Julia Child is one of my culinary heroines. Almost every recipe I’ve made from one of her cookbooks has been a masterpiece. The only reason I say almost is because one time (not at band camp), I decided to adapt a Julia Child recipe — you know, make it my own.
Oh yes, I did.
Seriously. Who changes Julia Child? You don’t adapt Julia Child. You do everything Julia says to do — exactly the way she says to do it. Up to and including the wearing of a strand of cooking pearls (they lend confidence and panache to any cook). If I throw on my Julia Child Cooking Pearls, things are about to get serious in my kitchen.
A few years ago, I revisited the Smithsonian Museum of American History in Washington, DC — Julia Child’s Kitchen is an exhibit there (totally worth a visit if you haven’t been, btw). I had no idea Julia was such a big fan of pegboards in her kitchen — she hung all her pots from them. So when I saw these fantastic words printed on a pegboard, I snapped a photo.
I have a long list of favorite things about Europe, but near the top of that list is this idea . . . wine is simply part of a meal. It’s as necessary as utensils or a napkin. There is no stigma — it’s just ordinary. Now that I think about it, I’m kind of in the mood for an ordinary lunch today.
And because there’s no such thing as too much Julia, here’s a bonus Julia quip for you:
These words always make me laugh — because they’re true. Let’s face it — Julia was talking about American bread. And while American bread has made staggering strides in the last decade, it still pales in comparison to the Great Breads of Europe. As long as America has the Chemical Loaf (nod to my mother-in-law for that turn of phrase), we’ll have bread that tastes like Kleenex.