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Alex Prud'homme

'Julie & Julia' Makes for a Half-Baked Meal

It was an inspired gamble. Julie Powell, then a low-level government employee in her late 20s and looking, as she put it, “to pull myself out of a tailspin of secretarial ennui,” embarked on a quest to follow all 524 recipes detailed in Julia Child’s epic 1961 cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, in the span of a single year. Powell chronicled her experiences in a candid, sharply written blog, and a culinary star was born.

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