Julia Child’s Easy Cheese Tartlets Recipe

February 21, 2013 in Appetizers

Julia Child’s Cheese Tarts – a simple, elegant appetizer.

Julia Child recipe cheese tarts

Julia Child’s Easy Cheese Tarts

Easy and Elegant are two words which define Julia Child’s cooking.

I love Julia Child. I often pause in my kitchen and repeat the phrase that Christians coined: WWJD? – but when I’m  in my kitchen “WWJD” means “What Would Julia Do?” Whenever I feel discouraged about my cooking prowess, I snuggle on my couch late at night and watch an episode of The French Chef. (Co-blogger Anne gave me a DVD set!) I laugh out loud every single time, and am instantly strengthened and renewed. When truly serious discouragement hits me, I bring out the big guns: Saturday Night Live’s French Chef Skit: “You’ll need a knife . . . a very, very, very sharp knife. . .” I dare any cook who watched Julia to watch this and not laugh out loud!  It was during one of those late-night couch sessions that I saw her make cheese tartlets. I took copious notes, and I’m glad I did, because I have not been able to find this recipe written down anywhere. It’s not in any of her cookbooks!  You’ll just have to trust my note taking on this one.

These are a masterpiece. Truly. I dare you to make appetizers that are as simple and yet sophisticated as these. It is impossible. They are the perfect blend of rich, satisfying flavors and melt-in-your-mouth comfort. If you have a favorite pie crust recipe, use that, or check out my miracle Never-Fail Pat-in-the-Pan Pie Crust.

Bonus: they take only minutes to throw together. Another bonus: they are very forgiving, and can be served warm or at room temperature. Add these mini-tarts to your Hostess Bag of Tricks. I promise you won’t be sorry.

If you’re looking for other apps for Oscar Night, check out my new book: 200 Appetizers by Gibbs Smith Publisher. Julia’s tartlets plus 199 other fab small bites!

– posted by Donna

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Julia Child’s Chocolate Almond Cake Recipe – Happy 100th Birthday, Julia Child!

August 9, 2012 in Desserts

Julia Child’s favorite dessert: Chocolate Almond Cake.

Julia Child’s Chocolate Almond Cake

If you asked a group of cooks what their favorite Julia Child recipe is, I’m sure many would answer with a savory recipe, such as her beloved Beef Bourguignon, which Elise of Simply Recipes describes as “more of an an event than a food.” So true. Or, her famous Potato Leek Soup that she made most every day for her beloved husband Paul.

But. My favorite Julia Child recipe is the recipe that she herself described in the intro to Mastering the Art of French Cooking as her favorite cake. A group of culinary experts list this masterpiece as her Number 3 favorite recipe, but to me it is Number One, hands down. Chocolate Almond Cake is an other-worldly perfection of a dish. It is hard to do justice to this recipe with mere words. It is creamy, yet fluffy at the same time. It is rich, yet light at the same time. It just may be my favorite bite of food. Ever.

So, in tribute to Julia, or “Joooolia” as she would pronounce her name, I am posting this recipe. You’re welcome.

Happy Birthday, Julia Child! I hope you’re baking a celestial cake today!

And THANK YOU for so many things, not the least of which is sharing your favorite cake recipe with the world: Chocolate Almond Cake, which I plan to eat every single day when I am in heaven, where everyone is their ideal weight, no matter how many calories they consume!

Julia Child – The French Chef

Julia Child was one of a kind. She was adventurous. She was boisterous. She was large. But what I love about Julia, who would be 100 years old on August 15, 2012, is that she was unashamed to experiment, to make mistakes, even to fail.

I remember sitting on the sofa next to my mom in the early ’70′s and wondering what in the world she was laughing at. My mom would laugh out loud when Julia – as The French Chef would cook. I was perplexed when I was a kid. But not now.

Now I watch old episodes of The French Chef and I, too, laugh out loud. I get it now. Julia spills her omlettes on the counter as she flips them. She scrapes potato peels onto the floor. She says things like “Well, it really doesn’t look very appetizing here, does it?” God Bless You, Julia Child!

If you haven’t seen Julia making a “hamburger” on David Letterman, you MUST drop whatever you are doing and watch this STAT. I promise it is one of the most hilarious clips of  Julia Child on television. Again, You’re welcome!

– posted by Donna

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