Would you like to cook in Julia Child’s original kitchen in her summer cottage in France? I know I would be so inspired and honored just to stand in her kitchen, let alone use it to make great recipes like she did.
Since receiving the groundbreaking cookbook “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” (first published in September, 1961) for a wedding present many years ago I have been a big fan/follower of this remarkable chef. I have enjoyed her cooking shows, guest appearances and especially her cookbooks. I do not own all of them but the picture below gives you a good example of what she had published.
She became the first woman inducted into the Culinary Institute Hall of Fame. In 1964 she received the George Foster Peabody Award and an Emmy Award in 1966. In 2000 Julia received France’s highest honor; the Legion d’Honneur. In 2002 the Smithsonian’s National Museum of History unveiled an exhibit featuring the kitchen. More recently she was the inspiration behind the 2009 film Julie and Julia, based on a cooking blog by Julie Powell.
In August 2004, the world lost a great culinary legend at the young age of 91. There will never be anyone like Julia Child; her stature (only 6′ 2″), her style, her distinct voice with her hearty humor and an unforgettable laugh. She was entertaining on her TV shows and I enjoyed the way she threw a whole fish down on the table, or snapped bones – some were critical but not me. Even back then some were concerned about the high levels of fat, but not Julia. Gene gave me this sign which hangs in my kitchen…
My personal connection to Julia is our nickname Juju. Julia’s father had a number of nicknames for his daughter when she was young and Juju was one of them. Mine was given to me by a special nephew who at the young age of 2 could not pronounce Judi so he called me Aunt Juju. The kids still call me that to this day. That’s where my blog’s name comes from and to remember this young man we lost just a few years ago. His absence has left a big hole in my heart ❤
When I read the recent “Food News” in the June issue of the Food Network Magazine that Julia’s home in France could be rented with the possibility of cooking in her kitchen I had to look into this further.
Purchased by Kathie Alex in the 1990s, and turned into a cooking school, La Peetch closed in 2015. Julia’s summer cottage was then bought by the American husband/wife team of Makenna and Yvonne Johnston who will return La Peetch to her roots as it not only becomes a cooking school but a yoga retreat. Beginning in 2017 the new owners will be offering cooking sessions, yoga classes (optional), weekly rentals for a vacation retreat and who knows what else. Check out their site http://www.lapeetch.com/ for further information. There are still openings for 2017!!! You can rent this cottage through Airbnb which is an online rental service that enables people to list, find and rent vacation homes.
To cook in Julia Child’s summer cottage where she and Paul lived for nearly 3 decades would be a dream come true. A Foodie Paradise to say the least. La Pitchoune, which was lovingly shortened to La Peetch, is a small stucco house built in the village of Plascassier in France. It is not far from Chateauneuf-Grasse, a commune in the Alpes-Maritimes department in southeastern France.
It is only 1500 square feet and accommodates up to 6 people. There are lovely grounds including olive trees and lavender surrounding the well-maintained gardens. What an opportunity to visit and cook in this beautiful and historical property. Besides, you are in the heart of Provence food country. There are many restaurants, wineries and markets to visit within a two hour drive to make your vacation complete.
Julia Child in 1978 (AP Photo File)
Photo by Sotheby’s International Realty
Apparently, the kitchen is just about the same as when Julia cooked there except for the stove, right down to the pots and pans!
Photo by Sotheby’s International Realty
The rest of the house was updated – how beautiful the living room is.
La Peetch is not far from this charming village on a hill in the countryside of France.
Gene and I visited France a number of times, especially enjoying our road trips through the stunning countryside where we viewed the ancient villages, castles everywhere and the numerous chateaus we always stayed at. My favorite was Chateau de Ligny not far from Cambrais. We had a private stairway to the top floor of our special room with a private bath.
Yes, that’s me peeking out of our room!
I remember the “pate farms” too – I think I gave up pate after witnessing so many farms with ducks being fattened up! Besides Paris and all of its glitter, museums and shows, Limoges was one of my favorite places to visit. They had every possible piece of white china you could ever want. There was a huge store with nothing but white porcelain dishes. I bought as much as I could to take back to the United States.
In conclusion, if you are looking for adventure, a wonderful foodie experience and a great way to spend your vacation give La Peetch a try. Take me with you please 🙂