Giada De Laurentiis is one of America’s most-loved culinary stars, adored for her Food Network hit shows and her New York Times bestselling cookbooks alike, both of which feature her fresh, flavorful Italian recipes. For the first time, Giada tackles weeknight cooking, sharing her favorite tips and go-to dishes—all in her vibrant signature style—to get a delicious meal on the table in a flash.
After a full day, Giada, like most parents, wants nothing more than to sit down for a home-cooked dinner with her husband, Todd, and their daughter, Jade. Weeknights with Giada rises to the challenge, delivering soups, sandwiches, pizzas, pastas, and meat and fish dishes that come together quickly as stand-alone main courses—most in half an hour or less: Rustic Vegetable and Polenta Soup, a hearty soul-warming one-pot dish, cooks in under twenty minutes; Lemony White Bean, Tuna, and Arugula Salad is a great meal that’s quickly assembled from pantry and fridge essentials; Spicy Linguini with Clams and Mussels is a fifteen-minute-or-less spectacular pasta; and you can’t beat Grilled Sirloin Steaks with Pepper and Caper Salsa, which are also ready in just fifteen minutes. From inventive breakfast-for-dinner dishes and meatless Monday vegetarian recipes—both weekly traditions in Giada’s house—to picnic sandwiches and hearty salad recipes for reinventing leftovers, Weeknights with Giada reveals every secret in her repertoire. Even the desserts are quick to mix and bake, should a craving—or a last-minute school bake sale—strike.
Here is Giada at her most inventive—and at her most laid-back. Flavor, freshness, and fun take center stage while cooking times, pots dirtied, and stress are kept to a minimum. With gorgeous color photographs and intimate home snapshots of Giada and her family, Weeknights with Giada is a welcome handbook of fantastic recipes and surefire Monday-to-Friday strategies for every home cook.
Featured Recipe: Sweet Corn and Basil Lasagna
No-boil noodles and a food processor are what make this lasagna a weeknight-dinner friend. Both help to put a super-creamy, provolone-cheesy, comforting, and downright amazing pasta dish on the table for the family. One tip to minimize clean-up and avoid hand-grating the cheese: use the shredding attachment of the food processor to grate the provolone first. Then, without having to wash the bowl, you can switch to the blade to make the sweet corn and basil filling. Smiles all around!
- Vegetable oil cooking spray
- 3 cups frozen corn, thawed
- ½ cup heavy cream, at room temperature
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 cup (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
- 1 ½ cups grated pecorino romano cheese
- Grated zest of 1 large lemon
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¾ packed cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- 1 ½ cups (6 ounces) shredded sharp provolone cheese
- 6 no-boil lasagna sheets (about half a 9-ounce box)
- Olive oil, for drizzling
Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spray an 8-inch square glass baking dish with vegetable oil cooking spray. In a food processor, blend the corn, cream, and garlic until chunky. Add the mascarpone cheese, 1 cup of the romano cheese, the lemon zest, salt, and pepper. Blend until smooth. Add the basil and pulse until just combined. Spread one-third of the corn mixture on the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with one-third of the provolone cheese. Place two lasagna sheets on top. Repeat twice with the remaining corn mixture, provolone cheese, and lasagna sheets. Sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup romano cheese and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Cool for 10 minutes. Cut into 6 pieces and serve.