Julia Child doesn't make a habit of watching cooking shows. For one thing, she says she doesn't want to copy anyone else's style. For another, she's not impressed with a lot of the shows she's seen. Too many series for "fluffies," as she says.

When Child first went on TV in 1961, cooking shows were called "educational television." And she still considers herself more of a teacher than an entertainer.

So how does she explain the hundreds of people who turn up at her book signings to get her autograph, as if she were a movie star?

"Well," she tells a reporter, "I have been on the air 30 years, dearie."

For her newest show, "Cooking With Master Chefs," Child, 81, went on the road all over the United States, coaching her mostly TV-naive guest chefs and writing up scripts on a portable computer. Compared to some of her other series, she considers "Master Chefs" almost an advanced cooking show.

"This is for people who really want to cook," she says. "This is not a show for fluffies."

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