While shopping for a decorated tree at the 24th annual Trees of Life, you can pick up an autographed cookbook to put under your tree.
The event, sponsored by Kidney Health Alliance of Kentucky, is Thursday through Sunday at The Shops at Lexington Center, 430 West Vine Street. Cookbook authors who will sign books from 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday are: sisters-in-law Jayna Oakley and Kelli Oakley, Kentucky TALEgating: Stories With Sauce, and Kentucky TALEgating II: More Stories With Sauce; Fran Taylor, Keeneland Entertains: Traditional Bluegrass Hospitality and Favorite Recipes; and Benita McCoy-Lyons, Kentucky Scratch Cooking.
Jayna Oakley's 91-year-old grandmother also will be there, to talk about her cookbook, Grannie Charles' Family Favorites.
"My grandmother, back in 1998, wanted to do something for everyone for Christmas, and I suggested she do a cookbook," Oakley said. "So I gave her a legal pad and asked her to sit down and write down all of her favorite recipes, one per page. She wrote little things on some of her recipes that everyone has enjoyed as well."
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Sullivan University Culinary Club will prepare the menu for the Trees of Life preview party, which is 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $40 a person at the door. The tree display is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and until 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets for the Kentucky wine sampling are 10 for $10.
Call the Kidney Health Alliance at (859) 277-8259 or go to KHAky.org.
Local cooks, local books
Here are two more local cookbooks to buy for holiday gifts.
■ Barbara Harper-Bach's latest cookbook has all the recipes you'll need to get through the holiday season. The Christmas Clinic Cookbook includes recipes for cakes, candies and cookies, and menus for lavish dinners. The cost is $20 plus $5 for shipping and handling. Go to Bluegrasscookingclinic.com.
■ The Morehead United Methodist Church's cookbook, Come and Dine, has recipes that have been tested many times. "We have published two previous cookbooks and have included the 'best of the best' from them in this book," said Greta Bennett of Morehead. To order, send $15 to Greta Bennett, 151 Wells Lane, Morehead, Ky. 40351.Retro dining at Whitehall
If your home isn't large enough to entertain, take your friends to Whitehall House & Gardens holiday dinner on Dec. 10.
The historic home at 3110 Lexington Road in Louisville is having a five-course dinner prepared by chef Gregoire Guiot of Mirabelle Gourmet Catering. The menu includes miniature Yorkshire puddings, butternut squash soup with crème fraiche; beef Wellington with brandy sauce, and traditional European buche de noel. Tickets are $70. Call (502) 897-2944, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or go to Historichomes.org. Dinner begins at 7 p.m.
It's what's for Christmas
If you're tired of the Thanksgiving turkey, a beef roast for the next holiday is inviting. The Kentucky Beef Council has tips on how to select and cook the perfect roast. Go to Kybeef.com or Beefitswhatsfordinner.com. The site has a new interactive meat case that can help you work your way around the butcher's counter.
A spirit of Christmas past
Here's a fun way to get the family in the Christmas spirit. The 43rd annual Frontier Christmas will be Saturday and Sunday at the historic 1700s village of Washington, in Mason County. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
Entertainment will be provided by bagpipe, fiddle, guitar, banjo and dulcimer players. Kriss Kringle will make an appearance, and there will be craft demonstrations and buggy rides. Shops in the historic buildings will have plenty of gift ideas.
Foods, including transparent tarts, a Mason County specialty, will be served in the Meeting House. Vesper service will be at 4 p.m. Sunday in the Old Church Museum. Go to Washingtonky.com or call (606) 547-1231. Washington is 4 miles south of Maysville on U.S. 68.