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Why did Julia Child use electric burners?


Cookware 69

Why did Julia Child use electric burners?

MaximRecoil | Nov 11, 2010 12:43 PM

I was watching some "The French Chef" episodes last night from the '60s and '70s, and Julia Child was using electric burners in all of them.

Now, I'm not much of a cook, but the first time I tried gas burners (I grew up using only electric) I loved it, and didn't want to use electric ever again. I loved the instant response to flame adjustments. For example, if a pot was starting to boil over, and you turned down the flame, the bubbles went down immediately, rather than a minute later like with electric burners. It also worked the other way; i.e., turning up the flame gives an instant heat increase.

Another advantage of gas is that a warped pan can still work fine (or a round bottomed pan like a wok). It isn't ideal of course, but at least it is still heated properly from the flame; while with an electric burner, only a small part of the burner will contact the warped surface.

Does anyone know what Julia Child saw in electric burners?

Also, I've heard a lot about her using and recommending copper cookware; but in the several episodes I watched, she didn't use any copper. I saw her use raw aluminum and cast iron mostly. At one point she picked up a tinned copper pan and mentioned that it would work for what she was about to do, but then she put it away and used something else. She also gave lip service to using a raw copper bowl for beating eggs, along with a short demonstration; but then she put it away and said she preferred an electric mixer, and did it that way in a glass bowl.

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