Do you ever like to look back through the years? With a blog that is particularly easy to do. This week one year ago, I was toasting a new era with the launch of the Personall Chef Approach™ on Julie Anne, and celebrating the release of Eau de Vie Julie Anne, a limited edition grappa by Antica Grapperia Bosso in conjunction with Simini Catering in Turin, Italy.

Original homepage of

Original homepage of

Eau de Vie Julie Anne grappa label

Eau de Vie Julie Anne grappa label

The year before I was shooting another cooking show in Torrance, and tonight I’m off to the spa. After all that hard work, a gal deserves a little pampering, and it’s Spa Week! Americans can enjoy all kinds of expensive spa treatments for a fraction of the cost, so I’m headed for a 90 minute combination Swedish and Thai massage with hot stones (something I have never tried before). You could do the same through Sunday April 22nd – what treatments and/or other plans do you have in mind for this weekend?

Jewels making Harvest Comfort Short Ribs on Commumnity Cooking in Torrance

Jewels making Harvest Comfort Short Ribs on Commumnity Cooking in Torrance

By the way, I made these short ribs on that cooking show I did a couple years ago, and they are one of my personal favorite recipes. Why not give them a whirl yourself before summer hits, and you won’t want such heavy food. The picture below are of the short ribs I had on my birthday a few weeks ago.


Harvest Comfort Short Ribs by Julie Anne Rhodes

Harvest comfort short ribs for my birthday a few weeks ago

I wrote this recipe for a guest chef appearance I did on a television show. You can watch me make these in the media section of this website for extra guidance, but it really is a simple, adaptable dish that is hard to go wrong with.



2 racks of beef short ribs (4 pounds)
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon pepper + more to taste
1 teaspoon salt + more to taste
3 Tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 large onion, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
3 large carrots, chopped
3 large parsnips, chopped
1 large sweet potato
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried)
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried)
2 cups dry red wine
14 1/2 oz can diced tomatoes
3 cups beef broth
Italian parsley, chopped


1). Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Mix flour, 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, and 1 teaspoon salt. Dredge the short ribs in the flour mixture, shake any excess off, and brown on all sides in the Dutch oven (you may need to work in batches). Remove to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm.

2).  Add onion, celery, carrots, and parsnips to remaining oil and rendered fat. Cook until softened and starting to caramelize, 7-8 minutes. Add garlic, bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary, cook  30 seconds or until fragrant, giving it a good stir.

3). Add tomato paste, stirring well to mix throughout. Pour in red wine, stirring and scraping up any brown bits from bottom of pan, bring to boil and cook until reduced by 1/2. Add sweet potatoes, diced tomatoes, and beef broth. Return to boil, then reduce heat to medium low. Season to taste with salt and pepper, cover and simmer gently for 2-3 hours, until meat is so tender it falls from the bones. Stir occasionally, and make sure there is always at least 1 inch of liquid in the pan (adding more broth or water if necessary).

4). Transfer meat to a platter and tent with foil to keep warm. Skim fat, bring to boil, and cook until sauce has thickened, 10-15 minutes if necessary. Remove bay leaves, pour over meat, and sprinkle with chopped parley.


Additional root vegetables I love in this stew include celery root, turnip, and rutabaga.


Serve over mashed potatoes, with egg noodles, or fresh crusty bread.

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  • April 22, 2012
    5:26 am

    Hope your spa appointment recharged your batteries and spoiled you in all the best ways. Happy Anniversary! Always fun to go through earlier posts and see what has happened since them. But, the best is yet to come. Just wait until you see what fate has in store for you in the year to come. You’ve worked so hard and I know that good things are coming your way. [[[hugs]]]

  • April 22, 2012
    10:27 am

    Oh Ruthee, it was so divine, and it was a kind of massage I have never had before, so it was very interesting at the same time. All the stretching and then easing tight muscles left me so relaxed and much more agile.

  • April 22, 2012
    10:34 am

    A lot of people view massage as a luxury, and being pampered does feel luxurious, but I look at it as a downpayment on good health, because stress is such a killer.

    After years of being so sick with Crohn’s disease, then finally getting into remission, I instinctively knew stress control was the key to staying there. I was dead set against taking maintenance drugs, so I used to have a woman that came to my house once a week for massage, and to this day I credit her for my never having a relapse (it’s been 11 years, and no sign of the disease at all).