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[personal profile] ornerie

last night I got home to a box on my stoop.... a package from a swap pal! in it was a complete boxed set of Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child

I've been wanting these books since forever but never really been able to justify them. there was always something else that needed the money, or the time or ?? but now, no excuses!!

I had always had the idea of systematically going through them, learning classical techniques and recipes, then adapting them for healthier diets and smaller audiences (what do I need with hollendaise for six?) Julie and Julia came out and I thought "hey! she had the same idea! awesome!". I'm listening to the book on tape right now....I have to admit I dont identify with Julie at ALL. I am happy with my life and my career, and she seems a bit prone to hystrionics (kitchen stuff never seems to stress me out that much. I in fact find it very relaxing, even if it fails) but the idea of exploring new chemistries, and applying the principles of classical french cooking to local ingredients is a very intriguing one to me.

My CSA box comes every other week, full of tasty fresh local produce. seasonal as heck, and much in line with how I ate when I was in France (as compared to the rather dated ingredients that the books used...they talk about using canned and frozen produce, for example)

and so I am looking forward to going home tonight and picking one of the many veggies I got yesterday and applying a new mantra WWJD? What Would Julia Do?

zucchini? oo! a whole chapter!
celery? leeks? potatoes? 

can I make a good creamy soup using lower fat products, using butter and cream as accents rather than primary buttresses? how little cheese will make a nice gratin? .

how can I incorporate whole grains (pretty much unheard of in kitchens when the books originally came out)? will brown rice thicken the way Julia uses white rice?

another fun challenge will be scaling everything down. the books recipes are currently scaled to 4 for main dish or 8 for sides. can I make just enough for 2? (ie one for me, one for the freezer for lunch box lottery....)

this will be fun :)
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June 2010

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