For example, the use of apricots, sugar, citrus, sweet melons, rice, saffron, raisins, nutmeg, clove, pepper, pine nuts, cinnamon (along with fried preparations) is a sign of Arab influences from the Arab domination of Sicily in the 10th and 11th centuries.
Normans and Hohenstaufen influences are also found, such as in the fondness for meat dishes, such as Bruscialoni. Later, the Spanish introduced numerous items from the New World, including cocoa, maize, turkey, and tomatoes and other produce. In Catania, on the east coast, initially settled by Greek colonists, fish, olives, broad beans, and fresh vegetables are preferred instead. Much of the island's cuisine encourages the use of fresh vegetables such as eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes, and fish such as tuna, sea bream, sea bass, cuttlefish, and swordfish. In Trapani in the extreme western corner of the island, North African influences are clear in the use of couscous.
Well-known dishes from Sicily include arancini (a form of deep-fried rice croquettes), Pasta alla Norma (a specialty of Catania), caponata, pani ca meusa (Palermo) and couscous al pesce (Trapani). Sweets are another specialty; examples include: frutta martorana, pignolata, buccellato, cannolo siciliano, granita, and cassata siciliana).
Sicily has a number of unique citrus fruits used in their cuisine. Many were first introduced by the Arabs from the 9th to 11th centuries, but some have been brought more recently to the region as well such as the Washington navel from Brazil. Below several examples of the citrus fruits one can find in Sicily.