Giada dishes her best summer entertaining recipes & tips
Cher, Madonna, Paris … Giada? In the food world, Giada De Laurentiis is as much a household name as any pop star. Now in addition to her many cookbooks, television programs and kitchen products, Giada is blessing Italian winemaker Bella Sera wines with her golden touch. SheKnows had the opportunity to talk with Giada about her latest wine venture and pick her brain for her favorite food, wine and entertaining tips. And yes, she totally is as cute and nice as you imagine.
Giada talks wine
Coming from a large, traditional Italian family, Giada says wine is always an important part of a meal. But good wine doesn't necessarily mean pricey, and Bella Serra wine at about $7 per bottle fits her bill nicely. "Their brand is affordable wine that tastes delicious," Giada says. "Elegance that's still affordable. That's why I chose Bella Serra."
Giada says she prefers white wines and loves Pino Grigo. "When in doubt, buy a Pino Grigio," she says. And for a versatile and delicious red wine, you can't go wrong with Pinot Noir. "It's light, crisp and refreshing and has a darker fruit cherry flavor that's delicious with all sorts of food. With a good Pinot Grigio and a good Pinot Noir you can please any crowd."
Giada's Summer Entertaining Recipes
Over Labor Day weekend, Giada says she plans to throw herself a huge 40th birthday bash. "I'll be cooking a lot of food for a lot of friends," she says. "You can be sure we'll be celebrating with food and wine. And definitely a Pinot Grigo." Here are some of her favorite summer entertaining recipes.
Serves 4 first-course servings
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from about 1/2 lemon)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin
- 1 1/4 pounds assorted tomatoes (such as regular vine-ripened tomatoes, plum tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, and yellow teardrop tomatoes)
- 6 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, drained and sliced
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
- Whisk the lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in the oil to blend. Set the dressing aside.
- Cut the regular tomatoes into 1/4-inch-thick slices, and the plum tomatoes into wedges. Cut the cherry, grape, and teardrop tomatoes in half. Arrange the tomatoes and cheese on a platter. Drizzle the dressing over. Sprinkle with the basil and additional salt and pepper to taste, and serve.