“And here it is: Le Gâteau Victoire au Chocolat, Mousseline! One of the great chocolate cakes of all time, according to me.”
Not, “in my opinion,” but “according to me.” Who says that? A master citing herself, that’s who.
She restates this notion of self-authority in the same television segment, a guide to an intimate tableside cooking of Steak Diane:
“So, as I said at the beginning before we started cooking, I think this is a nifty little dinner (and I really agree with myself) for a chafing dish dinner.”
The menu (which she pronounces “may-noo”) of this very simple feast includes:
- A cold first course, a ceviche [“sev-EE-chee”] of scallops, with fresh artichoke bottoms
- Steak Diane (“cooked in a chafing dish, right at the table”)
- Mashed potatoes, “made out of actual potatoes, which is a rare thing” (rare in 1978, I guess)
- Fresh peas
- The cake, made with a full pound of chocolate
For this meal alone, the following alcohols are used:
- For the cake, rum.
- For the steak’s sauce, “a little bit of Madeira or port… [plus] a few drops of cognac” added at the last minute for taste. (“That never hurt anything.”)
- “With the Steak Diane, I would serve a nice red Bordeaux, or a cabernet, and with the first course, the ceviche, you could serve a chablis or Riesling.”
- And with the dessert, “a fine bottle of vintage champagne, maybe one of the great California wines.”
2/21/11 | Postscript: I am amused to see that many Google searches leading readers to this page include the words julia+child+drunk, was+julia+child+drunk, or words to that effect. No, my headline is only a play on words, reflecting Child’s citation of herself as an authority, and her love of using alcohol in her cooking. Her producer, Geoffrey Drummond, watched the 700+ shows that survive on tape, and never once saw her drinking from a bottle or exhibiting signs of inebriation (or, for that matter, dropping a chicken or reusing food that fell on the floor).