Want to cook like Julia Child? Get out your whisk! Here are 13 French recipes to master
Photo by James Carrier
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Photo by James Carrier
This was Julia Child's first lunch when she arrived in Paris, and it changed her world.
As she recounted in her memoir My Life in France, it was"perfectly browned in a sputtering butter sauce with a sprinkling of chopped parsley... I closed my eyes and inhaled the rising perfume. Then I lifted a forkful of fish to my mouth... The flesh of the sole was delicate, with a light but distinct taste of the ocean that blended marvelously with the browned butter... It was a morsel of perfection... It was the most exciting meal of my life."
In short, you should make this. It's unexpectedly easy: You'll spend 15 minutes cooking and feel like Julia Child at the end.
Much is made of boeuf bourguignon, that staple stew of French cuisine featuring cubes of browned beef braised in wine with carrots, mushrooms, and onions.
Of course, you could always raise it up a key, find even punchier flavors to make your irresistible beef stew more bewitching. You could, for instance, supplement your boeuf with smoked paprika, chipotle chile powder, hardwood-smoked bacon, blue cheese crumbles, and an extra bottle of wine.
Then you'd be making this Smoky Beef Stew with Blue Cheese and Chives ― and saying how much more you like it than a regular old beef stew.
You don't know what the name means. No matter, a lot of French is like that.
But there are syllables you recognize: blanc (white), a velvety cream sauce. Veau (veal), tender and meaty. Together: A dinner like you imagine yourself eating in your French farmhouse. Sensual, rich, sophisticated. But not fussy.
You can make it in a slow cooker and turn it into a weeknight treat. As long as you promise to eat it with a baguette.
If you think French desserts are all about piping pastry cream and fussy meringues, give this rustic, gorgeous, free-form apple galette a gander. As easy as apple pie? Easier. No crust-fluting required.
This is the French cook's final exam, beguiling in its simplicity. Because as anyone who's made an eggy mess of a skillet can attest, simple can be death-defying.
Your secret weapons: A nonstick skillet and a precise technique. It's worth practicing till you get it right, and we give you the instructions you need to create le petit déjeuner of your dreams.
Now, all you need to do is figure out how to fill it. Camembert and thinly sliced leeks? A handful of shredded gruyère? Crumbles of chèvre and sliced red peppers? Once you've passed this test, the possibilities are endless.