NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The definitive cookbook on French cuisine for American readers: "What a cookbook should be: packed with sumptuous recipes, detailed instructions, and precise line drawings. Some of the instructions look daunting, but as Child herself says in the introduction, 'If you can read, you can cook.'" —Entertainment Weekly
“I only wish that I had written it myself.” —James Beard
Featuring 524 delicious recipes and over 100 instructive illustrations to guide readers every step of the way, Mastering the Art of French Cooking offers something for everyone, from seasoned experts to beginners who love good food and long to reproduce the savory delights of French cuisine.
Julia Child, Simone Beck, and Louisette Bertholle break down the classic foods of France into a logical sequence of themes and variations rather than presenting an endless and diffuse catalogue of dishes—from historic Gallic masterpieces to the seemingly artless perfection of a dish of spring-green peas. Throughout, the focus is on key recipes that form the backbone of French cookery and lend themselves to an infinite number of elaborations—bound to increase anyone’s culinary repertoire.
“Julia has slowly but surely altered our way of thinking about food. She has taken the fear out of the term ‘haute cuisine.’ She has increased gastronomic awareness a thousandfold by stressing the importance of good foundation and technique, and she has elevated our consciousness to the refined pleasures of dining." —Thomas Keller, The French Laundry
About the Author
JULIA CHILD, a native of California and a Smith College graduate; Simone (“Simca”) Beck, French-born and -educated; and Louisette Bertholle, half French and half American, educated in both countries, represented an even blending of the two backgrounds and were singularly equipped to write about French cooking for Americans. Child studied at Paris’s famous Cordon Bleu, and all three authors worked under various distinguished French chefs. In 1951 they started their own cooking school in Paris, L’Ecole des Trois Gourmandes, at the same time that Mastering the Art of French Cooking was taking shape. After that, Simone Beck published two cookbooks, Simca’s Cuisine in 1972 and New Menus from Simca’s Cuisine in 1979, and she continued to teach cooking in France until her death in 1991. Louisette Bertholle also had several cookery books published. In 1963, Boston’s WGBH launched The French Chef television series, which made Julia Child a national celebrity, earning her the Peabody Award in 1965 and an Emmy in 1966. Several public television shows and numerous cookbooks followed. She died in 2004.