“Steak and Cake: More Than 100 Recipes to Make Any Meal a Smash Hit” by Elizabeth Karmel, Workman Publishing, 260 pages, paperback, $22.95

Steak and cake — a perfect combo for the meat lover with a sweet tooth. If that describes your mom, consider preparing any of the recipes from chef and pitmaster Elizabeth Karmel’s latest cookbook for Mother’s Day.

Certainly, expect plenty of oohs and aahs if you offer the oven-baked bacon recipe from “Steak and Cake: More Than 100 Recipes to Make Any Meal a Smash Hit.” That’s the reaction I got from those attending a midmorning meeting. The bacon recipe accompanies the book’s Classic New York Steakhouse Strip recipe and both are paired with Potus Carrot Cake, a favorite of former President Gerald Ford.

Side Dish: Recipe for Classic New York Steakhouse Strip with Sizzling Thick Bacon and Onions

The cookbook is an offshoot of Karmel’s popular Steak and Cake classes at the Institute of Culinary Education. She says she wrote it “to give people the basic tools needed to choose and cook steak and to bake luscious cakes” and “to empower people to create their favorite restaurant-style meals in their own homes.”

The book “ended up being a delicious collection of my favorite flavors and a homage to both my Southern heritage and the recipes of my family,” she writes in the book’s introduction.

Each of her steak and cake pairings comes with two other “match-ups” for those who want to mix things up. She also offers some lagniappe with a recipe for Skinny Mango Margaritas and three bonus cake recipes for the more advanced baker. There’s also a chapter of side dishes from Roasted Shallot and Bacon Marmalade to Steakhouse Spinach. Technical information can be found in the Steak Primer and the Cake Primer.

“Steak and Cake” is a keeper — wonderful steak preparations and yummy cake recipes, all written with easy-to-follow instructions and illustrated with full-color photographs. Mom will love it.


Cheramie Sonnier is a food writer and columnist. Contact her at sonnierfood@gmail.com, and follow her on Twitter, @CheramieSonnier.