Cherry Season

Sicilians eat seasonally, so from mid-May to about right now, they have been enjoying a lot of cherries (ciliegie). Don’t tell the vendor in the Mercato Antico of Siracusa, but while in Ortigia, I enjoyed a few myself! (I cannot tell a lie, really, he was right there!) When planning your trip to Sicily, find…

Hands-on Sicily

Visiting the vibrant markets of Sicily is a crash course in Sicilian cuisine, the natural world, and culture all at once. Here, I’m in Il Capo market in Palermo getting a lesson on spatola (or spatula aka silver scabbarfish or lepidopus caudatus) from the fish monger. Spatola is a beautiful silver, long fish found in…

Spice It Up

Palermo’s outdoor markets should be on your itinerary when visiting this historic city. Among the three centers of exotic scents, cacophonous sounds, and vibrant colors: Il Capo, Ballarò, and Vucciria, you’ll find what you are looking for and a few things you didn’t know you needed… Like the spices pictured. Each market has its own…

A Mighty Swordfish

In the fishing village of Pozzillo, near Acireale north of Catania, this weekend they are celebrating swordfish with the Sagra del Pesce Spada. Specifically, their specialty is eating a grilled fillet as part of a sandwich. The one pictured, from Il Capo market in Palermo, shows you just how mighty this fish is. 

Nothing Short about Maletto’s Cake

This weekend in Maletto, a town between Randazzo and Bronte on the north slope of Mount Etna, citizens celebrate the 31st annual Sagra della Fragola, or Strawberry Festival. Strawberries, like the ones pictured, are celebrated in all forms: strawberry cake, strawberry pastries, strawberry gelato, strawberry jams, strawberry risotto, strawberry … you get the idea! There’s…