French-born Pierre Cubat served as chef to the courts of last three Tsars as Russia passed through social ferment and political upheaval. French journalist Nicolas de Breteche examines the world in which Cubat worked and explores the unusual closeness between the chef and the Imperial family.
The book is handsomely illustrated with photographs and portraits of historically important figures and settings in both France and Russia, from grand dining rooms to the kitchens of the Summer Palace in St. Petersburg. Also included are versions of Cubat's own recipes, adapted by French chef Gerard Dupont, former president of the Culinary Academy of France, for contemporary home kitchens.
While author de Breteche is somewhat emphatic in his conviction that Cubat was one of the most historically important French chefs, the book nevertheless does a good job making clear the contrasts between cultures and classes that underlay the differences not only been French and Russian cuisine, but between Imperial Russia and the future that would follow it.
Hardcover. Color photographs throughout. In French.