If I Can’t Be in Sicily, Then…

by Chikashi

Pasticceria Savia, CataniaSicily is the capital of gelato. I wrote about Pasticceria Russo previously, but they are a true destination since there is probably no other reason to visit Santa Venerina. On the other hand, if you happen to be in the city of Catania, then you must visit Pasticceria Savia even if you do not have a sweet tooth. Unlike Russo, an unassuming presence in a little town, Savia has an imposing presence in the second largest city in Sicily.

To be honest, I was a bit sceptical when I saw the palazzo of dolcezze. In a funny way, a large structure like that seemed counterintuitive when imagining an artisanal establishment. However, my scepticism was entirely misplaced.

Gelato cake at Pasticceria Savia, vintage Oliver GoldsmithWild strawberries. I am not a big fan of fruits, but I cannot get enough of wild strawberries, probably because they are virtually impossible to get in Belgium. So, wild strawberry gelato cake…

Gelato con brioche at Pasticceria SaviaAnd wild strawberry brioche con gelato, aka gelato sandwich. I seem to recall reading somewhere that this is had for breakfast. Speaking of starting the day on the right foot… and abandoning any thoughts of staying slim.

It has to be said that I have had some really underwhelming gelato at random places even in Sicily. You have to know where you’re going, but they’re not exactly a well guarded secret: Savia in Catania, Russo in Santa Venerina, Caffé Sicilia in Noto…

So, what do we do if we can’t be in Sicily? Bring Sicily to us. Well, sort of. We got an ice cream maker, namely, Cuisinart Pure Indulgence. It’s the basic model, but it does the business. A most excellent fatty maker, indeed. It’s also very educational because you learn the practical nuances, such as the difference between an ice cream and a gelato, as well as the range of textures in-between those two, the amount of sugar to suit your palate, the variety of secondary ingredients to corrupt the Italian notion of a gelato, such as adding a wee bit of Skippy peanut butter or matcha green tea in a vanilla receipt… whilst watching your girth expand like you have a mini-me growing inside you.

No wild strawberries, but absolutely delightful.