Head to Sur La Table for a special class where you'll learn how to cook a few of Julia Child's signature recipes.
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I'm thrilled that Mastering the Art of French Cooking was literally the first cookbook I ever purchased. I'm not so thrilled to admit, however, that owning the book didn't automatically allow me to pull off some of Julia Child's most delicious recipes. I've always wanted an expert to teach me how to really nail Julia's entrées in my own kitchen, and today, on what would have been Child's 106th birthday, my wish is finally coming true. 

To celebrate her life's work and the lasting importance of Mastering the Art of French Cooking 57 years after it was first published, all 82 Sur La Table cooking schools across America will host a Julia Child-themed course tonight. Students will get the chance to learn how to make a few of Child's most recognizable recipes alongside an instructor. And while you'll leave armed with a bit more culinary expertise than you had when you arrived, each student will also receive a copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking (Volume II) to continue learning in their own kitchens. 

Tonight's classes will cover how to make dishes such as Pan Roasted Beef Tenderloin With Red Wine Pan Sauce, Crispy Potatoes Anna, and a classic Strawberry Brioche Cake With Chantilly Cream. You'll be working in groups of four, and the class is expected to run anywhere between 2 and 3 hours tonight. 

You can see the event details for your local store and sign up for your class by checking Sur La Table's official announcement here. Prices vary and each class only has room for 16 people, but you can secure your spot by calling your local store as well.

Love French cuisine? Check out these recipes: 

If baking is more your speed, or if you're unable to attend tonight's festivities, Sur La Table is also offering another course on Saturday, August 18, where students will tackle Julia Child's signature desserts. You'll make Child's Chocolate Mousse, Raspberry Sherbert, and Walnut and Almond Puffs (you can sign up for that class right here). The cost for the two-hour course is $75.

As an added birthday gift in honor of Child's memory, Sur La Table is also making a special donation—about 5 percent of all sales—to the Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts. This organization gives grants to other non-profit organizations to encourage education efforts, and also awards the annual Julia Child Award.

Whether you've been cooking Child's recipes for as long as you can remember, or if you've just seen the movie Julie & Julia, Sur La Table's class is as close as you'll get to the experience of attending Child's cooking school all those years ago.