Cover image for Julia's casual dinners
Julia's casual dinners
Child, Julia.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Knopf : Distributed by Random House, 1999.
Physical Description:
115 pages : color illustrations ; 29 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Subject Term:

Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
TX715 .C545624 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
TX715 .C545624 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize
TX715 .C545624 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

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Offers step-by-step recipes for a series of menus for casual meals and includes shopping tips, suggestions for using leftovers, and planning advice.

Author Notes

Julia Child was born in Pasadena, California on August 15, 1912. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Smith College in 1934 and served with the Office of Strategic Services in East Asia during World War II. After the war, Child lived in Paris for six years, attending the famous Cordon Bleu cooking school.

After graduating from cooking school, Child opened her own culinary institute called, L'Ecole des Trois Gourmandes with her friends Simone Bech and Louisette Bertholle. She achieved critical acclaim with her first cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking which was first published in 1961 and is still in print today and helped to popularized French cuisine in America. Starting in 1963, Child hosted the first of many award winning cooking series on PBS, where she was best known for her exuberant personality and flamboyant cooking style.

Her other books include The French Chef Cookbook; From Julia Child's Kitchen; and The Way to Cook. She also filmed an instructional video series on cooking and wrote columns for various magazines and newspapers. She died of kidney failure on August 13, 2004 at the age of 91.

(Bowker Author Biography) Julia Child was born in Pasadena, California. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts & Santa Barbara, California.

(Publisher Provided)



Introduction Menu books are useful to have on hand since you can use them for complete dinners -- literally from soup to nuts -- where you are escorted step by step, or you can pluck out single dishes. This third book in our series gives you everything from a pep talk at the beginning of the menu to the shopping list, the order of battle, complete recipes for each dish plus variations and alternates, and suggestions on which wines go with what foods. Follow faithfully and you don't even have to think. Or you may want to substitute your own famous spinach recipe for the green beans suggested, or your special and sumptuous Riz á L'Impératrice for the Floating Island in the menu.     That Floating Island, however, is a very special dessert and one that's useful to have in your repertoire since you can ready the parts a day or two in advance, and it is the kind of finale that will go with almost any meal. This particular meal, Informal Dinner, includes a beautiful roast of veal that is slowly braised in a covered casserole with aromatic vegetables, producing its own fragrant sauce as all the elements slowly release and mingle their particular flavors. A sauté of grated zucchini and spinach completes the course. The dinner begins with a modest serving of crisp puff pastry rectangles filled with fresh asparagus tips and a dollop of lemon butter sauce. The Floating Island makes an attractive light finish, and is always a conversation piece. But you might prefer a fruit dessert, such as the orange and blueberry bowl in the UFOs in Wine dinner. The UFOs, by the way, are Rock Cornish game hens, broil-roasted with wine and cheese and served on a giant cake of sautéed shredded potatoes.     The Buffet for 19 offers some easily expandable dishes, from its turkey Orloff casserole with cheese, mushrooms, onions, and rice to its Jamaican ice cream goblet, where rum and coffee sprinkles cleverly garnish store-bought ice cream. When you want A Fast Fish Dinner we suggest you begin with a chilled beet and cucumber soup, which your food processor will make for you literally in a flash, puréeing cooked or canned beets and raw cucumbers. When you top each bowl with a splash of sour cream and some fresh dill you have made yourself an instant borscht. Monkfish tails are sautéed quickly, then briefly simmered in a julienne of colorful peppers and onions. The dessert is my favorite lemon flan.     A host of fine dishes awaits you here, from the very simple sauté of cherry tomatoes to the elaborately decorated crust for the pâté en croûte , and from basic mashed potatoes to that glorious chocolate creation, the Gâteau Victoire . May you enjoy these menus!     Bon Appétit! Julia Child 1998 Chapter One Turkey Orloff Turkey breast scallopini gratinéed with mushrooms, onions, rice, and cheese For 8 people ¼ cup (½ dL) plain raw white rice Salt 1 pound (450g or 5 to 6 medium-size) onions 1½ sticks (6 ounces or 180 g) butter 1 egg plus 2 egg yolks ½ pound (225 g or 3 to 3½ cups) fresh mushrooms A handful fresh parsley sprigs (to make 3 Tb minced) ½ tsp fragrant dried tarragon Pepper 12 or more turkey breast slices (see notes preceding recipe) 5 Tb flour for sauce, plus extra for turkey sauté 1 Tb vegetable oil 3 cups (¾ L) hot turkey stock (or chicken stock--see notes preceding recipe) ½ cup (1 dL) low-fat cottage cheese 1 cup (¼ L or 4 ounces) lightly pressed down coarsely grated mozzarella cheese Rice and onion soubise Preheat oven to 325°F/170°C. Drop the rice into a saucepan with 2 quarts (2 L) rapidly boiling salted water and boil uncovered for exactly 5 minutes; drain immediately and reserve. Meanwhile peel and then chop the onions in a food processor (it needs no washing until after its last operation). To do onions, prechop roughly by hand into 1-inch (2½-cm) chunks and process them 1½ cups (3½ dL) at a time, using metal blade and switching machine on and off 3 or 4 times at 1-second intervals to chop onions into 3/8-inch (1-cm) morsels. Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a flameproof 6- to 8-cup (1½- to 2,-L) baking dish, stir in the chopped onions, the drained rice, and ¼ teaspoon salt, mixing well to coat with the butter; cover the dish and bake in middle level of oven for about 1 hour, stirring up once or twice, until rice is completely tender and beginning to turn a golden yellow. When the rice is done and still warm, beat in the egg; taste carefully and correct seasoning. May be done a day or two in advance. Mushroom duxelles While rice and onion soubise is cooking, trim and wash the mushrooms. For the food processor, first chop roughly by hand into 1-inch (2½-cm) chunks, then process into 1/8-inch (½-cm) pieces, using the 1-second on-off technique. Mince the parsley in the machine afterward. By handfuls, either twist mushrooms hard in the corner of a towel or squeeze through a potato ricer to extract as much of their juices as possible. Sauté the mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of the butter in a medium-size frying pan over moderately high heat, stirring and tossing until mushroom pieces begin to separate from each other--5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the tarragon and parsley; season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir half of the mixture into the cooked rice and onion soubise ; reserve the rest.     Mushroom duxelles may be cooked in advance and may be frozen. Preparing the turkey scallopini Pound the slices between 2 sheets of wax paper, with a rubber hammer, a rolling pin, or the side of a bottle, to expand them about double and to thin them down by half. These are your turkey scallopini; cover and refrigerate them until you are ready to sauté them. Sautéing the turkey scallopini Salt and pepper the turkey slices lightly, dredge in flour and shake off excess, sauté for about a minute on each side in the oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter (more if needed) -- just to stiffen them and barely cook through. Set slices aside on a plate as you finish them. The gratinéing sauce Make a turkey velouté sauce as follows. Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter over moderate heat in a heavy-bottomed 2-quart (2-L) saucepan, blend in the flour, and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until flour and butter foam and froth together for 2 minutes without turning more than a golden yellow. Remove from heat and, when this roux has stopped bubbling, pour in 2 cups (½ L) of the hot turkey or chicken stock and blend vigorously with a wire whip. Return to heat, stirring slowly with wire whip to reach all over bottom, corner, and side of pan, and boil slowly for 2 minutes. Taste and correct seasoning. Sauce should be thick enough to coat a wooden spoon nicely, meaning it will coat the turkey. Beat in more stock by droplets if sauce is too thick. In the food processor or an electric blender, purée the egg yolks with the cottage cheese (or push through a fine sieve and beat in a bowl with a wire whip); by dribbles, beat the hot sauce into the egg yolk and cheese mixture. Assembling the dish Choose a baking-and-serving dish about 10 by 14 by 2 inches (25 x 35 x 5 cm); butter the inside, and spread a thin layer of sauce in bottom of dish. Make a neat, slightly overlapping pattern of the turkey slices down the center of the dish, spreading each, as you go, with the soubise . Spoon remaining mushroom duxelles down the sides. Spoon remaining sauce over the turkey and spread the mozzarella cheese on top.     Recipe may be prepared a day in advance to this point; when cool, cover and refrigerate. If, before proceeding, you note that the sauce does not cover some parts of the meat, spread more mozzarella on these areas. Final baking and serving Turkey will take about 25 minutes to heat and for the top to brown; it should be served fairly promptly since the meat will be juicier if it does not have to wait around. Set uncovered in upper third of a preheated 400°F/200°C oven until contents are bubbling hot and sauce has browned nicely. Sauté of Fresh Artichoke Hearts with Onions and Garlic Onions and garlic and a whisper of wine vinegar give a special taste to this sauté of artichokes. Serve it hot with roast or barbecued meats, cold as an hors d'oeuvre, or with sausages, or with hard-boiled eggs and sliced tomatoes. For 6 people as a vegetable accompaniment 6 to 8 fine fresh artichokes 1 lemon 4 Tb or so olive oil 1 head garlic 4 large onions Salt and pepper Thyme or mixed dried herbs 2 Tb or so butter 1 to 2 Tb wine vinegar Minced fresh parsley Equipment A heavy deep frying pan or an electric skillet Preparing the artichokes Artichoke hearts include the artichoke bottom and the tender part of the inner cone of leaves. When artichokes are very young and fresh, you can use the whole cone without removing the choke; however, it is rare indeed to find such quality outside the artichoke-growing regions. I prepare the usual store bought artichokes as follows, one at a time. Cut the stem off an artichoke, close to the base. Then bend the leaves at right angles to the base until they snap close to their large end; pull down toward the base to snap the leaf off, leaving the tender part of its base attached to the artichoke bottom; continue rapidly until you reach the pale creamy cone of leaves covering the choke. Shave the tough green from around the base of the artichoke, using a small knife at first, then a vegetable peeler. Frequently rub cut portions of artichoke base with half a lemon as you go to prevent discoloration. After trimming you will usually have to cut off the top part of the cone, down to where you judge the tender part begins. Cut the heart in half lengthwise and, if large, in quarters. Scoop out the choke (hairy portion covering bottom) with a small knife, and rub the quarters again with lemon. As soon as one heart is prepared, drop it into your frying pan with the olive oil and set over low heat, tossing to cover with the oil. Continue rapidly with the rest of the artichokes. The sauté With the artichokes still over low heat and being tossed now and then (toss by swirling and shaking pan by its handle), separate the cloves of garlic and drop them into a pan of boiling water for a moment to loosen the skins. Peel the cloves, halve or quarter them lengthwise if large, and add to the artichokes. Peel, halve, and slice the onions lengthwise; toss them into the pan with the artichokes and garlic. Season with salt, pepper, and herbs; add 2 tablespoons butter and toss to melt it. Cover the pan and cook slowly until artichokes are just tender when pierced with a knife--20 minutes or so--and toss once or twice. Pour in the vinegar, toss, cover, and cook 5 minutes more. Correct seasoning.     May be cooked in advance; set aside uncovered and reheat, tossing and adding a little more oil or butter if you wish. To serve hot Toss with minced parsley. To serve cold Let cool after their initial sauté and, if you wish, chill. Before serving, toss with a little lemon juice, a little olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, and fresh minced parsley. Copyright © 1999 Julia Child. All rights reserved.