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Before Julia Child’s warbling voice and towering figure burst into America’s homes, a gourmet food movement was already sweeping the nation. Setting the Table for Julia Child considers how the tastes and techniques cultivated at dining clubs and in the pages of Gourmet magazine helped prepare many affluent Americans for Child’s lessons in French cooking. David Strauss argues that Americans’ appetite for haute cuisine had been growing ever since the repeal of Prohibition. Dazzled by visions of the good life presented in luxury lifestyle magazines and by the practices of the upper class, who adopted European taste and fashion, upper-middle-class Americans increasingly populated the gourmet movement. In the process, they came to appreciate the cuisine created by France's greatest chef, Auguste Escoffier. Strauss’s impressive archival research illuminates themes—gender, class, consumerism, and national identity—that influenced the course of gourmet dining in America. He also points out how the work of painters and fine printers—reproduced here—called attention to the aesthetic of dining, a vision that heightened one’s anticipation of a gratifying experience. In the midst of this burgeoning gourmet food movement Child found her niche. The movement may have introduced affluent Americans to the pleasure of French cuisine years before Julia Child, but it was Julia’s lessons that expanded the audience for gourmet dining and turned lovers of French cuisine into cooks.

Table of Contents

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  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page
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  1. Copyright Page
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  1. Dedication
  2. pp. v-vi
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-xii
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  1. Note to the Reader
  2. pp. xiii-xiv
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-10
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  1. Chapter One: Food Fights in Twentieth-Century America: The Good Life versus the Healthy Life
  2. pp. 11-42
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  1. Chapter Two: Building a Foundation for Gourmet Dining in America
  2. pp. 43-69
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  1. Chapter Three: Origins, Rituals, and Menus of Gourmet Dining Societies, 1934–1961
  2. pp. 70-100
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  1. Chapter Four: Selectivity and Publicity in the Gourmet Dining Movement
  2. pp. 101-133
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  1. Chapter Five: Beating the Nazis with Truffles and Tripe: The Early Years of Gourmet: The Magazine of Good Living
  2. pp. 134-162
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  1. Chapter Six: Gourmet's Gastronomic Tours: Samuel Chamberlain and His Bouquets
  2. pp. 163-188
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  1. Chapter Seven: From Readers to Cooks?: The Influence of Gourmet/Gourmet Recipes
  2. pp. 189-220
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  1. Chapter Eight: Julia and Simca: A Franco-American Culinary Alliance
  2. pp. 221-247
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  1. Conclusion
  2. pp. 248-258
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 259-304
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  1. Essay on Sources
  2. pp. 305-314
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 315-324
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781421428116
Related ISBN(s)
9780801897733, 9781421429069
MARC Record
OCLC
1048205497
Pages
352
Launched on MUSE
2018-08-15
Language
English
Open Access
Yes

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