One of my great passions is cooking. Whether it is for family, friends, or myself, the art of cooking never fails to intrigue me. At a young age I attempted to emulate my mother, who herself was a wondrously wonderful cook. How well I recall the sheer joy of opening a present from Mama. Inside the colorful wrappings lay my first cookbook: Betty Crocker’s Boy’s and Girl’s Cookbook. Since that first cookbook, rarely have I stopped cooking for any length of time.
Julia Child entered the world on August 15, 1912. My father was already two years old when she arrived; my mother didn’t appear on the birth horizon until 1915. Today Julia Child would have celebrated her 100th birthday. What a fascinating person she was, to say the least. With brio I read her book My Life in France, which my daughter bought me in 2006, the year of its publication. I have read and re-read the book multiple times over the years in which she eloquently expresses her ardor of France. Appetite for Life: The Biography of Julia Child, by Noël Riley Fitchstands dog-eared on my bookshelf from numerous readings too. Other books, both by Julia Child and those written by others about her, have enlightened me too.
Yet the coup de grâce, the crème de la crème of them all is Julia’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Heavenly is the only word to describe her Boeuf de Bourguignon. Every time I make it, and I never stray from her recipe, it turns out perfectly: so moist, succulent, and savory that one could bask in the euphoria of it throughout the night, along with a glass of fine vino rosso. This recipe alone would have put her on the culinary map in my humble opinion were not other recipes from the book superb, like her Reine de Saba cake.
Tonight over dinner I plan to raise my glass of Pinot Noir and toast Julia Child, who so aptly counseled us: Toujours bon appétit! Bon anniversaire, Julia!
Ciao for now.