Sicily offers a landscape of extraordinary and uncontaminated beauty, of softly undulating mountains, volcanos and hills, olive groves and vineyards following ancient trails laid by hermits, saints, peasants and pilgrims. In the North-West it’s possible to see uncontaminated nature, culture and … great gastronomy and wines. In the town or in the country, in the humblest cottages or in numerous villas and castles that testify to the island’s noble architectural heritage, the dishes prepared are in no way inferior to the most international gastronomic masterpieces. Sicilian civilization is unique and has preserved its particular features over the years. Its various aspect find full expression in the local cuisine, where the preparation of food becomes a launching pad for the imagination and the innate elegance that is such an essential part of the islanders extremely rich historical and cultural heritage. Conviviality is perhaps more widespread here than anywhere else in the world. It is no coincidence that pasta was born in Sicily along with sweet and sour sauce. Not to mention the wide range of delicacies imported from the Middle East and Spain with their hints of myth, legend, religion, aristocratic beauty and poetry. All these elements combine to draw people together to create occasions for lively parties
It is a wonderfully fertile land which offers a great variaty of products. The sea, with its unique variety and fish – these are the two inseparable elements which go to make up Sicilian cuisine. It is therefore essentially an agricultural and a maritime cuisine, often simple but always genuine, with a thousand different nuances. The centuries of domination of the island by various populations have also enriched the range of typical local dishes with new ingredients and usual flavors. For example, the use of apricots, sugar, citrus, sweet melons, rice, saffron, raisins, nutmeg, clove, pepper, pine nuts, cinnamon (along with fried preparations) is a sign of Arab influences from the Arab domination of Sicily in the 10th and 11th centuries. Normans and Hohenstaufen influences are also found such as in the fondness for meat dishes
Later, the Spanish introduced numerous items from the New World, including cocoa, maize, turkey, and tomatoes and other produce. you will also find lots of almonds, hazelnuts and pistachios, both in the preparation of sweets and drinks that to season rice and pasta. Much of the island’s cuisine encourages the use of fresh vegetables such as eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes, and fish such as tuna, sea bream, sea bass, cuttlefish, and swordfish. Sicily has a number of unique citrus fruits used in their cuisine. Many were first introduced by the Arabs from the 9th to 11th centuries
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