I am so looking forward to the release of Julie and Julia, the film based on cooking legend Julia Childs (Meryl Streep) and blogger/writer Julie Powell (Amy Adams). This film looks like lots of fun and of course Meryl Streep always steals the show. It is also interesting to me as Julie's writings started in her blog.
Julia Childs was an American who moved to Paris with her husband in 1948 where she discovered cooking. Who wouldn't discover food while living in Paris! Julia was looking for something to do so she studied at prestigious cooking school Le Cordon Bleu, and through sheer determination, graduated. She went on to write her cook book, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, published in 1961, which was a best seller and is still in print.
Julie Powell decided to follow the recipes form Julia's book in her blog. The blog became so popular she was commissioned to write a book, which she titled Julie and Julia:365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen. This book is the basis for the film.
The recipes are extremely complicated of course, and not for the light hearted. Julie's experience of having to murder a lobster by bisecting it would make most of us squeamish.
My worst attempt at cooking was a disastrous birthday cake for my son. We were living in Beijing at the time and our ancient cooker had no thermostat. That was my first problem. Not being an experienced cook anyway, I had to guess the temperature of the oven.
My second mistake was not knowing how to use the spring form cake tin properly. If you don't already know, these cake tins are meant to make life easy as you just release the outer rim of the tin when the cake is cooked to remove the cake. But I didn't close the spring properly and the cake oozed out of the pan all over the inside of the oven. When I went to check my cake, there was very little left still in the tin, most of it being a burnt mess. I had to rush out and by a cake-not easy to do in Beijing in 2004!
I'm sure Julie/Julia had many close encounters with their cooking. But the film is really about finding a little space in the world to be comfortable in. Julia did this and she inspired Julia to do it some 40 years later. I can't wait to be inspired and uplifted by these strong and courageous women.