Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Sicily - Ragusa food

We totally maxed out our food intake in Ragusa. We found a local restaurant (think tv by cashier, locals all laughing at some Italian version of You Think You Can Dance). We began with with a local wine -it was very "unstructured" but it went very well with the strong tasting food.
We were not 100% sure what we were ordering as the menu was in Italian. B went for some sort of pasta dish made with aubergine and tomatoes. It was tasty but very salty.

My all-time favourite: bresaola with parmigiano-reggiano and arugula. The beef was soft and moist and the arugula was probably the freshest I ever tasted.

B then tried some pasta dish with tomato and chili sauce - a Sicilian speciality. Tasty but once again extremely salty.

There was no way I could have a starter, a pasta dish then a main so I dived straight into my main (B as a result had no room for main but hey). I asked for some manzo (beef) and that's the extent of Italian I could manage. I was quite happy to see what I got at the end though.
It was some kind of very homemade-looking stew and I thought it was very nicely cooked. The beef was succulent and I could still taste the broth it was cooked in. Somehow the potatoes were once again really salty! We were beginning to wonder when travel guides speak of strong tasting food in Sicily do they mean salty?

We had no room for dessert but we were happy. Dinner came to 55 euro.
Ristorante Orfeo
Via S. Anna 117, Ragusa. Tel: 0932 62 10 35


The next day we decided to indulge once again. We found a place in Ragusa old city and ate ourselves silly. In order to try eating a 3-course lunch we cheated by sharing some of the stuff.
To start we got some soup but it was more like warm and starchy hummus. It was so thick (but very tasty) it sat on our bread nicely and we didn't even need spoons.

My sister B went for some tomato-base pasta again, since Sicilian tomatoes are renowned throughout Italy for their rich favours. The sauce was very zingy and refreshing but it was very salty!

I thought it was time to try the famous Sicilian dish pasta con le sarde. Ingredients: sardines, wild mountain fennel (unique to Sicily), pinenuts, raisins, and strong (and wonderful) caciocavallo cheese. We LOVED this dish (although it was salty once again)!!! The sardines were infused into the sauce and pasta so perfectly to begin with. Together with the aroma of fennel it was out of this world. I wish I had bought some fennel back with me!

As full as I was I moved onto our third course (we were kind of sharing this one). The seafood mixed grill was recommended by the very friendly waiter. It was simple yet fresh and delicious.
Our scrumptious lunch (probably the biggest in my life) came to 32 euro. Bargain! Will definitely go back again if we ever have a chance to visit again.

U Saracinu
Via del Convento 9, Ragusa. Tel: 0932 24 69 76

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