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Women’s Day Menu

“From women’s eyes this doctrine I derive: they sparkle still the right Promethean fire; they are the books, the arts, the academes, that show, contain and nourish all the world.”

(William Shakespeare)

Are you looking for a modern and elegant location to spend the Women’s Day in Rome? At the Piccolo Mondo you can relive the atmosphere of the “dolce vita”, celebrating in a beautiful restaurant near Via Veneto, Piazza di Spagna, Fontana di Trevi. Our special Women’s Day menu, in perfect harmony between tradition and innovation, is waiting for you!

 

WOMEN’S DAY MENU

 

Appetizer

Sea bass carpaccio with strawberry “panzanella” and yellow “datterini” tomatoes

Pasta

Tagliolini with squid, zucchini and pumpkin flowers

Main course

Turbot with asparagus tips and saffron velvety

Dessert

Mimosa cake with Tribago chocolate and berries

 

Price: € 45,00 per person (beverages not included)

Reservations: info@ristorantepiccolomondo.it, tel +39 06 42016034.

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Fellini: sixty year of dolce vita

A film, an icon, the profile of an Italy exploding between cultural rigidity and frantic change. Sixty years ago, La dolce vita by Federico Fellini appeared in cinemas, and in popular culture. Just on the night between 2 and 3 February 1960 at the “Cinema Fiamma di Roma”, today closed, there was the premiere.

 

The Film

We are in the glamorous Rome of the ’60s, where Marcello Rubini (Marcello Mastroianni), a scandal journalist, spends his life through a purely Hegelian drama, that is: between having to be a scandal journalist and wanting to be a novelist.

Through the character of Marcello, Fellini unveils to us lights and shadows of the Capitoline society of the time, such as: the arrival of a Statue of Christ headed to the Vatican aboard a helicopter; Marcello’s continuous betrayals that lead his girlfriend Emma (Yvonne Furneaux) to the attempted suicide and the will of a man who, after the escaped tragedy, decides to throw himself headlong into his job accepting to follow the famous Hollywood star Sylvia (Anita Ekberg). Through her, Fellini takes the protagonist and the spectator into the complex meanders of a society that changes, rebeling quietly and finding itself devoted to beauty as if it were sunken, festive and luxuriant in the Trevi Fountain. And, in an instant, it is as if that “Marcello come here” was an invitation addressed to all that ” dolce” Italy.

 

“A Small World” in Via Veneto

Like a current that crosses a river from Porta Pinciana to Piazza Barberini, Via Veneto is the place where Italy changes, Neorealism flakes and is tinged with a golden filigree, a new light.

Located in the beating heart of Rome, a stone’s throw from Via Veneto, the visceral soul of the freshness of the style known as “dolce vita”, the Il Piccolo Mondo restaurant is a witness to an inexorable change of the guard, becoming a cradle of change and home to the likes of Federico Fellini.

 

Federico Fellini and the evenings in via Veneto

Federico Fellini walked along Via Veneto like an ante litteram flux of Roman sociology. Born in Rimini and moved to Rome to study, he made the city his second home, so much so as to make it the inspiring muse of his greatest films from Roma to La dolce vita. The capital took on new facets for Fellini: a protagonist with a thousand faces, told in a prosaic way as one does of a woman one admires and loves so much.

In an interview Fellini said: “In the evening we went to Via Veneto”. And it was precisely this little glimpse of Rome that became a corner of home for the director, a place to live, made up of nineteenth-century facades, crowded hotels and beauties immortalized by a flash. Here, the “painter” Fellini admires his masterpiece that moves and turns from “dolce vita” into “daily life”. Via Veneto could not, therefore, fail to thank that great master. Crossing the Aurelian arches we arrive in largo Federico Fellini, dedicated to the man who made Via Veneto “the theatre of the Dolce Vita”.

 

Federico Fellini and food

A table laid and a family reunited. Speaking of Fellini, one cannot help but think of one of Amarcord’s scenes, but it is also the scene that comes closest to his life experience in terms of food. Son of a parmesan representative, he tells of how he grew up “with that smell under his nose”, as he said as an adult. However, his favourite dish remained, without a shadow of a doubt, the English soup prepared by his grandmother and enriched with a very special meringue. At the time, in fact, since there were no piping bags, his grandmother used to put the mixture of egg white and sugar inside a cone made of newspaper. And it was precisely this detail that made that meringue so special, which took on an aftertaste of newsprint impossible to reproduce, because the newspaper in question was now out of print. He loved first courses, as not to mention one of his famous phrases: “life is a combination of pasta and magic”. In an interview he revealed that he loved to eat alone during filming. Voracious but too anxious to sit still, he said that having lunch with the film crew would distract him.

We, however, like to imagine him like this: sitting at one of the tables of the restaurant Il Piccolo Mondo, in front of a steaming pasta dish, watching life flowing outside and a new idea running through him.

 

Pasta and its many varieties

Pasta, like pizza, has made Italian cuisine famous throughout the world. In Italy there are many kinds of this product and they differ in ingredients, shapes, processes and methods of cooking. In addition, each recipe uses precise formats, so as to create a perfect combination of pasta and ingredients.
The types of pasta vary from one region to another, but also from one location to another in the same region, some over time have had a national spread, or international as spaghetti, while others have remained the exclusive heritage of their places of origin.
Among different processing methods and more or less bizarre names, the world of pasta is rich and varied, let’s discover some of its characteristics together.

Processing methods

A first fundamental difference concerns fresh and dry pasta. The first must be kept in the fridge and consumed within a few days, the second, the classic dry pasta, if stored at room temperature in the pantry, can last for several months.
Dry pasta can be stored for a long time because, thanks to the drying method, it is dehydrated during processing, thus preventing the proliferation of bacteria. Even if for convenience we tend to prefer dry pasta, we also allow ourselves the pleasure of eating fresh pasta sometimes, making sure, however, that it has been prepared and preserved with care.

There is an infinite number of shapes of pasta on the market with different costs, how to find your way around? Surely you should prefer products that are bronze drawn, a process carried out at low drying temperatures to preserve the nutritional properties of the ingredients.
The products made by artisan companies offer a higher quality both for the raw materials chosen, both for the attention they pay to the processing methods. The work of the pasta makers is based on an ancient art, which is handed down from generation to generation. Even if they continue to apply these consolidated techniques, some of them do not give up trying to distinguish themselves by combining traditional products with alternatives that capture the attention of consumers.

Each ingredient has its own pasta

Have you ever wondered why there are so many shapes and sizes of pasta? First of all to arouse the curiosity of consumers, small or large, and then because not all shapes are suitable for every ingredient. Let’s take a few examples:
1) Let’s say: Cacio e pepe, we are implying the use of long pasta, spaghetti or tonnarelli, because they blend better with the creamy sauce of this dish, typical of the Roman cuisine. A simple recipe, but extremely tasty, which includes only three ingredients: salt, black pepper and pecorino romano.
2) Spaghetti and clams are inseparable by tradition and to ensure the right creaminess to this dish with only few ingredients, long pasta is the best choice.
3) And what about the Amatriciana? Bucatini or spaghetti are the perfect shapes! This ancient recipe, born in Amatrice, was originally without tomato and had the name of Gricia (typical dish of Lazio cuisine, still very popular today). The addition of tomatoes to the other ingredients, peppery guanciale (cured pork cheek) and pecorino romano, is subsequent to their being imported from the Americas. For both the Amatriciana and the Gricia, rigatoni are a valid alternative to spaghetti and bucatini.
4) If we move to the south of the boot, in Puglia we find the orecchiette with turnip tops (also called “strascinati”). The recipe requires that the pasta is cooked with vegetables and sautéed with garlic, oil and anchovies, the orecchiette are perfect to ensure a good result.

The pasta, as well as for its shape and production, also differs for the flours used in the dough. For example, Tacconi, originating in the Marche region, has wheat flour and broad bean flour in the dough; the gnocchi are prepared with potatoes, flour, eggs and salt.  Rice, buckwheat and corn flours are some of the flours used to produce gluten-free pasta.
The shapes and recipes that characterize this traditional dish of Italian cuisine are numerous. You are spoilt for choice between tradition and innovation!
If you are passionate about pasta, and in particular the typical dishes of Roman cuisine, il Piccolo Mondo is the restaurant for you, we are waiting for you!
For reservations please contact us at 06 42016034.

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Eggplant: a summer vegetable that’s good for you!

Did you know that eggplants, besides being good and suitable for the preparation of numerous recipes, are also healthy?
There are different varieties of this typically summer vegetable, and they differ in shape, color and flavor, which can be more or less decisive. There are eggplants with an oval, round or elongated shape. The colors are dark purple, violet or a lighter color with purplish streaks.

The dishes that can be prepared are numerous and range from first courses, to second courses if used to prepare tasty meatballs, to seasonal side dishes. Let’s discover together the characteristics, the properties and the different ways to eat them by preparing appetizing summer recipes.

 

Properties

The eggplant is rich in nutrients and fibers, which have numerous advantages including reducing the absorption of sugars by the body, promoting intestinal transit and making this vegetable easily digestible. The eggplant also has a low-calorie content, gives a feeling of satiety so it is advisable for those preparing for the “bikini test!”.
It is rich in potassium and other minerals and the high percentage of water makes it a purifying food. It contains several antioxidant substances that are good for the heart and brain. These include chlorogenic acid, which helps to reduce LDL cholesterol, which is harmful to the body, and counteracts the action of free radicals.

 

But the properties of eggplants do not end here…

Would you ever have said that this vegetable is also good for bones and for those who have anemia problems? Yes, it is! Eggplants contain some phenolic compounds that promote bone density and are rich in calcium and iron.
After the quick reference to some of the many properties of this plant, let’s find out together how to enjoy it in the kitchen.

 

To each of you, your own recipe…

For eggplants lovers there is really an embarrassment of riches! The ways in which they can be prepared are numerous and suitable to satisfy all palates.
An appetizer, fresh and inviting, is the eggplant carpaccio prepared with grilled eggplants and marinated with an emulsion composed of olive oil, lemon juice, mint leaves and basil, garlic and black pepper.
As seasoning for an excellent first course you can prepare them by cutting them into chunks and after frying the garlic and onion in a pan, pour the eggplants and brown over low heat for about ten minutes. Then add fresh tomatoes peeled and cut into pieces, basil, salt and chilli and complete cooking.
They are very good as a side dish grilled in the oven with zucchini, potatoes, carrots, celery, onion, parsley, olive oil, salt and breadcrumbs.

These are of course just some of the many recipes that can be prepared with this versatile vegetable.
If you love it, in the restaurant “il Piccolo Mondo” you can enjoy the traditional eggplants with parmesan cheese, prepared with an emulsion of basil, or a side dish of the season in which the eggplants are accompanied by zucchini, peppers and mushrooms. Seasonal dishes that will give you a fresh summer evening.
For reservations please contact us at +39 06 42016034.

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Strawberries: a spring delight

Thinking of spring, which is rich in colours and scents, we wish we were taking a stroll in the open air, whether in parks and woods, to admire nature while it undergoes its natural change. Winter bare trees take on the several shades of foliage green, and flaunt an explosion of fragrant and bright flowers. And it is precisely this temperate climate that allows the growth of strawberry plants, whose fruits, esthetically pleasing and just as good to eat, are charactised by an intense and tempting colour! However, besides being tasty, strawberries also have a series of beneficial properties for the body that we will discover together.

 

Nutritional properties

Strawberries are the fruits of the homonymous plant belonging to the genus Fragaria, which either grows spontaneously in the woods or is cultivated.
The many varieties grown can be distinguished by the shape of the fruit, whether small or big, as well as by its colour and flavour. Fragaria vesca, with its more or less large red fruits, is the most common variety in Italy. The fruit ripening covers a period which goes from April to June and, in some regions of northern Italy, continues until July or August.

Rich in water and fibres, strawberries contain different nutrients, such as iron, calcium, phosphorus, vitamins A, B1 and B2. Moreover, they have a high content of vitamin C which, besides contrasting cold-induced diseases, stimulates blood circulation and facilitates the iron absorption by our body. They have an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect, and help to counteract the harmful effects of cholesterol.
Thanks to their content of salicylic acid, strawberries have a positive effect on blood pressure and fluidity. They are also diuretic, depurative and low in calories.

 

Some tips for choosing the best strawberries

Nowadays, many are the strawberries commercially available and present all the year round. Obviously, they are not identical. Caution and special attention paid at the moment of purchase will help you choose the sweet and tasty ones! First of all, due to the fact that spring is the season when this fruit spontaneously grow and is thus tastier, it is essential to wait for this period to arrive. Since transport times are shorter than those from foreign countries, it is advisable to buy our home-grown strawberries, which have certainly been collected more recently.
Pay attention to the price! If their cost is too low, quality is not guaranteed. Whether small or big, what is important is that they are compact and have a uniform red colour.

 

How to taste them?

This fruit with many beneficial powers is very versatile in the kitchen; this is why it is a suitable ingredient for multiple preparations. If you love slightly sour flavours, you can eat strawberries alone or sweetened with sugar. They are excellent for preparing tasty fruit salads, seasoned with sugar, lemon, and coated with whipped cream. Fruit salads can also be enriched by other types of fruit, such as apples, kiwis, pineapples and other berries. They are excellent to fill or decorate cakes or omelettes, as well as to prepare pastries, tiramisu cakes, pies, ice creams, smoothies, and jams. Moreover, they can be used to prepare a syrup, the so-called strawberry sauce, used to moisten sponges for cakes and roulades, and to soak ladyfingers when it comes to making tiramisu. You’re really spoilt for choice!

At the restaurant Il Piccolo Mondo, after enjoying a rich meat or fish meal, you will be able to refresh yourself with a tempting, seasonal fruit tray, where strawberries are the queens! We are waiting for you!
For reservations, please call us at +39 06 42016034.

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Asparagus: tasty for those who love them and nutricious for everyone!

When spring comes, it brings a mild weather and a lot of beautiful colors. In the same time asparagus reach our tables. In addition to being delicious, they provide nutritional benefits to the body.
Rich in fiber, these vegetables got folic acid, vitamins (in particular vitamins A, C and K) and mineral salts.

Recent studies show how eating asparagus may prevent Type 2 diabetes, as one of the mineral salts they contain favors the glucose absorption in the body. They are also rich in potassium, a useful blood pressure and muscles proper functioning regulator, especially for the heart, in addition to being all-natural diuretics. They are low in calories and rich in asparagine, a useful substance to prevent muscle fatigue. Then, let’s eat a lot of these healty vegetables!

 

To each Italian place their own asparagus…

The majority of asparagus is green in colour, but there are also white (with a more delicate taste), pink and purple varieties too. In Italy, each colour has several varieties that change from place to place. A lot of different white asparagus can be found in Bassano, Padova, Cimadolmo, Rivoli Veronese.

The Lombard variety of Mezzago known as one of the white type, is actually pink. Among the purple asparagus varieties is the one from Albenga, very sweet, eatable row making carpaccio and furthermore the violet asparagus of Cilavegna.
Asparagus can be both wild and cultivated. Wild asparagus are called “asparagina”, a variety typical of woodland and rural areas.

 

How to cook asparagus: from appetizers to side dishes…

Asparagus can be cooked in a number of ways to serve tasty appetizers, delicious first courses or light and healty side dishes. Among the most common recipes we recall risotto, pasta and omelet. As for cooking, steaming is advisable as it preserves the nutritional properties of the vegetable and enhances its flavor. Steaming can be used to make delicious buns with asparagus and capers, appetizers, first courses and side dishes.

Asparagus can be also boiled to make risottos, lasagna with asparagus and ham or as a side dish seasoned with olive oil, salt and lemon. As a side dish they are also good sautéed. Try the combinations with curry, white pepper, dill and mustard to make the most of their flavor.

At the Piccolo Mondo restaurant you can taste asparagus in their different preparations. We are waiting for you!

Reservation at + 39 06 42016034.

Valentine’s Day Menu

“Love is like good cooking: special dishes always start with simple ingredients, transformed with imagination.” (Paul Mehis)

Valentine’s Day Menu “il Piccolo Mondo”

Welcome prosecco and delicacies from the Piccolo Mondo

Appetizers

Tuna tartare with passion fruit and cuttlefish ink

Pasta

Sea bass ravioli with cream of black cabbage and tomato powder

Main course

Wild catch “all’acqua pazza” and duchess potatoes

Dessert

Cake with strawberry ice-cream

 

Price: € 60,00 per person (beverages not included)

Reservations: info@ristorantepiccolomondo.it, tel +39 06 42016034.