My Life in France

My Life in France❮PDF / Epub❯ ☂ My Life in France Author Julia Child – The bestselling story of Julia's years in France and the basis for Julie Julia starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams in her own words Although she would later singlehandedly create a new approach to Ame The bestselling story of Julia's years in France and the basis for Julie Julia starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams in her own words Although she would later singlehandedly create a new approach to American cuisine with her cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking and her My Life PDF \ television show The French Chef Julia Child was not always a master chef Indeed when she first arrived in France in with her husband Paul who was to work for the USIS she spoke no French and knew nothing about the country itself But as she dove into French culture buying food at local markets and taking classes at the Cordon Bleu her life changed forever with her newfound passion for cooking and teaching Julia's unforgettable story struggles with the head of the Cordon Bleu rejections from publishers to whom she sent her now famous cookbook a wonderful nearly fifty year long marriage that took the Childs across the globe unfolds with the spirit so key to Julia's success as a chef and a writer brilliantly capturing one of America's most endearing personalities.

Julia Child was a famous American cook author and television personality who introduced French cuisine and cooking techniues to the American mainstream through her many cookbooks and television programs Her most famous works are the cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking and showcasing her sui My Life PDF \ generis television persona the series The French Chef which premiered in .

My Life in France PDF/EPUB Å My Life  PDF \
  • Hardcover
  • 336 pages
  • My Life in France
  • Julia Child
  • English
  • 05 February 2015
  • 9781400043460

10 thoughts on “My Life in France

  1. Kelly says:

    I did not grow up on Julia Child I’m too young to have watched her TV show and my mom wasn’t the type to own any of her cookbooks we stuck to mostly Italian recipes handed down from my dad’s mom and ranch style cooking or if we were unlucky my British nanny’s “traditional” English dishes she insisted we try I barely knew who she was before I started cooking a few years ago I admit that I wasn’t really interested in her until the recent movie Julie and Julia which definitely made me want to know What can I say? Meryl Streep’s powers are infiniteI say this just so you’re aware that I don’t have any childhood memories that mean that this book is illuminated in a shiny impenetrable blanket of nostalgia not that there is anything wrong with those blankets I have them for other things Just not for this Nonetheless I really liked this book I don’t want to overstate this The book is what it says it is and you should sign up for it because you would like to read about what Julia Child did in France what came of her trip in France the writing of French cookbooks and how she got started as The French Chef There is food and a lot of it Everything from incredibly detailed memories of menus she ate or cooked for people in France in 1950 to explanations of her experiments with translating French foods to the American market to the trials and tribulations of publishing her cookbook So far so expected And frankly so good She is excellent at describing a sense memory of taste so that even if you’re not uite sure what a dish is you’re very sure that you want to eat itThe unexpected part which I loved was Julia’s personal transformation I don’t necessarily mean the inspirational tale of finding happiness in going native in a foreign country that inspired a thousand imitators of the Under the Tuscan Sun variety I meant the other side of the story her prickly growth as a person The way these stories are told and it should be noted that they are written by her great nephew though with her approval her very distinctive voice seems to express not only the sort of warmth and charm that drew people to her but also the other woman hiding behind that I really identified with that other woman that she seemed embarrassed to talk about too much She was the girl who was smart and restless enough to long for than the slot that life had lined up for her housewife in unthinking Republican Pasadena but so it seemed with a self esteem low enough that she didn’t think herself as smart as the artsy literate people that she longed to be around like her husband I could relate to that I've been that girl Forever in between in your own mind not good enough for what you want but knowing you need than what would be acceptable It was fascinating to hear her talk about politics of the time period and this was a surprisingly political book whether French or American and then stop herself with one of her patented sweet exclamations “Phooey” “Whew” as if she was suddenly self conscious of talking about something that she was not an expert about and didn’t want people to think she was getting above herself or something She was extremely self aware about her limits too There was a wonderful passage from when she was about 40 or so when she was arguing with a man of conservative opinions when she realized that she had “emotions instead of opinions” which was why she couldn’t express herself very well She didn’t come out and say it but it seemed implied that she was still a young girl rebelling emotionally against her Republican father which had seemed to her sufficient opinion until that point She immediately resolved to educate herself and read with Paul a wide assortment of French and American newspapers How many people are willing to admit that kind of ignorance and take on such a deep project of self improvement at that age? In my experience that seems to be about the time where people start to get set in their ways and are all “Oh well too late not to suck at life now” Once she had found her new passion she also became the most amazingly hard worker She spent months perfecting a mayonnaise recipe that no one had ever written down and then had to find a way to translate it to an American market that has ingredients that make for a completely different chemistry She was the first person to write down a recipe for French bread in English and it took her over 200 pounds of flour to get it right She wrote to scientists who worked with Hershey’s to get a demonstration of the chemical reactions of chocolate It was the most amazing thing like she finally found a little niche that she could make herself have enough self confidence to succeed in despite her doubts and suddenly we find out that she’s probably way smarter than the people she’s been writing about in awe the entire book whether chefs or otherwise She eats this amazing meal when she first arrives in France that starts her on this journey towards her ultimate career as a French chef and about halfway through the book and twenty years later she goes out to a restaurant and has another amazing meal but instead of reacting in awe and worshiping the magic of the French character she guesses accurately everything that is in the dish and goes home and reproduces it almost exactly and it is just as good as the lady in her restaurant who has been making this dish since the dawn of time The way she talks about her obsession with these details of why food works is still almostdefensive like she had to explain it to someone a half century later when she's been proven right about having done it over and over again It’s so true once the insecure girl who is too tall too smart too something always that girl successful or not Ultimately you love her because she always brings things back to this place of happiness and “oh well the show must go on” no matter what but the way she told the stories and negotiated herself to that place was very realistic This was not an unrelenting “always look on the bright side of life” montage There were difficult people in her life difficult spots in her marriage difficult moments in her career the fact that she still remembers verbatim uotes and fights from forty years earlier is telling and she’s clear about it when she doesn’t like something or someone and why She doesn’t have an American sense of everything will turn out all right in the end but rather this very French tant pis acceptance that shit happens and life is shit and oh well wade through it like a big girl She doesn’t try to deny anything or erase it or obsess about appearing perfect when she wasn’t which is something I find irritating about American self help books and TV fantasies Her philosophy about serving your food even if it comes out bad and not apologizing for is sort of the epitome of this rejection of the hide your dirty laundry ideals of the mid century She’s perfectly frank about her fights with Paul Child her problems with her co authors on the book her difficulties with her Republican father her failures in the kitchen and on her TV show It isn’t in the exhibitionist way that you see so often these days either She’s a good girl but she won’t let herself be walked all over she is going to have her say and that’s just fair I don’t know if I am doing a very good job describing this voice but believe me when I say that it is as captivating in print as it is on televisionAll in all a surprisingly down to earth book from a classy lady who was much complicated than I thought she was Come for the food stay for the voice of the woman telling you about it and don’t let her talk herself down She’s worth the price of admission and

  2. Melissa says:

    Oh how I love and adore this book It's one of the best I've read lately combining as it does my love of France Julia and food in one funny touching package Julia Child was such a uniue eccentric brilliant woman and I'm always inspired when I realize that she struggled along at loose ends for years before finding her true passion and callingHer marriage to Paul Child is beautifully portrayed in the book He was uite a worldly erudite man and very forward thinking for his time in the way he nurtured and supported Julia's talent and career He was very much a driving force behind her success but he always made sure she was the one who got to shine They lived a fascinating life even before her career began however living all over the world while Paul was a government official WWII Asia post war Europe the McCarthy witch hunt there's a lot than just cooking stories in the bookThe cooking stories are great however I loved her description of her seminal first meal in France the one that began her obsession with French cuisine She really does credit that one meal with being the start of everything that was to follow from her training at the Cordon Bleu to the formation of L'Ecole des Trois Gourmandes with Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle to the three of them setting about writing Mastering the Art of French Cooking The amount of work that they Julia especially put into researching and writing the cookbook is another inspiration The woman was not averse to hard work that's for sureI really can't say enough about My Life in France I absolutely loved reading it and it made me adore Julia even than before She really was a treasure

  3. Richard Derus says:

    Rating 3875 of fiveThe Book Report Truth in advertising had no greater champion than Julia Child Her book is called exactly and precisely what it is The narrative of her life in France She begins her book on November 3 1948 with the Child family landing at Le Havre getting into their gigantic Buick station wagon and motoring off across northern France towards Paris They stop at thirty six year old native Californian Mrs Child's first French restaurant La Couronne where her husband Paul already fluent in French from his first stint living there than 20 years before consults with M Dorin the maitre d' and decides the young marrieds relatively speaking as he's 46 by then will have a sole meuniere with a glass of wine I mean A nice Republican raised gal from Pasadena California drinking wine with lunch Who heard of this? Mais certainement not Mme Child nee McWilliamsIt was the beginning of a life long love affair between Julia Child and la belle France and Julia Child and la cuisine Francaise It led to several books several TV series and a long happy life spent teaching teaching teaching Mme Child had found her metier at close to forty in a day and time where living past sixty five was considered to be ancient In the process the person she became changed the American and possibly the world as a result culture surrounding food Yet Julia Child wrote this book with her husband's great nephew Alex Prud'homme who tells us in his brief Foreword that getting his garrulous old relative to open up about the feelings and secrets that make up the majority of any human life His degree of success was formidable given the generational and gender induced reticence he fought against to extract the juicy bits from herBravo M Prud'homme et merci bien par tout le faireMy Review Julia Child was a fixture around our house when I was young I got the TV watching habits I carry with me to this good day at a tender age and part of the formative process was The French Chef My mother didn't like Mrs Child much She was a fan of MFK Fisher's food work which wasn't in sympathy with Mrs Child's careful and precise measuring and nice and accurate timing Mama was a feast maker not a dinner preparer and that's why she watched Julia Child programsI learned about enthusiastic appreciation of food from my mother and Mrs Child I was never a picky eater and only rejected a few foods I still hate corn on the cob It always seemed like the ladies were having so much fun making these weird dishes It made sense to me that it would be fun to eat them and so it proved to beIn reading this memoir I immersed myself in the flow of Child's later life awakening to the joy of food and the sheer exhilaration of preparing special and delicious and carefully thought out meals for one's loved ones While I understand the co author's challenge in balancing the need to afford the famous personality privacy against the buying public's desire to know the dirt I can only lament that Prud'homme either didn't or couldn't press Child on the topic of her childlessness I suspect burying herself in research and in obsessive experimentation was a means of assuaging her sadness at not being a mother She was or at least she is painted in this book as being a very nurturing person and given the prevailing attitudes of the era it is unlikely that this absence did not cause her pangs of regret I would have liked to see some exploration of that mostly because I think glittering surfaces which this book limns in loving detail are even beautiful when seen with shadows It's like sterling silver flatware When dipped into a cleaning bath as opposed to hand polished it's true that all the tarnish comes off but all the character does too and the pattern is flat and blah for lack of a bit of dark contrast that is left by the labor intensive hand polishing methodThe delight of the book was in Child's almost orgasmic recollections of the foods and wines she and her dearly beloved husband Paul Child ate and drank across the years In the course of learning to cook the haute bourgeoise cuisine that she made famous in her native land Child came alive to the joys and thrills of sight smell and taste in a way that only truly delicious food can cause a person to become It was the positive counterpoint to her manifold frustrations in collaborative cook bookery The travails of preparing the Magnum Opus that is Mastering the Art of French Cooking simply don't do enough to make the author come off the page and join me in my reading chair I rate books based on this type of measure this degree of ability to enfold and immerse me in the narrative and the emotional reality of the tale being told I thoroughly enjoyed this book but I wasn't swept into it and away to France circa 1950 and that was what I came to the read expecting to happen In fact when I saw the film partially based on this book Julie Julia I was completely swept away and eager to read the source materialIn the end I got out of watching Meryl Streep enact Julia Child than I did reading Julia Child reporting herself I was disappointed And hungry This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial ShareAlike 30 Unported License

  4. Petra-X says:

    I didn't know anything about Julia Child apart from having heard her name and that she was 6' tall until the book Julie and Julia I read that and whereas I didn't think much of Julie at all I think she should go back to blogging a book's a bit much for her I was curious about JuliaThe book is beautifully written by her nephew Paul Prud'homme and illustrated with many photographs from her talented ex diplomat husband Paul Its a lovely story of a life through cooking and inspired by France and full of surprises that you wouldn't expect for someone of her monied patrician backgroundOne one of the Goodreads groups I belong to where everyone besides me is American and it seems strongly Republican the book Julie and Julia got many negative comments owing to Julie's total disrespect of Republicans and not being respectful enough of the construction of a memorial to 9 ll I didn't feel that I thought she was just pissed off with her job but I'm not an American and there may have been nuances I missed Needless to say I don't think that group would enjoy My Life in France either Julia Child is fiercely anti Republican and critical of many aspects of American politics which she sees as hypocritical This causes if not a rift in the family then her father's coldness and uninterest in her life and husband as he saw anything less than full enthusiasm for all things Republican and racist anti academic anti semitic and xenophobic to be a betrayal by her of his and his friends' lives and the cultural millieu he had brought her up in Julia's politics were important to her and she studied assidiously so that she could hold up her end in dinner table debates with her knowledgeable friends often over one of her wonderfully cooked mealsThe story of how she learned to cook and the various places she and Paul lived in is beautifully told without either undue self praise or false modesty She had a lovely personality a burning drive to educate people as to how good food French food could be and why it was worth the time and effort to make it and attracted a rich variety of friends whose only link seemed to be they really really liked food But it was just as interesting viewing American politics and France through the half century of her life from the 50s until her death five years ago in 2004 I'm so enthusiastic about reading Julia Child that I've ordered Mastering French Cooking a huge and expensive tome and I don't cook not ever but I do want to read it

  5. Michael says:

    A nice window on Child’s love affair with France and its food starting in the post war period Her relationship with her husband Paul was a high point of the book I appreciated her practical and good hud approaches to the challenges and solutions to helping the average household achieving uality meals Some of her friendships and conflicts have some life and color but for the most part the story came across as bland and sanitized Some of her passion for particular foods comes through such as for home made mayonnaise and French bread Ultimately there was not enough real life drama eg the “thrill of victory and the agony of defeat” and I expected humor Maybe I was spoiled by the great channeling of Child by Meryl Streep in the movie “Julie and Julia”

  6. Mahlon says:

    I've never been a fan of Julia Child and whenever I ran across her show on PBS I'd make a conscious effort to change the channel which was why I was surprised when My Life in France turned out to be one of the most well written engaging Autobiographies I've read in uite awhile The book covers roughly the same time period as the movie Julie Julia except that it extends into the mid 70's and discusses the beginning of her TV career and the writing of her second book Even though it was completed by her great nephew and published after her death Julia's uniue voice and enthusiasm shine through The reader will feel as if they are having a conversation with her over lunch Julia's love of the food and people of France as well as her husband Paul permeate this book and allow the reader to get a feeling for her as a person rather than just an imposing 2 D TV personality Like a hearty meal or a rich dessert this is a book to be savored until the very last biteBon appétit

  7. Tim says:

    Lighthearted and fun recollections of Julia's first years in France Highly recommended for anyone already enthralled by Julia whether by her television programs or her excellent cookbooksReaders who do not know Julia may find the book a little too rambling and a little too focused on food they've never tasted and have no idea what it even is often she does not give translations for food names As noted in the introduction the book was pieced together from conversations Julia's nephew had with her He made notes at these conversations and then arranged the events described into some kind of chronological order It is rather ingenious because you are only reading the high points the things an eighty something year old woman remembers forty years later Due to this however the narrative is not in any sense a complete autobiography like a series of remembrances arranged chronologicallyThe book is an excellent portrait of the wonders of France just after World War 2 when the country was not as modernized as it is today Also the story is inspiring in that it starts when Julia and Paul are already nearing what some would call middle age It is not just young people that discover new things and live a life worth enjoying Of course this is obvious anyway but it is nice to see an example of it now and then

  8. Dana Stabenow says:

    I spent the summer of 1987 in Paris studying beginning French at the Sorbonne and staying at the Cité Universitaire in a program geared toward older students Some of them wanted to take a cooking class and the Sorbonne organized it for them They needed one student to make it go and I was browbeaten into filling the empty spaceUnderstand I was raised on the five Alaskan staples of Spam Bisuik Velveeta pilot bread and Carnation Instant Milk If we didn't get our moose that year we didn't eat meat except on my birthday when I got pork chops no matter what We got all the salmon and king crab we could eat for free The salmon was mostly fried The crab was mostly boiled The first fresh milk I ever drank was in college The first real cheese same Remember those Kraft Cracker Barrel packages of four logs of four different kinds? Until then I thought I hated cheeseSo at the time I went to this cooking school my most complicated prepared meal was a hamburger Claudine our chef went around the class asking where we were from and when I said Alaska her eyes lit up Alaska she said sauvage and made up a roux for wild game on the spot just for meI've been playing catchup in the kitchen ever since I can't believe it's taken me this long to discover Julia Child This book is the story of her life in France from the first oyster in Rouen to the last pot roast at La Pitchoune in Provence It's a love story of her marriage with Paul Child who is about the most intelligent charming man I've ever met between the covers of a book It's a voyage of discovery into French cuisine into the science of cooking into collaborating on and writing a cookbook or any book for that matter And it's a mesmerizing walk through Paris looking over Julia's shoulder The first year she says By now I knew that French food was it for me I couldn't get over how absolutely delicious it was Yet my friends both French and American considered me some kind of a nut cooking was far from being a middle class hobby and they did not understand how I could possibly enjoy doing all the shopping and cooking and serving by myself Well I did And Paul encouraged me to ignore them and pursue my passionYou'll remember what I said about Paul being intelligent and charmingThe how to portion of this book is fascinating French ingredients are different from American ingredients and the French learn cooking by watching not reading recipes so Julia would take the recipes of her French collaborators and translate them and the ingredients and the measurements of the ingredients into something an American cook could first buy the ingredients for in America and second understand and recreate And then she'd test them and test them and test them and test them again and she and Paul would eat them and eat them and eat them and eat them again until it was foolproof enough to unleash upon American cooks No one is born a great cook she says one learns by doing In between they'd drive around France and eat in great restaurants In a perfect world I would have been their childShe concludes with a remembrance of that first marvelous meal in Rouen the sole meuniere I ate at La Couronne on my first day in France in November 1948 It was an epiphanyIn all the years since that succulent meal I have yet to lose the feelings of wonder and excitement that it inspired in me I can still almost taste it And thinking back on it now reminds me that the pleasures of the table and of life are infinite toujours bon appetitI gotta say I got a little teary at the end of this book And I just ordered my first ever copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking Both volumes

  9. Lisa (Harmonybites) says:

    I found this an absorbing read and I'm no foodie But I think what's striking in this memoir of Child's love affair with French food is her drive her dedication to excellence her passion there's something attractive in that no matter what the endeavor as well as fascinating to get a picture of such an elite esoteric world as high cuisine It all started for Julia in 1948 when she had her first French meal When she came to France she knew only a smattering of such French phrases as Merci Monsieur wretchedly pronounced and was a terrible cook She didn't even know what a shallot was let alone what to do with one One taste of sole meunière and she had an epiphany One that would lead her to study French cooking at the renowned Cordon Bleu culinary school learning to cook everything from snails to wild boar and eventually lead to her collaboration on the ground breaking cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking and to her television show The French ChefI'm not even sure after reading this if I like Julia Child She came across at times as ruthless she calls herself unsentimental stubborn opinionated and ironically dismissive of those of different beliefs I say ironically because she's so hard especially on her father and what she considered his ignorant views and intolerance She was a liberal Democrat he was a conservative Republican And therefore it seems to her naturally a boob compared to the sophisticated Julia Except that as she admits it was only due to his generosity that she and her husband living on his salary as a government employee could live an affluent lifestyle consuming fine wines escargot truffles Camembert cheese and foie gras Admittedly one can understand her bitterness towards the GOP given what she related about her husband's brush with McCarthyism And while Child paints her father as xenophobic well her comments on the English made me cringe and she characterized Germany as a land of monsters Admittedly when she and her husband were posted to Bonn it hadn't been long since World War II As for the English she didn't care for their cooking and that seems to have been a capital crime to Julia ChildDid I mention this is about a love affair with French cooking? Because it is This made me salivate at the descriptions of Brie bouillabaisse baguettes On the other hand my vegetarian friend would probably find this book nauseating and there's enough odes to red meat cream mayonnaise and above all butter to make a cardiologist weep Nor could I imagine putting the effort the time and expense into cooking that Child described here I'll happily leave the making of brioche and uenelles de brochet to professionals and limit myself to recipes no complicated than tabbouleh But I did enjoy the picture of post war Europe This was written by Child with the help of her grandnephew and based on the letters her and husband wrote at the time so her reminiscences especially of her time in Paris and Marseilles are vivid and evocative

  10. Izzy says:

    I think the reasons I wanted to read this book are that Julia's always thought of as a late bloomer and because her travels were so influential in helping her discover herselfCertainly her life had great adventure Highlights p 268Too tired and busy to go to France But then we looked at each other and repeated a favorite phrase from our diplomatic days Remember 'No one's important than people' In other words friendship is the most important thing not career or housework or one's fatigue and it needs to be tended and nurtured So we packed up our bags and off we went And thank heaven we didHer description of Provence which she admits has changed since It was the cool early morning layers of fog in the valleys; Esterel's volcanic mountains jutting up out of the glittering sea; the warming Provencal sun and bright blue sky; the odor of earth and cow dung and burning grapevine prunings; the colorful violets and irises and mimosas; the olives blackening; the sound of little owls talking back and forth; the sea bottom taste of Belon oysters; the noisy fun of the marketplace; the deeply uiet sparkling nights with a crescent moon hanging overhead like a lamp What does it mean that the prose gets better near the end? I want to sail to Europe; how much fun than flying I want to see my car brought out of the cargo hold on by a crane I just saw a biography about Julia It really was Paul who introduced her to food But should you fault where you hear about that which you're destined to know of? And she pretty much comes out and says he dated every woman in Ceylon before he considered her The biography used his letters to show how he was critical of her at first and then warmed up What am I supposed to feel about this? I admire her tenacity; yet I'd be unwilling to date someone who noticed me as late as second She has a different kind of attitude about life that really makes me think She mentions that they would have welcomed children I think though she was very liberal you couldn't call her modern Maybe that's not so bad; I just don't think most people would do things this way And maybe she stayed up nights crying but she really seems too no nonsense for that Meanwhile knowing I'm fairly young I still worry about the appropriate time to have children oh nonstop I kinda wish I could just make that kind of commitment to my own husband so that I could focus on something else But for me I always am never really sure if I'll want to be with him in five years What do you think it's like to be not restless? But maybe she finally found that in cooking? Maybe I'll find myself someday

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