OK, here I am…I just finished the last of the 5 books for my From the Stacks Winter Reading Challenge. I had saved Julie and Julia for last, figuring it would be a light, fun, breezy read, which might suit me well after some of the heavier topics I had thus far covered. I was right. To be honest, I knew very little about this book/blog/idea before the book was given to me as a gift last Christmas. I knew that the author, Julie Powell, lived in New York, that she decided to make every recipe in Julia Childs’ famous cookbook, Mastering The Art of French Cooking, 524 recipes, in one year. I’ll confess that I kind of wondered if this might be a book by a Martha Stewart wannabe, someone who was going to go into excruciating detail of each and every recipe, and how perfectly they all came out, and so on. Or maybe, it was going to be the blog, one year worth, written into a book, which also? Not so interesting. I needn’t have worried. I mean, Jefito and his lovely bride gave me this book, and I should trust them, right? So here we go, I’m reading along, and I find that I’m reading about someone who knows when to use the ‘f word’ (whenever possible, it seems). If profanity is a problem for you, skip the book. Clearly, I was raised with this word, so it wasn’t a problem for me.
How was I to know, then, that not only would Julie Powell, the author and crazed woman who took this project on, would, in addition to having a blog that she loved and swearing like a trucker, have a Buffy addiction! I mean, outside of her cooking brains and kidneys and so on, this woman and I could be friends! Here’s a quote:
It made me philosophical, or maybe just hungry…Anyway, as I was stuffing and sealing turnovers, I found myself considering the essential rights of Roquefort filling. I brought the filling into being, and now I was seeking to entrap it in a buttery pastry prison, though it was obvious from its evasive behavior that there is nothing Roquefort wants more than to be free. Was this not arrogance? Was it not, in essence, a slave-owning mentality, to be approaching this from the perspective of how best to trap the Roquefort filling, without consideration for the Roquefort’s fundamental desire for freedom?
I was getting a little dizzy.
In retrospect, of course, this can be recognized as the first sign of my imminent psychotic break.
I would recommend this book heartily, to anyone with a passion for living, at least SOME interest in cooking, and who doesn’t mind discovering that the author is so overwhelmed that she has allowed maggots to fester in her kitchen. Ugh.