Wednesday, December 14, 2011

How to Save Yourself from Your Christmas Cookies and Have Some Left to Give

Cheap Eat Challenge, Part 2: Watch as our family of 6 eats on less than $10/day.

This time of year, I like to bake a lot of cookies. I'm not even opposed to eating a couple. The problem is that we have way more than a couple hanging around.

Additionally, I want to have enough leftover to give away. That's over half the reason (did you hear that, friends, over half the reason--wow, you should feel very special) I'm baking them. But I don't want to be running out each day to give a batch to so and then the next day to so and other so. I want to go as a family on a (somewhat) convenient day with plates of different varieties of cookies.

How to save yourself from your Christmas cookies and have some leftover to give?

1. The day you bake them, let them cool, have one or two if you wish. Then, cut them and bag them up in Ziploc baggies.

2. Take your bags and label them if your cookies are different, but look similar. Then put them in the freezer.

3. Don't panic, you can still eat one if you have an absolute hankering. They're just in your freezer. But what won't happen is that you won't end up eating them just because, gee, there are 17 varieties of cookie sitting on your counter. Happy breakfast to you. Furthermore, by freezing them up nice and tight the first day, you'll keep them surprisingly fresh.

4. When cookie giving day comes, you can pack up plates with different kinds of all the cookies you bake. I just love this. That way I get the fun of making and tasting the different kinds of cookies. And the receiver gets the fun of not making and tasting the different kinds of cookies.

5. As a bonus tip, I like to put the cookies on a plate tightly wrapped with foil or cellophane. And then I like to put that in a gallon sized Ziploc freezer bag. It's not the prettiest presentation in the universe (you guys should know by now that that isn't my strongest suite). But it is incredibly practical. This way if your friends are completely cookied out by the time you get to them (and let's face it, cookie overload can happen), they can just throw your plate of cookies in the freezer and enjoy them later when they're ready, like some dreary day in January. The cookies are not exactly vacuum-packed like this, but they will keep well for a couple of months in someone's freezer. Want to go even further? Individually wrap each cookie in cellophane and then put them in the Ziploc bag for further freezer protection. That way any cookie-saturated friends can take one out of the bag when the whim arises and the rest will stay fresh even longer.

Happy baking.
Happy giving.
Happy not weighing 17 trillion pounds.

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