Julia Child would have turned 100 tomorrow, and New York Times food writer Julia Moskin pays her respects. "It was Child—not single-handedly, but close—who started the public conversation about cooking in America that has shaped our cuisine and culture ever since," she writes. When Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking came out in 1961, it would have been smart to bet against it. In fact, the whole idea of home cooking was starting to seem antiquated just then.
"But with her energy, intelligence and nearly deranged enthusiasm, Child turned that tide." Home cooking is more popular than ever today, and the book endures, even though it is "daunting," at times "needlessly persnickety" (beat eggs only with a fork, not a whisk), and perhaps not the most practical modern guide. But cooks still cherish it, and Moskin rounds up some favorite recipes from chefs. Read the full tribute here from Moskin, who, yes, was named after Child herself. (Read more Julia Child stories.)