Castagne, mondine, caldarroste, marroni, ballocci, bruciate, mosciarelle... Who would have ever known that Italians refer to chestnuts in so many different ways? Yes, caldarroste are roasted chestnuts, mosciarelle are dried chestnuts, mondine are peeled and boiled whilst ballocci are boiled whole, bruciate are cooked in a frying pan with large holes. Well, "le Castagne" are clearly part of Italian tradition and October is the month when they are celebrated the most! If you happen to visit Italy in October, don't miss out on one of the many local "Sagre" that celebrate this Autumnal offering with dancing and traditional products.
The Italian language is full of colourful sayings. These may sound bizarre when translated literally but they represent an integral part of Italy’s culture.
“La gatta frettolosa ha fatto i gattini ciechi”. Literally, “The hasty cat gave birth to blind kittens”. This is probably not the most refined way of saying that things done in haste tend to turn out badly. An English equivalent might be “haste makes waste”.