Holiday hankerings Want to give the gift of local flavor? Don't miss the Second Annual Detroit Holiday Food Bazaar, a pop-up marketplace with wares from a variety of Detroit's independent food vendors. You'll be able to shop from the good folks behind Love's Custard Pie, Drought Juice, the Detroit Institute of Bagels, Pete's Chocolate Co., Perkins Pickles, Beau Bien Fine Foods, Great Lakes Coffee Roasting Company, McClure's Pickles, Simply Suzanne, Suddenly Sauer, Corridor Sausage Co., Porktown Sausage and many more. Nonfood vendors — such as City Bird, Handmade Detroit, Leopold's Books and more — will also hawk their wares, including vintage dishware, handmade cutting boards, and delectable food photography from MT photog Marvin Shaouni. A great chance to buy one-of-a-kind gifts while supporting Detroit and its food entrepreneurs. From 5 to 11 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 9, at 2448 Market St., third floor above Cost Plus Wines in Eastern Market, Detroit; cash only. For more info, see the Facebook page for the Detroit Holiday Food Bazaar.
Gourmet giving How to stuff a gourmet's Christmas stocking? Toasted Oak Grill & Market has some ideas, offering gourmet gifts that are carefully packaged, such as a coffee-lover's basket complete with mugs, Illy coffee and Sanders hot fudge topping ($29.99). Or a branded crate with three assorted locally produced mustards and jellies from Brownwood Farms ($24.99). Drop in at the Hotel Baronette, 27790 Novi Rd., Novi; or see toastedoak.com.
Wider Sahara They've been hard at work at Sahara Mediterranean Grill, and the restaurant's expansion is complete, with a dining room that seats 170 and a full-service bar — something you don't often get with Middle Eastern fare. Have a look at 45199 Market St., Shelby Twp.; 586-566-9777; saharagrill.com.
Taste the season Want schooling on how to prepare a sumptuous holiday feast? Jeremy Grandon, chef and owner at Jeremy Restaurant & Bar is offering a cooking class on how to make potato latkes, purple cabbage stuffed pork loin roast with medjool dates and roasted apples, roasted root vegetables — even holiday cookies. The "Holiday Cookery Gala" is at 5:30 p.m., Monday, Dec. 12, at 1978 Cass Lake Rd., Keego Harbor; reserve your spot at 248-681-2124; $65 per person plus tax and tip; jeremyrestaurantandbar.com.
Warm feelings Next week, Chicago's "most laid-back, delicious party" — Soup & Bread — is coming to Ferndale, and generous Detroit-area cooks will dish out free soup at the Loving Touch. It's called the first ever "Soup & Bread: Detroit," hosted by Martha Bayne, author of The Soup & Bread Cookbook: Building Community One Pot at a Time. Soup's on at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 14, at 22634 Woodward Ave., Ferndale; 248-546-6396.
Downriver, women & beer Don't miss the inaugural Downriver Women's Craft Beer Lovers Society Meeting, featuring the world's first certified female cicerone, Annette May, from Merchant's Fine Wine in Dearborn, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 8, at the Rockery, 1175 Eureka Rd., Wyandotte; 734-281-4629; rockerywyandotte.com.
Stewart, Tabori & Chang, $35
'Tis the season to be bakin' — and a glance through Francine Segan's beautifully photographed Dolci: Italy's Sweets may become the inspiration for a tasty tour through Italian desserts. Begin with the basics, such as biscotti, cannoli and panna cotta, then on to a version of tiramisu in which the eggs are whipped with hot sugar syrup — thus not raw for those with health concerns. Along with chapters on pies, cakes, cookies and frozen desserts, there's also "Weird and Wonderful, Unique and Unusual Desserts: Dolci Particolari."
the works "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire ..." conjures up images of sitting by the fireplace on a snowy night, fiddling with hot, aromatic, roasted chestnuts as soon as they're cool enough to handle, prying out the delectable meat. However, to prevent them from exploding, the nuts must be scored before they're roasted, no small task with an ordinary knife. The Chestnutter solves the dilemma. Merely put a nut in the bowl and squeeze the handles. Roast them, remove the flesh and enjoy. We found a recipe in Dolci — at left — for chestnut chocolate spumoni, another good reason to snap this baby up. See cooksite.com.