Marie-Antoine Carême

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Marie-Antoine Carême

Marie-Antoine Carême (born June 8, 1784 in Paris ; † January 12, 1833 there ) was one of the most important chefs of his time, who made a significant contribution to the development of classic French cuisine .


Carême comes from a poor family with at least 15 children. He had to earn money at the age of ten and started working as an assistant in the kitchen of a restaurant. This was followed by training as a pastry chef and cook . At the age of 15 he started working for the famous Parisian confectioner Bailly, whose client included the French Foreign Minister Talleyrand . Two years later he left Bailly and worked for another pastry shop, the name of which is unknown. At the end of 1803 he opened his own pastry shop on Rue de la Paix , which he ran for about ten years.

From 1804 to 1814 Carême was primarily Talleyrand's personal pastry chef, but he also worked for other important people. For example, in 1810 he organized the banquet for Napoleon's wedding to Marie-Louise of Austria . He also served, among others, the British King George IV , Tsar Alexander I and Emperor Franz I of Austria. “Carême never let patriotism affect his own career interests. For example, the British and Russians occupied Paris after Napoleon's defeat, and the Russian Tsar Alexander I (…) hired Carême during his stay in Napoleon's palace (1814) and again for a few weeks the following year. "

In 1815 he published his first two books, Le Pâtissier royal parisien and Le Pâtissier pittoresque , the latter containing over 100 drawings of models for decorative patisserie modeled on show dishes . In the following years Carême worked a lot abroad. In 1816 he was hired by the British Prince Regent, later George IV, and in 1818 by the Russian Tsar. He later expressed himself disappointed and frustrated about his stay there, including the restriction of the kitchen budget.

In 1821 he published as a layman two books on architecture with plans for the beautification of Saint Petersburg and Paris . He proved to be a supporter of eclecticism and an opulent mix of styles. The book Maitre d'hotel followed in 1822 . In the following years he worked in the house of the banker Jakob Rothschild in Paris. In 1828 he published Le cuisinier parisien . His last book project, L'Art de la cuisine francaise au XIX. siècle , he could no longer complete before his death. Two of the planned three volumes were later finished by his pupil Pluméry.


  • Le Maître d'hôtel français (1822) ( Online )
  • L'Art de la cuisine française
  • Le Pâtissier royal parisien
  • Le Cuisinier parisien
  • L'Art de la cuisine au XIXe siècle
  • Le Pâtissier picturesque


  • Alan Davidson: The Oxford Companion to Food , 2nd. ed. Oxford 2006, p. 139 f.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Maguelonne Toussaint-Samat, La trés belle et trés exquise histoire des gâteaux et des friandises, Editions Flammarion 2004, p. 215 ff.
  2. ^ Alan Davidson, The Oxford Companion to Food, 2nd. ed. Oxford 2006, p. 140. Original quote: “Carême never let patriotism interfere with his own career interests. For example, after the defeat of Napoleon, the English and Russians occupied Paris, Alexander I., the Tsar of Russia, (...) engaged Carême's services during his stay at the Elysee-Napoleon palace (1814), and again for serveral weeks following year. "