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Everyday Italian in Little Big Head's Kitchen


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#6241

whitepepper

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Posted Dec 12, 2009 @ 11:17 PM

Want to see a really scary cover photo? Any magazine shot of Paula Deen. Talk about air-brushed Stepford wife look!

Haha - totally! Pauler's apparently got a line of pots and pans on sale at Target... saw them today while Christmas shopping... didn't look all that high quality.

Did anyone watch the Secret Santa episode today? I know it's a repeat, but I figured maybe someone other than me had seen it. Reason I ask, is that after a little discussion about overcooking shrimp, it looked like she overcooked the shrimp. Is it me or does she tend to overcook seafood? I thought that she overcooked the calamari in that salad dish she made in last week's holiday episode, so I just wonder... She also made another cornmeal cake, although I am surprised that she didn't use polenta in her attempt to appear more Italian. Speaking of, has anyone made any of her polenta/cornmeal cakes? They look interesting, but they always appear to be so dry...
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#6242

grisgris

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Posted Dec 26, 2009 @ 2:33 PM

Reason I ask, is that after a little discussion about overcooking shrimp, it looked like she overcooked the shrimp. Is it me or does she tend to overcook seafood?


I thought the same thing during today's episode. When she was grilling the shrimp for the chopped salad, it really curled up fast and was nearly red in color. It look sort of dry. Maybe the grill was too hot. She might have had better results if she's actually brushed oil on the grill, as opposed to givng the shrimp a quick dunk in EVOO and s/p.

That was an interesting menu... EVERY FN host has prepared some version of watermelon/feta salad, so that was nothing new. Giada used watercress. The chopped salad looked OK.

What really blew my mind was the dessert. Spring rolls? I am sure that the cellophane noodles and rice paper would absorb whatever flavors were mixed with them, but I just thought it would be a very odd texture -- fruit, almonds and noodles. Maybe it's a five-star recipe. I think I'll pass.
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#6243

Baysu

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Posted Dec 26, 2009 @ 2:37 PM

I watched todays show, and was not impressed at all. I don't care for spring rolls, so I had no interest in that recipe. Her watermelon salad is very similar to Paula Deen's recipe, if not exactly alike. The chopped salad was ok, even so I was not so sure about grilling the romaine lettuce? I have never had grilled lettuce so I have no clue how it would taste. I doubt I will watch a rerun of this show.
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#6244

grisgris

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Posted Dec 26, 2009 @ 2:47 PM

baysu, first, thanks for being my "blizzard buddy" today!

I've grilled romaine before. I am deeply ashamed to admit this, but when Guy's show first premiered, he made a decent-sounding menu of Bloody Mary flank steak, then he grilled romaine and made a blue cheese dressing for it. It was actually good. Like Giada said, grilling the romaine gives it a smoky flavor and wilts it.

I didn't understand why she used both grilled romaine and butter lettuce in the salad. The yoga looked like fun, but can't say much more about the rest of the event.
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#6245

Baysu

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Posted Dec 26, 2009 @ 3:12 PM

You are welcome grisgris. I know what it is like having a blizzard going on and being stuck in the house. I lived in Kansas for several years, know all about white outs, not being open your backdoor because of snow drifts and sliding down ( in your car ) your driveway. I don't miss all that, thankfully I live in the southern part of the US now.
I think I remember Bobby Flay grilling romaine, not a Flay fan, but he knows how to grill.
And yes, I agree, I think she cooked the shrimp too long, they were not just pink, they were red. A few weeks ago she cooked calamari and it looked she overcooked that also. Calamari must have been like rubber.
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#6246

foodie100

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Posted Dec 29, 2009 @ 12:31 AM

My god, I hate this show. Painful to admit, I've been a major, major Giada fan for years now (been to book signings, etc) and didn't get it when people complained about the pretension and self-love. I watched the yoga special tonight on TiVo after taking a little hiatus from the crazy holidays, and I GAGGED. First of all, I do not consider throwing together a few salads "cooking." Sure, it's a great idea, but I would NOT appreciate being served two salads, and a funky-ass fruit spring roll for lunch. I know our girl is all about staying skinny, but um ........ I NEED SOME REAL FOOD. The menu did not sound satisfying. It really bugged me. I don't know, I am tired of seeing Giada's fabulous life - call me bitter, I probably am. But when the cooking doesn't match the fabulosity, I will stop watching. I'm just about there. Not all of us have personal yoga teachers come to our house weekly, with a posse of adoring friends to go along with whatever we make/do.

Please go back to traditional Italian cooking. Because you suck at "Californian Giada lemon fresh."
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#6247

osomarie

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Posted Dec 29, 2009 @ 12:23 PM

It looks like the transformation is now complete - Giada's former "cooking" show is now "lifestyles of the rich & famous."
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#6248

Philly Phoodie

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 8:12 AM

Maybe it's just me, but methinks Giada uses ground turkey too much. Some dishes simply require ground beef and/or pork. That is all. It's most likely my personal dislike of ground turkey. I find it expensive and bland.
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#6249

Baysu

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 8:47 AM

Turkey is bland, especially white turkey meat. Even lemon zest can't do the trick. Giada likes to use lemon zest/ juice a lot, like that makes it all taste better.
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#6250

schnauzerlover

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 9:34 AM

On the Barefoot Contessa thread there's a lot of snark about Ina's story lines, but Giada's really send me over the edge. If I have to see one more episode where she and her girlfriends are trying on shoes, exchanging gifts or picking jewlery ... well, it won't be pretty.
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#6251

Philly Phoodie

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 1:14 PM

Turkey is bland, especially white turkey meat. Even lemon zest can't do the trick. Giada likes to use lemon zest/ juice a lot, like that makes it all taste better.


Exactly. Some things can't be substituted. I love turkey, just not ground.
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#6252

grisgris

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 5:25 PM

I like to make ground turkey loaf, but yes, you really have to load up on the flavors or it's completely bland.

I'd really rather just watch Giada cook. Every show doesn't have to have a story line.
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#6253

Baysu

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 5:55 PM

I think her new show is promoted as a life style show, not just cooking. But she had stupid story lines in her old show also. But I do believe Ina Garten takes the cake with dumb, ridiculous story lines.
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#6254

grisgris

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 6:30 PM

I'll have to agree with you on that one, Baysu. Some of Ina's forced storylines are just painful to watch and detract from her and her cooking. Of course, though, I'll NEVER complain about seeing too much TR!
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#6255

orchidgal

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Posted Dec 30, 2009 @ 6:36 PM

I don't mind turkey burgers, but you can't pretend that they are beef burgers. The plus is that turkey burgers can be jazzed up with different flavors that add to the taste rather than detract.

I admit to having trouble seeing how lemon can help ground turkey out, though. Giada, leave the lemon to Ina. At least she knows when and how to use it.
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#6256

Baysu

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Posted Dec 31, 2009 @ 8:55 AM

I'll have to agree with you on that one, Baysu. Some of Ina's forced storylines are just painful to watch and detract from her and her cooking. Of course, though, I'll NEVER complain about seeing too much TR!


TR is eye candy , isn't he. He hasn't been on lately, the new shows I mean.
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#6257

grisgris

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Posted Jan 2, 2010 @ 8:17 PM

Did anybody catch today's new show? Giada spent time making three incredibly fussy dishes with more ingredients than I could care to count -- the main culprits being lemons, lemons, lemon zest, oranges and grapefruit.

I swear that I felt that the entire time, she was talking to Jade. "Squee-eee-zee all of the yummy grapefruit juice out." "This is so yummy!" "Chopping up these capers make them less capery-salty." "There's a lot of juice in cucumbers" (TM Slop)

Anyway, she made this elaborate salad, grilled salmon with some exotic topping and herbed quinoa, then plated up a huge serving and said, "I'll leave a little bit left for Jade and Todd" (There was about enough food for 4-5 people) then she proceeded to take her meal down to the poolside to eat.

Was Todd having a "Daddy's day out" with Jade or something? Maybe he was introducing her to a toddler-sized battery-powered skateboard. After all, Suri Holmes wears high heels....

This was boring and disappointing. Last week's fruit spring rolls more or less was the "jump the shark" episode for me. I really can appreciate diversity and venturing outside one's area of expertise, but I really prefer Giada doing what she does best -- Italian cooking. Like we discussed on the Paula Deen thread, Paula does her best at down-home Southern cooking and really shouldn't venture into other areas, like Thai, French, etc. Giada has the skills to venture outside of her comfort zone, but some of the stuff she's come up with lately ... ugh.
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#6258

Mlle Poilane

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 3:34 AM

I had the same feeling you did, grisgris, that she was entertaining a room of toddlers. Giada can really go off the deep end of "cutsie" when she wants to. I think the reason may be that Giada thinks she's cute when she does it. She clearly has a huge ego. I wonder if she was fussed over as a child or made to feel she was extra special to the world. I really can't stand to watch her anymore, but occasionally she comes on before another show I want to see.

Last year, Giada seemed to be making an effort to copy Ina is many ways. That's when she began using so much citrus and especially the peel. She also began asking, "How easy was that?" She began having family on, as opposed to Ina's friends. She began filling her table with friends and asking them how they liked the dishes. All of that is straight from Ina.

I have often wondered whether, if we tied Giada's hands behind her back, she would be able to talk. There is way, way, way too much gesturing. When you put the gestures together with the exaggerated facial expressions, it's either comical or nauseating. Can you tell I don't care for Giada???!
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#6259

schnauzerlover

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 8:59 AM

Unless Aunt Raffi is on, Giada is unwatchable as far as I'm concerned. There is a little girlishness about her that grates -- everything is "yummy" and "pretty" in her world. I'd honestly rather hear Rachael's "yummo" or Ina's "How easy is that?" We all know that some of Ina's storylines are lame, but when Giada and her friends are trying on shoes or picking jewelry off a "tree," I'm done. I usually catch the last couple of minutes, just before Ina comes on, and am always glad I missed what came before.
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#6260

Baysu

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 9:06 AM

I have often wondered whether, if we tied Giada's hands behind her back, she would be able to talk. There is way, way, way too much gesturing. When you put the gestures together with the exaggerated facial expressions, it's either comical or nauseating. Can you tell I don't care for Giada???!


Maybe that's the Italian way ?
I liked Giada when she first came on TV. I like the dishes she prepared, italian food, I think she was on her best then.
I don't care for her new show, which really is more like a life style show then a cooking show. I don't care to have to watch Todd on his skate board or surf board. The scenes with her friends are so forced, it's almost painful to watch. I wish Giada would go back to doing what she does best, cooking italian dishes.
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#6261

rhys7

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 3:26 PM

Listen to her say "pepper."

That being said, I like her food most of the time.
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#6262

Mlle Poilane

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 5:58 PM

Maybe that's the Italian way?


I imagine some of it may be, and I've thought of that, but no Italian that I know gestures anywhere nearly as much as Giada does. Even her mother and her aunt don't. Maybe she thinks that if she keeps moving, nobody will fall asleep.

Listen to her say "pepper."


I've heard her say pepper and never noticed anything. What does she do?

Schnauzerlover, I agree with your entire post.

I would reeeeeeally like to see the results of a scientific poll of how many people watch Giada frequently and how many people don't care for her show.

Edited by Mlle Poilane, Jan 5, 2010 @ 6:02 PM.

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#6263

angelblades

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 7:11 PM

I would reeeeeeally like to see the results of a scientific poll of how many people watch Giada frequently and how many people don't care for her show.


I'll offer my unscientific two cents. I have never liked Giada much. I could tolerate her old show. I mostly watched because I was too lazy or too busy to change the channel when she came on. I have never been tempted in the slightest to cook any of her recipes. However, I cannot tolerate her new show. I am still too lazy or too busy to change the channel, but I have plenty of energy to mute her.

I was quite surprised that my fiance' mentioned in a conversation recently that he cannot stand her. I thought he would be all blinded by her cleavage, etc. He simply stated that she was annoying and he refuses to watch her. Wonders never cease.
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#6264

grisgris

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 7:43 PM

Giada's show is much better when Aunt Raffi is on. Oddly, though, she is the FN chef whose recipes I have tried the most -- her Italian dishes and desserts -- and I've always had good results. I just don't like the way that she's "evolved."
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#6265

csichick

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Posted Jan 5, 2010 @ 9:03 PM

Agree that "Everyday Italian" was much better than "Giada at Home". The reason she is still on is ratings, which sell ad space. Ratings fall, things will change. If you want something that is not all about the money, you're going to have to depend on PBS. JMHO.

I'm interested to see what the new Cooking Channel will look like. Obviously, DIY was not doing well enough as a network to keep them around.
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#6266

JTMacc99

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Posted Jan 6, 2010 @ 1:45 PM

I think her new show is promoted as a life style show, not just cooking. But she had stupid story lines in her old show also. But I do believe Ina Garten takes the cake with dumb, ridiculous story lines.

However, Ina's turkey meatloaf recipe is by far the best one I've tried. I guess if you're going to do a lifestyle show, you still need to make the recipes worth looking up on the internet.

I've got what might be a typical (male) arc of viewership for Giada's time on TVFN. When she first came on the air, she neither immediately made me want to go out of my way to watch her show, nor did she make me want to turn it off. However, after she'd been on for little while, and getting some recommendations on "Big Head's" recipes from my father and my brother, I found myself watching more and more. A great deal of her food was easy to make and enjoyable to eat.

Then, once I was pretty much aware of her and was checking in to see what she was making, she changed the way she presented herself on the TV. Hair down. Nicer clothes. Boobs. At that point, it is possible that I would have become bored with her food, since that's the typical arc for almost every chef on the Food Network, but I stuck around just because it amused me that the brilliant set designers put the oven underneath her counter and put the place where she keeps her spoons and whisks way over on the other side of the counter (close to one of the cameras.)

After a couple of seasons of that, we really got into the "I'm just making shit up now" recipes, which is about when I checked out for good. The fact that they gave her this current show didn't really do much to bring me back in as a regular viewer. I still think she's a good TV chef, and she certainly added a bunch of stuff to the food I prepare, but I just don't expect her to wow me with food anymore.

Edited by JTMacc99, Jan 6, 2010 @ 1:47 PM.

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#6267

contestant pool

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Posted Jan 6, 2010 @ 5:00 PM

The show this afternoon (Wednesday), the spa show, had more boobage than I have ever seen. The top she had on during the opening part showed more than she has ever. They've never looked so big!
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#6268

LivenLetLive

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Posted Jan 6, 2010 @ 6:21 PM

Tits galore for sure this afternoon, but damn, I am so trying those stuffed pork chops.
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#6269

polpetti

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Posted Jan 8, 2010 @ 10:39 PM

Princess Lemonhead is set to make some serious bank with a new line of cookware, housewares and food products for Target. I better see wall to wall zesters! Clickety.
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#6270

csichick

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Posted Jan 8, 2010 @ 11:46 PM

Princess Lemonhead is set to make some serious bank with a new line of cookware, housewares and food products for Target. I better see wall to wall zesters


Well, why not? Let's see - Emeril, Ray Ray, Mario, Paula Deen. I'm sure I'm missing a few. Depends on who actually "makes" the stuff. Still LMAO that America's Test Kitchens tested Ray Ray's cookware and put it under "Do Not Recommend."
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