Bud-laced branches hover above dry grass fields speckled with flashes of green. Warmth from an early spring sun melts the crisp air and tickles the buds to unleash their tight grip, quickly unfurling pale pink blossoms in a wave of color across Agrigento. Soon, these same branches will hang heavy with sweet Sicilian almonds. The first days of spring have been announced, and it is time to celebrate Sicily’s awakening.
Perched on a hillside of Sicily’s southwestern shoreline, Agrigento’s stepped white cliffs and crystalline shoreline have beckoned civilizations for centuries. Founded by the Greeks in 6 B.C. the cobblestoned streets and ancient ruins scattered throughout Agrigento serve as an historical map, uncovering brief moments of its rich and storied past and casting an alluring charm over the ancient town. Home to the UNESCO World Heritage Site Valle dei Templi whose ancient temples are among the best-preserved ancient Greek temples in existence outside of Greece, the town’s many archeological sites beckon tourists from far and wide.
Serving as an agricultural center for the southwestern region, the first buds of springtime fill the streets of Agrigento with revelers during the Festa del Mandorle in Fiore. Folk dancers and singers from around the world parade through the streets throughout the week and bring to life the colors and vibrancy of both past and present in one of Italy’s most celebrated archeological sites. With the sweet smell of spring hanging in the air, there’s no better time or place to experience the true resonance of Sicilian heritage.
Celebrate Sicilian Spring with this simply delicious almond brittle. A pinch of our Sicilian Sea Salt with Organic Lemon helps to balance the sweetness with a touch of salinity and bright lemon.
CROCCANTE DI MANDORLE (ALMOND BRITTLE)
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Toast the almonds until fragrant and toasty, roughly 5 minutes and remove from the oven.
- Roughly chop the almonds.
- Line a small rectangular pan with parchment paper.
- Add the sugar, honey, and water to a large saucepan and melt over medium heat, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup turns golden.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the almonds and a pinch of lemon salt, then pour into the lined pan, spreading evenly onto the pan with a rubber spatula.
- Cool completely and break into pieces to serve.