Food and Wine

The same cultural matrix that has given birth to the local architecture and such peculiar cultural events and religious festivals in the region of Marmilla is also recognizable in the traditional local cuisine and handicrafts. The culinary tradition includes a wide range of specialties, among which bread and pasta are the most significant products. The variety of durum wheat often used to produce this food is the "Senatore Cappelli", which has a lower yield compared to other Sardinian crops, but is particularly rich in substances that ensure the smooth consistency and elasticity of the dough, which are the main characteristics of top-quality baked goods.

Civraxius, a large loaf of bread with a hard crust, su moddizzosu and su coccoi are perhaps the best known types of bread. Among the various pastas, the most famous are sa fregua, which is often cooked with is sinzicorrus, or snails; malloreddus, Sardinian gnocchi cooked with tomato sauce and sausage; and is cruguxois, stuffed ravioli.

There are also specialties that are strictly local, so they can only be found in a limited number of towns. Most of them are starters, such as marraconis fibaus, handmade spaghetti; tallutzas, short pasta made with bread dough; and tallanius, which has a small version that is typically prepared with soups and vegetables and a larger one that is cooked with traditional sauces. Last but not least are the crogoristas, which resemble rooster combs, and caòmbas, a dove-shaped pasta which is mainly used to prepare traditional Easter soups.

These pastas, often scented with saffron, are normally seasoned with simple tomato sauce, but chicken, pork or lamb sauces are not uncommon.  They are also generously sprinkled with locally-produced cheese.

Soups, whose main ingredients are legumes and cereals and are spiced with bacon or ham bone, are popular starters. Beans with lard, called faa e lardu, and wild fennel soup, enriched with cheese, are also typical dishes.

The pastoral tradition of this region brings lamb, sheep and suckling pig, which is the emblem of Sardinian cuisine, to the tables of its inhabitants. The typically high-quality meat is roasted on the embers of aromatic wood (oak, mastic, or olive). Moreover, the free-range roosters and hens that sometimes shared the yard with partridges or quails, which are normally included on the holiday menu, are generally baked. Game, once abundant in these lands, is now difficult to find, but once in a while they reach the families’ tables, especially wild boar meat, which is marinated in strong, local wine.

Many other traditional dishes are based on farm products: snails, called boveri or tappadas, are considered true delicacies as well as olives in brine, dried tomatoes, mushrooms in oil, grilled mushrooms, asparagus, radishes, artichokes, beets, beans, zucchini and eggplants. Even the extra virgin olive oil, made from local varieties, is of excellent quality.

Finally, almond-based desserts, such as gattou, gueffus, candelaus, and cruguxoisi de mendua, end the meals along with pardulas, pirichittus, biancheddus and panis de saba.

The wines that accompany the food here are the most characteristic on the island. The red Cannonau, the Bovale and the Monica deserve special mention. As for the white wines, in addition to the Vermentino, the Nuragus and the Semidano from Mogoro are worth mentioning. Malvasia, Muscat and Vernaccia are obligatory complements to sweets. Finally, many of the municipalities in the region are involved in the IGT (Typical Geographical Indication), so these red, rosé and white wines are produced according to a rigorous discipline that involves the use of locally-harvested grapes that are vinified in the most important wineries in various municipalities.

Related contents