Molise, clams, the poor fisher’s meal

0,7% of the national fishing fleet
41,8% Demersal trawl
9,9% Hydraulic dredges
48,4% Small-scale fisheries

The clam is a bivalve mollusc that has been appreciated since ancient times, there are even depictions of it among the mosaics of Pompeii. Despite its organoleptic qualities, during the period between the wars it was considered in some northern regions as food for the poor and hence some dialectal names like “poveraccia”, “pavarassa” o “purazi”.

Clam fishing is carried out by typical vessels called vongolare. These vessels carry a hydraulic dredge, which penetrates a few centimeters into the sandy sea bed, capturing all the organisms present in that stretch of sand.

Clams are suitable as ingredients in various dishes. In the Molise region, the dish which enhances the quality of local fish products is the fish soup called (U ‘Bredette). This was initially the simple meal made by the fishers, who would leave their little boats (paranze) at sunset and go home with the “Scafetta“, their portion of the fish caught after the best fish had been selected for the gentlemen, and when there was too little fish they added pieces of rock with seaweed and molluscs attached. The soup is a blend of flavours, scents and colors of the sea and the land.

An enchantment, whose memory remains in hearts and minds