Sicilia, terra di degustazioni interessante connubbio tra Oriente e Occidente
Sicily is a gastronomic continent, a meeting place between east and west of the Mediterranean Sea but also a passage of many and various cultures over the centuries. One cannot but find variety in the kitchen, but also encounters of flavors that are not always conventional. Caponata, a typical dish based on sweet and sour fried eggplant, in its variants there is a version with chocolate and chilli. The panorama of agronomic biodiversity provides a choice of products from the most exotic to the most traditional. On the island, mangoes, avocados, kiwis are grown, and at the same time in the woods there are mushrooms and truffles, moreover each micro-area provides particular quality ingredients.
Sicily is the place to visit if you want to experience something new, if you want to make many trips in one trip. The vine and with it the production of wine, originally migrated from east to west. Here there are also very different areas of wine interest. A visit to at least one Sicilian winery is a must, take a break during your vacation and stop to enjoy the fruits of a rich agriculture, in soils and climates. From the slopes of a volcano to the breezes of the seas.
Il cioccolato di Modica : una prelibatezza tutta siciliana, preparato con una antica ricetta che viene da molto lontano
The Southern East of Sicily is a region rich ofexcellent quality agricultural products and slow food products, it is worth a visit not only to admire its splendid Baroque-style monuments, but also to
taste its delicacies, including the Modica chocolate.
Famous all over the world, it owes its uniqueness to a grainy and crumbly texture and a rough appearance that preserves all the characteristics of cocoa intact.
The origin dates back to the Spanish domination in Sicily, in that time Modica was the capital of a county, once the largest in the Kingdom
of Sicily. Around 1519 they imported the first cocoa beans having learned their excellent qualities and economic riches, and they established a real trade.
The Spanish learned from the Aztecs, one of the old civilization Central America. For these civilizations , chocolate assumed an important meaning because it was considered a medicine, but it was also an index of well-being and wealth and a means of communicating with their divinities. They used it dissolved in water as a liquid drink, Xocoatl, which gave energy and vigor. The Spanish added sugar. The cocoa beans were processed using the "Metate", a type of curved stone grinder resting on two transverse bases, used for
processing seeds and cereals. While in Europe it passed to industrial production, in Modica it continued to be an artisanal product.
How is chocolate made? The cocoa mass, obtained from roasted and ground seeds, and not deprived of cocoa butter, is heated in a water bath, to make it fluid, at a temperature not exceeding 40 degrees. This particular type of processing called "cold" allows to maintain the characteristics of the cocoa unaltered. It is mixed with sugar, without merging into it; in fact the sugar crystals with such a low processing temperature remain intact. Spices such as cinnamon, vanilla, chilli, ginger, or with orange and lemon peels are added. At this temperature the sugar crystals do not dissolve and give a grainy texture. The flavor of Modica chocolate is unique Sciascia called it "archetype", because chocolate arrived in Sicily and above all in the county of Modica before anywhere in Europe, after Spain. The chocolate has a very dark and rustic color, you immediately notice the rough appearance and the rough grain inside the bars. It has an uneven brown color, the aroma is that of roasted cocoa.