The Dreadful Secrets of Candlewick
Master Chef and Food Frankenstein
NOTEWORTHY STATS: Hands 5; Guts 3; Brains 3; Face 3.
B ACKGROUND: Orphan and Refugee.
VOCATI ON: Master Chef.
PASSI ON: Transcending the Boundaries of Ordinary Cuisine.
Q UOTE: “My greatest creation! They said I was mad, mad! for combining the delicate flesh of the dove with the pungent heat of the green Siam curry, and a dressing of pasted almonds and honey—but when they taste this, then who’ll be mad, eh? Not Giuseppe!”
POV : The Doctor, he say to me, “Giuseppe, you come and cook for my new home. You teach the orphans what good food is.” I say to him, “But I am so busy with my restaurant! How can I come?” And he says to me, “All these young minds, these untrained palates, will you let them learn to like only the baked macaroni and cheese? The gloopy Stroganoff? What kind of men and women will these unfortunates grow into?” And the Doctor, he shame me, and I agree to come, for it is the chef ’s greatest duty to first and foremost teach how one appreciates food, is it not?
ROLE: Giuseppe is responsible for Candlewick Home’s dramatic dining hall. The exotic and eclectic menus are his own creation, and he’s served dishes to hungry orphans that kings and czars and merchant princes would have paid barrels of pearls to sample. He is wholly taken with his mission to broaden minds by broadening palates. These orphans my have never known love, but by God they’ll know it now. Love folded inside a delicate ravioli, with a simple sauce of butter, marjoram, sage, and rosemary. Giuseppe is a font of worldly advice, as well, though much of it is so seasoned with food metaphor that a certain amount of interpretation is needed.
DESCRI PTI ON: Giuseppe would be enormously fat, for he samples every dish he prepares, were it not for his furious energy and nonstop motion. He dashes around his kitchens in a blur, all white hat, swarthy complexion and curled mustache. The cooking staff are merely puppets on his strings; he’s so involved in ever step of the cooking process that they rarely get the chance to make mistakes. He always joins the diners, taking a tray and a plate himself, and sits with the orphans, eating the same meals as them; for the secret of truly transcendent food isn’t the methods of its preparation, or the quality of the ingredients, but instead the people you share it with.