The Pope’s Cook

Maria Cristiana (Ketty) Magni

€ 15,00
Publisher: Cairo Editore
Collection: Scrittori italiani
Pages: 240
ISBN/EAN: 978-88-6052-500-0

This is the story of Bartolomeo Scappi, a cook at the service of the Popes during the Renaissance. After rising through the ranks in the Veneto and Lombardy, in the service of unimportant country gentlemen or fishers on the lagoon, his career took a turn when he was 36. In a Rome still caput mundi, where the Papacy is a court of dissolute behaviour and chastity, he is fought over by cardinals and aristocrats until Pop Pius IV wants him all to himself as secret cook (in other words, private). In the magnificent and remote kitchens of the Vatican he will have the heavy task of serving three popes. Scappi, who had even cooked for Emperor Charles V, will be sought after by cardinals and archbishops every time there was need to make an impression at table. But Bartolomeo had a secret dream, the Work, all his gastronomic knowledge written down in black and white. He will succeed in doing this and publishing when he is seventy. He is a recipe bandit: sturgeon heads with purple violets, veal liver with Seville orange sauce, pigeons fried with cinnamon and sugar, rice Lombard style, Roman biscuits, Venetian style Umbrina cirrosa fish stew, Bologna style sausages.

Besides the Italian regional recipes, Scappi also welcomes foreign traditions: Moorish couscous of Arabian provenance, Hungarian milk soup, German style boar stew, turkey stuffed with oglia potrida, a Spanish potpourri of meat and greens, French style scrambled eggs. But Bartolomeo also had another dream, a prohibited one: the incredibly beautiful Claudia Colonna. His ardour for her will have the intense taste of impossible love, but in one night of passion stolen from the conventions of the time, she will give him a child that, because of those same conventions, will never be his.

In The Pope's Cooks, Ketty Magni continues to astound her readers with a new and fascinating fresco of Renaissance Italy and one of its hidden protagonists, a man whose contemporaries defined him as the “Michelangelo of the kitchen”. An enthralling book where the author combines a historical-culinary art novel with a passionate style having a rare immediacy.

The author
Ketty Magni (Maria Cristiana) is the author of the novels Riflessi (2006), Il Pontile sul Lario (2007) and, her real passion, the historical novels, Teodolinda il senso della meraviglia (2009), Adelaide Imperatrice del lago (2011) and Il Principe dei cuochi (Cairo 2011).

Cairo Publishing Srl
Corso Magenta, 55
20123 Milano
Tel +39 02 433131
Fax +39 02 43313550

Foreign rights:
Rita Colombi
Tel +39 02 43313534
Represented by:
Via G.B. Moroni 22
20146 Milano
tel./fax +39 02 48713365