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15 Fascinating Facts About Julia Child

Julia Child was much more than just a bestselling cookbook author and cook. She has also been a breast cancer survivor, TV trailblazer, and government spy throughout her life. It is the famous chef’s spy game that will be the focus Julia, a new series developed by ABC Signature and created by Benjamin Brand.

The project will be inspired by Child’s PBS program Cooking for the CIA “I was disappointed when I learned that the CIA stands for the Culinary Institute of America in this case,” Brand told Deadline. “Central Intelligence Agency Cooking Secrets always seemed like a more interesting show to me. Many years later, when I read a biography of Julia Child and learned of her experiences during World War II, I worked for the Office of Strategic Services ̵

1; the CIA’s precursor – the story of Julia quickly fallen into position. “

Although Julia is going to be a fiction, here are 15 facts about beloved chef who was born on August 15th, 1912.

1. Julia Child met the inventor of the Caesar salad as a child.

As a teenager, Julia Child traveled to Tijuana on a family vacation. Her parents took her to dine at Caesar Cardini’s restaurant so they could all try his trendy “Caesar Salad”. Kind remembered the formative culinary experience The New York Times: “My parents were so excited to eat this famous salad that suddenly became very chic. Caesar himself was a tall old man who stood right in front of us to make it through. I remember turning the salad in the bowl was very dramatic. And egg in a salad was unknown at the time. “Years later, when she was a famous cook herself, Child convinced Cardini’s daughter Rosa to share the authentic recipe with her.

2. The WAVES and WACs rejected Julia Child as too big.

Like so many others of her generation, Child felt a call to serve when America entered World War II. There was only one problem: their size. At a height of 6’2 “, the child was rated” too tall “for both the Voluntary Emergency Service Women (WAVES) and the Women’s Army Corps (WAC). However, she was accepted by the forerunner of the CIA, which tells us brings our next point.

3. Julia Child was a spy during World War II.

The child took a position with the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), which was basically the CIA 1.0. She began as a research fellow in the Secret Intelligence department, where she worked directly for the head of the OSS, General William J. Donovan. But she moved to the OSS Emergency Sea Rescue Equipment Section and then took on an overseas post for the last two years of the war. First in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) and later in Kunming, China, Child served as chief of the OSS registry. This meant that she had a security clearance of the highest order. It also meant that she was working with Paul Child, the OSS officer she would eventually marry.

4. Julia Child helped develop a shark repellant for the Navy.

While in the emergency rescue equipment department, Child helped the team find a suitable shark repellent. Since the outbreak of the war, several US naval officers had been attacked by the predators of the ocean, so the OSS brought in a zoological scientist and an anthropologist to find a solution. The child helped with this mission and remembered her experiences in the book Sisterhood of Spies: “I have to say we had a lot of fun. We designed rescue kits and other utensils for agents. I understand that the shark repellant we developed is now being used on rundown space equipment – strapped on so the sharks don’t attack when they land in the ocean. “

5. Julia Child got married in bandages.

After the war ended, Julia and Paul Child decided to “take a few months to get to know each other in civilian clothes”. They met with family members and traveled across the country before deciding to tie the knot. The wedding took place on September 1, 1946. Julia recalled that she was “extremely happy, but had been a little bit involved in a car accident the day before”. She wasn’t kidding; For her wedding photos, she actually had to wear a bandage on the side of her face. The New York Review of Books has one of these pictures.

6. Julia Child was a terrible cook well into her 30s.

The child did not have a natural talent for cooking. In fact, she was a self-admitted disaster in the kitchen until she started taking classes at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, where she and Paul lived for several years. Before they married, Child ate a simple frozen dinner. It was probably the safest choice; One of her earliest attempts at cooking resulted in an exploded duck and an oven fire.

7. Lunch in Rouen changed Julia Child’s life.

The child repeatedly attributed a meal that had piqued her interest in fine food: a lunch in the French city of Rouen that she and Paul enjoyed on the way to their new home in Paris. The food consisted of oysters Portuguese A sea meunière is browned on the half-shell in Normandy butter, followed by a salad with baguettes, cheese and coffee for dessert. They “also happily drank a whole bottle of Pouilly fumé” over the courses.

8. It took Julia Child nine years to write and publish her first cookbook.

Master the art of French cooking revolutionized home cooking when it was released in 1961 – but the revolution didn’t happen overnight. Child began working on her famous tape in 1952 when she met Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle. The French women wrote a cookbook to teach Americans how to make French cuisine and brought Child on board as the third author. Nine years of research, rewritings and rejections followed before the book ended up being published by Alfred A. Knopf.

9. Julia Child became famous for beating eggs on Boston public television.

The kid’s big TV break came from an unlikely source: Boston’s local WGBH broadcaster. During promotion Master the art of French cooking, Child appeared as a guest on the book review program I have read. But instead of sitting down and discussing the semantics of the recipe, Child started cracking eggs into a hotplate she had brought with her. She was making an omelet on the air as she answered questions and the audience loved it. The station received dozens of letters asking for further demonstrations, leading WGBH producer Russell Morash to offer Child a deal. She filmed three pilot episodes that turned into her star show The French chef.

10. All of Julia Child’s essential utensils were kept in a “sacred bag”.

After a 1974 New Yorker Profile child carried a large black canvas bag known as a “sacred bag”. Instead of sacred artifacts, it contained the cooking utensils she could not live without. This included her pastry cutting wheel, her favorite flour scoop and her knife. She started using it when The French chef Premiere and only trusted certain people with its care.

11. Julia Child survived breast cancer.

Pediatricians ordered a mastectomy in the late 1960s after a routine biopsy returned with cancerous results. She was in a depressed mood after her 10 day hospital stay and Paul was a wreck. But she later commented on her surgery in hopes it would remove the stigma on other women. she said TIME“I certainly wouldn’t be walking around with a radical [mastectomy] because it’s not worth it. “

12. Julia Child’s marriage was way ahead of its time.

Paul and Julia Child, as their meeting in the OSS offices suggests, were a long way from a conventional marriage (at least by 1950s standards). After Julia’s career began, Paul happily helped in every possible way – as a taste tester, dishwasher, agent, or manager. He had retired from the Foreign Service in 1960 and immediately plunged into an active role in Julia’s business. The New Yorker noted Paul’s advancing stance in his 1974 Profile of Julia, noting that he “suffered from no apparent male ego insecurities.” Until his death in 1994 he was Julia’s partner in the truest sense of the word.

13. Julia Child was the first woman to be inducted into the Hall of Fame for the Culinary Institute of America.

The child spent her early years working for the Central Intelligence Agency. In 1993 she joined another CIA: the Culinary Institute of America. The group inducted Child into the Hall of Fame earlier this year, making it the first woman to ever receive the honor.

14. Julia Child received the highest civilian awards from the USA and France.

Along with this CIA award, Child received top civilian awards from both her homeland and the country she considered her second home. In 2000 she took on the Legion D’Honneur of Jacques Pépin at the Le Méridien Hotel in Boston. Just three years later, George W. Bush awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

15. Julia Child’s kitchen is in the Smithsonian.

In 2001, Julia donated the kitchen Paul designed in her Cambridge, Massachusetts home to the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Although it is not possible to go directly through it, there are three viewing windows from which visitors can see the tall counters, the wall of copper pots, and the shiny stove. Framed recipes, items, and other memorabilia from her career adorn the surrounding walls – and of course there is a television that plays her cooking shows in a loop.

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