The story, set in the 1900s, revolves around a writer called Augusto and a rather special cook. Augusto once wrote a best-selling cookbook but is now suffering from a bad attack of writer's block. He keeps asking his publisher for advances and his friends for loans. He meets Antonia who works as a cook for a countess. The countess has a daughter, a bland creature who is in love with a lieutenant with literary aspirations, and a half-mad, sexually obsessed son who molests all the women of the house. When the countess dies, Augusto hires Antonia. But she turns out to be much more than he expected. Antonia keeps what everyone believes to be a recipe book but, in fact, it is a scandalous diary of everyone's secrets.