Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Borlotti and Bananas

To the Mercato this morning to pick up produce for dinner then on to one of my favourite shops in Testaccio, Emporio delle Spezie. I usually make a list before leaving home of all the herbs and spices that are running low, then purchase them here. They also stock a smoked salt from Norway that I have not seen anywhere else.

On our way back to the apartment we cross Piazza Testaccio. This lovely square has been transformed since the old market moved to its new home and the restored Lomabardi Fountain of the Amphorae relocated here.

After dropping our purchases we head out to Piramide station to renew our weekly travel cards and take the metro to Annibaliano. We are here to visit the Mausoleum of Santa Costanza and the church of St Agnes but first, coffee.
Bar Giungiu is the cutest little cafe, all pastels and cupcakes with a super nice barista.

Loitering over our coffee was our first mistake, as you will soon see. Loitering far too long in the tranquil garden of St Agnes was our second.
This tiny peaceful garden has a wall of plaques simply saying 'thank you' for answered prayers (a similar wall appears in a scene in 'Roman Holiday').

There is a small shrine dedicated to the Virgin Mary.......

..... and a wall decoration that reminds us of Andy Goldsworthy's work

It is now almost noon when both the Mausoleum & church close so we have left ourselves five minutes to see the glorious mosaics of Santa Costanza and no time left at all to visit St Agnes. Oh well, back on the list for another trip.

Lunch today is, unusually for us, not Roman or even Italian but Mexican. La Taqueria kept popping up on Instagram as a cheerful sort of place that we might like to visit and it didn't disappoint.
You can't help but smile when you see a ceiling dripping with bananas.

Food is good & margaritas excellent. Even better is that it is a short walk to Bologna station for the metro back to Testaccio.
The plan is to spend the afternoon relaxing in the garden but first we must pod beans & prepare chicory.

Aperitivo hour this evening is spent at Tram Depot, a favourite spot of ours. on Via Marmorata.

Then back to the apartment for dinner of sausages cooked on the BBQ, borlotti beans and chicory with garlic & chilli.

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