Have you ever stopped to think about the important role food played in Columbo? If not, then let’s consider now.
From the Lieutenant cooking an omelette for Joanna Ferris in Murder by the Book to him whipping up scaloppini for Paul Gerard in Murder Under Glass; from him gulping Dr Keppel’s caviar in Double Exposure to assisting Dexter Paris on a live cookery show in Double Shock; and from garlic snails over chess in The Most Dangerous Match to poisoned marmalade in Rest in Peace Mrs Columbo, food is an ever-present and extremely enjoyable ingredient of the show.
And that’s what makes a new cookery book inspired by Columbo and its cavalcade of guest stars such a mouthwatering prospect.
“Food is an ever-present and extremely enjoyable ingredient of the show.”
Released to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the first airing of Prescription: Murder in February, the book in question is entitled Cooking With Columbo: Suppers With The Shambling Sleuth – and it’s the creation of London-based Columbo super fan Jenny Hammerton.
Jenny, the proprietress of the popular Silver Screen Suppers blog, plundered her extensive archives of more than 7000 movie star recipes to come up with meal suggestions to match every Columbo episode!
Featuring favourite recipes from the likes of Peter Falk, Vincent Price, Johnny Cash, Robert Conrad, Trish Van Devere, Dick Van Dyke and Janet Leigh, there’s inspiration enough to create sensational dinners for one right through to opulent banquets and house parties – including enough chilli variations to keep purists happy (although no squirrel chilli recipe makes the cut).
Having had the opportunity to have a sneak preview of this book prior to its publication, I can only commend Jenny for her passion for the subject matter and her devotion to the Columbo cause. I was delighted, too, to have been asked to write a foreword to the book: a chance I leapt at!
“I can only commend author Jenny for her passion for the subject matter and her devotion to the Columbo cause.”
Speaking on the inspiration behind the book, Jenny says: “I’ve been a fan of Columbo for as long as I can remember. He’s been a constant companion for me since the 1970s.
“A few years ago, I started working my way through the box set on my kitchen DVD player as I cooked my evening meals. I’m a movie star recipe collector and one night it hit me like a thunderbolt. I had recipes in my collection for so many of Columbo‘s amazing co-stars, why not start cooking my way through them?
“I hope that I’ve created a fun tribute to the best TV series that was ever created, and perhaps given inspiration for Columbo dinner parties, indulgent dinners for one or romantic dinners for two. If the book encourages people to try Columbo for the first time or prompts fans of the show to cook something Columbo specific, I’ll be very happy indeed!”
If Cooking with Columbo sounds like your cup of tea (or black coffee), the book is available in paperback and for Kindle on Amazon at bargainous prices. Find out more, read a preview, or order online here.
Jenny has also offered to give away a copy of the book to one lucky reader of this blog. If you’d like to enter the draw to win, simply leave a comment below about your favourite Columbo food-related memory and a winner will be drawn at random. Closing date for comments is 1 March 2018 so get amongst it!
UPDATE: The winner of the book, drawn at random from all those who entered a comment below, is Aaron Goldstein. Jenny will be in touch directly to arrange shipment of the book! Thanks to everyone who commented…
Until next time, bon appetit!