Sūq is an arabic word meaning “market”, but in Genoa there’s no need for translations and encyclopaedias to know it: from 1999 the city hosts a famous festival dedicated to interculture that has this name. Every year we wait impatiently for the opening of the event that for about ten days lights Porto Antico (the Ancient Port of Genoa) with colours, tastes, scents and mediterranean dances, and even this year I went to visit it.
Unluckily I was able to have only a fast visit, but as every time it was worthed. To walk among the narrow alleys which recreate a true Suq like suddenly from Genoa’s Aquarium we are thrown in another dimension is priceless, as it is to wander around smelling unusual spices coming from the many gastronomic (and not only) stalls, listening to music coming from the Mediterranean area.
The most difficult thing, as every year, had been to choose at which stall to have some food: the bazar’s gastronomic part is indeed very rich, it extends in any range of ethnic cooking, becoming a kind of paradise for those, like me, who are passionated about it.
At the end I chose the senegalese cooking stall, attended by the restaurant Jamila in Via dei Giustiniani in Genoa (I know, ironicly I didn’t go so far 😉 ).
I had some awesome Panzerotti (a kind of calzone) stuffed with meat and a tomato and onion sauce:
And the unavoidable Cous cous, in this case made of senegalese millet with meat and vegetables:
My mother, instead, since lately she is obsessed with Tunisia, took Cous cous with vegetables and lamb and some fantastic sweets from the tunisian stall (I loved them too, especially the ones tasting of rose!).
Suq is a very important event for Genoa: as a port city it’s not a news its extreme multiculturalism that, added to generalization, sometimes creates fights and prejudices; it’s nice that the ten days of this festival are reminding us of how instead it’s marvellous and interesting to be in the centre of a continous cultural vortex, that includes all Mediterranean and beyond.