powder and baking soda and add with milk to butter mixture until well blended. Stir in nuts and toffee bits.

Next, refrigerate mixture until firm enough to handle, at least 2 hours. Heat oven to 350°F. Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper or lightly grease. Remove wrappers from chocolates and shape the dough into 1-inch balls. Press chocolate piece into each ball, covering completely with dough. Reshape into balls and place on prepared cookie sheet.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. Cool slightly and remove from the cookie sheet to the wire rack. Cool completely and roll in powdered sugar. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

Hawaiian Cookies

Don’t let the cold get you down this season, bring the taste of the warm tropics into your home! These fruity flavors and warm baked goodness will make you the hit of cookie exchange!

Directions:Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Simmer the orange juice and mango in a small pan over medium-low heat for 8 minutes and set aside. Next, beat the butter, shortening, brown sugar, and white sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time. Then, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl. Mix the flour mixture into the butter mixture until just incorporated. Fold in the macadamia nuts, coconut, cranberries, and mango; mixing just enough to evenly combine. Drop spoonfuls of the dough 2 inches apart onto greased baking sheets. Bake in the preheated oven until the edges are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on a wire rack. Yields 3 dozen cookies.

Classic Gingerbread Men Cookies

These baked goods are a classic for a reason. Just the smell of gingerbread brings to mind the warmth and joy of the holiday season.

Directions: First, in a large bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Then beat in the molasses, egg and water. Combine flour, ginger, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice and add to creamed mixture and mix well. Divide dough in half. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes or until easy to handle.

Next, preheat the oven to 350°. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each portion of dough to 1/8-in. thickness. Cut with a floured 4-in. cookie cutter and place 2 inches apart on greased baking sheets. Reroll scraps. Bake 8-10 minutes or until edges are firm. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Decorate as desired. Makes about 2 dozen.

Have a favorite cookie recipe you love to make? Share it with us! Simply submit your recipe here for a chance to be featured in our upcoming edition of the Longaberger StoryBook!