Sunday Food


I took practically the whole day off yesterday to make a Julia Child dinner of chicken fricassee drowned in a wine, onion, and mushroom sauce with buttered peas, homemade bread, and Bavarian chocolate cream with homemade whipped cream for dessert.

I ran the dishwasher three times and preparing the recipes took HOURS. Then I got out another cookbook, just out of curiosity, and checked out the chicken fricassee recipe, to compare. It was a whole lot simpler, but I could also tell from the ingredients and short-cut instructions that it couldn’t possibly taste the same. No butter or cream or twentieth step is spared by Julia Child. Which is why her sauces taste so magnificent. The sauce on that chicken is so good, you would eat it by itself. And the Bavarian chocolate cream? I gave the girls their desserts to take upstairs to Morgan’s room. They started eating before they got upstairs and I could hear them all the way up the stairs. “This is so good. THIS IS SO GOOD.” And it was. It was insanely delicious. And it had better be. I spent two hours yesterday making that Bavarian chocolate cream.

This is definitely not everyday food–because who has the time? But it’s very very very very wonderful Sunday food. And on a Sunday, I didn’t mind the time. It was fun. And SO GOOD.


  1. joykenn says:

    I’ve found with Julia’s recipes that the more times you make a dish the steps get easier and you get much faster at doing them or at doing something else while doing them. But it IS slow food. We’re so used to “quick and easy” that we forget how delicious slow and careful can be. I imagine a french housewife shopping every morning for fresh ingredients, planning her menu over strong coffee and starting her preparations in a tiny kitchen. While simmering she washes up her dishes, does a bit of housework, maybe some mending.

  2. AnnieB says:

    Suzanne, I’m so glad you discovered Julia Child! That fricassee looks so yummy!

    This is one of the first cookbooks I ever got as an adult. At this point the binding is broken and it’s held together with rubber bands. . . .Time to find a new copy, I guess. :yes:

    While a lot of her recipes are involved, some are really pretty easy. The best soup in the world is her leek and potato soup, it has about four ingredients and is simply perfect. And the quiche recipes are also easy and very very good. I hope you have fun going though Julia’s book!

  3. Glenda says:

    It sounds like making the dinner was almost as enjoyable for you as eating it! It sounds simply delicious. Both recipes are something I have never done…I have her cookbook too.

  4. Joell says:

    Suzanne, where was all of your “staff” whilst you were slaving away in the kitchen?
    You dinner sounds like it should be on the menu of a five star resturant, you outdid your self, I am sure everyone enloyed it.

  5. GA_in_GA says:

    I agree with Joy, the more times you make the recipe the easier it becomes. I know your meal was simply delicious yesterday and so worth all of your effort. :yes:

    Have always been a big fan of Julia, from the beginning. I cannot wait to hear of your next JC cooking endeavor.

  6. LisaAJB says:

    You inspired me so much with your last post that had the omelet video that I’ve been watching all of her old shows in my spare time. I am totally falling in love with Julia! She doesn’t cut corners, but she seems to understand what’s important and what’s not. Like when she’s working with world famous pastry chefs and she’s eating the crumbs off of the counter. Life’s too short to waste chocolate! I’m making her potato pancakes for dinner. These won’t take two hours, especially with my food processor, but they will be delicious.

  7. justdeborah2002 says:

    My family has Sunday dinner as well. This week’s was Mexican food, started some 11 months ago with canning pulled beef….and the actual prep took about 6 hours.
    For dessert, I made Julia’s chocolate mousse with Valhrona chocolate brought home from Paris.
    The mousse…divine!!! But it took 6 freaking bowls to make! Definitely labour and dish intensive…but worth it, for a Sunday dinner indeed.

  8. Butterbean says:

    Sounds wonderful!!! Bavarian Chocolate Cream just sounds like it tastes good!!!

  9. CATRAY44 says:

    Suzanne, have you ever watched “Babette’s Feast”?

  10. whaledancer says:

    I once heard an interview with Julia Child and her husband Paul, where she said that when she cooked, he washed the dishes, which he said was only fair. I always figured that’s why her recipes use so many dishes.

    JustDeborah2002, my husband used to fix that chocolate mousse, and I agree, it’s fantastic. That man knows the way to a woman’s heart!

  11. jamitysmom says:

    Suzanne, I used to watch Julia’s show when I was young – she was wonderful. I don’t have her cookbook (yet!) but would love it. Your dinner looks fantastic! My daughter actually had the book “My Life in France” and I can’t put it down! It’s really so interesting, so many things I didn’t know about Julia, like that she and Paul met in Ceylon, so exotic, and that she didn’t know how to cook at all when she got married. It’s a very good book. And I love “whaledancer”‘s comment about Paul doing the dishes when Julia cooked – it is only fair! Right?? 😆

  12. Murphala says:

    Dude, just looking at the picture made my arteries slam shut. It looks totally delicious! The Bavarian chocolate cream sounds dreamy…

    The one French Chef show I remember most vividly was the Buche De Noel…the yule log where Julia was flinging caramelized sugar over a broomstick to make moss. Something about that episode just stuck with me.

  13. twiggityNDgoats says:

    Could you please offer time-management classes at your workshops:-)
    I’d love to know how you get everything done. I could use a few pointers. I have 14 baby goats, five on the bottle, milking chores, a barn partly built, fence posts with no wire yet, and repairs to our spring to make, not to mention fixing food for us. Ahhhh, spring!!

  14. JerseyMom says:

    oh YUM!!!! That looks so very, very good. My mouth is watering. I love making slow food when I can find a day to do it. I’ll start looking for one right now~~

  15. auntie julie says:

    I have the cookbook and havent tried to make anything yet…I am so going to make that chicken this weekend girls! looks soooo yummy

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