The Delicious Life of Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa

She Taught Herself from Julia Child’s Cookbook

Julia Childs
Photo By Cyrus McCrimmon/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Garten developed her love for French cuisine when she took a four-month vacation to France in the ’70s. The open-air markets, fresh produce stands, and culture were pure magic to her.

When she returned home to the U.S, Garten did what many housewives at the time did – turn to Julia Child. Child’s book, Mastering the Art of French Cooking was the bible of many kitchens. Garten continued to learn from these hallowed pages, debuting her skills by hosting weekly dinner parties. Her husband and their friends were the guinea pigs Garten needed to experiment on. They were more than willing.