Monday, January 19, 2015


I am not very particular about fit and fashion, I'll wear just about long as I feel comfortable in it.  And comfort is the word when it comes to this hand-me up from my daughter. It is the perfect fit, size and length for me. As if they were made for me.  So soft and warm also. Perfect for the cold weather we are having these days. What am I talking about?  My new used  TRAPPERS trousers. My daughter bought them  for pennies from a vintage shop in Rome. As is often the case, when she got home and put them on, she didn't like the way they looked on her. So off they went into the hand-me up bag.... much to my delight!


Saturday, January 17, 2015


Very often you find that just when you want to eat bread....the breadbox is empty! You can make it at home, either by hand or by machine, but it will take hours to be ready.... and you want it NOW! You try to find a quick-bread recipe, but they all take time to make, even soda bread takes about 25-30 minutes  to make. So, what is the solution? 

If you have ever been to India, or to an Indian restaurant, you will have noticed something called CHAPPATI. Chappati is the fastest and easiest bread to make. Just mix wholemeal flour with a bit of water, and cook. 

You will need  about 250 g. of wholewheat flour and 175 ml. water.  Mix together and knead into a smooth ball. Cut into 15 pieces and  roll each one  out into a circle  and cook on a hot pan. When it puffs up it's ready.

Sunday, January 11, 2015



My friend Chikako, who runs the b&b L'Ostellino,  on Via Pegno 2, Erice (Trapani)  gave me oranges from her orchard so I decided to make an orange cake.

This is a very rich cake...filled with custard and whipped cream.

You will need: a sponge cake, about two cups of custard, half a cup of whipped cream, oranges,
water, sugar.

Slice about 4 or 5 big oranges, and boil them  for one hour in a syrup made of 3 cups water and 3 cups sugar.

Slice an 8in. sponge cake in half.

Mix two cups of custard with half a cup of whipped cream.

Grease a 9in. pan and sprinkle it with sugar. Place the orange slices at the bottom and sides of the pan.  Place half of the custard mixture on top of the orange slices. Add half of the sponge cake, and spread the remaining custard mixture over the sponge. Cover with the other half of the sponge cake. Refrigerate for several hours.  When ready to serve, invert on a plate.

This is an easier version  of Orange Creme Cake from  Australian Women's Weekly  French Cooking Made Easy Magazine  p. 102

Thursday, January 8, 2015


Cut up the eggplant and sprinkle salt all over it. Place in a colander for about an hour.

Boil 1 part water and 2 parts red wine vinegar, and cook the eggplant for about 10 minutes.

Drain. Place the cooked eggplant pieces  in a bowl, add 3 cloves garlic, fresh basil and oregano. Add a bit of vinegar and cover with olive oil.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


Today we celebrate La old woman who comes and brings sweets to children who have been good and charcoal to those who have been naughty.

La Befana is usually portrayed as an old lady wearing a scarf and riding on a broom. This particular Befana does not like to she goes on foot:)

Thursday, January 1, 2015



In  Sicily any time is good for eating, but it is during Christmas and New Year's that Sicilians really go out of their way to prepare huge meals. Here are some samplings of holiday food:

Stuffed tomatoes and eggplants

Grilled peppers.  Tomato and red onions salad

Busiate (typical pasta of Trapani) This particular dish was prepared by the Chef at Caffè Baby Luna in Trapani, owned by Salvatore Corrao.

Sfinci or, as we say, spinci
Doughnuts made with mashed potatoes or pumpkin, then rolled in sugar and cinnamon. Here is the proud Chef of Caffè Baby Luna in Trapani.

Torrone with pistachios