Catherine, who goes by the name 'Ketty', was born in Medingen on 2nd February 1905. Even when she was a little girl, she was interested in everything related to households. She now has her own place in all of Luxembourg's households. Whether you are a chef, newlyweds or keen on local gastronomy, a cookbook by Ketty Thull is a must for each and every kitchen and household.
Ketty Thull: an icon for Luxembourgish cuisine
Ketty Thull had a passion for cooking and for everything related to households and home economics in general.
She completed her studies in Home Economics Teaching in Luxembourg when she was 19, and she left to Louvigny to give lessons there at the Home Economics School. She left her job seven years later to continue her studies at 'Le Cordon Bleu' in Paris. She graduated in 1931 from the Paris Academy of Culinary Arts and was employed at the School of Home Economics of Esch-sur-Alzette in 1932.
Ketty Thull has published around 17 books: mostly cookbooks, but also books about healthy diets, home economics, food preservation and many more. All these publications were best-sellers and not only included recipes, but also useful tips on cooking techniques, serving and good table manners.
Ketty Thull was very curious, so it's not surprising that she loved to travel. She visited the United States and Canada where she obtained lots of feedback, such as in American supermarkets - an Eldorado for the great lady of Luxembourgish cuisine.
In 1962, she was awarded the Grand Ducal Order of the Oak Crown for her merits.
Ketty Thull passed away in 1987, leaving a mark on Luxembourg's cultural and gastronomic heritage.
Cult cookbooks then as now
Do you have a cookbook by Ketty Thull? And if so, which edition?
Today, old editions, the originals, are the jewels of the kitchen library and beautiful memories of a bygone era. These recipe booklets were a traditional gift to each bride or at graduation for the girls.
In 2011, a new edition of the cult Luxembourgish cookbook was published. Carlo Sauber, cook and cooking and catering teacher at the Lycée technique de Bonnevoie, rewrites part of the recipes in the language of our time, while preserving the uniqueness of the original.
So the recipes presented have been chosen from a perspective where modernity and tradition are combined in order to rediscover classic and local recipes according to the seasons: Bouneschlupp, Feierstengszalot, Kniddelen, Kuddelfleck, Judd mat Gaardebounen, Wäinzoossiss, Kiermescrème, Verwuerelter, etc.
Fränk Weber, a photographer, was in charge of picturing Ketty Thull's dishes for the first time. The books she edited herself never got illustrated. The photographs are in line with the book's themes, representing modernity and tradition. To do this, he had to search the kitchens, cellars and attics of mothers and grandmothers in search of childhood kitchen items.
And to finish on a tasty note, we offer you a culinary delight by Clovis Degrave, chef and owner of the 'Hostellerie du Grünewald'.
If you also fancy making a dish yourself instead of enjoying it in text and image, why not start with this reinterpretation of the Feierstengszalot by Clovis Degrave, for example?
The chef indulges in his passion at the Hostellerie du Grünewald (Dommeldange) through traditional and contemporary inventive cooking: his menu is short but seasonal and features local produce. Young, cosmopolitan and innovative, Clovis Degrave has been selected together with three other young culinary talents to work alongside chef Kim Kevin de Dood to develop recipes that will be presented for six months at the 'Schengen Lounge' as part of the 2021 Dubai Expo.
See page 115 of Ketty Thull's book
Slow-cooked crispy beef chuck, mimosa-style egg, candied shallot and herb dressing
Preparation: 1 hour / Cooking: 3 hours
- 500 grams of 'boiled beef' meat
- 2 hard-boiled eggs
- 1 bunch of parsley
- 3 shallots
- 5 extra fine gherkins
- 5 cl of vinegar
- 15 cl of sunflower oil
- 1 spoon of wholegrain mustard
- 5 cl of single cream
- Cook the beef, allow to cool and keep the cooking juices (see page 115 of Ketty Thull's book).
- Pull the beef chuck by hand.
- Add a bit of cooking juices, chopped parsley, chopped shallots and mix together. Season.
- Once the beef mix has cooled down, make small balls and bread them, the first time in the flour, a second time in the egg white and a third time in fine breadcrumbs. Repeat the process once.
- Cook the shallots skin-on in the oven for 45 min at 150°C.
- Peel the hard-boiled eggs, cut lengthwise in two and take out the yolk.
- In a small salad bowl, add the cooked yolk, one spoon of wholegrain mustard and make a mayonnaise with the sunflower oil. Add some curly parsley and season.
- Put the mayonnaise in a pastry piping bag, garnish the cooked egg whites and save the rest for the garnish.
- Make a dressing with wholegrain mustard, vinegar, oil, chopped shallots, parsley and chopped gherkins.
- Fry the small croquettes in a deep fryer at 180°C or in a small pan with oil.
- Place two stuffed half eggs on a flat plate.
- Make three dots of parsley mayonnaise with the piping bag.
- Place three croquettes on each plate.
- Put half a candied skinless shallot.
- Pour plenty of dressing.
For more information
- If that were not enough, buy your personal Ketty Thull cookbook here!
- Discover local products and Luxembourgish specialities
- Your restaurant at home – be spoiled by a restaurant of your choice, at home or elsewhere
- Learn more about the Grand Ducal Order of the Crown of Oak and discover all the honorary distinctions of the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg