In the far south of the Italian peninsula, the climate, like the people, is extreme. The temperature always seems to be rising beneath a sun that is always intense. The tomatoes grow sweeter, the peppers taste hotter, and the olives are riper. And the winds that well up from deep in the African dessert blowing across the Mediterranean Sea, called il scirocco, bring to the land a heat-drenched pungency that bakes into the earth that oppressively sweet perfume of sunlight and sea that promises a spicy and aromatic harvest. The constant turbulence of their politics just like the relentless blaze of their sky have forged into these people an insurgent spirit that is reflected in the vehemence of their cooking; and in this food you are able to taste the blood born of their soil, the salt washed up from their seas, and the fire breathed down from their sun.