New Delhi: 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.
The doodle shows the chef Julia Child holding a fork. To the left of Julia is a cookery book lying on the cabinet. Julia is known for introducing French cuisine to the American public with her debut cookbook - Mastering the Art of French Cooking. All the Google colours - blue, red, yellow and green - are depicted in the doodle.
Born on August 15, 1912, 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.
Following her graduation from college, Child moved to New York City, where she was employed as a copywriter for the advertising department of upscale home-furnishing firm W&J Sloane.
During World War II, Child joined the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) after she found that she was too tall to enlist in the Women's Army Corps (WACs) or in the US Navy's WAVES.
Later in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), she met Paul Cushing Child, also an OSS employee, and they tied the knot on September 1, 1946 in Lumberville, Pennsylvania. Paul, a New Jersey native, who had lived in Paris as an artist and poet, was known for his sophisticated palate. He introduced Julia to fine cuisine.
Julia Child repeatedly recalled her first meal in Rouen as a culinary revelation. Once, she described the meal of oysters, sole meuniere, and fine wine to The New York Times as "an opening up of the soul and spirit for me." Following this, in Paris, she attended the famous Le Cordon Bleu cooking school and later studied privately with Max Bugnard and other master chefs.
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.
In 1951, Child, Beck, and Bertholle started teaching cooking to American women in Child's Paris kitchen. For the next decade, as the Childs moved around Europe and finally to Cambridge, Massachusetts, the three researched and repeatedly tested recipes. Child translated the French into English, making the recipes detailed and interesting.
Finally, the book - Mastering the Art of French Cooking - was first published in 1961. It was a best-seller and received critical acclaim that derived in part from the American interest in French culture in the early 1960s.
On WGBH-TV, the French Chef 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.
On August 13, 2004, two days before her 92nd birthday, Julia Child passed away of kidney failure.