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International Recipes: Sweet Myrtle & Bitter Honey: The Mediterranean Flavors of Sardinia (Cookbook Review)

Updated on October 20, 2007

Are you a fan of authentic Italian and Mediterranean food? Are you captivated by the beauty, culture, and traditions of Italy? If so, you'll be delighted by Sweet Myrtle & Bitter Honey: The Mediterranean Flavors of Sardinia by Efisio Farris, native son of the tiny island of Sardinia.

Located in the Mediterranean sea due east of Italy's boot, Sardina is just south of the island of Corsica. Rich in history, this island has unique cultural and food traditions that will interest those who love to eat, enjoy cooking, and have an interest in learning about this unique part of the world.

In Sweet Myrtle & Bitter Honey: The Mediterranean Flavors of Sardinia you'll find over 125 recipes, along with striking photography of Sardinia's people and geography. The book is also packed with interesting stories and tidbits about the people, culture, and traditions of this tiny Italian island.

Interesting Facts About Sardinia

  • A native tree yields honey that is both bitter and sweet at the same time (hence the name of the book).
  • More sheep than people inhabit the island, with a ratio of 3 sheep per person.
  • Artichokes, considered a rare delicacy in many parts of the world, grow wild on the island of Sardinia.

Selected Recipes

Learn to prepare many Sardinian delights and delicacies, including:

  • Cold Pasta Salad with Baby Artichokes
  • Lamb with New Potatoes and Artichokes
  • Eel in Tomato Sauce
  • Eggplant with Tomato and Herbs
  • Fava Beans with Peppermint
  • Fried Puff Pastry Filled with Sweet Cheese
  • Honey Pies
  • Roasted Sardines
  • Sardinian Music Break
  • Sardinian Shepherd's Soup
  • Spaghetti with Sea Urchin

Lessons from Sweet Myrtle Beyond the Recipes:

  • Learn about many different types of cheese common to Sardinian cuisine such as pecorino
  • Develop an understanding of how to clean artichokes effectively and quickly.
  • Find out how to shuck raw mussels.
  • Gain knowledge of the secrets of baking delicious Italian breads.
  • Become familiar with wines specific to Sardinia, such as Vernacci di Oristano, Vermentino di Sardegna, and others.

About Sweet Myrtle's Author:

Born and raised in the town of Orosei on the island of Sardinia, Chef Efisio Farris' namesake is St. Efisio, the patron saint of the island. Farris currently resides in the United States, where her owns and operates two Texas restaurants: Arcodoro in Houston and Accordor & Pomodoro in Dallas. He also owns GourmetSardinia, specialty import business, that features traditional Sardinian items including olive oil, sauce, honey, bread, pasta, wine, gift items, and much more.


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