Monday, August 10, 2009

Julie & Julia

(Fellow diner at Mediterranean in Positano)

In honor of the premier of the movie Julie & Julia, I’d like you to sample some of the utterly fresh and delicious food that I ate in Italy. And yes, there will be a recipe to try. (please excuse the varied fonts and type sizes... Blogger has gone postal on me this morning!)

(Citrus stand in Pompeii)

Just in case you’ve been vacationing in outer space and haven’t heard or read about Julie & Julia, it’s a movie adapted from two books (one based on a blog).

(Peppers for sale in Positano)

Julie Powell’s blog and book chronicle her mildly insane self-impose project to cook all of the 524 recipes in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking in 365 days.

(Pasta shop in Vietri)

Director Nora Ephron's movie alternates scenes from Julie's endeavor with those plucked from Julia's memoir.

(Bruschetta in Il Giardino, Cava de Tirreni)

Even before the movie officially opened, critics began warning that the scenes with Meryl Streep as Julia were fabulous and those with Amy Adams as Julie disappointing or worse.

(Marinated and smoked seafood antipasto at Evu, Vietri)

The Washington Post and NY Times reviews adored scenes in Paris in the 40s and 50s and described Julie’s post 9/11 existence as insignificant, boring and whiny.

(Fruit stand in Pompeii)

I actually preferred the here and now which captured a 30 something living in less than perfect housing in NYC to a tee. Could it be because I more closely identify with the angst of a blogger who wrote a book?

Julia may be a cultural icon and have her pots and pans on display at the Smithsonian, but Julie is proof that myths come true.

(Arugula with shrimp and shaved cheese, Raffaele, Vietri)

She blogged, she a scored a book contract and a got a movie deal. I rest my case.

(Gnocchi with clams, Il Giardino, Cava de Terreni)

Baked Potatoes and Artichokes

4 large potatoes, sliced thin
8 ounces frozen or fresh small artichoke hearts, quartered
Olive oil
1 onion, sliced thin
1 cup parmigiano cheese, grated
1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 cup white wine
salt and pepper to taste

In a large pan heat 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil. Add potatoes, artichokes, onion, then cover and on medium heat steam for 8-10 minutes. Meanwhile mix herbs together and divide in half. Oil a rectangular baking dish, make a layer of 1/3 of the veggies, sprinkle with 1/2 of the herbs, then 1/3 of the cheese. Repeat layers ending with a last layer of veggies. Pour wine over top and sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 450 degrees for 20-25 minutes, serve hot.

*** BLOG DU JOUR ***

Do you love shells? Visit The Katillac Shack for a peak at some gorgeous vintage shell art.


Brenda at Cozy Little House is giving away an autographed copy of my book to raise awareness for Enchanted Makeovers. Check it out.


Karla said...

My oldest daughter and I saw it on Saturday night. I loved this movie - both the past and present portions. I am a huge fan of Julia Child, a Francophile and a love of cooking so it was a bit of heaven for me. Spectacular movie? No, but very delightful none the less.

And can I say, Barbara, just how much pleasure I'm having in savoring your Waterside Cottages book? I'm taking my time, always sitting with a pleasant snack and drink when I read and look through it. I live in land-locked Oklahoma but had my heart captured by the sea the first time I saw it in 1991. I've lived in my dream cottage on the beach in perfect weather ever since (even if only in my fantasies). Thank you for the hard work and dedication you put into this wonderful tome.

I'm Julia said...

I know I'll enjoy the movie :-) Right now I'm thinking about Gnocchi, yum.

I remember emailing you, but don't see it in my folders. Blogged the book shortly after it arrived. It's my summer browsing book for afternoon siesta time.

Pleasant day :-)
Julia @ Drawn to the Sea

Donna at Mourning Dove Cottage said...

I can't wait to see the movie! Yum, all that food....makes me hungry. Thank's for the recipe!

Karen said...

I just recently found your blog and it is lovely. Couldn't agree with you more about the J&J movie. I enjoyed every bit of it!

Maya said...

All the food looks so incredibly delicious. And I'm looking forward to watch that movie, no matter what the critics say.

NeereAnDear said...

I would really like to see that movie.... I love Meryl Streep ....

I do like your take on the past and present of the movie and the performances.... I rarely pay attention to the critics... as they dont determine what I am thinking..... have seen one or two movies perhaps where they were right ... other than that.... fogedaboudit....

Your photos are deeevine... and I cant wait to see more... and of course... I am definitley going to try out that fabulous recipe you have dangled before us.... the food is looking mighty good right about now.... mmmm shrimp and arugla and gnocchi.... mouth is watering as I type this......

Looking forward to more fantastic photos..


Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

I'm hoping to see it this week. I can't wait!

The recipe sounds and looks wonderful!

Lisa @celebrate CREATIVITY said...

OK, time for dinner now-lol.

I can't wait to see this movie as I just finished reading "My Life in France" by Julia Child. What an extraordinary book with an underlying message that you're never too old to pursue a true passion.

Love all your delicious photos here.

Hope all is well.

Brenda said...

I'd read a review that "Julie" was lukewarm in either Time or Newsweek. I never listen to reviews, as my tastes invariably differ anyway! I couldn't deal with writing the posts on Blogger, so write it on Windows Live Writer. Then upload to Blogger. I like to make my photos bigger, and this is easier to do. Food looks scrumptious! Of course I just now ate a supper of scrambled eggs!

Elyse said...

hi barbara,

thanks for your insights about the film. i do want to see it and generally like nora ephron films (except when she gets too nora ephron-y -- LOL). i like amy adams, too.


Carolyn Parker said...

Hi Barbara,
I've read the bad buzz, saw the trailer and couldn't imagine what critics were complaining about. Good post--yay bloggers!
By the way the Julia Child's memoir is one of my favorite books.

Rosie said...

I saw the movie last week with my teenage daughter and neice and we all loved it. My neice promptly started a blog of her own taking on 25 pudding and custard recipes in 2 months time. Very fun. I got inspired myself and have been getting acquainted with blogging this week.
My birthday is coming up soon, and after getting a preview of yoiur Waterside Cottages book, it will be on my wishlist. My private get away in my mind's eye is in a little waterside cottage. I even collect things while out shopping at antique stores or craft fairs that I feel fit the look of it.
Thanks for the visual inspiration to dream on....

Daisy Cottage said...

Hi Barbara!
I blogged about this movie today too! I loved it and you are so right - I really enjoyed Julie's journey, (loved her apartment) especially as a sister blogger!
Great post!


Tracie~MyPetiteMaison said...

I haven't seen the movie yet, but plan on walking down to our little town theatre to check it out some time this week. Love your photos, Barbara... especially the smoked seafood, I do believe I see beautiful anchovies on that plate - yum! The thing I loved after visiting Pompeii was the gelato stand across the way (guess I missed the fresh fruit!). Thanks for the movie recommendation and the delicious recipe... what's your favorite Julia dish? Mine's Salad Niçoise, of course!

Rebecca. Harlan, IN said...

I saw it with two friends. I thought the interplay of the two Julia's was fascinating and interesting. I wore a single strand of pearls to church today in silent celebration of all things Julia :)

Scintilla @ Bell'Avventura said...

What a lovely blog you have!
I was just scrolling along enjoying the photos, many of which I can pinpoint the places, when my friend Enzo popped up on the screen. He'd be chuffed to know it!

Scintilla @ Bell'Avventura said...

Enzo, is the diner or rather the owner of 'Il Mediterraneo'. I just love coming back to your blog!