I have just noticed that this past week was the anniversary of Julia Child’s death in 2004. How could I have let this important anniversary slip by without cooking something from her books. It is now in my diary to do so each year.
She was such an influence on my cooking style and still is: a perfectionist who persisted with a recipe until she got it to work, and then was prepared to adapt that recipe with variations.
I cooked so many recipes from her books that I have worn out a couple of copies of Mastering the Art of French Cooking. In 1976 I was 20, earning very little and living in a tiny flat in London with my boyfriend. I had never cooked a meal other than out of a saucepan whilst camping around Europe and by some wonderful piece of luck I bought my first copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
Eventually this copy fell apart from overuse, so I bought a second copy which I keep together with ribbon gradually losing the odd page. Now my third volume has been recovered in plastic and seems to be holding together under constant use.
I love cooking Julia’s recipes because she put so much time and effort into making sure they worked. No leaving out a vital ingredient for her. Her recipes are reliable, taste delicious and can be adapted to suit different trends and tastes and her strong vital personality comes through in all the helpful hints that are included on the pages and it is always a pleasure to read her books.