The Christmas holidays in Sardinia have a special aroma…
Christmas Day sees a lavish dinner prepared in every household, featuring the island’s most typical dishes, with different specialities in every region.
Diners are treated on this occasion to a unique and magical experience, created by the amazing colours and aromas of the region’s food and wine.
In Sardinia, tradition is a value that is
truly experienced and preserved in many areas, and this is particularly true of its food and wine.
Among appetisers, pride of place is given to the best cured meats and prosciutto, alongside olives and vegetables like mushrooms and cardoons in oil or stewed, a gift from the country.
First courses are a carousel of typical pasta dishes that vary according to region: culurgiones, malloreddus, macarrones. Sardinia is also famed for its traditional, hearty soups: zichi bread soup, typical of the area of Bonorva, and the soup known as suppa cuatta, made with stale bread soaked in lamb broth.
A typical and original dish is fregola, small grains of handmade semolina served in a fish broth, with clams and tomato, or served with mushrooms and our very own spices!
Main courses make a beautiful display on Sardinia’s Christmas tables, with the added bonus of their intense aromas: roast meat and fish, together with meat stewed with vegetables, slow cooked to make them soft and delicious.
These are complemented by treats from gardens and the country, such as radishes, celery and fennel, an inevitable component of these dishes on the island.
Lamb in particular, but also kid, can also be savoured in the numerous dishes prepared in the oven or in stew pots, or come stuffed alongside vegetable specialities such as cardoons, artichokes and potatoes.
Another cornerstone of the festive table is cheese: the type may vary, but they are always packed with flavour, and pecorino in particular is served in its different stages of ageing.
Bread is ever present, and almost takes on a leading role; in Sardinia, it is not only a food, but a typical part of various celebrations and holidays.
Bread in Sardinia takes on numerous forms, one for every region of the island thanks to the variety of techniques used to make the dough and the various leavening methods.
The most famous is pane carasau (or sheet music), a flatbread formed by two thin and crispy sheets, twice baked in a wood oven. The name comes from “carasare” which in Sardinian means “to toast”. Other types of bread are su pistoccu and su civraxiu, a large loaf eaten in thick slices.
Alongside this wealth of food, Sardinia boasts wines recognised for their excellence well beyond the boundaries of the island.
Sardinia’s winemaking tradition has ancient origins, dating back to the Carthaginians. It has 18 DOC (Denomination of Controlled Origin) wines, including single varietal wines such as the much-vaunted Cannonau. Try Nuragus, Nasco, Carignano del Sulcis, Campidano di Terralba and Monica; among the whites, Vernaccia di Oristano is one
of Italy’s most famous white wines; Vermentino di Gallura DOCG is also not to be missed.
Today, wine is an undisputed leader role among drinks on the holiday table, providing a perfect accompaniment in structure, taste and fragrance to the great gastronomic wealth offered by Sardinia at Christmas.
Sardinia’s typical desserts represent another indispensable component on the festive table, and are mainly made of honey and dried fruit, particularly almonds. But ingredients also include cheese, as in seadas, pardule and casadine pastries, and fresh fruit flavours, such as lemon and orange. Small pastry decorations are still made today at home by expert female hands for the Christmas table.
The meal is rounded off with another essential component of traditional cuisine, a mirto liqueur or filu e ferru, a strong brandy with a distinct bitter taste.
The holidays are therefore the best opportunity to discover an ancient food and wine tradition, which treats diners to unforgettable tastes, colours, flavours and aromas.
See you in Sardinia to raise a glass to Christmas and the new year!
More info: https://www.mice-sardegna.com/