Great intelligence and great cooking have a few things in common. Both require knowledge of art and science, and both require their results to be presented well!
So maybe it is a natural thing that Julia Child had a background as a spy!
She is most famous for bringing French cuisine to America as an author, chef and television personality. But she also played a role in the intelligence community as a member of the Office of Strategic Services. She joined the OSS after finding that she was too tall to enlist in the Women’s Army Corps, the Woman’s Army Corps or the US Navy’s WAVES. She began her OSS career as a typist at its headquarters in Washington, but because of her education and experience soon was given a more responsible position as a top secret researcher working directly for the head of OSS, General William J. Donovan.
Here is Julia on her role:
As a research assistant in the Secret Intelligence division, she typed 10,000 names on white note cards to keep track of officers. For a year, she worked at the OSS Emergency Rescue Equipment Section (ERES) in Washington, D.C. as a file clerk and then as an assistant to developers of a shark repellent needed to ensure that sharks would not explode ordnance targeting German U-boats. In 1944, she was posted to Sri Lanka, where her responsibilities included “registering, cataloging and channeling a great volume of highly classified communications” for the OSS’s clandestine stations in Asia.She was later posted to Kunming, China, where she received the Emblem of Meritorious Civilian Service as head of the Registry of the OSS Secretariat.
For more on this amazing woman see: A Covert Affair: Julia Child and Paul Child in the OSS