Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child
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A Time, Washington Post, and NPR Best Book of the Year
The stunning story of how Julia Child transformed herself into the cult figure who touched off a food revolution that has gripped the country for more than fifty years. Spanning Pasadena to Paris, acclaimed author Bob Spitz reveals the history behind the woman who taught America how to cook.
A genuine rebel who took the pretensions that embellished French cuisine and fricasseed them to a fare-thee-well, paving the way for a new era of American food—not to mention blazing a new trail in television—Child redefined herself in middle age, fought for women’s rights, and forever altered how we think about what we eat.
Chronicling Julia's struggles, her heartwarming romance with Paul, and, of course, the publication of Mastering the Art of French Cooking and her triumphant TV career, Dearie is an extraordinarily entertaining account of a truly remarkable life.
she attempted to parse the various chapters she’d been given: sauces, soups, eggs, entrées, poultry and game, meats, and vegetables. The book sure didn’t grab her the way she had hoped. “In fact,” she said, “I did not like it at all.” But … oh, there was something so enchanting about the idea: a French cookbook for American housewives, “fully explained for the novice.” Others had tried—and failed—to pull it off, ignoring what Julia called “the ‘whys,’ the pitfalls, the remedies, the keeping, the
shoulder blade, up here,” indicating her own shoulder, one could understand in a way that was unmistakably clear. “And this is called the undercut of the chuck, and it’s like the continuation of the ribs along here, where it gets up to your neck.” The rest of the show was just as straightforward and informative. Julia taught viewers how to correctly brown the meat so it wouldn’t steam instead of sear or stick to the skillet, and how to deglaze the pan with wine, which infused the dish with rich,
cooking from a quaint niche to a runaway trend, with a corporate imprimatur and corporate resources to fuel it. First the Time-Life media monolith put Julia on the cover of Time and now it was primed to launch her colleagues, as well. “They pumped so much money into this thing,” says Michael Batterberry, “and everyone was feeding off it, financially as well as professionally.” But it also created rivalries and, with them, internal politics. “Alliances were being formed,” says Barbara Kafka, who
it’s the President,” Russ Morash realized, just as he and the blue blur collided belly-to-belly. Today, that would have sparked a code-one Secret Service intervention, but in less spooky times an introduction ensued. Morash recalled: “Johnson merely looked at us as if we were something nasty on his shoe, then at the dog—the same dog that he’d infamously lifted by the ears—and said, ‘Come on, Yuki,’ before hurrying away.” At least the food was more inviting. “The food could not have been any
man, she was a superstar.” After a few weeks on the road, Julia staggered back to Cambridge in time for the holidays—more than a star: “a kind of Public Property,” a household name. Julia and Paul lunching alfresco in Plascassier, Provence, May 6, 1970 (Photo credit 20.2) Twenty-one We Are Not All Eternal The distinguished couple that stared into their plates at Lucas Carton on rue de la Madeleine one evening in September 1974 was flabbergasted by what they saw. On one lay six