Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Getting ready for Julie and Julia

Does this look like the kitchen of someone who cooks 27 minutes a day? According to Michael Pollan, Out of the Kitchen, On to the Couch, this is the average amount of time a day spent in food preparation by most American's.

Whoa! I know I am an outlier but 27 minutes, really?

We are going to see Julie and Julia, for two reasons. First and foremost Tina's brother Charlie had a serious boy crush on Julia Child and watched every single episode of the French Chef. When she died, Charlie cried. So we will go, with Charlie, to remember and celebrate the life of this extraordinary women who empowered so many in the kitchen! Julia Child is an Icon! After all she actually paved the way for the Food Network.

But this could have been my movie. True story. I have an active imagination, based on kernels of reality. I  have seen myself at the Oscars, twice in fact. The first time I am watching Kathy Bates accept the best actress award for portraying me in a movie "Testing the Human Spirit", a true story about my work as a nurse taking care of pediatric patients with AIDS. My second  appearance is for a documentary in which I work my way through Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Those plans fell apart after I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease and working my way through a singe recipe became very challenging.  My hopes of hitting the hollywood scene were dashed and Julie Powell stole the show. I am happy for her really, even if it was sort of my idea. I am mostly happy that cooking is going to hit the big screen and maybe bring some enthusiasm back to the kitchen.

I will admit, I am  excentric, especially in the kitchen. If I want tomato paste I start with tomatoes  and spend an entire day cooking them down to a tangy paste. I always start from scratch and buck the food marketing researchers idea of what cooking today is all about. According to their model and their idea on the direction of cooking, my off spring, if I had them, would consider my idea of cooking crazy. They may be right according to history. Apparently in the 1950's the rage of breaking down cooking to opening cans and boxes and using packaged food was redefined with the advent of leaving something for the cook to do, specifically, crack open an egg, so "she" could take ownership of the cake". That is crazy. I do spend hours in the kitchen, chopping, dicing, sauteing, braising, stewing. If it comes in a bottle and I can make it myself, I do, chutney, mayo, soup, sauces . . . If it comes in a box and I can make it myself I do. When I grocery shop my cart is full of fruit, vegetables, weird flours, dairy and meat. I am not going to be tricked into thinking the box cake mix is somehow mine if I crack an egg into it. 

And that movie idea, well it is on the back burner!

1 comment:

Katrina said...

I'm going to be super dorky and cook a Julia Child recipe and then go see the movie. YAY for themes!