Admit it: You’re stuck in a rut. Last night was tacos, tonight is meatloaf and Monday’s gonna be baked chicken. Again.
We’ve all been there. Even my eight-year-old is getting tired of my menu. Just the other day, he was all, “Spaghetti and meatballs again? We have that like every week.” (To which I very kindly and maturely replied, “Then start liking something other than spaghetti, hot dogs and pizza and I’ll switch it up a bit, mmmmkay?”)
It’s not that you don’t have plenty of cookbooks; you have a ridiculous stash of them, in fact. It’s just that you’ve been through them a hundred times and you’ve already bookmarked the three recipes you like and the rest are just meh. Or they have ingredients you don’t usually have on hand. Or they are recipes an eight-year-old won’t eat.
The solution: Host a cookbook swap party.
A cookbook swap party is the intersection at which a regular book club and an annoying office gift exchange collide in the most beautiful way. You don’t have to actually read anything AND you go home with something that is useful.
The ground rules
Here are the official Cookbook Swap Party Rules, which I am making up as I write this:
1. Invite two — or preferably more — people. You need at least three people for this to work, but the more you invite, the better selection you’ll end up with.
2. Each person can bring as many cookbooks as they like. However many you bring, that’s how many you get to take.
3. Don’t bring all your little junkers. Those little seasonal “books” (they’re really more like magazines) that you find in the grocery store checkout line don’t count. OK, you can go ahead and bring them in case anyone specifically wants a slew of Halloween dessert ideas, but they don’t count toward your book total. Bring nice books.
4. Bookmark your favourite recipes. It’s the polite thing to do for the book’s next owner and it’ll help you remember to make your own copy before you re-home it.
5. Serve snacks and beverages. Cuz it’s a party.
At the end of your cookbook swap party, you’ll have had an evening of fun and you’ll be armed with some new dinner ideas.