If you clicked on Google this morning, you may have noticed that the cheery chef making up the infamous Google Doodle is none other than Julia Child, the American chef famed for her love of French cooking, who today would have celebrated her 100th birthday.
Child was an inspiration to many; falling in love with French food and bringing her passion to a nation who at the time barely knew the difference between a baguette and beef bourguignon. She published her first and most famous book, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, in 1961 after encouraging American women where she lived in Paris to try their hand at the notoriously tricky cuisine. The book was a huge success and before long she moved into TV; The French Chef was one of the first cookery shows on television and ran for ten years. Child became a much loved personality, famed for her mischevious sense of humour and frequent kitchen mishaps, as replayed in the Nora Ephron film Julie & Julia, in which she is portrayed as her gloriously technicolour self by Meryl Streep.
In honour of the Queen of French cooking, first true TV chef and stalwart epicurean, we'll be cooking her renowned Beef Bourguignon recipe, and recalling a few of our favourite Julia Child quotes...
"The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook."
"Cooking is like love; it should be entered into with abandon or not at all."
"The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude."
"I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate."
"The best way to execute French cooking is to get good and loaded and whack the hell out of a chicken. Bon appétit."