Armchair Traveler ~ Cookbooks ~ Irish

Over the years I have bought cookbooks, including French, Italian and Irish. The other day when looking through one of the books, it dawned on me that they are fabulous sources for Armchair Travel.

A cookbook can immediately transport you to a faraway destination. A good cookbook of ethnic foods will have not only marvelous photos of the various dishes but also photos of the country. You can mentally journey to the country or area as you prepare a special dish. 

My memories of Ireland include very good seafood dinners, Irish Mist, marvelous entertainment and great fun. As a child, my Irish grandmother would make the most fantastic Plum Pudding for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It is a memory that I cherish. 

These books captures the food and scenery of Ireland quite spectacularly.\

 

Hint: When you travel, check out not only history books of where you are visiting but also cookbooks. They are a marvelous reminder of your journeys or can take you on journeys that you have yet to take. And you can have great fun preparing the meals …

Bon folláin!! (Bon Appetit in Irish) …

Enjoy being being an armchair traveler. Pick a country or city — learn a few words of the language, fix a dinner or have a party with that country’s cuisine. Go to your library to get a foreign movie or cd’s with that country’s music.  

Most important, have fun and be creative as you “journey” to a favorite spot … even if for now, it is a dream.

Savor your journeys… real and imagined.  

Armchair Traveler ~ Book: Rome, Then and Now

On a rainy day, what’s better than browsing a beautiful photo book of a place you have visited or want to visit?  I have visited Rome many times and always loved it. Below are photos, thoughts about “Rome, Then and Now” by Federica D’Orazio.

The book was published in 2004. Many of the vintage photos have dates (ranging from 1860’s to 1944) and the contrast is amazing: Rome has retained its ancient feel while being a vibrant modern city. The Eternal City is a marvelous blend of ancient and new, which you feel as you walk about this gorgeous city. Each photo has historical information so that the reader can fully appreciate the beauty of Rome. 

Let’s begin at the Baths of Caracalla, where you can attend operas or concerts during the summer. I did attend an opera and highly recommend it. We ate after the performance  at a local neighborhood ristorante where we saw many of the performers. Great fun. 

Rome is a marvelous city to walk about and get lost, even with a map (which happened to me several times). Think serendipity … you will eventually reach your destination, but if time is not a factor, enjoy the side streets …. you never know where they will lead. Wander about the Piazza Barberini (at the foot of the Via Veneto), walk to the Trevi Fountain (on a side street) … check out the Spanish Steps.

Tour ancient Rome visiting the Colosseum and Roman Forum, take the time to walk about;; imagine what it must have been like during Caesar’s time … 

Other marvelous photos show the changes to the Piazza St. Peter, Piazza del Popolo, and Piazza Navona, where I have marvelous memories of Tre Scalini Ristorante.

As you wander about Rome, either for real or as an armchair traveler, here are some additional sights … 

Browse thru your photo books or visit your library for ideas. Pick a special destination. The photos will have you reminiscing about previous journeys and/or planning a new adventure. After browsing this splendid book, what better way to continue my Italian armchair travel than preparing an Italian dinner (a favorite: spaghetti carbonara with Orvieto wine).  Viva Roma! 

Savor your journeys, near or far, real or imagined.