SPAGHETTI (Bavette) ALLE ARSELLE
The Italian summer dish par excellence spaghetti alle vongole, but the Tuscan version. For real food connoisseurs: spaghetti alle arselle. The crucial difference between these two dishes…the clams; arselle also known as telline are a smaller and more delicate version than the more famous familiar vongole. For years they have been considered the “clams of the poor”, yet, arselle have nothing to envy of the most noble molluscs. Fishing them by standing partially immersed in the sea of sandy shores with a rake has been a fun hobby of many (and still is for a few) who’s only goal is to bring as many home as possible to flavour a large bowl of spaghetti.
How to eat them: With bavette sauteéd with the shell, garlic, chili and onion …exclusively al dente.
“SAPORE DI MARE”
“Sapore di sale, sapore di mare che hai sulla pelle che hai sulle labbra quando esci dall’acqua e ti vieni a sdraiare vicino a me…” Gino Paoli
“Taste of salt, taste of the sea you have on the skin you have on your lips when you get out of the water and come and lie down next to me …”
“Sapore di Mare”, the cult film written by the Vanzina brothers, captures the Italian attitudes of the 60s through the eyes of Jerry Calà and Christian De Sica in the unforgettable Versilia.
Just think, it’s 1964, the Beatles and Gigliola Cinquetti’s “Non ho l’età” echo between Forte dei Marmi and Marina di Pietrasanta.
Dreamy eyes stare into magazines looking at McQueen and Bardot.
White tennis outfits and sweaters tied around the shoulders while cycling – definitely the best way to get around this part of Italy.
Watch the film in the original language to grasp its brilliant comedy or explore yourself with the advice of someone who has picked it apart for you:
FORTE DEI MARMI
The town known for cycling along the beach, aperitivi all’Almarosa, excellence of the bavette alle arselle, nights spent dancing and singing at La Capannina, and of late-night (early-morning) meals made of Anacleto’s focaccine. From slow lazy awakenings, made of sfogliatine al bar followed by “naps” sotto la tenda (under the beach tent) and evening shopping for handcrafted wooden baskets.
Forte dei Marmi is not for sea lovers but for all those who love the “bella vita” which surrounds it.
Considered by many critics and directors such as Martin Scorsese and Dennis Hopper as the first true road trip movie in the history of cinema, Dino Risi’s film, Il Sorpasso, is often referred to as one of the cornerstones of Italian comedy. Vittorio Gassman and Jean-Louis Trintignant take on a trip from Rome to Tuscany on THE quintessential summer day: Ferragosto.
An unpredictable road trip that showcases the pleasures and consequences of the good life and the Italian traditions of “villegiatura“— a time when everyone packed their bags, tied them to the roof of their car, and set off to places just like…
ITALIAN PARANOIA HANDBOOK
DO NOT jump in the water after a meal (wait at least a couple of hours).
DO NOT eat peppers or onions, as you will most probably not be able to digest them.
DO NOT leave the house with wet hair (doing otherwise may cause severe cervicale).
DO NOT overdrink or you will have male al fegato – Italians have the exceptional power to feel when their liver is hurting.
DO NOT run around and sweat! If you do, cover up immediately after if not you’ll get chilled and catch a cold
GET READY for the cambio di stagione (change of season) which may cause dizziness, nausea, and exhaustion.
Last but not least DO NOT ever find yourself under direct currents of cold air which will surely lead to the maledetto (cursed)…