Giada de Laurentis the California based Celebrity Chef and mini mogul. I mean mini because she is a teeny tiny chef who looks like she doesn't have to be surrounded by food all day. This mini mogul has written many cookbooks with the current one called "Giada's Feel Good Food which is geared to all of the healthy practices, tips and recipes that she uses in her life, including yoga, packing tips and other things she does to keep herself healthy and fit.
She is in town this weekend to be the Head Judge for the "Chef's Challenge" - The Ultimate Battle for a Cure 2014. An event that has amateur fundraising cooks paired up with some celebrity Chefs like Mark McEwan, David Rocco and Vikram Vij to compete against each other in teams with some random ingredients revealed to them on the day of the competition. This is the 4th year of this event and Giada got involved after speaking with her friend Bobby Flay about his experience hosting it last year. It is being held at the Toronto Congress Centre on Saturday, Feb 8th. (today) as I write this. and the proceeds of this event will go towards Research of women's Cancer diseases for Mount Sinai Hospital.
Giada has personal family experience with Cancer and wants to take this opportunity to "give back" as she puts it.
Hazelton Hotel in their screening room with a select group of mostly food bloggers like myself. It was an intimate space where we were allowed to ask her questions. I asked her if she thought chef's were going to far mixing too many different ingredients to think outside of the box. Her reply was that she thinks there are chefs that use too many ingredients and she thinks that more than 8 ingredients is too much. She thinks that food should be "clean" as she referred to it and she also thinks it's hard to make things that are made simple with a few ingredients and made well. She thinks that the food gets muddy when you mix too many things. At the Challenge she is looking to see things that we all know with a twist like chicken parmigiana with grilled chicken or some other twist. She said that if anyone knows her they will know the flavours she likes. Hint: She is partial to citrus flavour if anyone is reading this that is participating today.
She also chatted about her book and her busy life trying to keep up with her tv shows, her products and endorsements, her family and she is now opening a restaurant in Las Vegas that is a huge new venture for her. She says she has to take care of herself so that she can keep up with her busy travel schedule and hectic life where she finds she must multi task all the time to keep up.
Giada is the first woman chef to open a restaurant on the Las Vegas strip and also the only restaurant that will be located in a small boutique hotel which was a 2 story parking garage which she will convert to indoor and outdoor seating. She said this was the only one of it's kind on the Vegas Strip.
She is a powerhouse chef with many things in the air. She said she hasn't been to Canada very much but we hope that she can find the time to come back again a lot more in the future. Maybe a restaurant in Canada one day?? Who knows what's next for this busy chef. @gdelaurentis