Today would have been a good day to wear stretchy pants.
The Ready for the World Cafe was simply amazing.
Plus, there was a cool surprise guest: Knoxville City Mayor Madeline Rogero! She came at the invitation of Pellissippi State Community College President Anthony Wise.
The cafe also had the largest crowd ever today: 80 people. Awesomesauce!
Now, on to the food: All I can say is, wow.
Appetizer was arancini, deep fried risotto balls stuffed with prosciutto and peas and seasoned with Italian spices. It was served with marinara, spinach and grated mozzarella.
Salad was panzanella, a mixture of garden veggies and chopped pieces of Italian bread tossed in olive oil and red wine vinaigrette.
An aside: I loved the table decor. Crazy fact: did you know the average Italian drinks 26 gallons of wine every year?
Entree was braciole (pounded beef that was stuffed, rolled and baked with tomato sauce), polenta (corn meal cakes) and topped with garlic sautéed escarole (salad greens).
Dessert was a blood orange gelato served with crispy almond Florentine cookies and chocolate-covered orange peel. Nom!!!
Confession: it pays to have friends in the kitchen. My co-worker Amy and I got two servings of the dessert. We were joking with our server Matt that we wanted seconds. Next thing you know, he came out with them. Amy and I were speechless for a few seconds. And then we dug in :)
We gave Matt a big hug as we left.
Six cafes down, four to go. Up next are France (April 3), Liberia (April 10), Persia (April 17) and Germany (April 26).