The Panada – Cooking in Sardinia

The panada is a typical Sardinian dish consisting of a shell of pastry stuffed with eel, potatoes, dried tomatoes, parsley and garlic. This is the original. But of course .. the country you visit, panada you find. You can find it stuffed with lamb or just vegetables with artichokes and peas or any other variation can think of.


The history of the panada tells us much about the customs and traditions of the past eras. It constituted, in fact, the staple food for the shepherds or fishermen who would be away from home for several days, sometimes for weeks. This is because it was very easy to conservation and the food remained cool inside. The pasta in fact, was used as we now use an ordinary container of plasticaper store leftovers in the fridge. The pastor or the fisherman had to do was cut and lift the circle of dough over, eat the food inside and close it. Pasta made with lard remained tough and kept in a cool meat or fish and vegetables inside.

Originally, a panada could contain up to a kilo of meat or fish, since the dough was much larger and the larger circle. Today the dimensions are greatly reduced, not only for a commercial issue, but above all because no one would eat for ten consecutive days eel or lamb.

Over the centuries and invasions panada underwent many changes, as the Spaniards replaced some ingredients with other foods, such as fish and different kinds of vegetables, forming what is now called “s’impanada”.

According to some theories it was after the arrival of the Spaniards that the Sardinians added the so-called seam that serves to close the lid
For others, however, the seam was always present, as it is very similar to that of culurgiones and then not to reconnect to the advent of the Spaniards. panada

Today, the panada remains a dish that is eaten on days of celebration or which is offered as a gift to family or friends, when you are invited to dinner, not to present “a manos muzzas” – “empty-handed”!

You can also find it in a different way, very small and fried and it’s called “panadina”.