Now that the dust has settled a bit I’d like to share some more memories of this year’s IACP annual conference in Portland. I gave you the gist here but now I want to give you a little more to chew on.
First off, those pomegranate margaritas above are what I ended the IACP conference with. I made them at my friend Craig’s birthday party on Saturday night and they were delicious. It was the perfect cocktail to end the conference with considering the recipe is from IACP cookbook award finalist Chris and Idie Hastings’ The Hot and Hot Fish Club Cookbook.
One of the best events that I attended at the IACP conference in Portland was the Julia Child talk with Judith Jones. I’m guessing that if you read this blog you know who Judith Jones is but just in case you don’t, she’s the legendary Knopf senior editor and vice president who’s worked with everyone from Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus to James Beard and of course Julia Child. She discovered and edited Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking after all.
Several months ago Julia Child’s program The Way to Cook, which aired in the late 1980s in conjunction with her seminal namesake book (Judith Jones worked closely with her on both) became available on DVD. At IACP Jones talked about the making of the show, the book, and Julia Child. It was a charmed event and here are some highlights…
HIGHLIGHTS FROM JUDITH JONES’ TALK ABOUT JULIA CHILD AT THE 2010 IACP CONFERENCE IN PORTLAND:
Jones noted that during the 6-week production schedule of the series The Way to Cook the caterer put cilantro into just about every lunch. They ate it and didn’t bat an eye until finally several days into cilantro Julia Child raised up her arms in a playful way and cried, “No more cilantro!”
Jones mentioned another time when Child was fishing a bouquet garni out of a pot. She finally got it and said matter of factly in front of the camera, “Looks like a dead mouse.”
At some point during taping someone asked Julia Child why she always massaged chicken and she responded dryly, “I think the chicken likes it.”
Jones talked about a dinner at Julia and Paul’s one night when she made a simple potato dish, Paul made cocktails, and Julia made the main. Jones said that she added a little garlic while Julia hovered behind her and watched. At dinner Paul tasted the potatoes, smiled, raised his glass and toasted her. Jones said she was, “in cook’s heaven!”
Jones made a bit of fun of Food Network shows during her IACP talk and the channel’s slick everything prepped and ready-to-go in ramekins way by saying, “Who wants eight small cups to wash when they’re finished with making dinner?”
One time on camera Julia Child was working on a soon to be roasted suckling pig and trying to figure out how to deal with the tail so it wouldn’t burn. Finally, she said with a twinkle in her eyes, “Well, there’s a perfectly natural little hole right underneath it for the tail to go in so you don’t even need to bother.”
A FEW THINGS THAT JUDITH JONES SAID THAT SUM UP JULIA CHILD’S CHARACTER:
“She had a strong impulse to communicate and to teach us to cook.”
“Her biggest desire was to teach Americans the subtle art of French cooking.”
“Julia’s message was always to have fun and enjoy.”
“Julia was always open to change — if it was good change. Her standards were high. The first time she used a food processor she was absolutely thrilled with it.”
“Julia always liked food that wasn’t fiddled with too much and was what it was.”
“She never lost that naturalness.”
On that note I’ll end this post. I feel very lucky to have been able to attend this magical event. My heros — alive and in spirit…