Thursday, August 16, 2012

Happy Birthday Julia Child

 If you were on Google yesterday you know it was Julia Child's 100th birthday. Since I have been cooking through Baking with Julia (don't worry, there is the mother of all make up posts coming soon) I decided to celebrate by making Julia Child recipes for dinner last night. In true me form I hadn't made any of these before. I decided first on Coq au Vin or chicken in wine. If you know me at all I am not much of a wine drinker. Red tends to give me a migraine after the first couple of sips so I generally don't partake. Yesterday I was running around like crazy and didn't get to the liquor store until after I picked my son up from school....Awesome...I looked like the alki mom who drags her kid into the liquor store. I did ask before I took him in though to make sure they wouldn't get in trouble for him being in there. They said as long as he wasn't buying it would be fine. If only the grocery stores in Tennessee sold wine, this would not be an issue. Anyway, the recipe called for red: Zinfandel, Merlot, or Pinot noir . I had no idea what I was looking for but found an inexpensive bottle of Mad Housewife. After reading the description on the bottle I decided it was the one. :)

 I finally got my son home and started trying to get some preparation done. Before I knew it we needed to be out the door to get my girl. Once we were home it was on to cooking...finally. I whipped up Julia's Chocolate Mousse and was able to get that in the fridge to chill. Then prep began on the Eggplant and Zucchini Gratin. This was not difficult to put together and actually came out quite tasty. I think I may have eaten eggplant one other time in my life and before yesterday had never ever bought an eggplant. Munchkin really liked this but picked out the tomatoes. Bobby liked it but (tried them first) picked out parts of the egg plant. It was all I could do to get Little Man to eat just the zucchini. So, a fun recipe to try out and a success overall. It did call for Herbs de Provence, which Walmart did not have. I called Publix to make sure they had them before I made the extra trip. They did but the lady on the phone said "oh, you mean her-bs dee province?"......yeah.
 Once the veggies went in the oven it was time to work on the chicken.
That is my kitchen up there and looks pretty good. Of course that is when our house was on the market. Now, see if you can picture this: I went on one of those we are out of everything and anything grocery runs yesterday. Perishables were all put away but the cereal, crackers, all the junk full of preservatives were all still in the plastic bags next to the cabinets on the left. My son was sprawled on the floor next to that doing his homework, The sink (and the counter next to it) was full of the dishes from the mousse and the stove had several pans from use as double boilers and for blanching bacon. That corner over there under the open cabinet has all of my hoarded cookbooks and food network magazines. Needless to say, there was not much room for cooking. But, I made it work. I made Bobby go next door and have our wonderful neighbor open the bottle of wine for us...note to self go get a corkscrew that actually works. You may remember when I tried to open a bottle with a corn cob knob...not useful! Anyway, even without much space this turned out fantastically. My pictures are horrible this time since they are cell phone pics but you get the idea. The Coq au Vin probably could have browned a bit longer but it was quite tasty. Both my hubs and my daughter devoured it. My son took a little more convincing because the Mad Housewife turned it purple, but once the chicken was off the bone he seemed to like it pretty well. He held up an onion and asked  (rather whined) what it was. We said an onion and he looked like he was going to protest. I then said the magic words which were "There is chocolate mousse for dessert!". He popped the onion right in his mouth!

Last but not least we pulled the mousse out of the fridge. This is one of those recipes you cannot go wrong with. Bobby and I both loved it. Munchkin ate some and said there was a bit of a bitter taste to it. That could have been the rum or the coffee.  (I said rum and she pushed it away, she is reading Treasure Island and one of the pirates died from too much rum.) I assured her that the alcohol had burned off as I cooked it.

Overall, this was a very satisfying meal. The only thing that could have made it better is if I had had time to make some french bread to go with it. There is always next year. Happy birthday Julia!! :)

1 comment:

  1. Awesome way to celebrate! Nerves of steel to cook stuff you've never tried. And WOW! I LOVE eggplant! I'll have to look up the recipe for it. I'm laughing out loud about the Mad Housewife wine AND the corkscrew. I do not have a corkscrew that works...so, I always look for the twisty tops...cheap wine. Did it turn the chicken purple too? I made Doug green rice (food coloring) for St. Patty's day once and he refused to eat it. LOL!

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