Home for the Holidays

Q. I'm looking for really good, something-special bread for my Christmas party. Any suggestions?

A. I'll be filling my pantry with specialty loaves from Arizona Bread Company (70th Street and Shea in Scottsdale; and Scottsdale and Pinnacle Peak roads in Scottsdale). Delicious holiday blends include French with Normandy apples, sugar and cinnamon; cranberries and hazelnuts; nine-grain with Alsatian pear; and French with white chocolate and dried strawberry. Order no later than December 23 for December 24 pickup.

Q. Christmas just isn't Christmas without Sacher torte.

Does anyone in town serve it?

A. Sacher torte is an extremely rich Viennese classic made with layers (usually three) of chocolate cake filled with apricot jam and enrobed in a creamy-rich chocolate glaze, plus billows of whipped cream. The treat is on the Christmas buffet menu for Acacia at the Four Seasons Resort in north Scottsdale.

Q. I'm having vegetarian friends over for my holiday dinner, and would like to offer them something so they don't feel left out. Who's a good non-meat caterer?

A. Place an order with Wild Oats Natural Marketplace (multiple Valley locations). Their deli is preparing a full vegetarian feast, including "celebration" roast (made from grains and vegetables), green beans amandine, yams, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, apricot cranberry stuffing, mushroom gravy, rolls and spelt (a nutty grain) vegan pumpkin pie. Meals are for two, six and 10.


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