View recipes from Food and Friends. The coauthor of Mastering the Art of French Cooking shares an irresistible feast of reminiscence and recipes. Simone "Simca" Beck first met Julia Child in 1949 in the women's cooking club Cercle des Gourmettes in Paris. Soon afterwards, the two began collaborating on what would become Mastering the Art of French Cooking. During her extraordinary career, Simca was mentor and friend to a generation of cooks and food writers. In Food and Friends, she interweaves tantalizing recipes and menus with a wonderfully evocative account of her Normandy childhood, her madcap escapades in 1920s Paris, her work with Julia Child, and her friendships with James Beard, Craig Claiborne, M.F.K. Fisher, and Richard Olney, among others.