“Find something you’re passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.” -- Julia Child
My first cooking teacher was Julia, the original one name goddess of the kitchen. Eyes wide, I watched her in black and white, on our small screen in the family room, consumed with her every move, her voice, the food she magically created. Then I’d toddle off to the kitchen and try my hand at some of her wizardry. My mother, smart woman, encouraged it and kept the staples on hand for daily fare and cooking projects. At my mother’s knee with Julia’s voice coaching me along, I learned to separate eggs, make hollandaise (might be why I was a pint-sized consumer of all vegetables. Anything cloaked in hollandaise is a delight!). I learned to fold, to knead, sift and saute. All those cooking verbs kept me busy. Most of all, Julia taught me to have fun in the kitchen.
If I have a regret, it’s that I never got to meet her. When the invitation for a Cook N Scribble writing retreat at Julia’s home in the south of France arrived in February, I signed up. Eight months until the trip seemed like an eternity, but worth every second of anticipation.
WRITING IN THE SOUTH OF FRANCE!
When I opened my email today to this headline “HELLO! 100 days until we meet at Julia’s in the south of France” the little girl in me danced straight to the kitchen to prepare. I’ll cook, scribble, and shoot my way through these 100 days, channeling my inner Julia in today’s very different world. 21st Century French, approachable-everyday cooking sessions that welcome families to play along. Join me in the kitchen and bring your kids. I’m turning cartwheels, this is going to be fun!
kitchen transformation 101 -- a couple of everyday staple ingredients are woven (whisked, actually) into liquid gold
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon cold water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 sticks (8 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces each
- salt to taste
- Whisk the yolks in a medium metal bowl until the yolks become thick and light yellow, then add the water and lemon juice. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (makeshift double boiler -- be sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water). Whisk constantly until the yolks are thickened and warm to the touch.
- Add the butter, one piece at a time, whisking to melt each piece before adding the next. Season with salt and serve immediately with steamed or roasted asparagus or your favorite vegetable of the season.