Tag Archives: andrea bocelli

Another Reason to Be Good – Santa Lucia ;)

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Kids, pay heed! It’s once again time to be good if you want to get candies and cookies and other goodies for the feast day of Santa Lucia on December 13th! With all these opportunities for getting gifts in exchange for being good (and avoiding that nasty gift of coal for being bad), it seems to me that December must be the most well-behaved month of the year! Perhaps some of these holidays should be spread out during the year so that the goodness can last a bit longer ūüôā

The feast day of Santa Lucia is celebrated in various parts of Italy and in very different ways. In Sicily, where she was actually born and martyred, they celebrate her feast day with religious processions and special food. Legend has it that back in 1582, a severe famine miraculously ended on her feast day when ships loaded with grain entered the harbor. The people were so hungry that they didn’t take the time to grind the grain into flour, but boiled the grains immediately. Because of this, Sicilians, even to this day, will not eat anything made with flour on her feast day. No bread, no pasta! Instead, they make a traditional dish called cuccia. Everyone makes their cuccia a bit differently and the women have their kids bring their version to all the neighbors to sample. Here is one recipe, which sounds delicious and is tempting me to try it soon…

Cuccia

500 g. whole wheat (not ground)
500 g. ricotta
250 g sugar
salt
cinnamon
vanilla
candied fruits and/or chocolate chips

Soften the whole wheat for 2 days in water. After the 2 days, boil the wheat with a little bit of salt added to the water for at least an hour until it is cooked. Drain the wheat and let it settle for an hour before proceeding.
Meanwhile drain the ricotta until it is dry. Once dry, add the sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla and mix well (an electric mixer works well for this.) Stir in the candied fruits and/or chocolate chips.
Add the wheat mixture and mix it all up. Portion the mixture into individual bowls and sprinkle with cinnamon.

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The feast day of Santa Lucia is also celebrated in North-Eastern Italy, but in a totally different way. The traditional food eaten here is goose, and she is the one that brings gifts to the good boys and girls. She brings sweets and candies to the good ones, and guess what she brings to those not so good? Yep, once again they get coal!

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According to tradition, she arrives during the night between Dec. 12th and Dec. 13th in the company of a donkey and her escort, Castaldo. Children are asked to leave coffee for Lucia, a carrot for the donkey, and a glass of wine for Castaldo. In exchange, she leaves candies and sweets for the children. But don’t get any ideas of catching a glimpse of her – if she sees you, she will throw ash in your eyes! Yikes!

When I asked my mom about her memories of Santa Lucia, the only thing she came up with was this little rhyme:
Santa Lucia – il giorno piu corto che ci sia! (Santa Lucia – the shortest day there is). I always thought the shortest day was December 21st…hmm…maybe I’ve been wrong all these years! Obviously, my mom didn’t grow up in one of the places where her feast day was heavily celebrated!

This very traditional Italian song, Santa Lucia, is always one that brings me back to my childhood when these songs were always sung at gatherings at the Italian Social Club my parents belonged to in San Francisco.  And of course, when Andrea Bocelli sings it, I can swoon!

Super Combination!!!

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Another super duet by two amazing artists….even though I would never have thought about pairing up these two, the genius that figured it out deserves a lot of kudos!¬† Their voices are both so powerful, and when they team up together, it’s explosive.¬†¬† I never knew this song had Italian lyrics, either!¬† The surprises never end!¬† This song was performed at the 2010 Grammy awards and has been a sensation ever since.

Bridge Over Troubled Waters by Andrea Bocelli and Mary J. Blige

Quando sei stanco¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† When you’re tired
Sentirsi piccoli                                             Feeling small
Quando lacrime sono nei tuoi occhi   When tears are in your eyes
Io le asciugherò tutte                               I will dry them all.

Io sono dalla tua parte¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† I’m on your side
Quando i tempi si fanno difficili           When times are difficult
E amici semplicemente non pu√≤ essere trovato¬†¬† And friends just can’t

                                                                                                                be found.
Come un ponte sull’acqua agitata¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Like a bridge over troubled water
Io mi stenderò                                              I will lay me down
Come un ponte sull’acqua agitata¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Like a bridge over troubled water
Io mi stenderò                                              I will lay me down.

Quando sei gi√Ļ e fuori¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† When you’re down and out
Quando sei in strada¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† When you’re on the street
Quando cala la sera così difficile          When evening falls so hard
Io ti conforto                                                I will comfort you.

Prender√≤ la tua parte¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† I’ll take your side
Quando il buio arriva                                When darkness falls
E il dolore è tutto intorno                       And pain is all around
Come un ponte sull’acqua agitata¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Like a bridge over troubled water
Io mi stenderò                                             I will lay me down.
Come un ponte sull’acqua agitata¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Like a bridge over troubled water
Io mi stenderò                                             I will lay me down.

Vela con ragazza d’argento,¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Sail on silver girl,
Vela dalla                                                        Sail on by
Il tuo tempo è venuto a brillare            Your time has come to shine
Tutti i tuoi sogni sono in viaggio          All your dreams are on their way.

Guarda come brillano                               Look how they shine
Se avete bisogno di un amico                If you need a friend
Sono proprio dietro a vela¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† I’m sailing right behind
Come un ponte sull’acqua agitata¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Like a bridge over troubled water
Io facilità la vostra mente                      I will ease your mind.
Come un ponte sull’acqua agitata¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Like a bridge over troubled water
Io facilità la vostra mente                       I will ease your mind.