The Culurgiones – Cooking in Sardinia

The culurgiones are stuffed pasta pockets, famous in the Sardinian tradition. Their name means “small bundles”, which as from the picture below, perfectly describes these small wonders of the Sardinian cuisine.


The culurgiones are a traditional dish in Ogliastra, a region located in Sardinia. The popular towns for their preparation are Ulassai, Jerzu, Villagrande Strisaili, Osini and Lotzorai.

It ‘a dish that is prepared especially for the holidays, as the whole family gets together and all the women help one another in preparing them. And ‘interesting to note that in the city of Ulassai, until 1960 culurgiones were eaten only on the occasion of the Day of the Dead, November 2.

But let’s see how they are created …

The dough is made of semolina flour, white flour, eggs, water and salt.
The stuffing is usually made with boiled potatoes, olive oil, pecorino cheese, garlic, mint and nutmeg. But as for the vast majority of things in Sardinia, this varies from region to region depending on the tradition of the country in which it is prepared. In the Ogliastra region and in Sadali, instead of cheese, they add fiscidu (also called casu axedu), which is a fresh cheese, often homemade. In Barbagia, however, culurgiones are filled only with fresh cheese and served with pork chops.
In the area of Villagrande Strisaili, culurgiones are fried and not boiled. Interestingly, often the filling is changed for the Carnival and is full of lard.

The shape of Culurgiones has a striking resemblance to the shape of the grain of wheat and it is believed that this is done to askĀ favor with the harvest in August. They are also considered as a talisman that protects the family wealth.

The realization of culurgiones is not very difficult. The pasta is prepared in a very simple way, because it mixes white flour, semolina flour, eggs, water and a pinch of salt. To give them a circular shape, the dough is rolled out and cut into rounds. The fillings are positioned in the middle and the two parts are sealed so as to obtain the shape of an ear of corn. And here things get tough for beginners. You have to pinch the base first and then very slowly go up. For my personal experience, only the grandmothers and mothers can succeed … powers of the Sardinian matriarchy!

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