julie and julia

Last night, my dreams were filled with wonderful food. Good bread, fish coated with a buttery sauce, delicious cakes, the perfect roasted chicken, and did I mention, butter. Yes, I finally got around to seeing Julie and Julia.

I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. I found the parts about Julie’s blog, and her efforts to cook 524 dishes in 365 days interesting. I didn’t eat before going to the movie, and some of the dishes she made had my stomach rumbling. But for me, the best parts of the movie were the sections about Julia Child.

I’ve never been a Meryl Streep fan and was put off when I heard she would be playing Julia Child. I was wrong; she was spot on in her portrayal. And Stanley Tucci as Paul Child was just fantastic. For me, the movie was as much about their love story, as it was about the love of fine food and cooking. Maybe I’m thinking too much about romantic couples, because we’re polling right now for favorite couples, but wow, what a love story.

I loved the parts of the movie set in Paris during the the late 1940s and early 1950s. The gardens, the architecture, the markets, and the costumes were all beautiful. I’ve never had any desire to wear dresses 24/7, but the women in the movie made it look appealing. I found myself wanting to be back in Paris – only during that time period. Admittedly, there was a lot of smoking going on, but that’s the way it was at that time.

When I got home, I couldn’t make myself cook anything with the ingredients available in my refrigerator and cupboards. Nothing there was up to the quality of the food I had just seen. Plus, I didn’t have a single stick of butter in my refrigerator.

Right now, I’m trying to resist the temptation to run out to a bookstore and purchase Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Honestly, I know I just won’t make anything from it. But, as a food lover, I’m wondering how I’ve gotten along without it all these years. The movie has really piqued my interest in Julia Child, and I think I will pick up a copy of  My Life in France, written by Julia Child with Alex Prud’homme.

There is one thing that puzzled me. The last dish that Julie made was a boned duck — skin on — stuffed with something (not sure what), that was then coated in a beautiful pastry. I’ve only made duck once in my life, and that was years ago, but my recollection is that the skin was incredibly greasy. I just can’t figure out what would happen to the skin when coated with pastry. Have you made this dish? Any thoughts?

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My first memory is sitting with my mother on a blanket in our backyard surrounded by books and she is reading one of them to me. My love of reading was encouraged by my parents and it continues to today. I’ve gone through a lot of different genres over the years, but I currently primarily read mysteries (historical mysteries are my favorites) and romances (focusing on contemporaries, categories, and steampunk). When I’m not reading or working, I love to travel, knit, and work on various community projects.