Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Happy 100th Birthday, Julia Child and Julia’s Cherry Clafouti

Julia Child was an American cook, cookbook author and TV personality! If you’re reading this you already know that!  However, Julia was so much more…she was funny and never took herself too seriously! I just read that, during one of her shows she was flipping pancakes, dropped one…said Oops…picked it up and continued with the show!  August 15th would have been her 100th birthday. As a food blogger, I could not let the day pass without a tribute to this wonderful, talented lady, whom I greatly admired.  She was an icon in the food industry.  Her cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, changed the way Americans cooked. In the early 60’s to promote her cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, she started to cook on a PBS station in Boston.  PBS thought no one was watching, until the fan mail started to come in. In 1963, after appearing on a television panel show, Child began a weekly half-hour cooking program called,  The French Chef.  This show pioneered an entire genre of cooking shows.  The show proved more successful than her book. She had an off-beat style, a what the hell attitude, knowledge, and a flair for teaching.  She was hilarious!  This made her very popular. Her work was recognized with a Peabody Award in 1965, and an Emmy Award in 1966.   Her success on television landed her at number 46 on TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.”  

As a child I remember her TV show…I would watch her with total fascination.  She was so animated and her voice would hold me captive, even though I wasn’t interested in the cooking. 
Since then, I have accumulated most of Julia’s cookbooks.  I also belong to an online cooking group, Tuesdays with Dorie, that is cooking through Julia’s cookbook “Baking with Julia”.  
So here I sit…raising my glass to Julia Child on her 100th Birthday!!   This quote pretty much sums up Julia’s personality.
“The best way to execute French cooking is to get good and loaded, then whack the hell out of a chicken. Bon appétit.”    
Happy Birthday, Julia!  
Please check out the celebration at  PBS Cook for Julia! I decided to make Julia’s Cherry Calfouti! Easy and delicious. Made with fresh "in season" cherries…oh so good!  In my best Julia Child voice...Bon appétit!

Cherry Clafouti
A delightfully yummy custard filled dessert


Julia Child’s Cherry Clafouti
1 1/4 cups milk
2/3 cup sugar, divided
3 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup flour
3 cups cherries, pitted
powdered sugar, for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Using a blender, combine the milk, 1/3 cup sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt and flour, and blend.
Lightly butter an 8-cup baking dish, and pour a 1/4-inch layer of the blended mixture over the bottom. Set remaining batter aside.
Place dish into the oven for about 7-10 minutes, until a film of batter sets in the pan but the mixture is not baked through. Remove from oven (but don’t turn the oven off, yet).
Distribute the pitted cherries over the set batter in the pan, then sprinkle with the remaining sugar. Pour the remaining batter over the cherries and sugar.
Bake in the preheated oven for 45 to 60 minutes, until the clafouti is puffed and brown and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm.
Servings: 6-8 for dessert, 4 for breakfast.


  1. How fun! And you did an excellent job on the clafouti! Gorgeous in your usual style!

  2. Hi Kathy, what a lovely tribute to Julia, whom I love and respect so much for being the pioneer of 'all time' of women chefs! I remember her old cooking shows in black-and-white, also, I remember 'the Galloping Gourmet's' shows, and Jeff Smith...way before the Food Network cooking shows!

    Love, love, how your Cherry Clafouti turned out, so perfect, creamy, and loaded with lovely sweet, ripe, cherries. I did get a book from the library which has a recipe for Cherry Clafouti...will not be following that recipe for sure, can you imagine not pitting the cherries?...I had to double check the recipe and it sure did not mention pitting the cherries. I would be mortified if someone bit into a cherry pit and break their tooth!

    Thanks for sharing the wonderful post, and recipe, which I'm now bookmarking to make! xo

  3. A wonderful tribute, Kathy.
    The clafouti looks excellent!

  4. What a lovely tribute, Kathy!

  5. These look great! What a wonderful birthday celebration :)

  6. I made this dish in June, and it was wonderful. You're looks much nicer than mine did!

  7. Happy Birthday Julia! I really did love the move "julie and Julia" and getting some glimpses into her expat life in Paris. We can all dream, can't we? Your cherry clafouti looks just perfect.

  8. Kathy, beautiful post and delicious looking Cherry Clafouti, I love the way it looks like with all those wonderful cherries. And what a wonderful birthday post! Julia would have loved your dessert!

  9. Great post and great clafouti. I have never tried one before, but your picture makes me want to whip one up.

  10. Great post and tasty looking clafouti!

  11. I am such a big fan of anything cherry and this clafouti looks so good with all that beautiful cherries sitting in them.

  12. A beautiful commemorative post my friend which someone like Julia Child deserves :)
    This clafoutis looks gorgeous!

    Choc Chip Uru

  13. I used to love her TV shows! Truly an amazing woman. You've chosen well, Kathy. Cherry Clafouti is one of my favorite desserts!

  14. That would make an amazing breakfast!

  15. That quote is hysterical, Kathy! And your clafoutis is picture perfect :)

  16. I remember her show too Kathy. French food seemed like it came from another planet before Julia. (sometimes I still feel that way:)

    A wonderful tribute indeed and your Cherry Clafouti looks heavenly.

    Thank you so much for sharing...

  17. Wow - your Cherry Clafouti looks fantastic! Julia would be so proud :)

  18. You got it absolutely right, Kathy, Julia Child was hilarious. That's not a word I have ever used to describe her but it fits her to a T. Don't we all miss her? Cherry Clafouti is one of her classics and most popular recipes. A very fitting tribute to her and a very good dessert to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner ------ how long did it last?

  19. I love claufouti! Yours looks great. Julia would approve. I saw her once in the parking lot of the grocery store in Cambridge (Mass). I was too intimidated to say hello, but she was hard to miss.

  20. Such a lovely tribute, Kathy.
    You made such a wonderful clafouti - look at that cherries: fabulous!
    A great dessert!

  21. Wonderful tribute Kathy! The cherry clafouti looks beautiful, thanks for posting the recipe, I will definitely try it!