Clelias "Maremma" Style Macaroni

    Our wonderful cousin, Clelia, who lives with her husband, Luca and their children, Tom and Emma in Florence, San Gimigiano and at the beach, prepared this pasta dish for my son, Kieran when he was studying Italian in Florence. He loved it and tried to imitate it, with some success. He asked Clelia for the exact recipe and here it is.

    "Maremma" is an area of Tuscany (where our beach house is) North of Rome and south of Elba Island. It's a salt marsh, with beautiful wildflife and beaches and pine groves. Here you can find the typical cow buffaloes and their special strong tasting milk which is also used for buffalo mozzarella mainly in Southern Italy.

    Green olive oil
    2or 3 garlic cloves, whole
    Diced ripe fresh tomatoes
    little red chilli peppers (peperoncino)
    1 & ˝ cup (or more) of buffalo milk ricotta at room temperature (I also use sheepmilk ricotta)
    2 to 3 leaves of fresh basil

    While cooking your "pasta al dente" (make extra- this dish is good cold, too), heat about 6 tablespoons of olive oil and sauté the garlic cloves without browning. Chop the tomatoes and arrange in a large pasta dish. When macaroni are cooked, drain and put in pasta dish and top with ricotta cheese, Pour the oil over the macaroni, grate al little chili pepper and garnish with the basil leaves. Mix all the ingredients well and BUON APPETITO!! Couldn't be easier than that! ''