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OP: Cooking for Madam

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by Marta Sgubin and Nancy Nicholas

Scribner, 1998. Hardcover. Fine in Near Fine jacket. First printing.

A onetime governess to Caroline and John Kennedy Jr. who became a long-time housekeeper and cook, Marta Sgubin played an intimate and significant role within the Kennedy/Onassis family. The Italian-born, French-raised Sgubin was encouraged, first by “Madam”—Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis—and, later, by her children to publish her beloved family recipes. In 1998, she finally did.

Organized by month and affiliated occasions, the dishes are well-balanced between sophistication and hominess. The likes of shepherd’s pie and brownies have as much of a presence as roasted veal loin with morel mousse and tarte tatin. 

Cooking for Madam speaks not only to a certain class and generation, perhaps, but also to an enduring enamoration of the American political dynasty. Our invitation into the private lives of these public figures is heightened by the inclusion of candid photography and personal notes written from Madam to Sgubin.

Ours is a first printing in Fine condition, likely unused. The only flaws can be found on the jacket, which is price clipped and somewhat shelfworn.

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