According to legend, many centuries ago, during a severe famine, a ship suddenly appeared in the port of Palermo on December 13th, St. Lucy's day. It was loaded with wheat. Sicilians could not wait the long time it took to turn the wheat into flour, so they cooked the wheat, added grape must (pressed grape juice, cooked until the liquid is reduced and thick), and served it. This tradition of eating Cuccìa on St. Lucy's day is still followed today, to show gratitude to St. Lucy for her miracle of the wheat.
Secondo la leggenda, tanti secoli fa, durante la carestia in Sicilia, una nave approdò a Palermo proprio il 13 dicembre, il giorno di Santa Lucia. Aveva un carico di grano. I siciliani, avendo fame, invece di aspettare tutto il tempo che serviva per macinare il grano, pensarono invece di cuocerlo, aggiungendo poi il mosto d'uva. Questa tradizione si osserva tutt'oggi, anche come ringraziamento a Santa Lucia per il miracolo del grano.
Soaking the grains for three days
Il grano si mette in ammollo per tre giorni
After soaking, it is cooked for 6 hours and then mixed with the grape must.
Poi viene cotto per 6 ore, dopodichè viene aggiunto il mosto d'uva.
Count Agostino Pepoli was the founder of the Pepoli Museum in Trapani. The museum is situtated in the ex- Carmelite convent next to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Annunciation. This is the entrance to the sanctuary
The interior of the Sanctuary
This is the statue of the Madonna of Trapani, entirely in white marble. She is the protector of the fishermen.
There is a place in Trapani which I have literally fallen in love with. Where Italy begins or ends, depending on whether you come from the sea or from inland. It's at the very tip of the city, in fact it's the North-Western-most point of Sicily itself. The TORRE DI LIGNY. Originally it was built as a watchtower, to warn local people of possible attacks from the sea, now it has been turned into a museum. Located between the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Mediterranean Sea, it is a fascinating place, the air is unbelievably clean and fresh. I can just sit here for hours looking out into the open sea.
Below you can see the Tyrrhenian Sea on the right, and the Mediterranean Sea on the left.
Here I'm standing behind the tower, this is where the two seas meet. Notice how tightly I am holding on to the railing, it's pretty scary here, below you have rocks and the deep sea. Just until a few years ago there was no railing and it was terrifying to walk around the tower, but exhilarating at the same time.
In my previous two posts I have mentioned the OSTELLINO, a pretty little b&b just on the outskirt of Trapani, at the foot of Monte Erice. Here are some pictures of the actual Ostellino. It's run by Andrea Iraci and Chikako Nagano. You can follow Chikako at her personal blog http://il-cane-sciolto.blogspot.it/