While I enjoy every second with my daughter and catching up with old friends, Duran Duran are about to play the Hollywood Bowl, so I thought it would be a great time to rerun this oldie but goodie. Just this trip alone, I’ve enjoyed dinner with Yasmin LeBon before she left to meet Simon on tour, and spent a lovely Sunday afternoon catching up with Giovanna. What a giggle it was sharing memory lane with our daughters!
Giovanna and Julie Anne xx years on

Giovanna and Julie Anne xx years on

September 2, 2010: It must have been groundhog day for the Duran Duran exes this week. First Giovanna called me, the next morning I went for English breakfast at Cecconi’s with Madeleine Farley (I’m a cheap date these days – I drank some fresh squeezed orange juice while everyone else ate), then I bumped into Claire Stansfield at the grocery store right afterwards.
Giovanna and Julie Anne back in the day by Peter Beard

Giovanna and Julie Anne back in the day by Peter Beard

Giovanna and Claire’s friendships are very special to me. Few others can fully understand what it was really like to live in the bubble of Duran mania at it’s height. Sure, many of you witnessed it, and think you know what it was like; but it was an entirely different perspective watching it all unfold from the inside out – smuggled through hotel kitchens, Carabinieri with semi-automatic weapons posted outside our rooms, while a frenzied crowd of thousands stood screaming for the guys day and night, black maria police motorcades, being tax exiles in foreign countries far from our families and friends. Words don’t seem to do it justice. It was an incredible ride, and together we don’t need to find the words.
Julie Verdin, Julie Anne Rhodes, and Madeleine Farley

Julie Verdin, Julie Anne Rhodes, and Madeleine Farley

You may find it strange that I would want to have breakfast with my ex husband’s ex- after-me (truth be told I find most of Nick’s girlfriends quite fabulous). We might have had a few harsh words for each other in the past, but the fact remains we were great friends before she and Nick got together, and she was the best stepmother to my daughter I could have possibly hoped for. For that I am eternally grateful. She is the one girlfriend I can never bore talking about Tatjana, because we share a motherly pride in the wonderful young woman she has become. Maddie also happens to have a delicioulsy mischievous sense of humor, a complete lack of fear, an exceptionally creative mind, and she is more than a little eccentric – an irresistible combination in my book.

Relax Nick, we had better things to do with our time than dis the ex. Apart from sharing Tatjana stories, Maddie has just come back from a year abroad directing the television series, Gorilla School, with Damian Aspinall in Gabon for Discovery Channel. Her passion for the gorillas was tangible. I’ve always wanted to visit the gorillas myself, so I hung on her every word. Next up is an art exhibition of the gorillas silkscreened with diamond dust, a la Andy Warhol, here in Los Angeles this coming November.
Julie Anne Rhodes, Simon LeBon, and Claire Stansfield

Julie Anne Rhodes, Simon LeBon, and Claire Stansfield

Claire was shopping for the cleanse! She intends to start right after her youngest boy’s birthday this week. It was Claire that inspired and encouraged me to dream a little bigger. She was instrumental in getting my new website and this blog up and running, so I was touched that she is still following it more than a year later. The recipe below is for you Claire.

This week on the cleanse has been marginally more challenging. I miss biting into something with the texture of bread or cake, and have had to ride a few waves of cravings out. I placated myself with a slightly more exotic tasting recipe this time. It is not authentic to Indian or Thai curry, but more of a fusion of flavors I had handy, and were cleanse legal.

Coconut Curried Lentils (1)
Coconut Curried Lentils

Servings: 6

Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon Safflower oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 4 ounces of shiitake mushrooms, chopped
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1 13.5 ounce can of unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth, if needed
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • sea salt to taste
Directions:

1). Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onions, mushrooms and carrots, and cook eight minutes, until softened. Season with a little sea salt.

2).Add garlic and ginger, stir until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add curry, garam masala and cinnamon stick, stir until fragrant, 30 seconds.

3). Add red lentils, stirring well to coat, then add coconut milk. Let come to boil, cover and lower heat to simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally and checking to see if more liquid is needed, adding a little vegetable broth at a time. Add chopped cilantro, season with sea salt to taste, and serve hot.

Serving Suggestions: I love this over fragrant brown basmati rice, but any whole grain will do (glutton free only for the cleanse), and some fresh chopped mango on the side.

Variations: I did not have any zucchini on hand, but felt it was screaming for it. Zucchini would add more color, texture, flavor, and more nutrients to the dish.
This post was first published September 2, 2010
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  • September 2, 2010
    4:19 pm

    this is the kind of dirt I've been dying to hear from you! ;)

  • September 2, 2010
    4:22 pm

    i ♥ your blogsDerek Sims

  • September 2, 2010
    4:24 pm

    It says a lot about you all that you're still in touch after all this time! Good for you.

  • September 2, 2010
    4:24 pm

    I would expect nothing less than for Nick to be involved with only beautiful, classy ladies! No wonder most of you get along so well.The lentil recipe is sure to be one of my husband's favorites. He loves curry and coconut milk! In fact, any time I make plain white rice (which isn't often), he sprinkles on some flake coconut.

  • September 2, 2010
    4:24 pm

    One more time, I think that you are a special woman.Have a good weekend, Julie Anne:-)Carmen Ronsisvalle

  • September 2, 2010
    4:41 pm

    Every one of your entries just makes you more attractive as a human being. You are exceptionally gracious. So nice to read GOOD things about other women.

  • September 2, 2010
    4:42 pm

    I am fascinated with Gorillas myself, how they are so close to humans, it's amazing. It is sad, the danger surrounding their world. It is great to see the courageous and amazing women (and men) who worked with them like Jane Goodall and Dian Fossey, who lost her life trying to protect them. What a wonderful series Madeleine has put together. I will definitely be watching it!Andrea Schlegel-Wallace

  • September 2, 2010
    4:47 pm

    That is wonderful you are still friends. Those are the best kind of friends where months even years can go by without speaking and you can pick up the phone call them and talk as though no time has pasted!Josie Elder- Chow

  • September 2, 2010
    4:47 pm

    Couldn't POSSIBLY imagine the stresses it put on you all!! I guess I should say "sorry" for anything I MIGHT have contributed to as a teenager growing up in that time, at those concerts, etc. However, one thing I CAN say with pride is I would NEVER have bugged the guys OR their families in public or when they weren't working.I had the luck to see you, Nick and Tatjana in the London streets once. Just having what looked like great fun. I just watched for a moment an went on my way. My friend couldn't believe that I didn't go for an autograph/picture/chat etc.I'm GLAD you still have such strong bonds with good friends!!Thanks for sharing your memories.Justine Owls

  • September 2, 2010
    4:53 pm

    Love the recipe! Two dumb questions: are you referring to dried red lentils & is there a substitute for the garam masala? Not sure that I can get that at my grocery store, so would there be something I could substitute?I know that I have to be careful with spices in dishes as they can cause a lot of problems, but I detest bland food. Yet, I really enjoy rice cakes – makes no sense. But, I'm willing to try something different to see if it will perk up my appetite. Maybe this will be the solution! Thank you for the smiles! Reading your blog and posts always make me smile, I hope you have as much fun writing all these things to make it a fair trade.

  • September 2, 2010
    4:54 pm

    Justine, it wasn't so much that it was stressful – it was just a wildly exciting and odd existence. BTW, when I first met Nick, and fell head over heals, DD were not big in America. He kept telling me he had fans, and I thought he was just trying to impress me. I was relieved to see he wasn't imagining it all when I moved to England with him. That's why I've always liked Duranies.

  • September 2, 2010
    4:56 pm

    The gorilla video was extremely touching. I just cried big tears. There is nothing like a real friendship…especially with animals.Aesea Neassa

  • September 2, 2010
    4:57 pm

    I agree, and I cried too Aesea – so touching, and beautifully shot.

  • September 2, 2010
    6:23 pm

    I'm married to a musician. I hate myself for saying it.. but i'm a little glad that the band didn't make it! When they did have a chunk of success.. we split up. He did change, i didn't know who he was anymore and i wanted more for myself, i had my own dreams and goals. It was never at the scale that you experienced it, not even close but i didn't like it!Ceri 'Wedge' Nicholls

  • September 2, 2010
    6:23 pm

    Jewels, you are a classy lady. I say this based on what you just said here, and what I experienced growing up…I am a child of a divorced home, and the constant war zone perpetuated by mom, dad, and mom & dad's current love, was really stressful. I thought it would be better when I became an adult…but then they were all b*tching about who got to see each baby first, but none wanted to do it in the presence of the others, and there were offenses that some ex's wanted in on baby time too, and we revisit this issue on every holiday and birthday. You're all doing the right thing for your daughter by taking the high road, and I am hoping she appreciates it. :-)Looking forward, as always, to trying your dish! My cleanse has been foiled for now by spraining my knee (the one I had surgery on last spring) and needing all kinds of good drugs, and receiving food from well meaning friends that is not even close to cleanse legal. I started physical therapy (AGAIN) today, so hopefully I'll be back to health and fitness again.

  • September 2, 2010
    6:23 pm

    Julianne when I was 15 I was one of those screaming italian dd fan I bet you noticed many of us ;)I love your blog and I have always admired you :)hugsps.I'm still a Duranie ;)

    • October 1, 2011
      10:22 pm

      Your articles are for when it absolutely, posiietvly, needs to be understood overnight.

  • September 2, 2010
    6:24 pm

    I'm still sniffling over the Gorilla School video. Simply Majestic. Did that ever air in the US?Alison Sherman

  • September 2, 2010
    6:25 pm

    Guilty of Duran stalking both then and now! Haha :) But done with complete love and respect for the guys and their families. ♥ I've often wondered what it was like for you and the other "significant others." Thank you so much for sharing!Kim Phillips Cuccia

  • September 2, 2010
    6:25 pm

    I love the look of the new site – very visually appealing!Nancy Wardle

  • September 2, 2010
    6:56 pm

    I saw that video several months ago, had no idea you had a connection to it. It's absolutely amazing! The recipe ain't bad either girlfriend!

  • September 2, 2010
    6:58 pm

    Sounds like me, water and diet coke ! Lovely looking at that old picture xxxAmanda Kyme

  • September 2, 2010
    7:08 pm

    Oh Amanda – you are the missing link! Miss you so much. We need a chicken and mash night! Did Tatjana send you the CD with the old pics you wanted?

  • September 2, 2010
    7:13 pm

    hanks for sharing Julie Anne! Loved the Gorilla School video….gorillas have always fascinated me! I love your blog Julie….you are an inspiration! It warms my heart that you and all the ladies are still friends. I was in awe of you, Claire, and Giovanna as a young girl……and quite jealous, if truth be told! It is so nice to see that y'all have had such success in life and are all just as beautiful now as you were then!Carrie Bee

  • September 2, 2010
    7:14 pm

    Wow, I feel a bit like I have touched base with old friends, now. I remember Claire and Giovanna and back in the day I thought all of you ladies looked like wonderful people. I'm not surprised you would keep in touch with at least some of Nick's other exes. Recently, on Live Journal, some of us were talking about how Duran Duran woman say a lot for how good the members of Duran Duran are. All of you ladies are so talented and such good people. You are all inspiring.Kelly McAllister Hulse

  • September 2, 2010
    7:23 pm

    Thanks everyone, in a strange way we are all closer friends today than we were back then (we had some growing up to do), but I like the women we've all become. Mari – my biggest regret in life is that I was too caught up in the fear to take the higher ground when Tatjana was young, but I think she does appreciate that I do my best to now – not always perfectly (please don't think I'm ready for sainthood), but I try.

  • September 2, 2010
    11:38 pm

    Ruthee – yes, dried red lentils that have been rinsed and picked over. If you look at the recipe again on the blog, I put a link from garam masala to an explanation and recipe for you to make your own spice mixture.

  • September 2, 2010
    11:41 pm

    How amazing that you gals are still friends! I was a fan already when you two got married (that says a lot about my age, LOL!) and remember it well, all the craziness about it arrived even here to Spain. I also remember that you moved to the south of France for a while (might be wrong tho), cause there were big fires in the area that summer and I was praying for Nick to be ok, LOL! Kids! ;)Isabel Ortiz Bernad

  • September 2, 2010
    11:42 pm

    What an odd coincidence in timing. I always find those sorts of things amusing. It's like some sort of stars aligning or something. Glad you can all be friends and I totally get why it is easier to be friends with someone who already understands the madness of the past so you never have to explain it. You can just say, "Once we were being ushered through such and such kitchen.." and you don't have to stop to say WHY.Nique Quesada

  • September 2, 2010
    11:46 pm

    Yes Isabel, we lived in Valbonne for a few months while they finished writing Seven and the Ragged Tiger. I mention it in one of the very early blog posts ( you can see the villa we lived in) – Persistence of Memory http://jewelsfromtherovingstove.blogspot.com/2009/05/cannes-film-fetsival.htmlEric, the chef, was the first professional chef I'd ever met, and I used to spend all day watching him in action in the kitchen.

  • September 3, 2010
    2:09 am

    I've mentioned this before and I shall say it again….it's wonderful that you have all stayed in touch and look absolutely gorgeous. Such wonderful words you have written of all the ladies of the past. It just goes to show what an amazing, gracious woman you truly are. Funny you should mention that you miss biting into something with the texture of bread or cake. I've just come from the kitchen where I have been making BREAD. It is in the oven as I write. Mia is taking a late morning nap and I was desperate for some home made fresh bread. Smells divine (my apologies, I know you are still on the cleanse).The recipe sounds divine. I made a Thai Red Curry with prawns (shrimp) last night. It was amazing. It was slightly hotter than usual, however my husband likes it that way. Must try your recipe in the next couple of days. I'm sure hubby will love it too.Aussie Mum

  • September 3, 2010
    12:32 pm

    Like many young fans, I was soooo jealous of the Duran wives, esecially Giovanna-but Giovanna seems so lovely and down to earth-I couldn't help but love her too!I remember seeing a picture of Roger with a fan and the caption mentioned that Giovanna took the picture-how sweet! x

  • September 3, 2010
    12:49 pm

    I always wondered how you felt about us fans, thanks for sharing that. Oh gosh Claire, I'm wondering, last time I read about her she was part of a design team for a clothing company based in California which was called C&C or CC haven't heard anything since, is she still involved with that?

  • September 3, 2010
    3:32 pm

    Okay … THAT ^^^ is funny!!Justine Owls

  • September 3, 2010
    3:52 pm

    Love it!!!Tina Beeman

  • September 3, 2010
    5:41 pm

    What men with guns outside your rooms? Way to much drama, I would have taken black belt lessons! JKCarly Guerrero

  • September 3, 2010
    5:42 pm

    Does it bug you when people want to talk to you about your DD past?Carly Guerrero

  • September 3, 2010
    5:43 pm

    I love Basmati rice–had that for dinner with curried chicken the other night………:-) I also love Lentils, so I may have to try that recipe you shared…… Have a wonderful weekend. Love and hugs xoxoBj Nelson

  • September 3, 2010
    5:46 pm

    FYI, Bj Nelson is the phenomenal backing vocalist that did Duran's 1984 tour – so she is part of that inner sanctum – love you Beej xoOf course not Carly, so long as you see me for who I am in the present.

  • September 4, 2010
    4:07 am

    BJ has a GREAT voice!!! She'd be WELCOME back, IMOJustine Owls

  • September 4, 2010
    4:07 am

    Love you too, Jewels………..Muwaaah!!Bj Nelson

  • September 4, 2010
    4:08 am

    And thank you for your kind words, Justine……:-)Bj Nelson

  • September 4, 2010
    4:08 am

    Are you the BJ Nelson who used to sing back up and from Kansas City? If it is, girl you look goodCarly Guerrero

  • September 4, 2010
    4:09 am

    Speaking of the past…My husband and I saw that documentary 'Sing Blue Silver' on tv the other night. Jewels, was that you in the street scene in New Orleans watching the tap dancers?We were stunned watching all that tour stuff from 1984. You certainly lived through an amazing madness……Brittany Shai Harper-De Staedtler

  • September 4, 2010
    4:10 am

    cant wait to try Ure coconut curried lentils!Laura Petersen

  • September 4, 2010
    3:43 pm

    Wonderful story …

  • September 4, 2010
    7:49 pm

    I'll have to look for the Discovery documentry when it comes out. Sounds interesting.Suzanne Voelker

  • September 5, 2010
    3:40 am

    love The Jewels my darling xxxxxBeth Bovaird

  • September 5, 2010
    8:43 pm

    Great blog today! Really enjoyed the read. And as always thanks for a great sounding recipe to try with the family.

  • September 6, 2010
    2:45 am

    Thank you for the link about the garam masala! Quite an amazing blend of spices. I was out in another area on Saturday & ran into a large supermarket chain store and was lucky enough to find a bag of it already blended. Picked up some of the other ingredients & hope to give it a try this week.Thank you so much for the link, it lead me to some other interesting things to try.

  • September 7, 2010
    2:35 am

    Yes Brittany – that was yours truly. Glad you found the spices Ruthee.

  • September 9, 2010
    5:30 pm

    I just had to write and finally say hello. I'm another guilty party (i.e., screaming Duranie) that's discovered this fantastic blog as I searched for good food blogs. I immediately sent your URL to a few other friends who love it as much as I do. Thank you for sharing so much of your life with us.I also love how you gush about your daughter. I have two boys and really enjoy how you look back on Tatjana's life; I guess all of us doting moms are the same. :)By the way – wish me luck; I'm going to try your Red Velvet Waffle recipe this weekend!