Saturday, December 17, 2011

Yummy Treats to Simplify Your Week!

Seven days to get everything done! Enjoy the coming week and all the blessings that Christmas with family and friends offers by making your life a LOT easier--stay out of the kitchen slaving away making sweets and turn to these trusted Southern vendors for yummy creations. You will have plenty of treats for visiting family and unexpected visitors and if you are traveling to visit family or friends take a surprise that will certainly please.

If it is a cake you need, Piece of Cake in Atlanta (multiple locations) and Renaissance Market in Lafayette are all you need to deliver one that will delight all who partake of these delicious offerings:

Many flavors available. These are the three (Red Velvet, Carrot, Chocolate) layer cakes I have been lucky enough to try. DELISH! I stopped by the Roswell Road location and picked up a red velvet to have tomorrow...can't wait!
Available with or without nuts and in various sizes. You can order online and it will arrive at your door in perfect condition. This size cake is $ 34.50.


This time of year in Lafayette anyone in the know has cakes from Renaissance Market on the Christmas menu. That's because Mary Landry uses her Mother's recipe for a life changing Rum Cake that blows everyone away!
To order, call 337 234 1116

Mini cakes are $ 4.50, full cakes are $ 34

Keep everyone in good spirits during the Holidays by keeping Claxton Fruitcake, Cane River Pecans, and Cheese Wafers all around the house. Whether it's sweet or salty your guests are looking for, these products will keep them full and happy!

order online or by calling 912 739 3441/ 1 800 841 4211

These cakes are made in my hometown. I've grown up eating Claxton Fruit Cake and no Christmas is complete without them! There are several options for sizes/quantity to order but I recommend the (3) or (5) 1 lb. cakes that are individually wrapped. Use them as you need to replenish the tray you are serving them on and only open what you need. You will thank me for that when after the Holidays you open your refrigerator and have an unopened one to enjoy with hot chocolate on a cold winter night! There is a reason Claxton Fruit Cake is celebrating 100 years and you will know why when you've tried there delicious cakes.

(5) individually wrapped 1 lb. cakes = $ 37.95
(3) individually wrapped 1 lb. cakes = $ 28.95

order online or by calling 1 800 293 8710

The Pecan Trio Assortment is the way to go when entertaining during the holidays. This flavorful assortment of Mammoth pecan halves includes generous portions of Roasted & Salted, Milk Chocolate-Covered and Praline Pecans. 
I promise neither you nor your guests will be disappointed. These are simply the best pecans I've ever had!

Order in the classic tin for $ 32:

or for a tin you can reuse all year, the Clementine Hunter special edition which is $ 34:

FANTASTIC SOUTHERN CHEESE BISCUITS--hand baked by Louise Bohannon in Atlanta 
available at Boxwoods Gardens & Gifts--100 E. Andrews Drive---404 233 3400
or order from Louise directly by emailing

Cheese biscuits (wafers, really) are such a Southern staple. I love them and when I heard someone in Boxwoods Gardens & Gifts exclaim that these are "life changing", I had to try and that gal was right! Thin and crispy, these have just the right amount of spice. Perfection!

Serve your fruitcake, pecans, and cheese biscuits in style with these great options:

On the dining table or sideboard, use one of the "Crystal Towers" by New Orleans artist Lara Lester--from Julie Neill in New Orleans, these range in price from $ 150 - $ 175.
Julie Neill--3908 Magazine Street, New Orleans--504 899 4201

TRAVADAVI in Atlanta has this fantastic 18" Melamine serving tray--perfect for Christmas time and year-round casual entertaining. 
Travadavi--2300 Peachtree Road--404 844 0141

Anya Susani 18" Melamine Platter--$ 60

Less expensive, yet great looking, OH DECO WHERE ART THOU has these vintage options which are perfect for casual entertaining. Keep them replenished on the kitchen island or den coffee table so your guests always have a nibbly available.

3-section ceramic Christmas Tree Serving Dish: $ 8

Vintage 3-section light blue serving dishes, $ 18 each

Have a cook on your list that you need a gift for? Give them one of the hottest (and best) cookbooks available right now. Talk about the gift that keeps on giving!? You are sure to get yourself invited to enjoy the results of their use of one of these:

A New Turn in the South
Southern Flavors Reinvented for your Kitchen
by Hugh Acheson
"Acheson's fresh approach to Southern food has earned him a great deal of recognition including Food & Wine’s Best New Chef (2002), the AJC Restaurant of the Year (2007), a four time James Beard nominee for Best Chef Southeast (2007, 2008, 2009, 2010) and a 2007 Rising Star from Chef Mario Batali chose Hugh as one of the 100 contemporary chefs in Phaidon Press' Coco: 10 World Leading Master Choose 100 Contemporary Chefs."

available in Atlanta at Bella Cucina Porta Via in Virginia Highlands and Outwrite Bookstore in Midtown

Basic to Brilliant, Y'all
150 Refined Southern Recipes and Ways to Dress Them up for Company
by Virginia Willis
"Virginia Willis’s legion of fans love her knack for giving classic French dishes a down-home Southern feel and reimagining homey Southern favorites en Fran├žaise. In Basic to Brilliant, Y’all Virginia builds on her signature style, offering 150 soul-satisfying recipes and accompanying each with a new preparation technique, fresh presentation style, or creative recipe variation that transforms an already wonderful dish into an all-out show stopper."
available in Atlanta at Bella Cucina Porta Via in Virginia Highlands, Early Street Antiques in Buckhead

Southern Pies
A Gracious Plenty of Pie Recipes, From Lemon Chess to Choclate Pecan
by Nancie McDermott

We gave Nancie's cook book Southern Cakes as a gift and have been the lucky recipient of many of the creations from that book..if these pies are as good as the cakes, world watch out! Someone on my list will definitely get this one so I can find out just how good they are!
available at Tracery Interiors in Rosemary Beach & Birmingham

Cast Your Bread Upon the Waters
Recipes for Cooking, Living & Success
by Sister Schubert

We all know how good Sister Schubert's rolls are. Sister's new cookbook will certainly lead to some good food being put on the table! And, give this as a gift and give back with proceeds going to a Ukrainian foster home. Here is the story:

"The book tells the story of how I started Sister Schubert’s Homemade
Rolls based on my grandmother Leona Henderson Wood’s heirloom recipe
for “Everlasting” yeast rolls, along with the title to my wood-paneled
station wagon and a lot of elbow grease. And of how Sister Schubert’s
grew from a tiny, home-based company into a national brand with three
state-of-the-art bakeries and hundreds of employees.
It also links my Alabama heritage with a new chapter in our lives –
our Ukrainian-born adopted son, Aleksey, and the foster family home
that we established in his honor.
Proceeds from Cast Your Bread Upon the Waters will benefit the Barnes
Family Foundation
 and Sasha’s Home in Gorlovka, Ukraine, which
provides a warm and loving temporary home for 40 abandoned children."

available at Tracery Interiors in Rosemary Beach & Birmingham

Southern My Way
Simple Recipes, Fresh Flavors
by Gena Knox

Southern My Way: Simple Recipes, Fresh Flavors features more than 250 pages of seasonal recipes, streamlined for busy lives and accompanied by full-color photographs that portray a lifelong love affair with Southern food and culture.
available at Boxwoods Gardens & Gifts in Atlanta- 404.233.3400

and to help the cook (or you!) in your life do it all with flair, L.A. designer Joe Nye's book is the tool needed:

Exquisite invitations, lush flowers, and gorgeous table settings
by Joe Nye
available at Mrs. Howard in Charlotte- 704.376.8900
B.D. Jeffries in Atlanta- 404.231.3004

However you have to spend the remaining days before Christmas, enjoy! I hope my suggestions over the last few weeks have helped finalize your gift buying and made your preparations a bit easier. By the way, I am tired so I apologize for any misspelled words in this post! Please contact me if you need more info on these fantastic items featured.


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