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Short Synopsis
Thomas J. Craughwell relates the remarkable story of Thomas Jefferson and one of his slaves, James Hemings, as they seek to master the art of French cooking.

Full Synopsis
In 1784, Thomas Jefferson struck a deal with one of his slaves, nineteen-year-old James Hemings. The founding father was traveling to Paris and wanted to bring James along for a particular purpose—to master the art of French cooking. In exchange for James's cooperation, Jefferson would grant his freedom.

Thus began one of the strangest partnerships in United States history. As Hemings apprenticed under master French chefs, Jefferson studied the cultivation of French crops (especially grapes for winemaking) so that they might be replicated in American agriculture. The two men returned home with such marvels as pasta, French fries, Champagne, macaroni and cheese, crème brûlée, and a host of other treats. This narrative history tells the story of their remarkable adventure.

"Alan Sklar's rich voice is well suited to the book." ---Library Journal Audio Review

"Alan Sklar expresses the Jeffersons' awe of their new glamorous surroundings and recounts their experimentation with international culinary trends." ---AudioFile

"[A] tasty addition to the long list of Jefferson's accomplishments." ---Kirkus

"Craughwell capably sets the scene and places his story in historical context, with a focus on Jefferson's time in France and the gastronomic angle." ---Library Journal

"[A] well-researched look at the impact Jefferson and Hemings had on our eating habits." ---Chicago Tribune

"Thomas Jefferson's Crème Brûlée is a charming book that will appeal to both foodies and lay readers." ---ForeWord

Thomas Jefferson's Creme Brulee

How a Founding Father and His Slave James Hemings Introduced French Cuisine to America

Author Thomas J. Craughwell

Narrated by Alan Sklar

Publication date Mar 4, 2013

Running time 6 hrs

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