I’ve been cajoled into shooting a few new videos for the Personal Chef Approach website and YouTube channel tomorrow. SO, once again I’m going to have to leave you with an oldie but goodie while I get the set ready, food bought and prepped, think about what I’m going to say, and then a desperately needed manicure on my dishpan hands before they star in their own close-up.

Another early morning call-time

Another early morning call-time

Rising before the sun is not high on my list of favorite things (I’m much more likely to be just dozing off at that hour).

Jewels in action

Jewels in action

Luckily, my early morning grump was rapidly alleviated by a gallon of Starbucks, and the knowledge that hair and make-up were waiting for me when I went to tape another episode of Community Cooking in Torrance.
My set angel, Karla

My set angel, Karla

While Karla ran around making sure everything was perfect….
Make-up magic with Misa

Make-up magic with Misa

… Misa worked her magic and made the dark circles from my tired eyes disappear, but she very nearly put me back to sleep when she did my hair… it felt so good.
Wired for sound

Wired for sound

Next it was time to get wired, literally, although I was doing a good job already with the coffee. Talk about coincidence, the sound man blurted out that he had worked on a video for my ex. A strange thing to hear as he had his hand down my shirt. After that, as with any set, it was all about “hurry up and wait”. All I could think about was that extra hour of sleep I could have had.
Taping the show with Tana

Taping the show with Tana

Then the adrenaline kicks in when you start. Cooking on camera is a bit like patting your head while rubbing your tummy. Making conversation, whilst hoping you don’t set the place on fire, is an acquired skill. One I must be mastering because the 30 minutes flew by so fast, and I had so much fun with Tana that I forgot to get nervous.
Done in a flash, Tana and Jewels

Done in a flash, Tana and Jewels

The most gratifying part of all, is when the director yells “cut”, and the crew can’t wait to race in to devour the food. I know the rich, earthy aromas have tantalized their hunger sufficiently, and I’ve done my job well…. especially when they’re craving short ribs at 10:00 in the morning!

Harvest Short Rib Comfort

Comfort Harvest Short Ribs

Servings: 4


  • 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. 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.

Note: Additional root vegetables I love in this dish include celery root, turnip, and rutabaga.

Variations: Play around with it… add different vegetables, herbs, and spices. Try an Asian twist with ginger, garlic, soy sauce, a little bit of sugar for balance, and some sesame oil; or go Southwestern with green peppers, jicama, chili, and chipotles for a little smokier flavor and serve with corn tortillas. The possibilities are as varied as you allow your imagination to run.

Serving Suggestions: Serve over mashed potatoes, with egg noodles, fresh crusty bread, or get creative with an array of grains from barley to quinoa (maybe with some toasted pecans or walnuts thrown in for a bit of crunch).

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