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James Beard was a chef, television personality and food writer who many consider the father of American-style gourmet cooking.
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James Beard was born on May 5, 1903, in Portland, Oregon. After trying his hand at theater, he opened a catering company in the late 1930s, compiling his recipes in his first cookbook: Hors D'Oeuvre and Canapés. Beard was a pioneer of television cooking shows, a proponent of gourmet culture and an inspiration for Julia Child and countless other chefs. He died in 1985.
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As a nation that loves to eat, we hold food, and the people who prepare it, close to our hearts. Though Julia Child was the original celebrity chef and cookbook personality, the boom in reality TV has led to a renewed interest in all the people who turn food into art. From cooking show competitors to chefs to the stars, we love to watch these talented individuals whip up all kinds of delicious dishes. To learn more, sift through this group of Famous Chefs, which includes chocolatier Jacques Torres, classic culinarian Julia Child, gourmet guru Alton Brown, "semi-homemade" cook Sandra Lee, Gordon Ramsay, Rachael Ray and many more.
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