Serve Flaming; Bling Optional


By Matthew Breen

Judging by his festooned capes and the mounds of jewels bunched like grapes on his knuckles, one might guess that Liberace's thoughts on food would be as demure as his wardrobe'that is to say, not at all. One wouldn't be mistaken: Said the maestro, 'Nothing that costs a dollar is worth eating, so add caviar.' How could anyone pass up a meal created by a culinary connoisseur with a piano-shaped swimming pool and a rhinestone-encrusted car? In Joy of Liberace ($25, Angel City), authors Michael and Karan Feder gather the most amusing and delectable of the food fanatic's recipes, like Gilding-the-lily Lasagna, Salamiami Bouquet, Poofy Puffy Spuds, and Weenie Broil. Add one sterling silver candelabra, the sounds of some tinkling on the ivories, and bon app'tit.

Flamboyant Flamb' of Sirloin

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup minced shallots or scallions
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons minced parsley
3 1/2 pounds boned, trimmed sirloin
1/4 cup cognac

1. Heat butter and saut' the shallots or scallions in a large skillet until transparent but not brown.
2. Add salt, pepper, and parsley.
3. Brown the steak under the broiler for one minute and transfer to skillet to cook a few minutes longer, letting the steak juices run into the sauce.
4. Place on heated platter.
5. Warm the cognac, pour over the steak, and ignite.
6. Serve flaming.

Serves six.

From the book Joy of Liberace (Angel City Press). Copyright 2007 by Michael Feder and Karan Feder; images used with permission from the Liberace Foundation.