The first Baroque residence on the Upper Rhine

Rastatt Residential Palace

Rastatt Residential Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Günther Bayerl
STRICTLY REGULATED

KITCHEN RULES

Today, the kitchen rules that Margrave Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden-Baden stipulated two years after taking power are located in the archives. In those days, the head cook was responsible for kitchen organization, including kitchen duties, cooks and other servants who worked within the royal kitchen, as well as providing their rules of conduct.

Portrait of Margrave Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden-Baden. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, credit unknown

Ludwig Wilhelm set the kitchen rules.

ORDER AT THE ROYAL COURT

In 1679, Margrave Wilhelm Ludwig had kitchen rules drawn up for the Baden-Baden residence. These remained in effect after the family moved to the new palace in Rastatt and even after his death in 1707. The kitchen rules outlined in detail how the royal kitchen servants were to behave. The head cook, a master of household and an additional officer supervised the cooks and their assistants. Rules were to be strictly followed.

Festively set sala terrena. Image: Amea design and more

The margraves' table was also festively set.

HEAD COOK'S DUTIES

The head cook and the vegetable gardener were responsible for ensuring that provisions were available on time for meal preparation by the cooks. Cooks were to be present in the royal kitchen at 8:00 AM sharp and at 3:00 PM sharp. In the morning, they prepared the morning soup, which was served to the entire court. This required five pounds of meat daily. 

Soup tureen from the early 18th century. Image: Wikipedia, in the public domain

Morning soup was served to the royal household in tureens.

THE DAY BEGAN WITH A MORNING SOUP

The head cook and the vegetable gardener were responsible for ensuring that provisions were available on time for meal preparation by the cooks. Cooks were to be present in the royal kitchen at 8:00 AM sharp and at 3:00 PM sharp. In the morning, they prepared the morning soup, which was served to the entire court. This required five pounds of meat daily. 

Drawing of the "Kitchen pocketbook for women for the daily selection of meals, 1796". Image: Wikipedia, in the public domain

Women in an 18th-century kitchen.

AND WHAT ABOUT THE REST OF THE KITCHEN STAFF?

Access to the royal kitchen was also regulated: One scullion was tasked with opening and closing the royal kitchen. Another was responsible for lighting the oven fire and putting it out again. Scullions or scullery maids were also responsible for keeping the kitchen and tableware clean. The personnel list for the royal kitchen between 1726 and 1728 included, "1 head cook, 4 personal cooks to the prince, 1 junior cook, 3 cook maids, 1 servants' cook, 1 pastry chef, 1 confectioner, 1 personal baker to the prince, 1 kitchen gardener, 1 kitchen clerk, 5 scullery maids, 1 scullion, 7 footmen and 1 page."

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