We ♥ Target, We ♥ Giada!

Our ♥ of Target knows no bounds.  It’s part necessity and part obsession.  Over the years Target has had some amazing collaborations and we’re always excited to see who they team up with next.  This time they have teamed up with our favorite (and gorgeous) Food Network Chef, Giada De Laurentiis to launch Giada De Laurentiis for Target collection.

My girl and I were recently invited to Target Studios where we were introduced to Giada herself and her amazing line of products. As a TV/culinary personality, she is loveable and in person, exactly the same.  We were all ears listening to her as she took us through her new line of cookware and tools.  Some of the stand out items include the revolutionary 7″ inch Mezzaluna Knife for a ridiculously priced, only $20.79.  This knife is one of a kind and created by Giada.  Providing a great multi-function chopping ability it is also pairs with a professional chef secret, the rocking motion of a Mezzaluna.  It’s my must-have item which I have been hunting for at every Target I come across for weeks now — SOLD OUT!  Another new favorite has to be her Stainless Steel Pasta Scoop.  There will be no more draining of pasta.  Now I can safely scoop my pasta out and save that salted water for seasoning or refreshing pasta.

It’s one thing to slap your name on a piece of clothing or physical item but when it comes to food, it had better taste good too.  Giada,  with her strong Italian heritage, made sure her specialty food items would be something she could proudly serve her family.  Now while I claim not to be a connoisseur, I can be a bit of an Italian food snob.  I just most restaurants by their eggplant parmigiana (there is none better than Rosa’s Pizzeria in Maspeth, NY) or their marinara sauce.  I have recently forsaken all bottled tomato sauces for my own easy homemade sauces.  I was never able to pinpoint what about bottled tomato sauces that I didn’t like, but after hearing about her sauces I clearly understood my taste-buds missed freshness.  Giada’s Tomato Sauces are nothing short of amazing.  She spent the time with Target to source the best tomatoes she could find and not only create sauces that her family would be proud of but made sure they got to our table as fresh as possible.  At price points of $2.49 – $4, they can’t be beat!  I think I might be able to stop slaving over a stove making my own sauce at these prices.

Because it was Giada, I was willing to shed my inhibitions and do something I have never done before… eat olives.  Okay, so they weren’t whole.  But surprisingly, I couldn’t get enough of her  linguine with sun-dried tomatoes, olives and lemon.  While I could distinctly taste them in the dish, it wasn’t overwhelming and easier to digest than I expected.  In fact, I have now served it at two gatherings to date and it’s been a hit with everyone including the babies.

I was even prouder watching my girl eat her first burger.  Eating burgers aren’t like eating french fries.  I could never figure out when chicken nuggets go out the door and hamburger happy meals would be a considered option.  We’ve tried for many years, offering her time and time again, a burger.  Alas it was the pretty lady and her cocktail sized caprese burgers that made all the difference.  To this day she asks for the pretty lady’s mini burgers because no ordinary burger will do.

At our recent 4th of July soiree, there were caprese burgers and linguine with sun-dried tomatoes, olives and lemon for everyone.  What amazed me was how quick (in under 10 minutes) and easy these two dishes were to make,  I looked like a culinary genius! I took little credit for the menu and everyone thanked Giada.  Giada De Laurentiis for Target sauces, Sun-dried Tomatoes and Genovese Pesto are new staples in our house!

To recreate the magic:


Giada’s Linguine with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Olives and Lemon

  • 1 pound linguine pasta
  • 1 cup or 6oz jar of GDL for Target Sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) medium green olives, pitted
  • 1 packed cup of fresh basil leaves
  • 1 garlic clove (or more if you like)
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice or juice from 1 large lemon
  • zest of 1 large lemon
  • ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Cook pasta according to directions on the box for al dente.  Scoop and set aside pasta with GDL Stainless Steel Pasta Scoop.

In a food processor, combine sun-dried tomatoes, olives, basil, garlic, oil, lemon juice and lemon zest.  Pulse until blended but still chunky.

Add the tomato mixture and parmesan cheese to the pasta and toss well until pasta is coated.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.



Giada’s Caprese Burgers

  • 2½ pounds of ground sirloin beef
  • ¾ cup or 1 jar of GDL for Target Genovese Pesto
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 (7 to 8 ounce) ball fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced into 8 – ¼ inch thick slices, patted dry with paper towels (freeze the mozzarella to make cutting easier)
  • ½ cup mayonaise
  • 8 large fresh basil leaves
  • extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • 8- 3 inch square pieces of tomator or plain foccaccia bread, halved or 8 hamburger buns, halved
  • 4 medium tomatoes, sliced into ¼ inch thick rounds, to yield 16 slices

In a large bowl, combine beef, pesto, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.

Form the mixture into 8 – 4″ diameter patties, approximately ¾” thick.

Grill for 5 minutes and flip.  Cook for an additional 3 minutes.

Place a slice of mozzarella cheese on top and continue to cook through and the cheese is slightly melted.  Allow the burger to rest for 5 minutes.

Drizzle the cut side of the bread with olive oil and grill until lightly toasted.  Spread the mayonnaise over the bottom halves of the grilled bread.  Place the burgers on top and add 2 tomato slices and basil leaf.

Add the top halves of the bread and serve.

[quote]Buon Appetito![/quote] [box]{ disclosure:  We were invited to an Editor’s Event and received a selection of Giada De Laurentiis for Target products. The opinions expressed here within are always our own. We ♥ Target! }[/box]