Fregula οr Fregua οr Freula, is a kind of pasta made from semolina, which is produced in Sardinia.
Fregula has an ancient origin and history. This can be easily proven, as, according to sources, it’s production and exportation was happening in the tenth century. The first written reference is in the Miller’s of the temple statute, which is dated back in the fourteenth cetury, where the proper production is defined, which had to be done strictly from Monday till Friday, so that the water for the fields and the farming tasks could be used in Saturday and Sunday.
Fregola is the name that has been given by the food industry, but her real name is Fregula, a term that comes from the Latin ferculum, which means, shatter, break and it could be translated as <<crumb>>.
Fregula or cuscus was born first?
Identical to fregula sarda, the arabic grains from semolina known as cuscus, were widespread throughout the centuries in the whole Mediterrean with different names.
Taking this into consideration, it could be easily said that fregola, is maybe the result of cultural exchange between the people of North Africa. However, there are no proofs to verify this claim, that’s why , we don’t reject the fact that it could be a clear local product of Sardinia.
The production of fregola, being preserved as a traditional heritage of Sardinia, had a home-made <<ceremony>> :
In a big and deep plate or basin, the dough is kneading, by adding slowly the semolina and the blended with salted lukewarm water egg. Simultaneously, with the other hand, women, rub with a cyclical movement the dough at the bottom of the cooking vessel,so that little balls of dough will be created. Once they dry, they put them in the oven for about 15 minutes, so that they will become “rosy”. There they acquire their charachteristic golden colour and their special unique taste. Those balls have different sizes and diameter, from 2 up to 6 millimeters.
In the cooking tradition of Sardinia, fregola is used for first courses based on fish or seafood or for soups as well.
Now that you got familiar with some things of her history, try to use her in the recipes that we recommend you, but you can rely on your own imagination as well !