SacFoodies Favorites – Holiday Gift Guide, Day 3

Vanessa Smith:  Turkey? Check. Stuffing? Check. Mashed potatoes? Check. Green beans? Check. Serving spoons for each dish? Uh-oh!

This past Thanksgiving, as our last scrumptious dish was carefully placed on the fully adorned buffet table, I found myself back in the kitchen frantically rummaging through the utensil drawer for serving spoons…of course, all this while everyone waited patiently to dig in. In the end, I pieced together the best tools for the job, but my Type-A personality couldn’t let go of the fact that my poorly matched array of spoons and forks was a major distraction from the otherwise perfect spread. “Never again,” I said! “This is the year I add a serving set to my Christmas wish list!” Since then I’ve done the research and found a great selection, from modern to classic, at Crate & Barrel. And, their prices fit any budget since they sell both by the set and separately depending on your serving needs. I’ve settled on the Nortica 5-piece Serving Set at $64.95 because it’s simple and will pair well with any other basic utensils – or, since my mixing and matching days are over, I can simply add to it as my needs grow! Happy Serving!

Jenna Buhagiar:  During a recent trip to Mendocino, I fell in love with a set of four beautiful vase-like champagne flutes at the charming local boutique, Sallie Mac. Unfortunately, I didn’t act on my urge to purchase them and haven’t been able to find the exact set, but found this similar pair at Crate & Barrel. Cheers!

Maria Chacon Kniestedt:  Lately, as the weather’s turned cooler, I’ve been experimenting with one-pot dishes – the ultimate in comfort food. I’ve made a sweet-savory chili and a hearty vegetable soup in my big stockpot, and I’ve used my slow cooker for a delicious wine-flavored ground pork stew I remember from childhood. But, I’ve been eyeing some classic French cassoulet recipes that are just calling out to be baked in this Le Creuset French oven from Sur La Table. Hopefully, Santa is reading this post!

Regional Gift Idea:   We’ve found that you often get the most when you give. So, if you’re looking for a way to make someone else’s holiday dreams come true, consider adopting a family for the holidays through Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services. There are still 200 families who have yet to be adopted. Team up with family members, co-workers or friends to put a smile on a child’s face and to help out parents and single parents who are struggling to make ends meet. Contact Genevieve at

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