Channel Your Inner Julia Child With These Recipes That Are Really Achievable

Channel Your Inner Julia Child With These Recipes That Are Really Achievable

As the HBO Max series winds down, take a page from the chef’s script and begin to master the art of French cooking.

“Julia,” the HBO Max series that chronicles Julia Child’s journey from cookbook author to unexpected television star and national icon, ended Thursday. (The streaming service hasn’t announced whether there will be a second season.) And what better way to celebrate the series than with a meal designed by “The French Chef” himself?

Child’s vast canon of recipes is known for its reverence for French tradition, fearless approaches to different animals and their parts, and liberal use of butter. What are they not known for? Ease. Sure, a French omelette takes less than 30 seconds to make. And countless attempts to perfect the flip-and-roll motion that defines it.

“Learning to make a good omelette takes practice,” Child writes in her groundbreaking “Mastering the Art of French Cooking.” “Do one after the other for groups of people every chance you get for several days, and even be willing to throw a few away. You should develop the art quickly.”

Some of her most famous recipes include the titles of episodes in the series starring Sarah Lancashire as the lilting child: coq au vin, beef Bourguignon, crêpes Suzette—those dishes that “Mastering” send you throughout the book in search of secondary recipes to prepare all ingredients. Or it’s about setting something on fire.

But Child gave us so much more than that. She made French cuisine approachable, even if it took time and effort to get there. As “Julia” settles down, take on the challenge of one or two kid’s recipes to honor the grande dame of French home cooking. Enjoy your meal!


Serves 4 to 6.

Note: This Flemish dish is traditionally made with fish, but Child was happy to swap for a whole chicken, which is poaching in a fine stock. It’s a quick meal; the most time consuming part is julienning all the vegetables. The creamy soup is packed with spring greens deepened with vermouth and luxuriously made with the addition of six — yes, six — egg yolks. Writing in the New York Times in 1987, Child credited the recipe to her teacher Max Bugnard, who ran a restaurant in Brussels before World War II, and served the dish with eel and white fish in that rich broth. “A divine ambrosia indeed,” wrote Child, “and in those glorious days no one thought of six egg yolks, great dollops of heavy cream, and wisps of butter.” She called this “one of my favorite recipes.” Serve with noodles or dumplings, or crusty baguettes to soak up that broth. From the New York Times.

2 large carrots

2 medium onions

2 tender ribs celery

2 medium leeks, only the white and soft green part

1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon

Salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste

2 1/2 pounds cut fried chicken, legs or thighs or breasts (with bone), or a mixture of these

1 1/2 cups dry white French vermouth

1 1/2 to 2 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

6 egg yolks

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


Trim, wash and cut the vegetables into julienne matches 1 3/4 inches long and 1/8 inch wide. (This should be about 5 cups in total.) Toss in a large mixing bowl with the tarragon and a pinch of salt and pepper.

Pat the chicken pieces dry and set aside.

Using a roasting pan large enough to hold the chicken and vegetables comfortably, arrange the layers in the following order: one-third of the vegetables, half of the chicken, half of the remaining vegetables, the rest of the chicken, and the remaining vegetables. Pour in the vermouth and enough chicken stock to just submerge the chicken. (So ​​far, the recipe can be prepared several hours in advance. Cover and refrigerate.)

When ready to cook, bring to a boil, cover and cook slowly for 25 to 30 minutes, or until chicken pieces are tender and, when pierced, juices run clear.

Strain out the cooking liquid, degrease and season to taste.

Combine the cream and cornstarch in a small mixing bowl. Beat the egg yolks in a large bowl and stir in the cream mixture. Slowly whisk in the hot cooking liquid. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Place over medium heat, swirling the skillet gently, until the sauce has warmed and thickened slightly, but do not bring to a boil or the egg yolks will curdle.

Before serving, scoop the chicken, vegetables and sauce into large warm soup bowls and sprinkle each serving with parsley.

Serve with boiled potatoes, noodles, gnocchi or just plain baguette.


Serves 8.

Note: In the first episode of ‘Julia’, Child makes this cake to cheer up the public television producers who would determine the fate of her idea for a television show. (It worked.) The power of this chocolate and almond cake was clear to Child; she once wrote that it was the first French cake she ever tried. She preferred the cake to be slightly undercooked in the middle, which gives it a “special creamy quality”. The recipe is simple and versatile – top with a buttercream frosting, whipped cream, or nothing at all. From ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’.

For the cake:

4 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate

2 tablespoons coffee (or 2 tablespoons rum)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

2/3 cup sugar, plus 1 tablespoon, divided

3 eggs, separated

pinch of salt

1/3 cup almond flour (or finely ground blanched almonds)

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/2 cup cake flour

1/4 cup sliced ​​almonds, for garnish, optional

For the glaze:

2 ounces of semi-sweet baking chocolate

2 tablespoons coffee (or 2 tablespoons rum)

5 to 6 tablespoons unsalted butter


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and place the oven rack in the center. Butter and flour an 8-inch round cake pan.

To prepare the cake: Place the chocolate and coffee or rum in a small saucepan, cover and place (off heat) in a larger saucepan of nearly boiling water; let it melt as you proceed with the recipe.

Beat the butter and 2/3 cup sugar together for several minutes until a pale yellow, fluffy mixture forms.

Beat in the egg yolks until well blended.

In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites and salt until soft peaks form; sprinkle over 1 tablespoon sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.

Mix the melted chocolate into the butter-sugar mixture with a rubber spatula and stir in the almond flour (or ground almonds) and almond extract. Immediately stir in 1/4 of the whipped egg whites to lighten the batter. Gently fold in one-third of the remaining egg whites and, when partially blended, sift in one-third of the flour and continue to fold. Quickly alternate with more egg whites and more flour until all egg whites and flour are incorporated.

Turn the batter into the cake tin and push the batter to the edge with a rubber spatula. Bake for about 25 minutes. The cake is done when it’s puffed and placed 2 1/2 to 3 inches around the perimeter so a needle inserted into that area comes out clean; the center should move a little as the pan is shaken and a needle comes out greasy.

Let the cake cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and invert the cake onto the rack. Let it cool for an hour or two; it must be thoroughly cold if it is to be frozen.

To prepare the glaze: Place the chocolate and coffee or rum in the small saucepan, cover and place in a larger saucepan of nearly boiling water. Remove the pans from the heat and let the chocolate melt for about 5 minutes until perfectly smooth. Remove the chocolate mold from the hot water and beat in the butter tablespoon by tablespoon. If the glaze is too runny, place the bowl of chocolate in an ice bath and beat until the chocolate mixture has cooled to a smooth consistency.

To serve, spread the icing over the cake with a spatula or knife and press a pattern of almonds over the icing if desired.

window.fbAsyncInit = function() {
appId : ‘603618843572416’,
xfbml : true,
version : ‘v2.9’

(function(d, s, id){
var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];
if (d.getElementById(id)) {return;}
js = d.createElement(s); = id;
js.src = “”;
fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);
}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));