Have you ever heard of a place called SAMBUCA di SICILIA?
Sambuca, which was appointed most beautiful hamlet in Italy in 2016, is a lovely place to visit and to spend some holiday time.
Located in the Agrigento country-side (south west of Sicily), it is a small town but full of history and culture. Everything is incredibly evocative in Sambuca!
HISTORY AND CULTURE
Despite being quite small a town, in Sambuca there is plenty to see in one day!
From the very characteristic Saracen alleys (here a lovely colorful glimpse on the left) to the main church, the Matrice.
The Sanctuary is home to the famous marble statue of Our Lady called Madonna dell’Udienza, created by the Renaissance artist Antonello Gagini, between 1515-1530.
Another very important site not to be missed is the Gianbecchina Foundation.
A museum dedicated to the famous painter Giovanni Becchina, known with the nickname of Gianbecchina.
He was native of Sambuca and had an incredible talent.
Here on the right you can see one of his paintings, the Self- portrait, although most of his canvas have a rustic feel and want to evoke the Sicilian country side in which he was born and grew up.
Of course in Sicily as you already might know there isn’t only history and art.
Everywhere you go in the island you will find a dish or a particular food typical of the area you are visiting and Sambuca is not exception.
Here people are crazy for a delicious pastry, created by a nun in 1725, Virginia Casale di Rocca Menna.
This is a dessert made of shortcrust and filled with a milky smooth custard cream, dark chocolate chips and cedar cubes candied.
Decorated on top with tiny colored sugar pearls.
And this is not even the best part, do you want to know which is the best part?
It’s the name of this dessert which is called: Minne di Vergine!
The word Vergine means virgin, while “minne” is NOT a particularly polite way to indicate women’s breasts.
It is highly unlikely that the name was given from the nun herself, being extremely vulgar.
It seems more obvious that it was just a colorful way in which people in the village were calling the pastries, once they became popular, as the resemblance and shape are undoubtedly very “breast-like”.
You can find the best Minne at Pasticceria Pendolo where, in summertime, they bake them twice a day.
Despite the heath, the trip to Sambuca was absolutely lovely and I will definitely go back to discover more and enjoy another delicious pastry!
I recommend you do the same!
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