Google Doodle Celebrates Julia Child’s 100th Birthday [Video]

Julia Child – celebrated chef, author, and television personality – is the subject of today’s Google doodle around most of the world, even as Google celebrates Independence Day in India.

Google is honouring American chef, author, and television personality Julia Child on her 100th birth anniversary on Wednesday, August 15, with a doodle on its home page featuring a table full of food items, including a cake, fish and turkey, arranged in a way to form the letters of the Google logo, reports IBN Live.

Julia Child, born Julia Carolyn McWilliams, is famous for introducing French cuisine to the American public with her debut cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and her subsequent television programs, the most notable of which was The French Chef, which premiered in 1963.

Born in Pasadena, California on August 15, 1912, Julia was the eldest of three children. Child attended Westridge School, Polytechnic School from fourth grade to ninth grade, then The Katherine Branson School in Ross, California. With a towering height of six feet and two inches, Julia Child played tennis, basketball, and golf.

According to Guardian, during the second world war she worked for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the US intelligence agency that served as a precursor to the CIA. She married another OSS employee, Paul Cushing Child, who was an artist, poet, photographer and gourmet on September 1.

He introduced Julia to fine cuisine.

Julia moved to Paris after marriage, and it was in the French capital that her culinary journey began, writes NDTV. She attended the famous Le Cordon Bleu cooking school and later studied privately with Max Bugnard and other master chefs.

Child later recalled her first meal in the city of Rouen as a culinary revelation, describing the meal of oysters, sole meunière and wine to the New York Times on one occasion as “an opening up of the soul and spirit for me.”

Then she joined the women’s cooking club Cercle des Gourmettes, and met Simone Beck, who was writing a French cookbook for Americans with her friend Louisette Bertholle. Beck proposed that Child work with them, to make the book appeal to Americans.

The three women were to setup L’école des trois gourmandes (The School of the Three Food Lovers) in 1951, to teach cooking to American women in Paris. And in 1961 the 734-page Mastering the Art of French Cooking finally hit the shelves. The book became an instant success, and was popular with the audience as well as the critics.

On WGBH-TV, Child had its debut on February 11, 1963, and got successful. The show ran nationally for ten years. In 1981, she founded The American Institute of Wine & Food, and in 1996, Julia Child was ranked 46 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.

At 6ft 2in tall, aged 51 and with a distinctive, warbling voice, Julia was regarded as an unlikely television star but the weekly US programme she started hosting in 1963 lasted for 206 episodes.

Julia Child authored other books like The French Chef Cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume Two, and From Julia Child’s Kitchen. She went on to other shows, Julia Child and Company, and Dinner With Julia, and won various broadcasting awards. The Legion of Honour was bestowed along the way by France.

She won various Emmy Awards, Daytime Emmy Awards, a Peabody Award as well as a U.S. National Book Award. After the death of her beloved friend Simone Beck, Child retired from active life in June 1992.

On August 13, 2004, Julia Child died of kidney failure at her retirement community home, Casa Dorinda, in Montecito, two days before her 92nd birthday. Child ended her last book, My Life in France, with “… thinking back on it now reminds that the pleasures of the table, and of life, are infinite – toujours bon appétit!”

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