Sorry for the delay on the posts… we have been moving into our place in the economy. An experience.. to say the least. Happy to say we are getting settled in and we are getting spoiled by our new place.
Anyways back on schedule here with the posts (unfortunately that means waayy back to July 6th). I dont know if Im ever going to be able to be caught up to real time posts.
July 6th we went to downtown Catania for the first time. We went with a group from work and a guide that was showing us the ropes on how to get there, park, pay for parking, etc. He then let us loose to practice our Italian at the local bars (cafes). We went to a bar right in the piazza del duomo (Cathedral square) called Caffe del Duomo.
Here is a picture of the Duomo that I took with some angelic sunlight shining through.
Below is the entrance for Caffe del Duomo with the elephant on the sign. The elephant is the symbol of the city. From this bar you can see the Elephant fountain, which has an elephant made entirely of lava rock. Here is a link on more info on the dwarf elephants of Sicily: LINK. What I thought was a coincidence is that similar types of elephants were found on the Channel Islands back in Santa Barbara. Anyways into the food…
Jess got her breakfast obsession these days (Bomba). I got a cafe freddo (iced coffee on steroids here) and an Minne di Sant Agata, which literally translates to breasts of Saint Agatha (The patron saint of Catania). I know weird, but just like everything else there is an interesting story behind it.
Quick Story Time: Having rejected Quintian’s (The new ruler of Catania) marriage proposal, Agatha chooses death as a Christian virgin over life as a pagan wife – a death preceded by mammary amputation. Although the young woman’s breast is miraculously healed by Saint Peter himself, who visits her at night and heals her without touching her, Agatha dies a martyr because the next day Quintian has her killed on burning coals. The cakes thus become a pastry reproduction of the breast of this 3rd century Sicilian martyr.
As you can see they aren’t kidding about making it look like a breast, with that placement of the little red cherry. Very long story short it was a very good pastry and must go with a coffee or espresso because it is very rich.
We walked around the town and saw a bunch of sights. Here is more info on Catania if your interested: LINK . Jess is going to write a post about this trip as well.
We also stopped for lunch, which was very good and I had my first piece of fish out here. Pesce Spada ( Pe-shay Spa-da) , which is swordfish.
It was prepared nicely and very tasty, but I felt like there was room for improvement. I know that we will definitely get a lot more fish, while we are on the island here! And we will be visiting nearby Catania many times as well… great city!