The Vatican Cookbook: Favorite Recipes, Stories, and Prominent Portraits of the Holy Fathers by David Geisser
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is as much about the Swiss Guard as it is a cookbook, but I counted that as a plus. With the brief biographies and history of the Guard, plus the gorgeous photography, I wound up feeling as if I'd gotten an insider's tour of the Vatican and met some of the people who live and work there. One interesting point, which shows just how varied the Swiss Guard's members are, is that the person who wrote the recipes was an accomplished and respected master chef before he left that behind to join up. Originally the Guard had planned to write a little booklet of their history but after he came on board the book took on a new life to become The Vatican Cookbook.
The recipes themselves range from gourmet to such familiar basics as Spaghetti Carbonara. They are drawn from the home country favorites of Pope Francis, Pope Benedict XVI, and Holy Pope John Paul II which is another nice touch that makes you feel a bit of connection with the Vatican. Also included are favorites of major Vatican and Swiss Guard officials, so there is a wider range than you might expect.
This is a lovely coffee table book but I plan on trying out some of the recipes too. It would make a perfect special occasion gift for your favorite Catholic friends.
I did NOT get this as a review book but spent my own hard earned cash on it. It is just the sort of book my beloved mother-in-law would have gotten me for my birthday were she still alive. So I stood in for her.