Friday, August 14, 2009

The Joy, Today, Of Living With A Pack Rat!

Last night my friend Jean and I saw the movie "Julie and Julia." We came out of the theater starving after watching all that good food being made. We ate sushi; not sure how Julia Child would feel about that. The fish was fresh and we even had uni (sea urchin), which you don't often find at sushi bars.

But I digress. As soon as I got home I went on line to try to find a copy of her first cookbook, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." The county library system said all of her books were checked out; I could place a hold on one but it would be a while.

Amazon had just a few copies in hardback, which is what I wanted. Then Kerry came home from choir practice. I told him of my search and how I was getting nowhere.

As you may have read before on this blog, he is the king of pack rats. Something which ordinarily drives me nuts. But this morning he went somewhere on the property among his stash and came back with the two books pictured here (with our CSA box contents). The one on the right is her first book which came out in 1961. This one was printed in Dec. 1966 (I was in college). Volume Two is a first edition printed in 1970.

I feel like I have died and gone to Cordon Bleu heaven. The movie is about her getting the first book written and published and about Julie Powell cooking all the recipes in it during a year and blogging about it.

The foreword for the book says it all. "This is a book for the servantless American cook who can be unconcerned on occasion with budgets, waistlines (Meryl Streep gained 15 pounds during the making of the movie), time schedules, children's meals, the parent-chauffeur-den-mother syndrome, or anything else which might interfere with the enjoyment of producing something wonderful to eat. "

The first volume is going to be my night time reading for quite a while. I already cook a bit like Julia; fresh, local ingredients and butter, lots of butter. (She died one day short of her 94th birthday so butter didn't seem to hurt her.) But I have a lot to learn from her. Just reading the table of contents makes me hungry.
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gypsy said...

I'm not the least bit surprised. This is the same man, you will remember, who came up with the cash to buy Zoey. At a moment's notice. We stand in awe.
Steve loves this cookbook and has several standards he does from it. Beyond delicious. Kerry might have realized that he stands to benefit here!

Rondi said...

In 1972 I spent a week in the Aspen lodge of the Cambridge, MA, family that lived next door to JC. They said her TV personality was her real life one. She was constantly knocking on their backdoor with foods to be tasted.

Kirby3131 said...

What a hoot that he had those books. The most amazing thing is that he was able to find them in such short order. I've got a million things, but I can never find them lol

Rhonda said...

That is AWESOME! Your husband gets THE award of ALL awards!!!!!!!
If you cook something from the book, do tell!

scrappinshar said...

my hubby and i just saw the movie this week we loved it, it will be one of my favorites. i too love to cook and try to eat local food,what a treasure you found when you found her book i looked for years and years and finally found it at the bookstore here in licoln, happy reading !!
were you can find me!