Slow food may be an Ital­ian pre­rog­a­tive, but that’s no excuse for pass­ing up on the fast kind a pri­ori, espe­cially on the streets of Palermo.

From coun­ters set up out­side some of the well-known eater­ies (such as the Antica Focac­ce­ria San Francesco) to iffy-looking stalls in the Vuc­ciria dis­trict equipped with lit­tle more than a large BBQ or a vat of very hot oil, they serve up a won­drous vari­ety of local specialities.

Arancine di riso — rice cro­quettes tra­di­tion­ally filled with meat and peas — are a sta­ple, along­side frit­ters made from chick­pea flour known as pan­elle. Then come sfin­ci­uni, a flat­bread topped with tomato sauce, sar­dines, onions and pecorino cheese, and for stronger stom­achs the leg­endary pani ca’ meusa, a bun filled with meat and calf’s spleen with only a squeeze of lemon juice to make it more palat­able to the unini­ti­ated. They fry up just about any­thing, from slices of sum­mer veg­eta­bles to a stag­ger­ing array of seafood. And for dessert, the ubiq­ui­tous can­noli, filled with ricotta and can­died fruit. This is by no means an exhaus­tive list.

So no prob­lem, really, if you can’t get a table at that restau­rant we told you about. In fact, Palermo is now offi­cially one of the world’s top cities for street food, 5th out of 10 in a recent clas­si­fi­ca­tion drawn up by Vir­tu­al­Tourist and pub­lished by Forbes. So there.