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Sicilian cuisine

Sicilian cuisine is the style of cooking on the island of Sicily. It shows traces of all cultures that have existed on the island of Sicily over the last two millennia. Although its cuisine has a lot in common with Italian cuisine, Sicilian food has Greek, Spanish and Arab influences; the Sicilian cook Mithaecus, born during 5th century BC, is credited with having brought knowledge of Sicilian gastronomy to Greece: his cookbook was the first in Greek, therefore he was the earliest cookbook author in any language whose name is known. Arab influences on Sicilian cuisine trace to the Arab domination of Sicily in the 10th and 11th centuries, include the use of apricots, citrus, sweet melons, saffron, nutmeg, pepper, pine nuts and cinnamon. Normans and Hohenstaufen influences are found, such as in the fondness for meat dishes; the Spanish introduced numerous items from the New World, including cocoa, peppers and tomatoes, along with other produce. Catania, on the east coast, was settled by Greek colonists, who left a preference for fish, broad beans and fresh vegetables.

Much of the island's cuisine encourages the use of fresh vegetables such as eggplant and tomatoes, fish such as tuna, sea bream, sea bass and swordfish. In Trapani in the extreme western corner of the island, North African influences are clear in the use of couscous; the starters are an important aspect of Sicilian cuisine. Common Sicilian starters include gatò di patate. Maccu is a Sicilian foodstuff prepared with fava beans as a primary ingredient, it is a peasant staple that dates back to ancient history. Maccu di San Giuseppe is a traditional Sicilian dish that consists of various maccu; the dish may be prepared on Saint Joseph's Day in Sicily, to clear out pantries and allow room for the spring's new crops of vegetables. Sicily is the oldest Italian and Western location on record where pasta worked into long and thin form was part of the local cuisine; this dates back to around the 12th century, as attested by the Tabula Rogeriana of Muhammad al-Idrisi, reporting some traditions about the Sicilian kingdom.

Spaghetti ai ricci, pasta con le sarde and pasta alla Norma are the most popular pasta dishes that are Sicilian. Cannelloni is another common dish. After the pasta, the typical Sicilian menu includes a main dish based on meat or fish. Main dishes based on seafood are couscous al pesce and Pesce spada alla ghiotta. Sweets are another specialty. Examples include: frutta martorana, Pignolata of Messina, cannoli, cassata siciliana and the Crocetta of Caltanissetta, a sweet that disappeared and was rediscovered in 2014. Candy in Sicily was influenced by the Arab candymakers in the 9th century, Sicilian candy has preserved more of that influence than any other place in Europe. Marzipan fruits may have been invented at the Convent of Eloise at Martorana in the 14th century. In the 17th and 18th centuries, many Sicilian monasteries produced candies and pastries, some with sexual or fertility themes; the only surviving convent to follow this tradition is the Monastery of the Virgins of Palermo, which makes breast-shaped cakes in honor of St Agatha of Sicily.

Traditional sugar statues, called pupa di cena, are still made, although now featuring modern celebrities or culture figures. Granita is famous and well known, it is a semi-frozen dessert of sugar and flavorings from the island, is associated with Messina or Catania though there is no evident proof that it hails from any particular Sicilian city. Related to sorbet and italian ice, in most of Sicily it has more crystalline texture. Food writer Jeffrey Steingarten says that "the desired texture seems to vary from city to city" on the island; this is the result of different freezing techniques: the smoother types are produced in a gelato machine, while the coarser varieties are frozen with only occasional agitation scraped or shaved to produce separated crystals. Citrus fruits are a popular ingredient in Sicilian cuisine. Many were first introduced by the Arabs from the 9th to 11th centuries, but some, such as the Washington navel from Brazil, have been brought to the island more recently. Examples of citrus fruits found in Sicily are: Biondo comune - the "common blonde" orange Ovale - ripens between April and May, with a compact flesh Sanguigno comune - common blood orange harvested between January and April Washington navel - introduced from Brazil during the 1940s-1950s, grown chiefly near Ribera and Sciacca and harvested from November to January Sanguinella - bitter orange of the blood orange variety, found in Paternò Santa Maria di Licodia, Palagonia and Francofonte during January until April Tarocco - high quality blood orange found in Catania and Francofonte from November to January Tarocco dal muso - bell shaped orange found in Francofonte Valencia - similar to the Ovale and used in confectionery items Moro - crimson colored flesh found in Lentini and Francofonte from mid-January until the end of April Comune - common variety of the mandarin orange Tardivo ciaculli - a second variety of the mandarin orange found in Sicily Femminello - the lemon that makes up 80% of Sicily's lemon crop, sound in Catania, Siracusa and Palermo Monachello - "little monk" lemon harvested from October from March and able to with

1999 Pilot Pen Tennis – Doubles

The 1999 Pilot Pen Tennis – Doubles was the doubles event of the seventeenth edition of the final tournament in the US Open Series. Alexandra Fusai and Nathalie Tauziat were the defending champions but Fusai did not compete this year. Tauziat played with Anne-Gaëlle Sidot as the fourth seed, they were defeated in the first time by Kristine Kunce and Dominique Van Roost. Lisa Raymond and Rennae Stubbs won the title, defeating third seeds Elena Likhovtseva and the previous year's finalist Jana Novotná in the final. ITF doubles results page WTA draw archive

Yashovarman

Yashovarman was a medieval Indian ruler of Kannauj. There are few sources that provide information of his life, although he was indubitably a powerful man. Yashovarman was king of Kannauj in the early part of the eighth century; the city had been ruled by Harsha, who died without an heir and thus created a power vacuum. This lasted for around a century. Alexander Cunningham, an archaeologist of the British Raj period, speculated on possible rulers of Kannauj during the period between Harsha and Yashovarman but there is little evidence to support his claims. Little is known of Yashovarman or his family, with most information being derived from the Gaudavaho, a Prakrit-language poem written by Vakpati. Yashovarman was a supporter of culture and Vakpati was among his courtiers: the extent to which the poem can be relied upon for statements of fact is impossible to determine. Vakpati's work has been variously said to describe Yashovarman as either a divine incarnation of Vishnu or a kshatriya of the Lunar dynasty.

The dates of his reign are obscure, with assertions including c. 728–745, around the late-seventh century/early eighth-century and, according to the calculations of Ramashandra Tripathi 725–752. The Gaudavaho depicts Yashovarman as conquering large swathes of northern India — including Bihar, the western Deccan, Indus Valley and Kashmir — before returning in triumph to Kannauj. However, Kalhana, a Kashmiri court chronicler who lived around the 12th century CE, gives a different story in his Rajatarangini, depicting Yashovarman as a ruler, among those defeated by Lalitaditya Muktapida, a ruler of Kashmir; the variant claims of stupendous conquests given by both of these courtiers are improbable, with Tripathi saying of those in the Gaudavaho that "These exploits read more like fiction than sober history". Other early sources are the Prabhavakacarita, Prabandha Kosha and Bappabhattasuricarita, which are Jain documents. Although R. C. Majumdar is among those who are wary of the ancient accounts of conquests, he believes that Yashovarman was "unquestionably the most powerful king about this time."

He believes that diplomatic relations existed between the Chinese court and that in Kannuaj, evidenced by Yashovarman sending a minister to China in 731, that he was for a time in alliance with Muktapida, with the two rulers defeating the Tibetans. These two diplomatic events may be connected because China was at that time at war with Tibet but it is possible that the Chinese relationship grew from a shared concern about the growth of Arab power; the alliance with Muktapida collapsed around 740, according to Majumdar because of jealousy felt by the Kashmiri king. While Majumdar says that Lalitaditya defeated Yashovarman and annexed his lands, Tripathi believes that Kalhana's account of what happened is inconsistent and that Yashovarman may have been allowed to remain on his throne after a "nominal acknowledgement of supremacy" to Lalitaditya. Little physical evidence exists of Yashovarman's reign, although he is reputed to have constructed the temple at Harischandranagari. An inscription has been found at Nalanda, some coins elsewhere, that may relate to him but there is no certainty.

According to the Jain chronicles, Yashovarman had a son named Āma, who succeeded him as the king of Kannauj during 749-753 CE. Historian Shyam Manohar Mishra believes this claim to be true, as it is not contradicted by any historical evidence. C. V. Vaidya theorized that the Ayudha rulers were descendants of Yashovarman, but no historical records connect the two dynasties. S. Krishnaswami Aiyangar proposed that Vajrayudha and Indrayudha were names of Āma, but this theory is contradicted by the Jain accounts. Notes Citations Bibliography Chopra, Pran Nath, A Comprehensive History of Ancient India, Sterling Publishers, ISBN 978-81-207-2503-4 Elgood, Heather and the Religious Arts, Bloomsbury Publishing, ISBN 9780826498656 Eraly, The First Spring: The Golden Age of India, Penguin Books India, ISBN 9780670084784 Majumdar, Ramesh Chandra, Ancient India, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 9788120804364 Mishra, Shyam Manohar. Yaśovarman of Kanauj. Abhinav. OCLC 5782454. Tripathi, History of Kanauj: To the Moslem Conquest, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 9788120804043 The Gaudavaho, a poem composed by Yashovarman's court poet Vakpati