A sumptuous narrative history of presidential food--from Washington starving at Valley Forge to Trump's well-done steaks with ketchup--from the co-author of My Life in France.
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is perhaps the most important house in the world, which gives the food on the Commander-in-Chief's table unprecedented significance. What our leaders choose to eat, how the food is prepared and by whom, and the context in which these meals are served speaks volumes not only to the country, but often to the world at large. These gustatory messages touch on everything from personal taste (Jefferson's love of eggplant, FDR's terrapin stew, Nixon's daily lump of cottage cheese topped with barbecue sauce, Obama's arugula) to local politics, national priorities, global diplomacy, climate change, and war--not to mention race, gender, class, money, and religion. In The First Kitchen, Alex Prud'homme explores the fascinating stories of first families through the food they ate and served, and in doing so paints a unique picture of the institution of the presidency--and its place in American history.