I found tasty dishes of mushrooms all over Sicily but I remember especially an unexpected early breakfast of rustico bread with roasted mushrooms.
I had told Guiseppina, a lady of very advanced years and the owner of the B&B, that I didn’t require breakfast. “Non voglio che la prima colazione, Senora“, but she may have been a little hard of hearing or didn’t speak Italian. More likely my feeble Italian was just too grossly, incomprehensibly wrong. Perhaps the mushrooms weren’t considered breakfast.
So breakfast was at 6.00 am in Enna in the heart of Sicily.
Enna is on the top of a gigantic hill, in the very centre of Sicily, a natural fort and her steeped sides have been bathed in blood over and over.
There’s a big, gray, bulking castle here that’s impregnable. Except for the drains. Romans seized the fortress in the second Punic War, using the sewer system to get in, if anyone understood sewers it was the ancient Romans.
But there’s another reason for my journey to Enna. This is the very place where Persephone, after her obligatory term underground, returned to the world.
Persephone’s mother, Demeter, once had a fine sanctuary on a mighty rock just north of the Castello. This is Rocca di Cerere, empty now, but I waved a good morning to Demeter and called out that I’d come many thousands of miles to stand here.
After a full day tramping round the Sanctuary and searching for coffee in Enna, I slept like the proverbial log and woke early, starving, to a clear, cold morning. The big plate of funghi was most welcome!
Funghi misti trifolati are mushrooms sauteed with garlic, parsley, and olive oil. You can serve the mushrooms as a pasta sauce, as a side dish, or spoon over ciabatta.
More on Demeter (Ceres) :
Demeter the Mother, from Tales of the Ancient Greeks
Demeter, the ancient Greek Goddess of Agriculture, is perhaps best known for the abduction of her daughter Persephone, but she is much, much more. She has a powerful message for modern times. The ancient tale of Demeter helped me recover from the death of a child and gave me the strength to pick up my life again. I’m sure it’s been used in this way for thousands of years.