Julia Child on Sunday became the first U.S. chef to receive the French government's highest honor, the Legion of Honor.
"I am very, very proud," the 88-year-old Child said.
The honor was bestowed upon Child by restaurateur Roger Fessaguet, a knight in the Legion, during a black-tie ceremony in Boston, according to The Associated Press.
"Before Julia Child, America was still a meat and potatoes country," Fessaguet said. "She helped to make cooking the culture it is today."
Child, who was born in Pasadena, Calif., moved to Paris with her husband after the second world war and received her culinary training at the Cordon Bleu.
She published her first book, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking," in 1961 and most recently hosted a 39-part series called "Baking at Julia's."