The goddess of Italian cuisine, Giada De Laurentiis, is one of the world’s most renowned celebrity chefs. As some people might say, she was indeed born with a wooden spoon, as the love for Italian food runs in her family. In one of her latest cookbooks, titled Giada’s Italy, she takes her readers on a gourmet Italian food tour and talks about her remarkable heritage. Here we present to you five of her handpicked cooking lessons we learned from her over the years.
1. Save the pasta water
Never throw the pasta water down the drain. This is a common mistake almost everybody makes when they don’t know how to use it. This cooking tip is something which Giada mentions every time she makes a pasta recipe. Pasta water is full of thick starchy goodness, which makes it an excellent addition to your creamy alfredo sauce. So just when your pasta is all cooked, set aside some extra pasta water and use as much as required, depending on how thick you want your sauce to be.
2. All-in-one tomato sauce
De Laurentiis refers to her signature tomato sauce as a building-block of Italian cuisine. Not surprisingly, she uses this sauce in most of her iconic Italian dishes. Her pro tip is to hand crush the tomatoes instead of pureeing or blending them, as it adds a better texture to the sauce. Next, she adds a surprise element – Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, which brings out the real flavor of the sauce. Her recommended time to cook the sauce is thirty minutes, which gives you enough time to prep other parts of your meal.
3. Store bought pizza dough vs. homemade
Giada shares that she always prefers buying pizza dough from the store, instead of making it at home. It not only saves you from all the hard work, but it also saves time and of course, most importantly, you don’t have to worry about cleaning up the mess later. Besides, it still tastes better than the outside takeaway pizza you would have ordered. So that’s another plus!
4. Split the turkey open
Another one of the cooking tips we learn from Giada is her suggestion to slice the turkey or chicken in half, stuff it with all the good ingredients, and then roast it. It helps to speed up the cooking process and also makes it easier to cut in pieces while serving. Giada also suggests cooking the stuffing first and then adding it in the turkey. This way, you can make sure that everything is well-cooked and combined properly.
5. Wing it up with some tequila
This has got to be the best ever tip we have come across. Adding tequila to the chicken wings adds a depth of flavor to the dish. De Laurentiis’ fiery tequila lime chicken wings is her favorite recipe of all time. The wings are seasoned with fresh lime juice, which increases the tenderness of the chicken, topped with some smoky harissa and hot pepper sauce, and lastly some tequila. And yes, you can taste the flavor of the tequila in the chicken, making it a mouth-watering delight.
Well, now that we have Giada’s best kept cooking secrets out in the open, it is time for you to go and put these valuable cooking lessons to some good use.