Sweet and sour pumpkin – Ficatu ri setti cannola

The sweet and sour red pumpkin or ficatu ri setti cannola is an ancient dish from Palermo that comes to light on the stalls of theVucciria street vendors, one of the oldest and most popular markets in the city of Palermo.
In this very particular market, it is easy to find in the most varied and colorful forms of trade; by the seller of olives to fruit sellers, from the fishmongers to the carnezzerie (butchers) as old as the market itself and anything else edible can be found in a popular market.
500 grams of red pumpkin
Extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic
A few leaves of mint
¼ cup of vinegar
A tablespoon of sugar

Peel the pumpkin and remove the seeds, cut into 1 cm slices and fry. When cooked, arrange the slices on a plate. Into the oil left, add the sliced garlic and brown it little. At this point, put into the pan fried pumpkin, salt and pour the vinegar in which we will have melted sugar. Make fade out vinegar over high heat, then add the mint leaves and arrange on a serving plate. Serve cold.


Vucciria in Sicilian means confusion, and fits perfectly to the folklore of the market. Everyone advertises his wares aloud (“abbanniare”) creating the confusion effect characteristic of the Vucciria. However, the origin of the name evokes the French term “boucherie” (butcher-slaughter) turned into Bucciria. The Bucciria Grande (as it was called to distinguish it from other markets less important) was originally reserved for slaughter, the sale of fish and fruit and vegetables.WP_20140117_00_52_30_Pro
In the territory still there is, in the square, the fountain of Garraffello. This fountain is characterized by “setti cannola” (seven tubes from which flows the water). Sellers, who formerly worked in this square, “abbanniavano” (advertised) the sweet and sour fried red pumpkin shouting “u ficatu re setti cannola” (the liver of the seven taps). Allegory, across Palermo, referring to the fact that this dish was aimed at those who, not being able to buy the liver, was content to this simulation.
For sure that has become one of the most representative dishes of the kitchen of Palermo for its sweet and sour taste achieved with the combination of sugar with the vinegar.

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