La Cuisine Francaise, Francois Tanty 1893
This delightful image of chefs emerging from a copper pot on the stove is an illustration from the recipe book of Francois Tanty, chef de cuisine to Emperor Napoleon III of France and the Imperial Family of Russia. The book was published in Chicago in 1893.
Tanty trained under Marie-Antoine Careme (1784-1833), regarded as the original maestro of haute cuisine. Careme was the inventor of “mother sauces” that were used in different dishes and of pastries such as mille-feuille.
After cooking for the Czar, Alexander II of Russia, Tanty came to America to settle his three sons in business and wrote this recipe book. He wanted to show Americans how they could enjoy French cuisine in their homes – as television personality and chef Julia Child did decades later.
Accustomed to preparing food for royalty, Tanty’s ideas were rather grand. He thought family dinners should consist of six courses including two kinds of soup.
The book was dedicated to Chicago-born Mrs H. G. Selfridge – Rose Amelia Selfridge (1860-1918) – wife of the department store magnate Harry Gordon Selfridge. Their marriage was recently portrayed in the television series Mr Selfridge.
Courtesy Lou Greenstein.
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