Cooking Club…Julia Child’s The WAY to Cook

 “In spite of food fads, fitness programs, and health concerns, we must never lose sight of a beautifully conceived meal.” JULIA CHILD The Way to Cook.

Did I mention my recent 2 month LITTLE  obsession with Julia child, folks?

Why Julia? I suppose watching re-runs of The French Chef, and trying out little tricks and tips, I FEEL as if she’s right there in kitchen with me, enthusiastically cheering on my new attempts to stretch my cooking skills. For my friend’s birthday, I tackled her infamous Queen of Sheba Cake, and my friends and I about ROLLED over with how delicious this cake tasted (and I don’t even like cakes!).

Julia feels like a good friend, you know? One that will pat your back if your souffle doesn’t rise and encourage you to take a slug of brandy while boning a bird. I mean, how can you NOT love a woman who says that “life itself is a binge?”

April cooking club centered on her book The Way to Cook. This guide breaks recipes down into essential techniques that you cross apply for multiple renditions:
For example, how to make mushrooms BOOST with flavor….This is best accomplished in a large, hot pan with cooking spray and a NOB of butter…with lots of space in order not to crowd them and make them steam….AND also how to braise onions to accentuate their flavor but stand their ground in classics such as beef bourgione or ! Coq au Vin (who wouldn’t ADORE meat soaked in WINE!!!!)

Also…this was the first time I ever bought a whole chicken and cut it into parts before browning.  I felt that surge of pride that I had accomplished such a feat….

 It is easy to love a chicken browned in butter and swimming in wine
Plus you pour cognac on the bird after browning and inflame it a bit searing the liquor into the skin.

served with fresh noodles

 But first up….we delighted in a lovely spring classic simple Vichyssoise soup

A then….ah, Julia! Thank you for teaching me the perfect technique for preparing asparagus…which is famous in this area of Germany. Simple Perfections…”one of the best things we’ve eaten all year”

Served with delicious Spring Salt purchased in Vienna

For Dessert…the intention was to make PUFF pastry… The technique requires lots of rolling out and then turning the dough. Must not have paid enough attention at this point because turn we did…just 180 (not 90!) and therefore did not manufacture the layers necessary to get elevation
(remember there’s no leavening agent in that dough)

 So in the end, yes, the squares were buttery and pleasing but far far fluffy. Tasted like pie crust squares. Oh! Failed in their intention, and I was therefore a bit, bummed. But Julia shouts “no apologies!” and “no one will know the difference”

I will.

Next time I’ll make Julia proud

Or maybe proud-er

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4 thoughts on “Cooking Club…Julia Child’s The WAY to Cook

  1. wow; what a super ambitious meal! looks like you pulled it off beautifully. so, as a julia child fan…what did you think of the movie “julie and julia?!”

    • Good question. I honestly thought that Julie was super authentic, but I didn’t care for her whiny personality. I read another of her books cleavage and again, relish her forewardness but wouldn’t want her as a friend. She’s super creative and has a strong voice, but lacks spirit. Good thing Meryl and Julia made up for it!

  2. Pingback: Best Chocolate Cake…fit for a queen | The Special K Treatment

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