Food historians believe grains were introduced to Sicily in approximately 1000 BCE by the Phoenicians. By 150 BCE, during the Roman era, grain became the base of island’s cuisine. By 1000 CE, during the Arab era, the majority of Sicily’s landscape was dedicated to grain agriculture, and that remains true today.
Once you learn the crop’s significance, it is not difficult to understand why for Saint Joseph’s Day, which is celebrated around the spring equinox, ritual bread loaves are created as an act of prayer and thanksgiving for the protection that Signuruzzu provides. Pictured is the top of an altar in Salemi that dons some examples of ritual loaves. More about this in the next days.
Join me for a presentation for Saint Joseph’s Day on Thursday, March 18 at 8PM Eastern. Register at https://experiencesicily.com/st-josephs-day-online/