As a public health precaution due to COVID-19, all Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo are temporarily closed. We are not announcing a reopening date at this time and will provide updates on our website and social media.

Copper bowl, about 1950

Copper bowl, about 1950

<< >>
Usage conditions apply
Downloads
Description
Julia Child whisked eggs for an omelet in this French copper bowl on the first test episode of The French Chef in 1963. Julia acquired it, as she did much of her copperware, from Dehillerin, a French kitchenware store in the old market at Les Halles. Julia, as The French Chef, created a run on copper bowls, omelet pans, and whisks that had not been commonly available in stores in the United States. That demand has never ceased, and has been extended to the many tools, utensils, and appliances that Julia introduced and championed, as well as to many others that have filled out the American batterie de cuisine.
Copper bowls, unlike their stove-bound relatives, are unlined, and it is the somewhat scientifically demonstrated belief of chefs who use them that the interaction of air with agitation on copper produces fluffier and airier eggs than any other cooking material. With their legendary ability to conduct heat evenly, the copper pots, most tin-lined (and re-lined over and again), reflect cooking methods typical for the French food Julia taught America to appreciate. Modern copper pots are typically lined with stainless steel, and many may have a copper-over-aluminum bottom to further create an even heat.
Object Name
bowl
date made
ca 1940 - 1990
owner
Child, Julia
maker
E. Dehillerin
place made
France: Île-de-France, Paris
Physical Description
copper (overall material)
cast iron (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 14.5 cm x 27.7 cm; 5 23/32 in x 10 29/32 in
lip on rim: 2.5 cm; 31/32 in
ID Number
2009.0091.21
accession number
2009.0091
catalog number
2009.0091.21
Credit Line
Julia Child Foundation for Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Julia Child's Kitchen
Food
FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000
Exhibition
Food: Transforming the American Table
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History
Nominate this object for photography.   

Our collection database is a work in progress. We may update this record based on further research and review. Learn more about our approach to sharing our collection online.

If you would like to know how you can use content on this page, see the Smithsonian's Terms of Use. If you need to request an image for publication or other use, please visit Rights and Reproductions.

Note: Comment submission on our collection pages is temporarily unavailable. Please check back soon!

If you have a question or require a personal response, please visit our FAQ or contact page.