Sunday, October 23, 2005

Freedom, spun sugar and objets d'artes

Someone help me with my French grammar and plurals... One of my all time favorite films, though most people think it's a snoozer... is Vatel.

Maybe it's because the whole story centers around the idea of bringing beauty into the world despite the foibles and ugliness of the people who drive it. That and I'm drawn to any movie, cooking show or documentary that features making works of fine art from spun sugar

If you don't know the story of the fated master of ceremonies who was basically the 17th century version of a PR whiz, movie producer and master caterer all rolled into one... watch the movie.

Or you can read about him here:
http://www.kitchenproject.com/history/aboutVatel.htm

Or read the historical text written by Madame de Sevigne:
http://history.hanover.edu/texts/louisxiv.html


I was able to find a food history web page that features some of the recipes from the historical feast served to Louis XIV.

http://www.kitchenproject.com/history/vatel/Vatel_Recipes.htm


NOTE: dont read below this line if you want to watch the film...

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There's a lot of controversy around the actual reason why Vatel killed himself. The film featuring Gerard Depardieu in the starring role, portays Vatel as a man driven to desparation because he is forced to choose between his freedom and being pawned as a slave to pay a gambling debt. Personally, I think the poor guy was just exhausted to the point of despair after working for nearly 2 weeks without sleep... I should learn something from this shouldn't I? Though I hardly think that I could be responsible for a master banquet given to the ultimate 17th century monarch... though I can dream can't I? And no I don't want to be on some freakin cooking show with a bitch-ass chef screaming at me.

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