Eh bien, tant pis!

So, I'm reading Julia Child's "My Life in France," it's a snowy/rainy Friday afternoon, my cravings satiated with vanilla bean ice cream, and suddenly I wander onto this page in a chapter subsection entitled "Never Apologize." After cooking a lunch of vile eggs for a friend, Julia had this to say:

"We ate the lunch with painful politeness and avoided discussing its taste. I made sure not to apologize. This was a rule of mine.

I don't believe in twisting yourself into knots of excuses and explanations over the food you make....Maybe the cat has fallen into the stew, or the lettuce has frozen, or the cake has collapsed--eh bien, tant pis!

Usually one's cooking is better than one thinks it is. And if the food is truly vile, as my ersatz eggs Florentine surely were, then the cook must simply grit her teeth and bear it with a smile--and learn from her mistakes."

The cat has fallen into the stew? Can't say this has ever happened in my kitchen, but I also can't say that something I've cooked hasn't tasted like the cat had fallen in.

Dear, sweet, resilient and reassuring D! He always eats my food with a smile and refuses to hear any apologies I might mutter. Learning from my mistakes is much easier when living with a man like that!

Comments

  1. I love this entry! I should read that book. The other night I made turkey chili. I actually didn't think it was bad but my husband didn't care for it. He politely ate it...but slowly and I could tell he was not enjoying each bite. I found myself apologizing. For what? For trying something different? So it didn't work for him...now I know to not make that again! No apology necessary!

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  2. Hi Lani - It's funny that you mention turkey chili. Lately, I feel like anything I make with ground turkey in it turns out tasting funky. Before I got knocked up, I made a heck of a lot of meals with ground turkey (in place of ground beef) and they all tasted good. The quote was great for me because it made me realize that it wasn't me, it was the turkey. And, you're absolutely right! We shouldn't apologize for trying something different!

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