Wednesday, October 17, 2012


The Ottobrata festival at Zafferana Etnea takes place on every Sunday during October and is a showcase for food products from the Etna area, local crafts, art and street performers. My friend Carol King and I set out for Zafferana last Sunday and I'm jolly glad we did!

The town perches below smoky old Etna

and we were just in time to see a rainbow in the fountain [well-spotted by Carol]:

There is a model of the crater in the square:

There were stalls as far as the eye could see

 but you still got an idea of what a peaceful place this must be for most of the year:

OK, so Carol [seated left, in headscarf] and I played at being tourists for this shot.  I think I should wear a hat like this every day!

There were tastes of everything on offer and there were so many varieties of honey that I couldn't decide where to begin:

There was no shortage of cheese either!

Then it was on to one of my favourite towns, Militello in Val di Catania, where the Festa della Mostarda e del Fico d'India [prickly pear]  was in full swing.  Luck was with us again as the parade of traditional Sicilian carts began a few minutes after we arrived:

The horses looked so proud of their finery and happy, like us, to be out in the sunshine:

I wonder if I could get some plumes like this to add to my flat cap?

Now I'll let you enjoy more of the colourful parade: 

I was too tired to cook when I got home but some of this "black" bread from Castelvetrano [Trapani] tasted delicious spread with some olive and aubergine pâté that I'd bought. The bread is made with timilia or tumminia wheat, which is becoming rarer.

And this balsamic honey - yes, I did finally choose one - made an interesting salad dressing:

Congratulations to the good folk of Zafferana Etnea and Militello in Val di Catania on their fine festivals.


Unknown said...

Thanks for posting about Ottbrata so I could vicariously follow along.

Rosaria Williams said...

And thanks to you, we can savor the feasts with our eyes and our imagination! So much to love!
I may just convince hop on over one of these days. How cold and wet does it get in winter?

Hawkins Family said...

I almost went last Sunday, hoping to make it this Sunday--especially after seeing your photos!

nothing here said...

That bread looks delicious. Bread is something I do now regularly. Although not with that Ancient Wheat. Most common Wheat now is a result of endless 'modern hybridization'. At best I use Organic Flour.

Looks like at least the tradition of Black bread making Tradition is still going

''Bakers, the Slow Food Association, the Councillor for Cooperation, Commerce, Handicrafts and Fishing in the Region of Sicily and the Municipality of Castelvetrano are working together to increase the cultivation of ‘tumminia’ wheat, and restore some life to the numerous local mills which are drastically underused.
The black bread shapes that come out of the oven are "vastedde" and "cuddure", reminders of times gone by when the housewives baked the bread once a week or once a fortnight''

I recently bought a Flat Cap, but then I am in 'Flat Cap ' locality, as was...

and you you know what they say, if the cap fits...



Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hope you enjoyed the virtual trip, Nick. x Thanks, Rosaria. It would be fantastic if you were to come over. Well, quite cold sometimes, especially indoors as the houses aren't built for it. When it rains it doesn't do so by halves and sometimes it sets in for a couple of days, all day. But often the weather is lovely in winter - hotter than a British summer! Hi, Hawkins Family. I do hope you make it as I thought it was well worth the trip. Hi, NH. Thanks for the extra info. The bread is delicious. I wish I could go back to get some more! I'm sure you look very fine in your flat cap. Tony who??

Whispering Walls said...

Che bella!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Grazie, WW. I got your message, NH and I remember you very well.

nothing here said...

A favorable remembrance I hope.

By the way that's a great image of Mount Etna on the header

Keep up the good blogging

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, NH. Yes, of course. Glad you like the header photo - I took it from a bus on the way to Catania back in February. It's an accident that it came out so well!


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