Julie & Julia

juliejulia.jpgJulie & Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously
By Julie Powell

If you’ve been reading this blog, or my cooking one – pitiful as it is – for very long, you probably have some idea of how much I love to cook.  This book came about at the perfect time for me.  I turned 29 in January.

Nearing 30 and trapped in a dead-end secretarial job, Julie Powell resolved to reclaim her life by cooking, in the span of a single year, every one of the 524 recipes in Julia Child’s legendary Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Her unexpected reward: not just a newfound respect for calves’ livers and aspic, but a new life–lived with gusto.

So, did you ever hear about the Julie/Julia Project?  Julie Powell decided to do the above, cook all those recipes, and document it all on her blog.  And this was back when no one even KNEW what a blog was.  She became very popular and by the end was a sensation and landed a book deal for her trouble. 

I found myself really identifying with the slight, not exactly mid-life, but crisis all the same, that Julie finds herself in at hitting the age of 29.  I don’t know that I would go to the extreme of cooking all the recipes in Julia Child’s cookbook (I’m not much for calves brains and chicken livers!) but I could identify with the “where am I going with my life” aspect of Julie’s story. I too feel like I’m in a deadend job.  Sometimes I wonder what I’m doing with myself.  Why am I not doing what I want to be doing most?  I haven’t found a crazy plan to fix myself yet like Julie did (or did I?  T-Minus 11 weeks until the little man is here!). 

I found Julie’s writing to be refreshingly honest and candid.  Her humor is infectious.  She holds nothing back as she describes the various recipes she cooks (and how gross some sounded!) and how her crazy scheme affected her life, family and marriage.  I’ve heard some say they are wary of books by bloggers.  I’m sure you’ve heard, some people think bloggers can’t really write.  Whatever.  (See that!  I colored that green for a reason!) This book is not just for foodies, or bloggers, but anyone who has struggled to find her (or his) place in life and just want to be given the chance to be happy with their life.  Highly recommended.

8 thoughts on “Julie & Julia

  1. You know, the only thing I thought was wrong with the book is that there was too much life and not enough cooking. I guess when I read a food book, I want there to be a lot of food.

    I do have to admit, though, it was a fun book to read.

  2. Melissa, I was surprised there wasn't more about the cooking as well but I found myself liking Julie so much that I didn't mind. I would have liked to have known more about the different recipes though. Some of them sounded scary!

  3. This was one of the first books I read last year and I was disappointed in it. Like Melissa, I was expecting more emphasis on the food and less on her personal life.

  4. I loved this too, for all of the same reasons. I actually liked that it focuses as much as it does on her personal life…I could identify with a lot of her emotions, and her honesty was so refreshing.

  5. I didn't realize she was a blogger. Interesting. Julie and Julia is on my shelf. Since I'm not much of a cook, I'll probably enjoy the fact that she delves into her personal life as much as the actual cooking. Good to know. 🙂

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