Interview with Salad for President's Julia Sherman

The Post Supply chats with Julia Sherman, our favorite artist, chef and host, about all things arty and salady. We are honored and excited to be carrying her two incredible titles in store and online!
Read on below!

We love that the line that runs through both your books is the artist's perspective - on salad and parties. What is it about the artist's lens that you think brings value to cooking and hosting?

It's no coincidence that artists love to cook and host. Their lives are dedicated to sharing ideas, to the creation of the ephemeral, to materiality and its potential. These are things one finds in both the studio and in the kitchen or garden. The beauty and the curse of being an artist, or thinking like one, is that your work is never done. Every moment of your life is an opportunity to create something new, to express yourself, to learn. And we are conditioned to share meals, to speak freely at the table, to stop and pay attention to the simplest but most profound human experience of self sustenance (this is how I wish people felt in a gallery or a museum). For me, the best art is profound in its simplicity, and the same goes for food. 

How can hosting and cooking in a way that is less about perfection and more about community and artfulness be a model for the greater good? 

While we might not all have the means or the privilege to dedicate our days to making art, we all have to eat, and we all have to cultivate community in order to thrive. So, it doesn't matter how you do it, it's only critical that you find ways to commune and take time out of our hectic lives to connect and make space for others. After a crazy day, nothing makes me feel more energized than feeding a friend. It's like a weighted balloon that brings me back to the ground. 

Just for fun - and because we are curious - what's the best party you've attended or hosted and why? 

Ugh, I have been to so many great parties. I think one of the best was in Japan, where I hosted a potluck at an underground restaurant. It was such a great cultural experience -- Japanese people don't do potlucks, and they thought this was such a novelty. People brought incredible dishes, and there was a real feeling of, "what the hell did I do in my life to get me to this place?" 

What ingredients are you into and what salad are you making for your family consistently right now?

I love the increased availability of unusual chicories and bitter greens. The colors are astounding, but I also love the sturdiness of them. My kids would fight to death over a tin of anchovies, so I do a lot of chicories with lemon vinaigrette, anchovies and parmesan.