A Friend in the Kitchen

60s HostessI’d like to share some beautiful photographs of one of my dishes, which a ‘friend in the kitchen’ produced for me. The recipe is “Pepper Steak, Ranch Style” from Entertaining Snacks After Dark. That was a particularly fabulous cookbook to pull together because of the late-night theme, and I love the profile of the fabulous sixties hostess on the cover that our Illustrator designed:

Our culinary photographer—my friend Mark Howard—is a true cookbook collector of epic proportions. His book shelves are lined with several hundreds—if not thousands—of cookbooks from all over the world and spanning the years. My works are included in his massively inspiring collection, and that is how we became friends. Mark is also a wonderful home Chef, so I was thrilled when he sent me these photographs; he was experimenting with both his love of cooking and his new camera.

His talents are obvious on both fronts. As you’ll see for yourself, his ‘staging’ of each photograph is well-thought out, highlighting the food, dinnerware, and cooking. It’s a surreal experience to be looking at mouth-watering  contemporary photographs of a dish that I had something to do with long ago. I’ll be posting more recipes & Mark’s photographic “shares” here and at the shop. It’s one thing for an author to muse about their creative works, but it is an entirely different experience to hear about my work through the eyes of such a lovely individual. I am touched that my cookbooks are a part of his life, and I celebrate the love of cooking with him and you.

Mark recently created a blog of his own, sharing recipes and photographs from The Dark Shadows Celebrity Cookbook. Please visit his blog for a deep dive into the Dark Shadows culture through cooking: http://mhowardds.blogspot.com.

I hope you enjoy Mark’s photographs of Pepper Steak, Ranch Style enough to get you in the “entertaining after dark” mood!


Pepper Steak, Ranch Style
• 1 1/4 lb beef tenderloin, sliced
• 1/2 C diced green pepper
• 1/2 C diced onion
• 1/2 C sliced, blanched mushrooms
• Salt
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1/2 t crushed whole black pepper
• 8 wedges fresh tomato
• 4 oz burgundy wine

Mark’s display of the tantalizing Ingredients:
all ingredients
Prepped veggies:
Prepped Vegetables

Sauté peppered beef quickly over hot fire until half done.
First Saute
Flip beef. Add all other ingredients except tomatoes and wine and cook for two minutes more. Add tomatoes and wine and heat thoroughly.
flipped and veggies
Serve in heated casserole with garlic croutons. Or serve with garlic bread slices–Nice substitution Mark!
close up YUM
Dinner is Served

The Entertaining Snacks After Dark Cookbook Post, here at the blog.
The Entertaining Snacks After Dark Cookbook & Recipe list and Bouillabaisse Recipe Share, at the shop.


  1. Linda Levine says:

    What a fabulous blog! Your latest is so vivid that I can almost smell the wonderful aroma of the steak and fresh vegetables. A mouthwatering experience!

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