the cannoli of the Cloister of Santa Caterina – Italian Cuisine


An absolute symbol of Sicilianity, cannoli and traditional convent sweets can be tasted directly at home, thanks to the new delivery service of the I Segreti del Chiostro di Palermo patisserie

A treasure chest of unparalleled beauty in the heart of the historic center of Palermo. Inside the sixteenth-century complex of Saint Catherine, within the walls steeped in prayer and silence that for centuries have welcomed generations of cloistered nuns belonging to the most powerful aristocratic families of Sicily, an all-female cooperative has restored the ancient kitchens of the monastery and recovered the original recipes of the conventual sweets Sicilians.

Cannolo Cloisters

After closing to the public following the lockdown, the pastry shop The Cloister Secrets (which is also the title of the volume of Maria Oliveri in which the recipes handed down by the nuns are cataloged) started during the quarantine, in line with government provisions, a home delivery service of their delicacies, in the belief that even the consolation of a kind of comfort could give relief in those days so difficult. To date it is still not possible to visit the monastic complex, but the pastry shop has been able to reopen to the public for the sale of sweets, in compliance with the rules of distancing with which we will now have to live.

Once you cross the entrance threshold of Piazza Bellini, your senses are immediately enraptured by the riot of perfumes that emanate from the Converse kitchen: cassate, virgin minne, cannoli, Genoese, dark brown, fedor of the chancellor is papal biscuits these are just some of the specialties that can be ordered by phone and received comfortably at home. To characterize the production is the great care in the selection of raw materials used for the preparation of desserts, as it happened in the past when it was the mother superior who dealt with relationships with suppliers. Although the demand far exceeds the offer, the laboratory does not intend to give in to commercial enticements and production remains limited to guarantee a high quality standard.

Cannolo Cloisters
Cannolo Cloisters

The most requested for delivery? Obviously the Sicilian cannolo, among the symbols par excellence of Sicily in the world. Born as a Carnival cake, according to historical sources it owes its name to the canes that were used to put the wafer into shape while it was fried. According to a legend, however, everything originated from a carnival joke designed by the nuns against a religious: they brought out sweet ricotta, instead of water, from a tap that in Sicilian is precisely called cannolo.

The I Segreti del Chiostro patisserie is open every day from 10 to 13 and from 15 to 18 (Piazza Bellini, Palermo). For the delivery call 327 5882302.

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