Searching for Italy episode 6 – Sicily: Sicily is the Mediterranean’s largest island and is known as God’s Kitchen because of its rich volcanic soil. But it’s also said to be home to the ‘Gates of Hell’. Impoverished for centuries, conquered by just about everybody and haunted by its mafia connections, Sicilians have learned to make do with what they have.
Michelin starred chef Tony Lo Coco shows Stanley his signature dish, spaghetti alla bottarga. Stanley then heads to Southern Sicily and meets artisanal winemaker Arianna Occhipinti and tries the grapes grown in the region’s unique soils. Next, Stanley dines with Princess Stefania di Raffadali in Palermo. Her chef Maria is an expert in timballo, a lavish baked pie made of pasta or rice with different fillings.
Stanley travels to Italy’s southernmost point, Lampedusa, 173 miles south of Sicily and first stop for many refugees from Africa. Here he meets sardine fisherman Beppe Billeci and his wife Rina. They cook him sardines in salsa verde and sarde a beccafico. It’s the perfect embodiment of rustic food, making the best of local produce.
Ending his Sicilian journey, theatre actors Emanuela and Mimmo invite Stanley to dinner along with recent migrants, their foster son Mustafa and their friend Joy. The meal is a blend of food and spices from around the world, plantain fried in coconut oil, chicken cooked in curry and ginger and rice with peas and shrimps.
Searching for Italy episode 6 – Sicily
Stanley Tucci Jr. is an American actor, writer, producer, and former fashion model. Involved in acting from a young age, he made his film debut in Sea Of Thieves (1969), and continued to play a variety of supporting roles in films such as John Huston’s Prizzi’s Honor (1985), Woody Allen’s Deconstructing Harry (1997), Sam Mendes’s Road to Perdition (2002), and Steven Spielberg’s The Terminal (2004). In 1996, he made his directorial debut with the cult comedy Big Night which he also co-wrote and starred in alongside Tony Shalhoub.
He also played Stanley Kubrick in the television film The Life and Death of Peter Sellers. Tucci is also known for his collaborations with Meryl Streep in films such as The Devil Wears Prada (2006) and Julie & Julia (2009). Tucci gained further acclaim and success with such films as Burlesque (2010), Easy A (2010), Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), Margin Call (2011), The Hunger Games film series (2012–2015), Spotlight (2015), Beauty and the Beast (2017), and Supernova (2020).
He has won four Emmy Awards; one for Winchell (1998), one for a guest appearance on the comedy series Monk, one for being a producer of the web series Park Bench with Steve Buscemi and one for hosting and producing Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy. Tucci was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in The Lovely Bones (2009). He was also nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play for his performance in Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (2003), and a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children, for The One and Only Shrek! alongside Meryl Streep.