Common Sicilian Dishes and Desserts

A talented software developer with more than 25 years of experience working for database software companies, Daniel Duic currently serves as the CEO of Mindscope Cura Staffing Software. An avid cook, Daniel Duic spends much of his free time learning to cook new food and dishes, and he is currently studying Sicilian cuisine.

Sicilian cuisine is well known around the world, yet many individuals are surprised at the cuisine’s diversity. One dish that is commonplace in Sicily is arancini, which are basically balls of saffron rice filled with a mix of cheese and meat. Resembling the shape and size of an orange, arancini is rolled in flour, egg, and bread crumbs before being deep-fried. Another common dish throughout Sicily is pasta con le sarde, a basic pasta dish topped with sardines sauteed in olive oil. After the sardines are sauteed, they are generally dressed with pine nuts, almonds, raisins, and finocchietto before being tossed with some pasta.

Sicilian cuisine also a number of popular desserts, one of which is cassata siciliana, a decadent dish that is one of the area’s sweetest. The dish is made of a liqueur-soaked sponge cake layered with sweetened ricotta and topped with icing and almond paste. The cake is commonly decorated with candied fruits or other sweets around the top. Cannoli is another treat that is less sweet than the cassata siciliana. The pastry is essentially a fried dough tube filled with sweetened ricotta and topped with either chocolate chips or candied fruit.

Getting Into Wine Collecting

A more than 25-year veteran of the software development industry, Daniel Duic serves as the CEO of Mindscope Cura Staffing Software. In his free time, Daniel Duic enjoys a wide range of hobbies, including wine collecting.

Wine collecting can become rather expensive, but setting a budget when first starting out prevents overspending. Even a small budget of around $300 is enough for new collectors to buy several great bottles. Typically, a collecting budget is spread out over several months, so many beginners can accommodate far larger budgets and greater buying flexibility. Once a budget is set, focus on buying wines that are enjoyable.

Collecting wines with at least two years of aging potential lets collectors see how their wines develop over time. Not all wine categories age well, so doing some research on different types before buying ensures that collectors get a good variety. Asking questions at a local fine wine store and reading wine collecting books helps beginners learn about collecting basics.

Storing wine properly is an important part of collecting; however, professional refrigeration is not necessary for everyone. If the collector doesn’t have access to a storage location that stays cool year round, investing in a temperature-controlled wine fridge may be necessary. The best storage temperature is around 55 degrees since it allows wine to continue to age while still maximizing its life span.