I'm Tamsin Hickson, I live on an olive farm in Le Marche in Central Italy with my husband, sons, father, cats, dog, chickens, ducks (until Christmas).

recipes

  • Chocolate banana bread chocolate-banana-bread

    I hesitate to give you this recipe. Introducing it to teenagers can be dangerous, Sam has to know that there is a loaf in the house or he starts to hyperventilate, fearful that starvation and famine lie just around the corner. He eats two slices for breakfast, another after lunch, and a final slice [...]

Italian

  • Corsa di Carretti carretti

    Aldo enjoys the very rare distinction of being a downhill go-cart champion, an unusual sport tailored to our hilltop towns. The go-carts have no engines and rely on gravity to get them to speeds of 100km per hour. Yesterday he won his race in Loreto and at the prize giving (he won a prosciutto, always [...]

making things

  • Elderflower cordial elderflower

    When the poppies are out it’s time to order the citric acid to make elderflower cordial. Every year I go through the recipe with our local pharmacist, who takes some convincing that I really want THAT MUCH citric acid. I’ve not yet found an Italian home recipe for a drink that doesn’t contain alcohol, [...]

Books, trees and pebbles…

Aldo spent our holiday immersed in international crime noir. He started with Jean Claude Izzo’s MARSEILLES TRILOGY, took a short refreshing break with Iain Pears DEATH AND RESTORATION then plunged headlong into Shanghai guided by Qiu Xiaolong’s A CASE OF TWO CITIES. I explored the world of creativity with IMAGINE, HOW CREATIVITY WORKS by Jonah Lehrer. It’s filled with fascinating ideas and interesting tests most of which I tried out on Aldo. It was a while before I noticed that the blank stare turned in my direction as I posed yet another intriguing mind bender had a noirish tinge to it…

Who knows why he wasn’t more open to my frank assessment of the way his mind works? Anyway, try this one at home: Mary and Martha are sisters, born to the same parents, on the same hour of the same day in the same year. But they are not twins.

I’ll post the answer (for those of you open-minded enough to have given it some thought…) on Wednesday.

Further differences in attitude can be detected in our choice of things to bring home. Aldo collected seeds of trees which he wrapped carefully in newspaper, planning to plant them here and create a tiny corner of Sicily in our garden.

I collected pebbles.

 

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