When planning where to go on our vacations, one of the most important criteria is the quality of the local cuisine. Therefore it may not come as a surprise that our last three vacations were spent in Italy. As food lovers we’ve rented apartments so that we have the possibility to try out the local ingredients ourselves. We just love visiting the local markets, the butcher, the cheese store, etc. Take our ingredients home, cook and pretend that we are locals.
We realize of course when booking that not everyone have the same interests as us and sometimes the kitchen utilities are quite disappointing; like last year in Sicily where you could have won the downhill gold medal in the frying pan. This year though we got lucky and had a kitchen full with knives, pots and pans, gas stove and an oven. The only thing missing was the grill – actually the reason why we choose the apartment in the first place, but that’s life… At least we had a griddle pan.
We have a newborn and therefore decided to do our own cooking in the evenings and only have our lunches at restaurants. We were very delighted with what was served, but were quite surprised that the Sardinians didn’t eat a lot of fish. Instead meat and shellfish seem to be the main ingredients. The prime dish is the porchetto – roasted suckling pig – that often needs to be ordered 24 h in advance due to the slow preparation. The whole pig is grilled over open fire which give a wonderful crust and an extremely juicy meat.
Another delicacy you should not miss is pecorino. With age the character changes much more than parmesan so you should at least try 5 different ages. Sardinia is really strong on wines. One of the biggest and best wineries is Sella & Mosca. We tried 5 of their wines and were very satisfied.
The most peculiar thing we had, was pasta with sea-urchins. It smelled like ammoniac but fortunately it tasted better (probably due to large amount of garlic). Interesting but not a dish we will order again.
To sum up our cooking. We did fairly well also without a char-coal grill. Every night we had at least two courses inspired by the italian kitchen. The local butcher delivered wonderful bisteccas, bresaola and tasty veal. The local pecorino producer provided us with 7 different aged pecorino and the supply of fresh sun-tanned vegetables were immense.
A selection of what we cooked
We can not only recommend Sardinia for the food, but also for the wonderful scenery, the beaches and the friendly people.