Gala Event for Viva Italia! Week

George Brown’s week of all things Italian was finished by a Gala Tasting Reception at the bargain price of $125 per person. The guests got to drink unlimited Prosecco and food from a dozen or so very talented chefs from Toronto, New York and Italy. A pair of students was assigned to each Chef. Myself and another lovely student were paired up with Chef Milne-Allan from Zucca Trattoria and we served scacciata (ska-cha-ta) – which is a Sicilian stuffed flatbread with baccala, olives and cheese. I had a hard time remembering how to pronounce it – oops. I will learn Italian, dammit. I will.

We have had an adorable Nonna from Bologna making pasta at our school all week, I didn’t have the chance to work with her, and after tasting her tortellini I feel like I really missed out. The brodo (broth) was rich with flavour and full bodied, the tortellini were like little pockets of heaven. At my first bite, I felt like the whole room stopped, I was having a
serious culinary moment. Food would never taste as good again knowing that these little tortellini were out there and I couldn’t have them. Wow. They set the bar high on all food to come.
One of the other culinary delights of the night was Mario Pingue’s Prosciutto from Niagara Specialty Foods. Now, maybe I haven’t tasted good Italian prosciutto here in Canada, but Pingue’s prosciutto was the most silky and delicious I have ever tasted. He brought an entire piece and sliced it fresh with a grissini. Yum! I am looking forward to eating Prosciutto di Parma while we are in Parma at ALMA, but I wonder if I will like it as much as his. We’ll see.

Vegetable Carving to the Extreme! Amazing!

Roasted Squab with Truffle Butter (and other lovely things I don’t remember) from Via Allegro.

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