The Flavours of Sicily. The Land of Sunshine
If you love to travel and you continuously seek new experiences, so it’s time to start a Sicilian adventure. The Land of Sunshine beckons and you must heed the call! You will enjoy the sun and will be enthralled by the landscape, but you will definitely fall in love with the food. With 3000 years of history and interracial mixing, you will discover that visiting Sicily for the food is an entirely unique undertaking. And one that will truly satisfy. For the best lodgings for your upcoming food trip and the for the most reliable Sicily holiday guide, you can check online.
Sicily’s cuisine is deeply rooted on and characterized by their surroundings and the matrix of cultures that have set food on the land. As such, there is a certain sense of identity separating them from others as well as a regional pride undoubtedly distinctive. The culinary result of these mixing of diverse cultural and historical influences is now evident in the extraordinary dishes prepared by present-day Sicilians. From the Greeks to the Arabs, the Normans and even the Spanish, the rich legacy of these cultural influences, together with the fertility of their soil, have created a delicious Sicilian cuisine that both locals and foreigners alike enjoy today.
One can find in Sicily a wide array of delicacies - from starters, to main courses, to desserts including the wines that go well with them. Starters can range from either grilled, baked, boiled, fried or fresh delicacies such as the famous Caponata, said to be of Spanish origin, which is a mix of eggplants, pine nuts, tomatoes, raisins, olives, capsicum, and fish. In Palermo, they even add octopus. There are also the arancine or saffron-rice balls, potato croquets, chickpea fritters, miniature sfincione which is a Sicilian pizza without cheese, to name just a few. For soups, maccu is a popular one made with dried fava beans and fennel as the main ingredients. It is rarely found nowadays but occasionally, they are served. For Saint Joseph’s Day, Maccu di San Giuseppe is prepared consisting of maccu and other various ingredients. Get in touch with your Sicily holiday guide for a trip to the islands during the feast of their patron saint and for a taste of this wonderful dish.
For the primi ( first course), they are usually pasta-based with the occasional rice dishes. Every region has their own specialty. In Catania, you can find Pasta alla Norma, a dish of macaroni that is topped with aubergine, tomatoes, salted ricotta cheese and basil. Spagghetti alla Siracusana is a pasta dish that uses fresh anchovies that are sautéed with garlic and pepper flakes in olive oil and deglazed with white wine, tossed with spaghetti, cherry tomatoes, parsley and served with toasted bread crumbs on top. Then there’s Pasta con le Sarde, a seasonal dish that is prepared using fresh herring and wild fennels. There are many versions of this such as the Pasta con le Sarde alla Trappitara, a recipe that is jealously guarded in Trappeto, Palermo.
A lot of dishes are based on seafood and you will definitely find Sicily has some of the best there are. Go to Messina and try their Pesce Spada alla Ghiotta, a dish using swordfish as the main ingredient and cooked with tomatoes, onions, olives, black pepper, celery, and capers. There is also Pasta al Nero di Seppia using spaghetti and served with a sauce that is a mixture of the ink sacs of cuttlefish and ricotta salata.
There are also some delightful meat dishes included in the Sicilian cuisine. One of the most poular, Farsumagru, translated to “false lean,”is a rolled steak stuffed with meats, cheese, eggs and vegetables, then rolled to resemble a roast. Braciole alla Sicilia, is another meat dish that is composed of veal cutlets filled with olives and capers then grilled over coals. Spezzatino di Agnello con Patate is a really delectable stew that you can also find.
Desserts in Sicily are varied and abundant. Cannoli con Crema di Ricotta is a very popular one. Try Cassata, a kind of sponge cake with Arabian influences that uses marzipan, ricotta cream, candied fruits and doused with sweet liqeur. In Trapani, you can find Casatelle served during breakfast to go with coffee, or as a dessert. On the other hand, fruit is also an option for meal-enders. Figs, persimmons, blood oranges are just a few of the possible choices. When you go to Sicily, never miss to try the gelato, and granita as well. There is an amazing collection of flavors to choose from.
When you visit Sicily, don’t miss out on a wonderful way to make the most of the place. Celebrate your vacation by enjoying the wonderful array of dishes accompanied by wines produced locally. It will make the entire experience much more pleasurable. And if you are interested to learn more about Sicilian cuisine, why not grab a copy of this recipe book, Sicilia in Cucina: The Flavours of Sicily. 80 recipes are included which feature the gastronomic culture of Sicily while providing insights into Sicily’s culture and culinary art. The book comes with a collection of colored photos of the island.