On Saturday, I had the pleasure of being in a room full of people in which at least 10 countries were represented when I attended a dinner hosted by the Global Center of Greater Cincinnati YPs. I only recently became involved with the group after learning about it from the director, Julie Arostegui. So this was a great way to meet some of the members. It was an evening of enlightenment as the YPs gathered to meet a very interesting group of international visitors who are visiting the United States to study ways to combat human trafficking. It was amazing to have the chance to discuss the matter in the presence of such a wonderful mix of people. Gareth L. Howell, president and CEO of the group, opened up his lovely home to all of us for the dinner. The cozy setting made discussion and milling about effortless. The countries that were represented included Albania, Germany, Jamaica, Kosovo, Madagascar, Nigeria, Sri Lanka, Wales, Yemen and, of course, the States.
In addition to the sharing of global ideas, it was a potluck so we were able to enjoy cuisine from all over the world, too. One YP brought a taste of the American South with a big dish of Shrimp and Grits. Another made a timely (it was St. Patrick's day, for those of you who didn't spend Sunday testing hangover remedies) dish of Beef and Irish Stout Stew. We also got to sample a heavenly and hellaciously spicy pot of Chicken Biryani that another YP made. I made sambusas, an Ethiopian appetizer (see recipe in comment section). They are very similar to Pakistani samosas, Jamaican meat patties, Puerto Rican meat pies, etc...
And that's just scratching the surface of all the cultures/cuisines that were represented that evening. When I left, I wasn't just full of tasty food... I was inspired and brimming with creative energy. It was a great reminder that the world really is small. After all.