Saturday, December 12, 2009

Lost In A Souffle

A Warning: Julia Child will forever remain my all-time favorite chef. She personified the art that is cooking, for me; and she touched many old souls, born with an inexplicable desire to get lost in a souffle.

This is and isn't a movie recommendation for "Julie and Julia". Meryl is fantastic; I love Stanley Tucci; I appreciate the Julia history lesson and the presentation of Julie's blog challenge. The succulent sensuality that personifies the food (preparation, presentation, consumption) is to die for. If you don't love Julia, or tall, quirky-sounding, funny, passionate ladies, though, you mightn't find joy in the movie. However, if you're even a slight foodie, "Yum!" As for me? Well, many coincidences in the film brought me to an understanding that my soul is a whole lot older than I thought; and, it has nothing to do with chronology! Now, to explain the photo...

The hilarious references throughout the film to THE JOY OF COOKING, first published in the 1930's, are relative. Joe had the boys inscribe an 18th-printing copy of the book to me as a Christmas gift, way back in the 1980's, when they were very young. Of course, I loved the thought and the addition to my cookbook collection; but the book doesn't have one egg stain on one page. A later gift was Julia's THE WAY TO COOK, currently full of bookmarks, paper clips, notes and LOTS of stains. Bingo! A family favorite from WAY is a recipe for the most amazing turkey gravy; my family has dubbed it "Liquid Gold". It is a two-turkey, several day, very laborious process to produce. Actually, you have to be a lunatic (I qualify) to create it, as it's devoured in a flash and not one person at the turkey table understands just how it arrived there.

The French fish poacher pictured is older than I am. My Godfather (not a foodie, as is his sister, my Mom) purchased it for the Paris memories it held for him. When he down-sized his home, he gifted it to me. Ah, when Julia was using one in the film, I just loved the scene and the memories it evoked.

Then, there is her table, completely laden with yellow ware bowls and whisks, as she attempts to muster up the best mayonnaise. How many times have I referenced the affection I have for these "... old bowls and the stories they might tell ..."?? Have I mentioned, perchance, the whisks I use in conjunction with them?? Smiling here.

The friend who recommended the film knows me well, albeit she knows little of what I've just written and pictured. I'm thinking she's an old soul, too; and I thank her for the time she has taken to understand me.

Bon Appétit!