The Roman Holiday

Autumn and spring are great for mini weekend breaks. Especially in Europe.
Last weekend, by an impulse we found ourselves in the “open air museum” of Europe, Roma.

The big question in Rome is: “How many cones of ice creams can you squeeze into 48 hrs?”
The answer: Don’t count.
Here’s my rundown for 48 hrs in Rome

Aperativo: Hotel de Russie at Piazza del Popolo
Hotel: Leon’s Place
Ice cream: Giolitti www.giolitti.it Via Uffici del Vicario , 40, Roma.
• Pizza: Bafetto http://www.pizzeriabaffetto.it/ Via del governo vecchio, 114 00186 - Roma (RM). Recommended to us by our sister, Nur. Thank you!
Pasta: Restaurant Matricianella, Via del Leone 2/4.
Walking: Trastevere – Santa Maria in Trastevere
Best almond cookies: Tozzetti from the bakery Il Fornaio, Via dei Baullari 5/7

• Spiritual: The Vatican – St Peters Basilica and the Square
• Coffee: Tazzo d’oro, Via degli Orfani, 84
• History and Architecture: Pantheon. The world's largest unreinforced concrete dome.
In search of Bernini: Piazza del Navona
Lunch break: Campo de Fiori – Forno campo di fiori for pizza.
Audrey Hepburn style: Bocca del Verita

Ps: A special thanks to my husband for coming up with the title of this particular post!


Project: Baby Rooms

Baby rooms are a source of fun and inspiration for parents.
It is a preparation must on the check list if they are expecting.
Here is a run-down of some decorative images that caught my eye... Hope you will enjoy them.

(Please note that most of the images are taken from  http://www.ohdeedoh.com/)



Eat, Pray, Love the movie - I'll take the Bali scenes please !

There is always a hype about certain films. Hence the rise of expectations. If you're not after cinematography and just want to empty your mind, this is a good film.
The Bali scenes were amazing... the flying over of the rice fields. The cliffs by the sea... It brought back memories of our honeymoon.

Hence, here is my quick guide to Bali; for those who have not yet been...

Jimbaran Bay: This bay which is superby lit during nighttime has a line up of seafood restaurants cooking lots of fish and sea creatures with coconut shells to shed the fire.
After dinner you can pop by to Four Seasons for a drink.
Jimbaran Bay restaurants have their special way of grilling the food-by coating it with a special sauce composed of oyster sauce, tomato paste, onion paste, chilli and lots of spices!

Rice Fields: I think the pictures say it all... Take a bike ride to get a closer look:)

Ubud: This bohemian art town filled with small shops, temples, sculptures along the way will make you gasp. There is the local market filled with not so genuine sculptures, household goods and spices that is alot of fun too.

-Besakih Temple (Mother Temple): Over a thousand years old, Besakih Temple is known as the "Mother Temple of Bali" Perched on the slopes of Mount Agung, at a lofty 1,000 meters (3,000 feet) Besakih is the biggest and holiest of all the Balinese temples. Named after the Dragon God believed to inhabit the mountain, it's said to be the only temple where a Hindu of any caste can worship.Eighteen separate sanctuaries belonging to different regencies and caste groups surround the three main temples dedicated to Shiva, Brahma and Vishnu. To the Balinese, visiting the temple sanctuaries is a special pilgrimage.

-Uluwatu Temple: Bali's most spectacular temples located high on a cliff top at the edge of a plateau 250 feet above the waves of the Indian Ocean.

-Goa Gajah (Elephant Cave): Dating back to 11th Century.
Two areas of Bali are safe and fun for hotels. Ubud and the Nusa Dua region.
The Nusa Dua region has a closed circuit security and an enterance gate of its own after the bombing attacks in Bali.
In Nusa Dua I would recommend the Westin Hotel and the St Regis Bali Resort.
In Ubud, it has to be the Amandari Resort. It was top rated in the book "1000 places to see before you die", I will leave you with some pictures to imagine why... 
The Famous Fire Dancers          Fire Dancers IINusa Dua Beaches St Regis Bali ResortThe Amandari Resort


Red, Burgundy,Purple: Berry Cobblers and more...

September is always a wink to the rest of autumn. Come October, slowly the season for warm shawls, teas, snuggling ups and of course cinema season begins.
The dried green leaves of the last days of summer slowly give in to turning all shades of yellow, red and burgundy.

With this month we begin to turn indoors, in my case to new inspirations, paintings, new recipes from food blogs and new expectations. For some January is the mark of a new year; for me (maybe as a long lasting habit of school starting in September) it has always been autumn.

Here is a recipe I found from one of the food blogs recommended by a recent Goop.com post, hope you will enjoy making and eating it!

Stone Fruit and Berry Cobbler, adapted from williams-sonoma.com

Serves 8.

1 cup blackberries or blueberries

5 pieces of stone fruit — i.e. peaches or nectarines — sliced

1 tsp. lemon juice

1/2 cup plus 3 Tbs. granulated sugar

2 Tbs. cornstarch

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. ground ginger

For the cobbler topping:

2 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

1/2 cup firmly packed golden brown sugar

2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking soda

6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 egg

3/4 cup heavy cream


Preheat an oven to 375°F. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

In a bowl, combine the berries, peaches or nectarines, lemon juice, the 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the cornstarch and cinnamon and toss to coat the fruit evenly. Pour the berry mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading it evenly.

Stir together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Scatter the butter pieces over the top and, using a fork, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and cream. Slowly pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture, stirring and tossing with a fork until the topping mixture holds together.

Using a soup spoon, place dollops of the topping evenly over the berries, leaving a 1-inch border uncovered around the edge of the dish. Sprinkle the 3 Tbs. granulated sugar over the top. Place the dish on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the cobbler until the top is golden and the berry filling is bubbling, about 35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.