Book Review,  Recipe

The Empress Book Review ~ A Madwoman in Mexico

by Laura Martinez-belli

1866, Mexico

Book Review 4.5/5

I knew I was going to love this book when it began with a cast of characters à la a Shakespearean play. Enriched with little known history and authentic persons, the dullness of centuries past becomes suffused with color, bright and alive.

Somewhat reminiscent of Philippa Gregory’s works, The Empress is full of Mexican culture, international politics, power struggles and aristocratic manipulations. Though centurial affairs can be at times dry, there was never a lack of interesting storylines. Martinez-Belli kept the narrative thriving through her many characters, especially the regal Empress Carlota and her questionable lady, Constanza.

I absolutely adore all things history and yet I had never heard of the brief and chaotic empire of Mexico.  At times I was so engrossed that I forgot to note mention of food! What a beautifully dramatic period piece it would be. This must become a movie or a series; I’m not picky.

Overall, I found The Empress to be a well written, extremely fascinating and satisfying read. 

Book Food Review 1/5

Food was a passing glimpse in The Empress. I really had to get creative, but it was a fun challenge!


Mexican Bolillo Bread

Mexican Hot Chocolate

When Carlota walked in, the first thing she noticed was the exquisite smell of bread and hot chocolate floating in the air among the tapestries. Her stomach rumbled with such force that she thought everyone must have heard it….. The pope spoke a few words to her, but she wasn’t listening: she was fixated on the steaming cup of thick chocolate in which His Holiness was dipping bread.

The Nerdy Gourmet
The Nerdy Gourmet

Hi friends!! I’m Jenni, The Nerdy Gourmet. I love books and I love food. Combining the two with a splash of travel has become my passion. I am a self taught cook/baker and I believe that everyone can cook from scratch! I’m here with recipes and Nerdy Tips to help along the way.  
I review books, mostly ‘read’ via audio, and I create recipes inspired by the story lines. Sometimes if I am deeply moved by a story, I will travel and try my best to experience the book- and bring you along via my blog! I provide all the photographs and content for the Nerdy Gourmet (unless otherwise noted). 

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