To celebrate her 100th birthday, we have been collecting tributes from chefs, bloggers and other important food personalities to illustrate the impact that Julia Child had on the world of food. Here are some of our favorite responses. What did your favorite chef say about Julia?
By John Besh
Julia taught us to allow ourselves to be inspired. She made cooking accessible and approachable while paying homage to French traditions in a way that was void of mystique. The perfect balance of confidence and humility allowed her to teach us all and to set the benchmark for what would later become America’s fascination with cooking and television. Since watching my first episode of her show, I have been inspired to cook with passion and heart, knowing that we’re never too old to learn new things.
By Lisa Lillien
Every celebrity chef today owes some of their success to Julia Child. I love watching her, to this day. Julia Child is to cooking as Johnny Carson is to television…
By Robert Irvine
Julia Child was and always will be an incredible inspiration to me
and the millions of people around the world she inspired to be different.
She taught a new generation how to cook and be creative in a fun, smart and
enthusiastic way. While she had a sense of humor about her, she was very serious when it came to her recipes being just right. Thank you Julia for all you have meant to me.
PBS Food talks to chef Gale Gand, of Elawa Farm in Lake Forest and former host of the Food Network series “Sweet Dreams,” about her time with Julia Child on the show, “Baking with Julia.” In the midst of the Julia Child 100th Birthday Celebration, Gand pays tribute to her legacy.
What was it like working with Julia Child?
Absolutely thrilling to be perfectly honest; it was the thrill of my life and my career. When we were done I broke down crying. Geoffrey Drummond asked what was wrong, did you not like the first take? I said no because it was over! She is the ultimate chef so I had this moment where I thought I had to switch careers I did everything you can. I was with Julia. I hit the ceiling. I was in the book Baking with Julia and the television series. I had to write a special chapter on phyllo dough and Julia came down and said I can’t wait to work with phyllo or whatever you call it! I said, you had to have worked with it Julia. And she said oh no! I’ll learn tomorrow. I was teaching her. It was that moment when you’re the daughter teaching the mother. I have so much knowledge that someone like Julia Child is saying I can’t wait to learn from you. It was a little strange.
By Sandra Lee
Julia Child was the quintessential master chef, she is the Godmother of American cooking, and she certainly is an icon, but what I truly love most about her was her warmth and generosity of spirit. Her unabashed respect for her audience and her guests was the one of the hallmarks of her shows and a sign of her deep character and intellect. When guests cooked with Julia Child, they were in the presence of greatness, but instead of resting on her laurels, her open curiosity, love for food and passion for cooking was the star. She was perfect. She was extraordinary. She was a gift. Happy Birthday, Julia.
By Melissa d’Arabian
“I don’t believe in twisting yourself into knots of excuses and explanations over the food you make…Usually one’s cooking is better than one thinks it is. And if the food is vile…then the cook must simply grit her teeth and bear it with a smile – and learn from her mistakes.”
-Julia Child, from My Life in France
I love Julia Child for showing guts in pursuing a completely new (nay, first!) career at the age of 37, for cooking with abandon (her philosophy in the kitchen boils down to “you’re all in or you’re all out”), and for bringing French cooking to the average American cook.
But the extraordinary lesson from Julia that I want my children to internalize is her ownership of her food, mistakes and all. How we act in the kitchen gives insight into who we are in life, and uncompromising accountability is a critical success factor in any major endeavor, whether it’s making Julia’s Boeuf Bourgignon (trust me, it’s “major”), or interviewing for a dream job.
(Article reposted courtesy of CreateTV)
By Christina Pirello
“I was new to public television … okay, I was new to television. My first cookbook, Cooking the Whole Foods Way was just published and I was at a book event with my publisher, John Duff, from the Penguin Group.
As we stood at our table surrounded by my new book, John turned to me and asked if there was someone I wanted to meet.
Of course, I said …Julia…the hero of every cook, chef, busboy and dishwasher.