Julia Child and Alice Waters changed food in the United States. They are also two women I feel very close to. My father cooked with Julia Child during one of our stints in Massachusetts and growing up we had a photo of dad and Julia hanging in the dining room. Her smile and personality were so warm you felt like she was in the room with you. Over the years as I have evolved in the kitchen and beyond, I have developed a food mantra that is strongly represented by these women: how we eat can change the world. Both women love simple and delicious food – they agreed that pretentious didn’t always equal good. However, they are equally talented with gourmet and rustic approaches. Julia never had restaurants to feature her creations but she has her various tomes and her TV series, The French Chef which clearly show her relationship with ingredients and recipes. Alice Waters has the world-renowned Chez Panisse in northern California and her smattering of cookbooks.
Alice and Julia were each deeply affected by their time in France. Julia went to France with her husband, Paul Child, and over the course of personal exploration enrolled in culinary school. Julia flourished in Paris and truly connected with the food in a way foreign to most of her U.S. contemporaries. Alice visited France during college and relished her time shopping in the public markets and preparing humble and delicious meals for group dinners. These women are incredibly strong-willed and brilliant, and warm. They seem equally willing and able to comfort a crying friend and go to battle for something they believe in – qualities I admire.
Alice supplies her restaurant with local ingredients and Julia would hit the markets nearly daily for all of her meals. The further I have delved into health and nutrition, the more obsessed I have become with making everything I possibly can – growing the food, making the yogurt, hemming the curtains, etc. Carver isn’t so much a fan of all of my projects but oh well! Below are snap shots of the shining stars in my fall garden. Hopefully I will be able to use these ingredients very soon, channel Alice and Julia, and make something fabulous.