Holiday helpers: Four seasonal meets for home chefs

Gastronomic gatherings with tips and ideas for the rest of your holiday celebrations.

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Holiday helpers: Four seasonal meets for home chefs

Kitchen expertise isn't required for the bill of holiday-themed food events happening throughout the week. From Tuesday to Thursday, here are four culinary classes and tastings to help you get through the final shindigs of the month.

Chef Whitney Miller, who won the U.S. MasterChef cooking show's first season, talks holiday entertaining on the cheap and budget-friendly recipes during Rolling Pin Kitchen Emporium's latest cooking demonstration. Happening Tuesday evening, the class costs $50. 6:15 p.m. 2080 Badlands Drive, Brandon, 813-653-2418.

Craft cupcakes inspired by cocktails, with ingredients like eggnog and spiced rum, alongside Cloud 9 Confections chef and owner Beth Lukens. Hosted at the Epicurean Theatre Tuesday, the $45 hands-on lesson gets you two cupcakes to bake and decorate. 7-9 p.m. 1207 S. Howard Ave., Tampa, 813-999-8700.

On Wednesday, Publix's Aprons Cooking School raises the bar — the cookie bar, that is. For $40, you'll bake one dozen of each showcased treat, including lemon bars and a gingerbread brownie rendition. Aprons is holding additional holiday-inflected classes before the end of the month, so get in on 'em. 6 p.m. 7835 Gunn Highway, Tampa, 813-926-4465.

So you want to dine-in for the holidays, but aren't up for preparing the big meal this year? Get complimentary samples of the catering fare offered at Carrollwood's Whole Foods Market Thursday. The menu's equipped with roasted lamb legs, potato latkes and more. 5-7 p.m. 3802 Northdale Blvd., Tampa, 813-264-3600.

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