Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Recipe 49 - veganizing French food, ala Julia Child.. (oh my).

Well hello.
I bet you don't know what today is?

Well, today my kids and I are celebrating my fur-child Sabrina's 12th birthday, and while we do that, we're sending out an honorary birthday wish to none-other than the brilliant Julia Child!  She's 100 today (well she would be). 

I find this to be fascinating, especially since my next recipe veganization is in honor of the film that enticed me to even do this blog - 'Julie and Julia'. 

So,  In honor of my blog, and Julia Child's 100'th birthday today (wow!)  I'm about to embark on a French dish called Poulet au Porto.

And OMG, this thing is further from vegan than Julia herself!  I don't even know... I think I'm going to attempt this on Friday.  Now, who's going to get the excess leftovers when I'm done? I dunno.  Maybe I'll ship some on over to baby-mama who so nicely made me my favorite sick-food this week ('chicken' and dumplins)  mmmm.  We'll see what happens.

But, before we do that let's look at an excerpt of 'My Life in France' by Julia herself, and the reasoning for the movie that was made. 

"This is a book about some of the things I have loved most in life: my husband, Paul Child; la belle France; and the many pleasures of cooking and eating. It is also something new for me. Rather than a collection of recipes, I've put together a series of linked autobiographical stories, mostly focused on the years 1948 through 1954, when we lived in Paris and Marseille, and also a few of our later adventures in Provence. Those early years in France were among the best of my life. They marked a crucial period of transformation in which I found my true calling, experienced an awakening of the senses, and had such fun that I hardly stopped moving long enough to catch my breath.

Before I moved to France, my life had not prepared me for what I would discover there. I was raised in a comfortable, WASPy, uppermiddle-class family in sunny and non-intellectual Pasadena, California. My father, John McWilliams, was a conservative businessman who managed family real-estate holdings; my mother, Carolyn, whom we called Caro, was a very warm and social person. But, like most of her peers, she didn't spend much time in the kitchen. She occasionally sallied forth to whip up baking-powder biscuits, or a cheese dish, or finnan haddie, but she was not a cook. Nor was I.

As a girl I had zero interest in the stove. I've always had a healthy appetite, especially for the wonderful meat and the fresh produce of California, but I was never encouraged to cook and just didn't see the point in it. Our family had a series of hired cooks, and they'd produce heaping portions of typical American fare—fat roasted chicken with buttery mashed potatoes and creamed spinach; or well-marbled porterhouse steaks; or aged leg of lamb cooked medium gray—not pinky-red rare, as the French do—and always accompanied by brown gravy and green mint sauce. It was delicious but not refined food.

Paul, on the other hand, had been raised in Boston by a rather bohemian mother who had lived in Paris and was an excellent cook. He was a cultured man, ten years older than I was, and by the time we met, during World War II, he had already traveled the world. Paul was a natty dresser and spoke French beautifully, and he adored good food and wine. He knew about dishes like moules marini√®res and boeuf bourguignon and canard √† l'orange—things that seemed hopelessly exotic to my untrained ear and tongue. I was lucky to marry Paul. He was a great inspiration, his enthusiasm about wine and food helped to shape my tastes, and his encouragement saw me through discouraging moments. I would never have had my career without Paul Child."

Now, even though Julia was a sweet, rather funny woman.  I'm sure "vegan" was not in her vocab.  So, even though I know several other people have done this, "I" have yet to do my best vegan Julia... and with that, I am excited.  The recipe in and of itself doesn't look extremely challenging to me.. but that means nothing until I have my hands in it.

I'm excited
You're excited (maybe)
Let's all dance.

Let's be more excited (and possibly blown out of our chairs) when we see some numbers!!

Poulet au Porto                                        Un-Poulet au-Porto Ah-Yeah
Calories - 4829 (holy!)                                           450    
Total Fat - 311g (um)                                              12g
Cholesterol -  1391  mg                                           0mg
Sodium -  2100mg                                                   565mg
Total Carbs - 40.8g                                                  23.4g
Fiber - 4.6g                                                              5.6g
Protein - 272.5 g                                                      14.3g
WW Pts - 87 (I think this is not on the plan)                6

My heavens to Betsy (er, Julia)!
Now, Julia wasn't a small woman by any means, (She was more tall than anything) but I'm really quite surprised she wasn't 685lbs!  Wowow.  If all of her dishes numbered out like this, she must have had a great aerobic coach!

So, I have a double date on Saturday - if I don't get to this fancy thing by Friday I'll be working on it on Sunday (at the very worst, Tuesday, but we'll see what happens, I still have to do a long run that I missed last weekend!). 

Anyway, you don't need to know my schedule.  All you need to know is that I'm about to take the Poulet out of the Poulet au Porto and save us a chicken in the long run!

The journey starts - this weekend.
I'll channel Julia, and Julie (I wonder if Julie would answer her email if I tried? My cousin Julie might!)

Music enjoyed while blogging:
Grim Grinning Ghosts - (I just heard the spirits were assembling for a swinging wake - wonder if Julia is involved since it's her birthday today?)

Current Craving:
Still.. guys I still need that hug!

Current Motivation:
Veganizing JC!
(Julia Child, not Jesus Christ - although I wonder how hard it would be to veganize the last supper?)

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