In 2009 a classic movie graced the theaters featuring Amy Adams and Meryl Streep with the first, at least to my knowledge, famous blogger. Now if you still don’t know what I am referencing to. It is the timeless movie Julie & Julia. Quoting IMDB page on the movie “Julia Child’s story of her start in the cooking profession is intertwined with blogger Julie Powell’s 2002 challenge to cook all the recipes in Child’s first book.” If you don’t know of Julia Child, well, she is probably one of the most influential female chefs in the last 50 years.
To dive into Julia Child’s life a little more here is a reference to a brief summary of her life and accomplishments in the culinary world. “Julia Child was an American cooking teacher, author, and television personality. She is recognized for bringing French cuisine to the American public with her debut cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and her subsequent television programs, the most notable of which was The French Chef, which premiered in 1963.” If you would like to watch the movie is is available on Netflix and Amazon Prime. I highly recommend taking some time to watch this lovable foody classic. Her book is also available on Amazon and in most retail book stores. As someone who personally owns this book, it is one for the shelf.
I am not writing a post just to review this charming movie. I am stating that I will be copying this format. Now before you jump ship, I am not cooking Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Everytime, I watch this movie it reminds me of two things that I love dearly; cooking and writing. If you have spent any amount of time on my site you will see that my page is dominated by cooking, but in passing I have mention my personal novel writing.
In my last post on the page I talk about resolutions and improving ourselves, achieving goals, working on what will make us happy with ourselves. Since Julie and Julia came out in 2009 I have ALWAYS wanted to cook my way through a cookbook. As a self proclaimed “Professional” at home chef, I think I have the basic skills to properly cook my way through most cookbooks. I think one of the biggest way I can grow for myself would be to be a better chef. As I look at my small but mighty cookbook shelf I see books that have never been opened, but which one to pick?
From Left to right: Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer, Marion Rombauer Becker, Ethan Becker. Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child, Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle. Tartine by Chad Robertson and Elisabeth Prueitt. Dessert Person by Claire Saffitz. Savoring Tuscany by Lori De Mori. All of these have a special place in our kitchen but two have never been used so it is a going to be a tose up between Tartine and Dessert Person. Here are my pros and cons for each; I will be channeling my inner Rory Gilmore for this list. (For all my Gilmore Girl Fans out there.)
Tartine: Pros: New chef to me, new cookbook, wide variety of recipes including savory options. Cons: No real connect to the book or it’s contents.
If you are a fellow at home chef you know that most of the recipes you make have some connection or motivation behind them to be made. It could be a family recipe, something that seems challenging, or a favorite dish you tried on your travels that you want to bring into your own home.
Dessert Person: Pros: Followed the chef for the last two-three years on social media and in magazine. Know a view of the recipes already. Competed in online competitions hosted by this chef. Dessert which is a specialty of mine. Cons: staying in my cooking wheelhouse.
I think it is pretty clear which cookbook I will be going with. I will be cooking my way through Claire Saffitz’s Dessert Person in one year. There are 89 recipes in total, which you might think pales in comparison to Julia Child’s 524 but I am starting small. I will continue to work my full time jobs and pursue other passions outside of the kitchen. So here it is all on the table for your. 1 recipe a week, 4 recipes a month. Yes, yes, I know, there are only 52 weeks in a year so that means I will have to double, if not triple up some weeks. Hopefully, with the vaccine rolling out I might be able to host a party soon and knockout multiple recipes in one go!
If this is something you would like to follow along, I will be starting a new tab on my page dedicated to cooking my way through Dessert Person! Natalie & Claire..not at catchy as Julie & Julia, I promise to come up with something better!
First Recipe: Spiced Honey and Rye Cake!
Bonus Pictures: Top Left: Hot Pocket Competition, Bottom Left: Ferrero Rocher Competition, Middle: Halloween 2019 dressed up as Claire Saffitz, and Right: Poptart Competition.