Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Audio: Hungry in Winter — The Literary Julia Child

Julia Child wanted to be a novelist, or to write for The New Yorker. “They weren’t interested in me, for some reason.” So she just kept reading — and finally wrote a book which revolutionized the way that Americans think about food. In this twenty minute recording, we have selections from a number of authors talking about what we eat and how we eat it.

The British actress Liz Marks reads of 8-year-old Jane Eyre’s hunger at the orphanage where she’s fed burnt porridge, and Julia Child talks about grains, one of the first things that people cooked: “Just add water and stir.” Annie Somerville, executive chef at Greens Restaurant in San Francisco, shows how to cook a delicious dinner of grains—farro risotto with leeks, chard, and mushrooms, as well as a fantastic recipe for Herbed Potatoes in Parchment Packages. Mary Risley, of the Tante Marie Cooking School, presents a simple dessert that would have been a treat for the girls in the orphanage. Michael Belitsos reads from “Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant,” by Anne Tyler — a book about Ezra, a chef who starts a restaurant serving the foods people are homesick for. It turns out he’s homesick for what he never had. As we listen, a love story is woven between the recipes and the novel excerpts, proving Julia Child’s conviction that cooking is always about more than food.

To listen to Julia Child and others tell stories about food, click here:



File photo of Julia Child in 1975. Credit: Getty Images.

Julia Child in 1975

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