Friday, December 13, 2013


According to  legend, many centuries ago, during a severe famine, a ship suddenly appeared in the port of Palermo on December 13th, St. Lucy's day. It was loaded with wheat. Sicilians could not wait the long time it took to turn the wheat into flour, so they cooked the wheat, added grape must (pressed grape juice, cooked until the liquid is reduced and thick), and served it. This tradition of eating Cuccìa on St. Lucy's day is still followed today, to show gratitude to St. Lucy for her miracle of the wheat.

Secondo la leggenda, tanti secoli fa, durante la carestia in Sicilia, una nave approdò a Palermo proprio il 13 dicembre, il giorno di Santa Lucia. Aveva un carico di grano. I siciliani, avendo fame, invece di  aspettare tutto il tempo che serviva per macinare il grano, pensarono invece di cuocerlo, aggiungendo poi il mosto d'uva. Questa tradizione si osserva tutt'oggi, anche come ringraziamento a Santa Lucia per il miracolo del grano.

Soaking the grains for three days

Il grano si mette in ammollo per tre giorni

After soaking, it is cooked for 6 hours and then mixed with the grape must.

Poi viene cotto per 6 ore, dopodichè viene aggiunto il mosto d'uva.

The Cuccìa is ready to be eaten.

La Cuccìa è pronta da mangiare.


  1. I've never tried this dish, probably because I always only spent my summers on Sicily and was never there in winter.
    But... if the Sicilians created this dish because they couldn't wait for the wheat to be turned into flour, they didn't exactly go for a speedy recipe, either: 3 days soaking, 6 hours cooking... :-)

  2. non lo conoscevo per nulla ma deve essere davvero buonissimo!

  3. It looks quite delicious and what a lot of preparation for this meal - I do think I would enjoy this Cuccia - very interesting post.

  4. Francesca, From what I read, according to custom, bread should not be eaten on December 13. Cuccìa should be the only source of wheat, and the primary source of nourishment for the day. Also, cuccia is prepared as a pudding in Italian families in Kansas City Missouri here in the USA. Interesting... Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  5. My thoughts were the same as Meike's. It would probably have been faster to make flour and then bread. And, to be honest, I think I'd have enjoyed it more too.

  6. Non conoscevo questo piatto grazie!!

  7. Nice pics! Love these styles! They all look genius!
    Thanks for your sharing and posting!
    Have a nice day!

  8. buona!
    Auguri di un sereno Natale e un felice anno nuovo