Its name is Cristaldi and although it is somewhat of an institution in Catania, it is a new discovery for me. No surprise there, for like most things about this place, it takes me time to find mine own way.
Cristaldi is a speciality market that carries international and hard to find food items, including an all American section. We're talking Aunt Jemima pancake mix, brown sugar and even cans of Campbell soup!
Here are some of the other highlights that caught my eye during my first visit.
The UK section: an impressive array of nice biscuts and real English tea. I was especially excited about the entire wall of loose leaf teas of all types.
The large Asian food section, including the full range of Indian spices. I was having a hard time just finding cumin up until now.
Unusual fresh produce: my hunt for cilantro (for my homemade guacamole fix) is what brought me here to begin with. I was very unlucky as it wouldn't be delivered until later that day. (See that picture above? That is what I am dreaming of making for my next meal. Recent attempts minus the cilantro just aren't doing it for me. I know I should just get some seeds and grow my own).
What came home with me: Despite the lack of cilantro, I did not go home empty handed--brown sugar, corn tortillas, tobasco sauce, a small packet of cumin and walker's shortbread quickly filled my basket.
And I finally found cream of tartar, not at Cristaldi but at the organic Bio market I've been shopping at for months in Catania! Some how I missed it all this time. Now I have to figure out a buttermilk substitute to make some scones.