Tag Archives: Julia Child

Happy 100th Birthday Julia Child!

VIDEO: What Makes a Good Chef,
According to {Auto-Tuned} Julia Child:

Watch and thank me later. Bring on the roasted potatoes…

What Makes a Good Chef

Julia Child Birthday Tributes:
recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s salade nicoise #jc100
recipe goodness :: mastering julia child’s rolled french omelet
recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s chocolate mousse
Do This!: Celebrate Julia Child’s 100th Birthday 

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recipe goodness :: mastering julia child’s fillet of sole meuniere #jc100

Julia Child's Sole Meuniere

Julia Child’s Sole Meuniere

Filet of Sole Meuniere was Julia’s first-ever meal in France.  She described the sole as “a morsel of perfection” and “the most exciting meal” of her life.  It was this simple preparation of sole that inspired  Julia’s 40-year love affair with food and the start of a cooking revolution in America. The dish takes less than ten minutes to prepare and since the filets go for a swim in clarified butter, there is no shortage of rich “French” flavor. Pour yourself a nice glass of chablis and take a petit voyage to France for dinner.

“There is no substitute for the taste of butter in good cooking…” — Julia Child

Sole Meuniere

Fillet of Sole Meunière

Serves 6

6 skinless, boneless sole or other thin fillets
Salt and fresh ground pepper
1/4 cup of flour or so for a plate
4 tablespoons clarified butter
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
4-6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 lemon cut into wedges

  1. Dry the fish, remove and bones, score, trim and lay flat on wax paper.
  2. Dust the fillets with salt and pepper. Just before sauteing drop each fillet into the flour to coat each side, shaking off any excess.
  3. Set the frying pan over high heat and film with 1/16 inch of clarified butter. When the butter is very hot, but not browning, rapidly lay each fillet side by side leaving a little space between each (don’t overcrowd).
  4. Saute 1-2 minutes on both sides, turning carefully so as to not break the fillet. The fish is done when just springy. Immediately remove from the pan to a platter or plates.
  5. Sprinkle each fillet generously with parsley.
  6. Wipe the pan completely clean, set over high heat and melt with new butter until bubbling.
  7. Pour over fillets — the parsley will bubble up nicely. Season with salt, serve with lemon wedges immediately.

Bon appetit!
recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s salade nicoise
recipe goodness :: mastering julia child’s rolled french omelet
recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s chocolate mousse
Do This!: Celebrate Julia Child’s 100th Birthday 

Excerpted from The Way to Cook by Julia Child. Copyright © 1989 by Julia Child. Reprinted with permission from the publisher Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

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recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s salade nicoise #jc100

Julia Child's Salad Nicoise

Julia Child’s Salad Nicoise

This is exactly the type of recipe that you are not meant to follow to a T. A big bowl of fresh ingredient goodness is all that matters. No green beans at the market yet? Asparagus makes for a lovely substitution. Not feelin’ the canned tuna? A beautiful bright tuna filet from my friendly fishmonger Warren at American Seafood was a first class upgrade. And with green garlic in season, I opted for those sweet stalks instead of scallions. I was not really feelin’ the five-page recipe laying out the original steps for Julia’s masterpiece. Really? For a salad? So I skimmed through her instructions and general flavor combinations, made a trip to the greenmarket, did a bit of chopping and doused everything in lemon, olive oil, salt and pepper. The result was a bountiful bowl full of beauty that was both healthy and hearty and will definitely be repeated again. soon. This is the perfect summer evening meal {which a chilled glass of wine of course}.

Julia Child's Salad Nicoise

Julia Child’s Salad Nicoise

“A bountiful arrangement in a bowl or platter is so handsome to behold that I think it a cruel shame to toss everything together in a big mess.”
— Julia Child

Julia Child’s Salade Niçoise {slightly modified}

Serves 2-4 | Link to the original recipe HERE

1 head boston bibb lettuce, washed and dried
1/4 bunch fresh asparagus {or 1 pound green beans} trimmed, cut into 3-inch pieces
1/4 pint grape tomatoes, halved {or 1-2 whole tomatoes cut into wedges}
3/4-1 lb tuna filet grilled and sliced {or 8-10oz  oil packed tuna, drained and flaked)
2-4 hard boiled eggs, halved
1 can flat anchovies packed in oil, drained {optional}
1/4 cup black nicoise-type olives {optional}

Dressing:
1-2 tablespoons capers
1/4 cup minced parsley
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 as much olive oil as lemon
salt and pepper to taste

Potatoes:
4 small new potatoes sliced into circles
1 stem green garlic or scallion, finely diced
1/4 cup potato-cooking water
1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2-3 tablespoons fresh parsley
2-3 tablespoons olive oil

  1. Rinse and dry all the vegetables. Add the lettuce to a large bowl while you prepare the rest.
  2. Add eggs to a medium pot and cover with water by 1-inch. Bring to a boil, then turn heat down to a low simmer, cover with a lid and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, remove eggs and cool.
  3. Bring water back up to a boil and add sliced potatoes until just slightly tender when you pierce with a fork. Reserve 1/4 cup of the starchy water, then drain and immediately toss in a bowl with vinegar, scallion/garlic, parsley, olive oil and cooking water. Season with salt and pepper and let potatoes absorb the liquid as they cool.
  4. Bring a medium pot of water back to a boil and add the 3-inch pieces of asparagus {or green beans} to the boiling water, cover and cook 1-2 minutes until bright green, but still firm. Drain and immediately run cold water over or add to an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
  5. Mix the dressing. Pour a little over the cut tomatoes in a small bowl and set aside. Pour a little over the asparagus in a small bowl and set aside. Pour the rest over the lettuce and toss to coat.
  6. Heat your grill to high.
  7. Coat your tuna with olive oil, salt and a generous amount of coarse black pepper on both sides. Cook 3-5 minutes on each side, just until the outer edges turn white and the center is still a light pink for medium rare. Remove from heat and let rest.
  8. Assemble the salad by channeling your inner Julia, creating sections of the seasoned potatoes, tomatoes, asparagus {or green beans}, the egg halves and olives. Sprinkled the anchovies over the salad. Slice the tuna and arrange in the center of the bowl.
  9. Bon Appetit!

More Juuuuuuuulia:
recipe goodness :: mastering julia child’s rolled french omelet
recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s chocolate mousse
Do This!: Celebrate Julia Child’s 100th Birthday 

Excerpted from The Way to Cook by Julia Child. Copyright © 1989 by Julia Child. Reprinted with permission from the publisher Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

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recipe goodness :: mastering julia child’s rolled french omelet #jc100

Julia Child's Rolled Omelet

Julia Child’s Rolled Omelet

“A good french omelet is a smooth gently swelling, golden oval that is tender and creamy inside” — Julia Child 

Julia Child has a very particular way to make an omelet. Through perfected pan tilt technique she promises a light fluffy interior with a beautifully browned exterior, all rolled up into a marvelous breakfast package. I didn’t have her leaning over my shoulder to tell me if I mastered her method correctly, but in the end it tasted and looked good, so that’s all that matters.

 

Julia Child's French Omelet

Julia Child’s French Omelet

Julia Child’s Rolled French Omelet

7″ non-stick pan
2-3 eggs per omelet
Big pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper
1 tablespoon butter
Garnish or filling, as desired

  1.  Proper way to beat eggs: Just before melting the butter in a pan, break the eggs into a mixing bowl and add the salt and pepper. With a table fork, beat the eggs only enough to blend the whites and yolks thoroughly, about 30 sec.
  2. Place the butter in the pan and set over very high heat. As the butter melts tilt the pan in all directions to film the sides. When it starts to foam and is at the point of coloring {indicating the pan is the right temperature}, pour in the eggs.
  3. Let the eggs settle in the pan 2-3 seconds to form a film of coagulated egg in the bottom of the pan.
  4. Grasp the pan handle with both hands and immediately begin jerking vigorously back and forth at a 20 degree angle over the heat.
  5. It is the sharp pull of the pan that throws the eggs over the far lip of the pan then back over the bottom surface of the omelet. After several jerks the omelet will start to thicken.
  6. A filling should go in at this point if desired.
  7. Then increase the angle of the pan to 45 degrees, which will force the egg mass to roll over itself with each jerk of the pan.
  8. As soon as the omelet has shaped up, hold it in the angle of the pan for 2-3 seconds to brown up, but no longer. The center of the omelet should remain soft and creamy.
  9. Turn the omelet onto a plate with the pan slightly off center so it rolls into the middle of your plate.
  10. Garnish with maldon salt, a pat of butter {if you want to stay true to Julia} and some fresh herbs.

Mastering the Art of Julia Child
recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s chocolate mousse
Do This!: Celebrate Julia Child’s 100th Birthday

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recipe goodness :: mastering the art of julia child’s chocolate mousse #JC100

Julia Child's Chocolate Mousse Bowls

This is the first recipe I’m sharing from the 100 days of Julia Child celebration.

In the words of Juuuuulia:
among all the recipes for chocolate mousse, this one is the best.

With two sous chefs by my side {thank you KMR and SKW} we masterfully whipped up this mousse in record speed — one on chocolate duty, one on egg creaming duty and the other on dish duty {a lot of bowls got egg on their face with all the separating, creaming, melting, folding that takes place}. While the mousse took a bit of symphonic precision in bringing together several separate movements in perfect timing, we found this recipe to be relatively easy to master as long as you prepare and measure out your ingredients into prep bowls before beginning. The only other recommendation I would make is to test this recipe with less sugar {or bittersweet chocolate instead of semi-sweet}. I have a savory tooth in general, but the crowd concurred that this meal-ender was a little too sweet — chalk that up to the French way of cooking.

Julia Child’s Chocolate Mousse 

Makes 6 small dessert bowls {or 12 if you want to limit your sweet intake}

4 egg yolks separated, whites reserved
3/4 cups sugar {I recommend trying to cut out 1/4 cup}
1/4 cup orange liqueur

6 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate {or try bittersweet}
4 tablespoons, room temp strong coffee
6 ounces unsalted butter
1/4 cup finely zested or chopped orange peel {optional}

4 egg whites
pinch of sugar

1/2 pint heaving whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
fresh in-season berries

  1. Measure everything into prep bowls before beginning to make this multi-step process seamless {especially if you don’t have sous chefs!}
  2. Beat the egg yolks and sugar together until mixture is thick, pale yellow, and falls back upon itself forming a slowly dissolving ribbon. Beat in the orange liqueur.
  3. Then set mixing bowl over the not­ quite simmering water and continue beating for 3 to 4 minutes until the mixture is foamy and too hot for your finger.
  4. Then beat over a cold water pot for 3 to 4 minutes until the mixture is cool and again forms the ribbon. It will have the consistency of mayonnaise.
  5. Melt chocolate with coffee in a separate bowl over hot water. Remove from heat and beat in the butter a bit at a time, to make a smooth cream.
Steps 2-5: Melt and Creaming

Steps 2-5: Melt and Creaming

  1. Beat the chocolate into the egg yolks and sugar, then beat in the optionaì orange peel.
chocolate + butter

chocolate + butter

  1. Beat the egg whites and salt in a separate bowl until soft peaks are formed; sprinkle on the sugar and beat until stiff peaks are formed.
  2. Stir one fourth of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Fold in the rest.
  3. Turn into serving dish, dessert cups, or petits pots. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

whip and fold

  1. When ready to serve beat whipping cream and vanilla until thick enough to hold a peak. Serve in a separate bowl. Serve with fresh seasonal berries.
Julia Child's Chocolate Mousse

Julia Child’s Chocolate Mousse

Excerpted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child. Copyright © 1961 by Alfred A. Knopf. Reprinted with permission from the publisher Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

Channeling My Inner Juuuuulia:
Do This!: Celebrate Julia Child’s 100th Birthday 

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Do This!: Celebrate Julia Child’s 100th Birthday

JC100Badge

Culinary icon Julia Child would have turned 100 years old on August 15th of this year. To honor her, I will be celebrating her legacy through JC100 {100 days of Julia} a national campaign involving restaurants, chefs, bookstores, and bloggers.

For Julia, a simple lunch of sole meunière — her first meal in Paris — was life changing and inspired her 40-year love affair with food and the start of a cooking revolution in America.

I’ll be preparing a number of her favorite and most beloved dishes and sharing them with you — I hope this encourages everyone to channel their inner Juuuuuuuulia and dirty up your kitchens, no matter how small they may be.

Bon Appetit!

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