Thursday, October 22, 2009


The walnuts keep falling and we keep picking them up. It started with a few every morning about a month ago, now there are hundreds of them, crates and crates. We put them all out in the sun in the morning and carry them into the bottom of the tower to keep dry at night. If it rains they stay inside all day.

They are an important crop, I have tasted the ‘Vin de Noix’, a fortified wine aperitif, flavoured with walnuts, and know why they are prized. Not to mention the walnut oil, two kilos of shelled nuts gives one litre of the most wonderful tasting oil, beautiful on salads and just nuts. Walnuts on their own, with cheese, before a meal, after a meal. The village elders have a few each morning and swear that they are good for keeping an active memory. They look a little like a brain, so that is good enough for me.

The chickens love them and chase anyone who helps pick them up in case they find a broken one or inadvertently step and break a shell. If they see one being broken, they are there, ready to snatch whatever you have in your hand, discarding the shell and taking every last morsel.

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