The Bust Of Sant’Agata Of Sicily

Replicas of the bust of Sant’Agata appear all over Catania. The actual bust is made of precious metals and is encrusted with jewels, making it extremely heavy. During these days of the feast, February 3 to 5, Catania’s faithful engage in back-breaking activities to illustrate their devotion and honor their patroness, Sant’Agata. Through rituals, they…

Sicily’s Breast Shaped Pastry

When you see this pastry show up in every pasticceria in Sicily, you know February is upon us. Minna di Sant’Agata (or Minna di Sant’Aita in Sicilian), or Saint Agatha’s Breast, is made and eaten in honor of the Sant’Agata, Catania’s patroness. The breast-shaped pastry represents the virgin martyr who is the patron saint of…

Catania’s Crispelle

These savory delights are called crispelle, a street food from Catania. They are made by pairing ricotta and anchovies then rolling them in semolina flour and deep frying them in lard. Sweet crispelle are made with rice that has been soaked in sweetened milk, then rolled in flour. Once fried, it is coated in honey….

Saint Agatha’s Breasts

Make no mistake, these pastry are created to look like breasts. And, I will say also, that it is a celebration of them! I’m preparing you for the big feast in Catania. From February 3 to 5, Eastern Sicily’s largest city (and the second largest in Sicily) is alive with passionate fervor as devotees celebrate…

Long Live Sant’Agata!

This morning we were back in Catania’s center to join the cittadini of the city in celebration of their beloved Sant’Agata. NB This isn’t an American parade! No barriers. No policemen on horseback. Just fellowship and trust amongst neighbors. We could walk right up to the carrozza and touch it and give the caretakers candles…

Keeping You Abreast

From February 3 to 5 the city of Catania is alive with passionate fervor as devotees celebrate their patron, Saint Agatha. These ricotta-filled pastry, pictured, called “minna di Sant’Aita” or Saint Agatha’s Breast represent Agatha, who is the patron saint of martyrs, bakers, earthquakes, wet nurses, and breast cancer patients. Her story starts in early…