Friday, December 5, 2008

Julie & Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen by Julie Powell

With the humor of Bridget Jones and the vitality of Augusten Burroughs, Julie Powell recounts how she conquered every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

Julie Powell is 30 years old, living in a rundown apartment in Queens and working at a soul-sucking secretarial job that's going nowhere. She needs something to break the monotony of her life, and she invents a deranged assignment. She will take her mother's dog eared copy of Julia Child's 1961 classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and she will cook all 524 recipes. In the span of one year.

At first she thinks it will be easy. But as she moved from the simple Potage Parmentier into the more complicated realm of aspics and crepes, she realizes there's more to Mastering the Art of French Cooking than meets the eye.

I don't consider myself a true foodie, but I do enjoy reading about other people's adventures with food. I like reading about the odd, interesting and even disgusting things that people eat, because I'm not adventurous enough to eat them myself.

This book had more to do with the author's life, friends, blog and experiences with the Project, as she calls it, than the actual cooking itself. This wasn't bad, but it wasn't really what I was expecting either.

Powell is quite funny, which I didn't expect either, but definitely enjoyed! She did tend to go off on a few tangents...Some of which had me laughing, and some had me shaking my head in confusion. She also does a fair bit of swearing, which doesn't bother me, but if you are opposed to that, you have been warned.

I don't feel inclined to follow in Powell's footsteps, but it was an entertaining and fun book that I would recommend to memoir lovers and foodies alike.


Lenore Appelhans said...

This does sound fun - though I'm sure I could never do such a thing. I'm pretty much clueless in the kitchen...

Monica (aka monnibo) said...

I saw this in the bookstore today. I was intrigued but I resisted picking up ANY fiction as I was there for a purpose. LOL

Sandy Nawrot said...

I just finished this book on my vacation last week and reviewed it on my blog. I truly enjoyed it, foul words and all, probably because the whole thing reminded me so much of myself. Since I quit working four and a half years ago, I have been on something of a quest to up my game in the kitchen. Hunting for bizarre ingredients, tackling five page recipes with 40 steps, the ever-challenging homemade mayo, you name it. Somehow, she got the book and movie deal and here I sit! I do look forward to the movie. With Meryl Streep and Amy Adams, how bad can it be?