The local cuisine of Sardinia
Sardinia is an incredibly unique part of Italy, and, being an island off the mainland in the Mediterranean Sea, its cuisine has faced a number of different cultural influences over the years. If you’re planning on staying in one of our Sardinia villas, be sure to try as much of these foods as you can!
Seafood is often the first thing that comes to mind when you think about Sardinian cuisine, and as an island destination, it has plenty to offer, with restaurants across the island serving a number of dishes featuring freshly caught fish daily. Some of Sardinia’s seafood delights include clams, squid, anchovies, sardines and rock lobsters, and can be found in soups especially, including cassola, which, along with spices and tomatoes, can contain up to twelve different kinds of seafood.
Cassola isn’t the only local soup recipe you can enjoy during your stay in Sardinia – there are a number of other soups which are eaten regularly as hearty meals. Favata is a thick stew made with cardoons, fava beans, tomatoes, fennel, salt pork and sausage, while su farro combines farro, a local grain, with beef broth, cheese and mint.
Traditional dishes cooked by peasants have been the heart and soul of Sardinian cooking as long as the people can remember, with meats usually cooked over an open wood fire. Some of the most popular meat dishes include suckling pig and lamb, flavoured with local herbs and smoked with various woods to give them an incomparable flavour, with a juicy and tender inside.
The local vegetables grown on the island help to add a new dimension to Sardinian food, and are often the driving force behind many of the dishes. Sardinian cuisine is generously seasoned with tomato sauces, with the local produce used including aubergine, courgette, peas, fava beans, artichokes, fennel and a host of fragrant herbs.
Like all other Italians, Sardinians love their pasta, and though they eat the universal varieties of spaghetti and macaroni, they also have pasta specialties of their own which cannot be found anywhere else. One such regional dish is malloreddus: tiny semolina gnocchi topped with saffron flavoured sausage, garlic, pecorino, basil and tomato sauce.
Sardinian bread not only varies from the rest of Italy, but also from village to village! They normally come in one of three different shapes: round, cylindrical or doughnut-shaped. The people of Sardinia also love flatbreads and carta de musica – a cracker which can be softened with warm water and then topped with tomato sauce, grated cheese and poached eggs. Sebadas is another much-loved Sardinian recipe – focaccia flavoured with a local bitter honey and pecorino cheese.
Sardinia’s sweet treats tend to come in the form of baked goods, each as delicious as each other. You’ll come across a wide variety, from biscuits to pastries to cakes, flavoured with a variety of ingredients including nuts, raisins, spices and even ricotta cheese. One such example is the pabassina, a pastry filled with raisin walnut paste.