I saw Julie & Julia and I have to admit, most of it was too delightful for words and you would really have to be a terrible curmudgeon of a person not to like it. I was absolutely starving after I saw it. I wanted to go straight to Whole Foods and buy the ingredients to make the sumptuous boef bourguignon that they were torturing us with throughout the entire movie. Yum...
Julie came off as lovably self-absorbed...I could totally relate to her narcissism and her worries that she would never be considered to be a "writer." Although, I would say that her writing/cooking scenes just didn't really look that hard. Okay, so she had a small crappy kitchen. She should try doing all that stuff with three kids in the room. Now, that would be a real challenge. The scene where she comes home after having blogged for several months and having a New York Times piece written about her, and has 63 messages on her answering machine all from publishers and literary agent types, made publishing a book seem about as easy as hitting "enter" on blogger. And then we see Julia Child struggle for years to have her book published. Not surprisingly, Julia Child's moment of literary validation felt much more satisfying and deserved (maybe I'm just saying that because I didn't go to high school with Julia Child?)
All jealousy aside, the movie inspired and encouraged me a great deal. It made me want to come home and cook and write and get things published like crazy. Now, if kindergarten and preschool would just begin...
In the spirit of the Julie/Julia Project I thought it would be fun to blog about what we ate last night. Emma and I went school supply shopping yesterday and when I came home I had to make something for dinner, but was out of just about everything (except for school supplies). Is Sunday night like that at your house too? We are out of usual staples and just have to make something out of nothing. I kind of like those types of cooking challenges. They remind me of writing poetry, where the limitations force you to be more creative. So, anyway, I had ham and turkey and swiss cheese, bacon...and one egg. That was it (except for random veggies and fruit) in the fridge. Brandon suggested I make some monte cristo sandwiches, which is exactly what I was thinking could be made out of those ingredients. After I got over the initial shock that he knew what a monte cristo sandwich was, I agreed that would be a good plan.
We put the kids to bed (they had eaten grilled cheese sandwiches earlier) and then dug into our sandwiches. Wow! Delicious! So delicious, I have to share the recipe (or really method) for making your very own monte cristo. This sandwich pairs well with ripe peaches, a cute husband and a comfy couch. Bon apetite!
Monte Cristo Sandwich (adapted from Rachael Ray's original recipe)
4 slices bacon
1 egg (really 2 eggs would be better, but I only had one)
splash of milk
pinch of ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 slices of bread
Grey Poupon mustard
plum chutney (this, oddly, is what I had on hand and it was fabulous, but any good jelly/chutney type of thing would do)
deli sliced ham
deli sliced turkey
Cook bacon until done and remove to paper towels. Drain off fat.
Reheat skillet over medium heat.
Beat egg(s) with milk, nutmeg and pepper. Add butter to pan and let it melt.
Turn bread in egg batter and then place in pan.
Turn bread after it browns, 2 to 3 minutes; spread mustard on 2 slices of bread and spread chutney on other 2.
Place a slice of cheese on 2 slices of bread. Add bacon, ham and turkey to remaining 2 slices and then set tops in place and press sandwiches together. Turn a couple of times and let set a minute or two to melt cheese. Cut sandwiches from corner to corner to serve.
You can dunk them in maple syrup if you want, but Brandon balked at that, so we didn't. Yum, yum, yum.
Do not be afraid of the bacon and the butter. If you are really that worried about it, go running or something. : )
Tonight, I want to make boef bourguignon, "Julia's boef bourguignon." I'll let you know how it turns out!