Taste The Islands: Exploring The Foods Of Sardinia

Taste The Islands: Exploring The Foods Of Sardinia

The cuisine of Sardinia is full of flavor and history. Sardinia food has been shaped by its geography, climate, and cultural influences. Dishes are often made with locally sourced ingredients, such as seafood from the Mediterranean Sea, fresh produce from the island's farms, and sheep's milk cheese. Traditional recipes have been passed down through generations, and new dishes are continually being created that reflect the changing tastes of Sardinia's residents.The best part about traditional Sardinian food is that it's simple and straightforward and there is no shortage of delicious food to be found in Sardinia. Sardinia is one of the National Geographic Blue Zones, places in the world where people live measurably longer, healthier lives. The diet of Sardinians has been studied for its health benefits therefore, it's no surprise that the food of Sardinia is not only delicious but also good for you.
Sardinia landscape
Sardinia landscape


Culurgiones is a popular pasta dish originating from the Ogliastra region in Sardinia, Italy. The name ‘culurgiones’ means “the small ones” and it refers to the size of the pasta shells used to make it. This pasta is made from semolina flour, eggs, and white flour and is served with a filling of boiled potatoes, pecorino cheese, mint, and nutmeg. The version from Ogliastra area does not include cheese and the version from Barbagia region uses fresh cheese. Both versions are equally tasty and mouth-watering.

How are Culurgiones served?

The best culurgiones are locally made with a cheese called Cas’e fitta, which is kept in water and salt. These cheese ravioli are traditionally eaten on the Day of the Dead in the town of Ulassai and are usually served boiled with abundant pecorino cheese. Culurgiones are a popular dish all over Sardinia and are often served at family celebrations or as part of a typical local meal.

Culurgiones, traditional Sardinian dumplings filled with potatoes, pecorino cheese and fresh mint


Malloreddus (or Malloreddos) is a type of pasta that originates from the south and central parts of the region. It is made from durum wheat semolina flour, water, salt and a pinch of saffron. It’s known as “Sardinian gnocchi” due to its shape and is usually served in a slow-cooked ragú of pork sausages, tomatoes, and pecorino sardo. Malloreddos is often eaten during special occasions such as Christmas Eve, Easter Sunday, and other holidays. The dish is popular in Italy and abroad because it’s easy to make and it tastes delicious. Besides, it’s vegan and it doesn’t contain any added oil or fat. The malloreddus recipe can be adapted to fit your taste and preferences depending on the ingredients used.

Malloreddos, made with durum flour, water, salt and saffron
Malloreddus alla Campidanese with pork ragu and tomato

Serving Suggestions

Malloreddus can be served with a variety of sauces and toppings, from a simple tomato sauce to something more complex like a pesto. It is best served as a main course, but it can also be served as an appetizer or side dish. The pasta is typically garnished with grated pecorino cheese.


Fregula (or Fregola) is a small pasta made from durum wheat semolina and water, toasted in the oven. It is a popular pasta in Sardinian cuisine, with theories that it was derived from North African Berkoukes and Middle Eastern Moghrabieh. Fregula is traditionally served with tomato sauce and clams, or bottarga from the small town of Cabras. To make fregula, you must first roll semolina and water together into a ball, before lightly toasting it in the oven. You can add sausages, porcini mushrooms, artichokes, seafood or other ingredients to fregula for added flavor and texture. Fregula is often used at celebratory occasions and dishes with sausage or seafood, it is easy to make and can be enjoyed by all ages. The nutrients provided by fregula’s wheat semolina are essential for improving your health and well-being.

Fregula, made from durum wheat and toasted in the oven
Fregula with seafood

Health benefits of eating fregula

Fregula is high in protein and carbohydrates, making it a nutritious and filling meal option. It can help to improve digestion, as it is rich in dietary fiber. Furthermore, fregula can help to satisfy cravings for carbohydrates and protein. Eating fregula can help to improve the overall health of the body by providing it with essential nutrients and staying nourished throughout the day.


Seadas (or Sebadas) are a traditional Sardinian pastry made with cheese curd and honey. Other than cheese, it can be made with other ingredients like meat or vegetable filling. Seadas are available in various shapes and sizes, from small bite-size pastries to large round ones. These pastries are usually served with a topping of sugar or honey and fillings of different varieties like chocolate, nuts like almonds or walnuts, or fruits. The filling of seadas is soft and creamy with a sweet flavor. They are best eaten warm after being fried. As seadas have a delicate texture, they should not be stored for too long after they have been made.

Seada with cheese and honey

History of Sebadas

The Seadas have its roots in the Middle Ages. Made with a thin, unleavened pastry filled with sheep cheese, it is wrapped in a fried dough and served with honey or sugar. The name of the dish comes from “sebada“, which means something like “bread soaked in oil”. Seadas are typically served for special occasions, such as weddings and christenings, or during the Easter holidays. They are also popular among tourists as a tasty snack or dessert. This dessert has its roots in Sardinia’s rich history and culture. They are most commonly served on a plate topped with a spoonful of honey or sugar poured over each one.


Bottarga is a delicacy in the Mediterranean, especially in Sardinia, made from dried mullet fish roe. It is commonly served with extra-virgin olive oil or grated on pasta, pizza, or seafood dishes. It can be eaten on its own, sliced into chunks and drizzled with olive oil. It is a cholesterol-rich appetizer often served with lemon and olive oil. Moulded from egg yolk and modified starch, bottarga provides a bright flavor to dishes it is added to. The yolk of the bottarga is made up of large amounts of cholesterol. As a result, it is thought to have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health. This ingredient has been used in traditional medicine for centuries, particularly for treating inflammation and jaundice. It’s also known for its mild seafood flavor and crescent shape that resembles sea urchins egg sack.
Bottarga, made from dried mullet fish roe
Bottarga is made by a process that involves several stages

Production process

Bottarga is processed by salting and drying the roes to form a glowing amber sack that can be used in cooking. The Sardinian culinary expert introduced the method of salting and smoking the roe in the 15th century, allowing for bottarga to become a staple in Sardinian cuisine. The flavor of bottarga is fishy, salty, umami-rich, and slightly bitter. It can be used in various typical dishes, such as grated over pasta or slices on pane carasau. Bottarga can also be served with olive oil and spaghetti to make an easy dinner. If you want to make your own bottarga sauce, you can sauté some clams or mussels in olive oil with garlic until they begin to open up, then sieve the mixture and add some bottarga to make a delicious seafood sauce.

Arco cafe NYC

If you are looking for a unique Sardinian culinary experience in New York City, Look no further than Arco Cafe. This cozy restaurant serves up traditional Sardinian dishes with a modern twist, making it the perfect spot to satisfy your cravings. From savory fresh homemade pastas to traditional desserts, this hidden gem has something for everyone. In this chapter, we’ll discuss why Arco Cafe is worth a visit and provide an overview of some of their most popular dishes. We’ll also offer helpful tips on how to make the most out of your dining experience at Arco Cafe. Whether you’re a fan of traditional Sardinian food or simply looking for something new to try, this post has something for everyone!

Signature dishes

Arco cafe, located on the upper west side of Manhattan, serves up traditional Sardinian cuisine in a cozy environment. The menu includes signature dishes such as fregola, a toasted semolina pasta that is cooked with seafood and mushrooms or culurgiones, handmade ravioli stuffed with potatoes and mint. Other dishes include malloreddos which is made from durum wheat semolina flour, water, salt and a pinch of saffron . In addition to great food and wine options, Arco cafe also offers a selection of house-made desserts like seadas. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite to eat or a delicious dinner out with friends and family, Arco cafe has something for all tastes and preferences.

The unique atmosphere

Arco Cafe has been providing a unique food experience to its patrons for almost a decade. The restaurant specializes in traditional Sardinian cuisine as well as modern Italian dishes, and it offers a wide selection of wines from the region like Cannonau, Monica, Vermentino, Bovale. In addition, the chef regularly creates specials dishes with local ingredients to keep the menu fresh and exciting. A visit to Arco Cafe is an ideal way to explore the flavors of Sardinia in an intimate setting.  Whether you’re looking for a delicious and unforgettable meal or just a place to relax and unwind after a hectic day, Arco Cafe is sure to satisfy your cravings.

On Manhattan’s upper west side, Arco Cafe offers Sardinian Italian cuisine


How is Sardinia culturally different from the rest of Italy?

To Italians, especially those living on the mainland, Sardinia can come off as a bit different from the rest of the country. This is because it has been uniquely influenced by outside cultures such as Greeks, Arabs, and Catalans that have left their mark on its cuisine over centuries. Sardinia’s food culture has been enriched by all these influences and offers dishes that are difficult to find elsewhere in Italy. These include speciality pastas, cheese, meat, and fish dishes, as well as unique sweets and wines. In conclusion, Sardinia’s culinary heritage remains largely undiscovered compared to other regions of Italy due to its isolated geography. Even today it holds onto many of the traditions and recipes it inherited from its colonisers such as the Phoenicians and Spanish.

Is Sardinia cuisine healthy?

The traditional Sardinian diet has been connected to longer life spans. The University of Sassari found that people with G6PD deficiency, a genetic disorder often linked to longevity, had high levels in Sardinia. Overall, Sardinian food is very healthy and can be part of a balanced and nutritious diet.



What are the benefits of eating Sardinian food?

Sardinian food has numerous health benefits that make it a staple of the Mediterranean diet. This diet is rich in protein, vitamins, minerals, and unsaturated fats, which helps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. It also features a range of local wines that are rich in antioxidants and flavonoids. Individuals who consume Sardinian food may experience reduced inflammation, improved cognitive health and increased longevity.

What do people in Sardinia Italy eat?

People in Sardinia, Italy are known for their traditional cuisine that often incorporates locally-sourced ingredients. Some popular pasta dishes from the region include fregola (a pasta dish made with seafood and vegetables), pane carasau (a thin, flatbread served with olive oil or tomatoes), ricotta and pecorino sardo like Fiore Sardo (a sheep’s milk cheese), malloreddus (semolina dumplings), roast lamb and porceddu (roast suckling pig). Fish is also a common part of the Sardinian diet, including varieties such as sea bass, tuna, octopus and lobster. Fruits such as oranges, lemons, apricots, figs, and pomegranates are also eaten in Sardinia. As with many Italian cuisines, the food of Sardinia is typically prepared using simple methods to bring out the natural flavors of the ingredients.

What is the most popular dish in Sardinia?

The most popular dish in Sardinia is culurgiones, a type of ravioli made with soft, hand-rolled pasta filled with a mixture of potatoes, pecorino cheese, and mint, and then boiled or steamed. Another traditional Sardinian dish is fregola sarda ,served with vegetables and seafood.

Where can I eat Sardinia food in NYC?

If you’re looking for a taste of Sardinia in New York City, then check out Arco Cafe. Located on the Upper West side, it is one of the best restaurants to get authentic Sardinian Italian cuisine. For those who are not dining in, they also offer fresh pastas and sauces to take away. Whether it’s Sardinian ravioli or malloreddus alla Campidanese, you will find all the ingredients necessary to create an authentic Sardinian meal at home. So if you’re looking for a taste of Sardinia in NYC, head over to Arco Cafe to get your fix!

Sardinia is one of the National Geographic Blue Zones, and Sardinians live measurably longer lives. The food is a big reason why. The island’s cuisine is based on whole, unprocessed foods, cheese, and bread made from locally grown wheat. These staples are all cooked with olive oil, which is rich in healthy monounsaturated fats.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this little culinary tour of some of the most iconic dishes of Sardinia. If you’re planning a trip to Sardinia, it’s best to try them all and make your own favorites as well. From seafood to pasta, there is a dish for everyone.