Use different coloured ribbons to tie up sets of single and double sheets so you know whether you are Arthur or Martha when you open the cupboard.
'Is this a book about making limoncello and doing the laundry?,' my Peter asked when he saw Limoncello and Linen Water on the kitchen table. 'Actually, it's only a few pages in the first chapter that are dedicated to the linen cupboard,' I replied. 'There are words of wisdom, Italian recipes and households hints too. The author says the book is "an ode to the matriarchal figures in [her] life".'
Limoncello and Linen Water is a beautifully written and presented, and very feminine book from cover to cover. Ms Kiros reminds us: 'Many years ago, a mother would teach her daughter how to keep a home using a doll's house as an example. The daughter would learn how to make sense of it all and keep order through the various rooms. ... To make a home that looks and smells and feels like a home ... How to make the most of what the seasons give by preserving things. That busting feeling through the days of the week with the various chores of washing, ironing and baking, and the harmony her know-how would bring'.
Chapters are divided into The Linen Cupboard, The Pantry, The Bread Oven, The Snack Box, The Vegetable Patch, The Pasta Pot, The Dining Room, The Sugar Bin and The Ice Box. The recipe selection is inspired, whimsical and delicious: basil liqueur, celery marmalade, omelette with blossoms; prawns with lardo and insalata di campo; (beef) fillet with rose salt; lemon biscuits with violets, coffee and cassia ice cream and cantuccini.
Limoncello and Linen Water by Tessa Kiros (Murdoch Books) $59.95 goes into the Christmas stocking for the special lady in your life. Thank you to Murdoch Books and Tessa Kiros for giving me the opportunity to review this title.
Note: Tessa Kiros is in Australlia for the World Chef Showcase at the Crave International Food Festival in Sydney on 6-7 October and will also talk at a literary lunch on 9 October at Stefano Manfredi's Balla.
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