My Trip to Italy: Rome Part 2

We really crammed it all in to our last two days. We spent it running around trying to take it all in. We had only set aside one day for the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill but found ourselves moving from seat to seat when we finally made it to the Roman Forum. There is definitely a reason that the tickets are valid for two days! The queues to enter the Colosseum stretched for miles despite the fact that it was autumn (which we never felt) so we were really glad that we bought tickets in advance. Honestly I must admit that I was a little underwhelmed by the Colosseum but it might have just been my feet talking. It was really hard to grasp the historical value of the site when the sheer size of it overwhelmed us.

I really enjoyed the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill more although all the walking had definitely taken its toll. We were completely knackered by the end of the day.

On our last day in Rome we just did a little shopping on Via dei Condotti (hello H&M!) and explored a few of the side streets where we found some really authentic looking Italian alleys. This was surprisingly also the first time I noticed a real Vespa. We also returned to the Pantheon so that we could enter during daylight. For our final evening in Rome we went to bridge before ending our evening with some gelato and wine at this cute little restaurant and bar that had amazing live music.

I couldn’t believe how time had flown and that it was already time to move on to our next stop. Rome, you romantic, you really managed to seduce me with your opera on the piazzas, great pizzas, even better gelato and beautiful architecture. I can’t wait until we meet again. La Dolce Vita!

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My Trip to Italy: Rome Part 1

It has already been a week and half since our return from Italy and I still haven’t managed to work my way through all our photos. I’ve decided to split our trip into four posts to give you a fair sense of what our trip was like. We spent our first three days in the Eternal City, Roma. These images take me right back to the streets of Rome and all the sweet memories it holds. Opera voices filling the air, rose sellers all around and the distinct smell of wine.

We arrived around midday on the first day of our ten day journey and were completely exhausted! We only managed to walk around our neighbourhood and rushed to greet the Colosseum before taking a nap. We ended our first day with a long walk to the Spanish steps (we stayed in an apartment close to the Colosseum) and also enjoyed our first, and arguably best, gelato along the way.

On our second day we headed to the Villa Borghese gardens and were sad to find that we couldn’t enter the museum without having pre-booked online (keep that in mind if you do plan to visit). The gardens were by no means a disappointing consolation prize as there is so much to see! It is also the place where we got engaged so I might be biased! If you’re looking for a seriously romantic spot you can’t miss the pond.

We spent the entire day there and on our way back to apartment we stopped at the Pantheon. The atmosphere in the evenings was electric as the temperature was slightly more bearable than during the day.

I wish we had a step-counter as we walked our feet numb in the Vatican Museum. Viewing the Sisteen Chapel has been one of my dreams ever since I learnt about in school and it did not disappoint! The only fault (aside from the distance covered) is that every room preceding and following the Sisteem Chapel was equally as impressive.

The Vatican Museums also offered a lot with regards to beautiful gardens, endless amounts of amazing art, sculptures and even a few rooms dedicated to Etruscan and Ancient Egyptian artefacts.

We already felt dead on our feet by the time we headed to St Peter’s Basilica but  I simply had to see Michelangelo’s Pieta. It was so beautiful to behold but exceedingly difficult to capture on camera thanks to its thick layer of protective glass. The complete scale and amount of detail inside and out was absolutely amazing and I still can’t believe we saw it all. Apparently you can even climb the dome, which we were sad to learn of after we returned. Now we have a good excuse to return!

P.S. Some of these beautiful pictures were snapped by my talented fiance. You can check his Instagram account here for more images.

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Caramel Gelato

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This rich, creamy custard based frozen dessert makes the perfect summer time dessert. It’s best served once it starts melting. The flavour will be masked if it served too cold.

Ingredients:

  • 60 g sugar
  • 80 ml cream
  • 350 ml milk
  • 20 ml English Toffee Cape Velvet
  • 3 egg yolks

100_5646Method:

  1. In a thick bottomed saucepan, melt 45 g of sugar over medium heat. As soon as it becomes a medium golden colour, remove from the heat and stir in the cream. Place the saucepan back on the heat until the caramel remelts.
  2. Bring the milk to boiling point before pouring it into the caramel.
  3. Cream the eggs yolks with the remaining sugar in a large bowl.
  4. Slowly pour the caramel mixture into the creamed egg yolks whilst beating continuously.
  5. Pour the custard back into the saucepan and cook, stirring, on low heat  for about 2 min or until it becomes thick enough to cover the back of a spoon. Be careful not to bring the custard to the boil as it will curdle.
  6. Remove from the heat and stir in the liqueur.
  7. Let cool before placing in an ice cream machine or alternatively place in the freezer and beat every half hour with electric beater until frozen. This breaks up any ice crystals and gives a better texture, essentially what a ice cream maker does.

Serves 4

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