I received my very special kitchen-based Christmas present a little early this year; which is lucky, as I have been a baking fiend this month! Apart from a bake swap with friends (chocolate oat balls, rocky road, Mexican chocolate cake), and a Chocolate Truffle Layer Cake for a Kris Kringle party with some girlfriends, I also participated in my first Cookie Swap. I was matched up with three other bloggers and we posted off a batch of cookies to each other.
The first to arrive were these amazing white chocolate-drizzled pistachio and cranberry biscotti from Yasmeen from Wandering Spice. They went in a flash.
Next was a fragrant and beautifully presented pencil tin full of cantuccini from Sherilynn (formerly of Tees2Knees fame!), now writing about eating well at Whole Promise.
And then these melt-in-the-mouth biscuits from my buddy Amanda at Easy Peasy Organic.
So the pressure was on as you can see. I thought I was being pretty clever making these stained-glass Christmas decoration cookies from the Australian Women's Weekly cupcakes and cookies book (that Amanda had actually gifted to me). Each cookie has a little hole with baker's twine threaded through for easy hanging. I wrote the ingredients on the back of these gorgeous holiday printable tags from Creature Comforts (that I have used for everything this year!). But boy were those cookies hard work. And I'm not sure how many survived my triple bubble-wrapping and eager handling at Australia Post.
So when I ran out of stained-glass window cookies, I decided to mix things up a little by making a batch of lovely melting moments (actually, YoYo cookies from Frankie's Afternoon Tea book). Much more robust than the decoration cookies - must note for next time.
I also popped together some little pressies for clients and the lovely preschool teachers, and this is my favourite packaging. The pillow box is an amazing printable from Oh the lovely things. I love that the dotted fold lines look like embroidered stitching.
So that's my baking for the holiday season done. Are you just getting started? I'd love your recommendations for your favourite holiday cookies/baking ideas.
Images: Steph Bond-Hutkin