We recieve this question a lot so hopefuly we can now answer it to the many that are interested. This is the very reason why we finally have the only Sicilian restaurant in Grand Rapids . The true difference is simple pheasant food made with love!
In Sicily the diet is strongly based on grains, vegetables, and fish. Meats and game are available, but often used in very special dishes, not every day ones. Swordfish and tuna are the fish most frequently eaten. Sicilian vegetable dishes are usually elaborate preparations, often with many ingredients added to the main vegetable to create complex flavors. Among the vegetables most stressed are eggplant, zucchini, peppers, cauliflower, broccoli and artichoke. And after Tuscany, Sicily offers the greatest variety of dishes using beans, especially the ancient Mediterranean ones, fava's, chickpeas and lentils. Sicilian bread is generally of very high quality because of the wonderful nutty flavor of the famous Sicilian wheat. Generally the bread is dusted with sesame or fennel seeds. The island has a wide variety of stuffed pizzas called Schiacciatas.
The ingredients in traditional Sicilian desserts include candied citron, orange and other fruits, almonds, walnuts and pistachios, marzipan, sheep’s milk ricotta, jasmine and orange essence, homemade bread crumbs, eggs and Marsala wine. The cakes often include ground nuts in the flour, and are often heavier in texture than normal cakes.
The thick Sicilian pizzas sold in the United States have their roots in the sfincione world of Palermo. Like America “Sicilian pizza,” the sfincione made in Palermo and some of the towns in its environs is thicker than Neopolitan pizza and made with tomato sauce (not fresh tomatoes). Traditionally it is shaped into a rectangle or square, cooked in a special baking pan with 1 inch sides, and served cut into squares. Instead of mozzarella, sfincione employs a lightly salted Sicilian sheep’s milk cheese called primosale. Its other ingredients include anchovies (or sardines) bread crumbs, chunks of aged cheese, onions, oil and oregano.