THE ARANCINA .......... with "A"

The ARANCINA is a stuffed rice balls which are coated with bread crumbs and then deep fried. They are usually filled with ragù (meat) or mozzarella. The name, which is translated as "little orange", derives from their shape and colour, which is reminiscent of an orange after cooking. 

Arancine are said to have originated in 10th-century Sicily at a time when the island was under Arab rule. In Palermo, arancine are a traditional food for the day of Santa Lucia on December 13th when bread and pasta are not eaten.



Panelle are fritters made from chickpea flour with parsley. The roots of this dish go back to the 9-10th centuries, when Sicily was under Arab rule.

They are a popular street food in Palermo and are often eaten toghether the crocchè inside a sandwich. Bread with panelle is the traditional snack of the student in Palermo for the break during the morning. In each school there is a "panellaro" (panelle seller) who waits eleven o'clock when bell to ring. He fries and serves bread with panelle and crocchè until when the school bell rings again.


CROCCHE' ............... O CAZZILLI !!!

Crocchè are a typical street food of Palermo. A creamy mashed potato ball coated in crispy breadcrumbs, to be eaten straight out of the frying pan while they are still hot.

People also call it "cazzilli" because of their shape reminds the male genital organs :) :) :) .

It was influenzed by the popular french croquette, during the seventeenth centurywhen potatoes toook root in Sicily. Today is the Sicily's answer to the french fries.



Sfincione is a thick Sicilian pizza topped with tomatoes, onions,  anchovies, caciocavallo cheese and oregano. Until the 1860s sfincione was the kind of "pizza" usually consumed in Sicily, especially in the west of Sicily. With a spongy crust up to two centimetres thick, sfincione is more like bread than pizza.

Sfincione has been made only since the seventeenth century. In fact the most important ingredient, the tomato, is South American in origin. It has been cultivated in Sicily only since the sixteenth century.

Sfincione is made or sold by a "sfinciunaro", street vendors  especially at Palermo's open-air markets. By tradition, sfincione is served on Christmas Eve, New Year's Eve and Good Friday. In warmer months it is served at room temperature.




Cannoli are a pastries of the Sicily region originated during the Arabic domination. In the Sicilian language cannolo meaning "little tube", with the etymology stemming from the Greek kanna (reed).
Cannoli consist of tube-shaped shells of fried pastry dough, filled with a sweet, creamy filling usually containing ricotta. They range in size from "cannulicchi", no longer than a finger, to the fist-sized proportions typically found in Piana degli Albanesi near Palermo.


If you want, you can tast also .....



U pani ca meusa is a Sicilian street food. Its name means "bread with spleen" (in Italian is panino con la milza). It is a dish exclusively typical of Palermo and it consists of a soft bread flavoured with sesame, stuffed with chopped veal's lung and spleen that have been boiled and then fried in lard. Caciocavallo or ricotta may also be added, in which case the pani ca meusa is called in Sicilian "maritatu" (married), if served without cheese, or schiettu (single). It is sold mainly by peddlers (meusari) in Palermo's main markets as the Vucciria (in the picture).


The base ingredient is the aubergine, the dish is very common in Mediterranean. About in the 1700 caponata was eaten as a main meal with bread. Today it is mainly served as a side dish. It is difficult to find out what is the origin of the name, probably from a fish called CAPONE seasoned with a sweet and sour souce. 




The legend and the history says that the origin of PASTA WITH SARDINES comes from the Arabs invasion in the IX century. It all began when captain Eufemio from Messina exiled to Africa and he allied with Saracens. to move the fleets to conquer Sicily. When they arrived to Mazara del Vallo he had to feed the troops with whatever he had at disposal: pasta, sardines, fennel and saffron.


The dish takes the name from a bird called BECCAFICO. In the past the sicilian noble would eat them after they hunted and stuffed them. Because the dish was very expensive, people from Palermo replaced the beccafico with a cheaper alternative and so they think to make a roll of sardines and for the stuffing, bread crumbs, garlic, parsley, salt, pepper and pine nuts.