Best Eateries In Rome

When you are in Rome, there is no doubt you will see a large number of places to eat. Most, however, are of mediocre quality and because they are geared to the tourist market could well make you raise at least one eyebrow when you get the bill. If you want to eat out in this beautiful city, ensure that you have taken out you travel insurance policy, because if you get it wrong it could mean stomach problems and a trip to the doctors.

If you want to know where a Roman would eat, then here are some trusted establishments that are not listed in any guidebooks.

Pasta- Oldest Restaurant in RomePhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Pasta by nickdawg2000

Get the ‘real deal at Da Enzo

Trattoria da EnzoPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Da Enzo by yukino

One of the city’s best kept secrets, so please don’t tell anyone because the locals wouldn’t thank you. Eat like a king in this genuine Italian trattoria that only uses local products. If you like wonderful food and a simple setting to eat it, then head for this place and eat 100% organic. If you like artichokes, prepare to discover heaven.

An elegant meal at the Capo Boi

Don’t make the error of thinking that eating like a Roman means you can’t find elegance. At this restaurant, you will be served the best fish in the city, and although it doesn’t come cheap, you are after all on holiday so live a little. The specialty here is raw fish, but save room for the entrees that are enormous and will not disappoint.

Pasta as it should be at La Carbonara

Campo Di Fiori // La Carbonara SignPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): La Carbonara by elonardo

This restaurant has been open since 1906, so it must be doing something right. If you enjoy eating homemade pasta, that is cooked like only an Italian can do, then head out to Monti and visit La Carbonara. The thing that will hit you instantly about this place is the generous size of the portions and the vibrant atmosphere. Homemade pasta like ravioli and lasagne are all prepared with fresh tomato, basil and goats cheese.

Roman pizza at its optimum at La Gatta Mangiona

Let’s face it, if you want to eat the best pizza then you should head for Naples, but if you twisted my arm, then I would take you to La Gatta Mangiona. Situated in the suburbs, you are not going to bump into many tourists here, so get ready to use some of your Italian phrases, because that’s the only way you will get served. This colourful and lively pizzeria does Neapolitan-style pizza, pasta dishes and excellent salads. If you want to try a pizza that bites back order the tuna, pesto and chilli, with a glass of Peroni.

PizzaPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Pizza by blackbeltjones

How to Stay Productive in the Office

These days it’s hard to find someone who doesn’t, at least during a portion of their week, work in an office environment. Offices are calm, quiet and cushy compared to other, more labour-intensive workplaces, however this excessive comfort can equally be the downfall of office-based companies, boredom and laziness taking over leaving bosses and employees similarly unhappy. There are some ways to keep boredom and procrastination at bay, however.

Spend Breaks Outside

CoffeePhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Coffee by duncan

One of the main problems with working in an office is that you’ll spend far too much time indoors. The same old surroundings, coupled with a distinct lack of fresh air, can really put a dent in your productivity, so when you have a break or lunch period, try and spend it outdoors. You’ll feel fresher, more awake and more productive as a result.

Eat Well

tea salad | teanyPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Salad by nchoz

If you’re under deadline and work pressure, it can be quite easy to throw in the towel and pug out on highly fattening, calorific foods, but such choices can easily put a dent in your working regimen. Sugary and fatty foods will only make you bloated and sluggish, two things that are not particularly conducive to improved productivity. Try sandwiches, salads, green teas or couscous instead- basically any food that is energy rich, calorie-lacking, and only partially dependent on bloating carbohydrates.

Play Mind Games!

Game Boy Micro, macro

Solitaire has long been a mainstay for bored office crowds, but there are some other games you can play during lunch breaks that’ll similarly give your brain a work out. Casinosagafans is a great gaming site that has a host of casino-themed games that you can play, but poker should be your first choice; the strategic tos and fros of the game will put your mind to work and might even earn you a little extra cash in the process!

Create Mental Deadlines

Rhombic Dodecareuleaux Calendar 2013

Projects need to be formulated, paperwork needs to be written, reports need to be drafted; every week you’ll likely receive a load of different tasks, and although you can be fine simply working through these tasks, if you have a lot on simply working through won’t cut the mustard. By setting yourself deadlines for different tasks you can maximise your time, massively boosting your productivity in the process. Plus, you’ll be less inclined to procrastinate if you’ve set yourself a mental deadline to complete a task in a certain time period.

Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Gameboy by coderkind/ Calendar by oschene

Must Try Food in Lanzarote

Tasting great cuisine is a part of anyone’s holidays and it’s something that everyone looks forward to. A trip to Bangkok is not complete without trying out Sticky Mango Rice or Pad Thai and a trip to Italy wouldn’t be complete with trying out the famous pizza and pasta and local desserts in various towns and cities.

If you’re currently planning a trip to Lanzarote and if you’re thinking of a list of great food to try then you’re in luck. We compiled a list of must try food in Lanzarote that you must not miss on your much awaited vacation. So before you book your flight to Lanzarote, check out our list of food that you should definitely try when you visit this beautiful island.

Papagayo
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Papagayo by djfrat

Papas Arrugadas

Papitas arrugásPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Papas Arrugadas by gemacamposhernando

Papas Arrugadas is the vital staple in every meal in Lanzarote. It’s basically wrinkled potatoes served with a tasty sauce made of garlic, olive oil, vinegar and generous helpings of herbs and spices.

Dorada, Vieja and Cherneand Other Seafood

Restaurante Almacen de la Sal - Playablanca - LanzarotePhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Seafood by kentwang

The most common fish that are served in various restaurants in Lanzarote include Dorada (sea bream), Vieja (parrot fish) and Cherne (sea bass). They come plentiful in the area and are cooked in a variety of ways. Lanzarote being surrounded by water also has a lot of tasty seafood dishes that you should try.

Gofio

Goatscheese, Figs and GofioPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Gofio by dennischnapp

Gofio is another staple food in Lanzarote made from toasted corn and maize flour. It’s used in a variety of ways like in bread making, desserts and also to thicken soups and stews.

Papas Crias

These are basically wild potatoes that grown on the rocky hillside of the island. It’s a prized delicacy in Lanzarote due to the richness of it’s flavors. It’s prepared in a variety of ways and you won’t have a hard time looking for a Papas crias dish anywhere in the island.

Papa arrugáPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Papas Arrugadas by carlosglezcabr

Aside from these four locally known food, you can also find tons of restaurants serving various international and fusion dishes. Your trip to Lanzarote will definitely not just be about the beatiful beaches but also about the great food that they offer.

4 Great Gambling-Themed Uses of Fondant

Dessert lovers come in all shapes and sizes, and the truth is, nobody can resist a freshly baked, succulent, moist cake or cupcake or what-have-you. If you’re one of the millions of people who now regularly hold poker nights at home and just so happen to be a talented home cook, your friends have probably come to expect the occasional homemade treat from you.

Want to make those homemade goodies extra special? Why not make them perfect for the occasion? With the help of some fondant, it’s easy to create custom decorations for every party or celebration. Here are some of the best uses of fondant for poker or bingo parties:

Birthday Cake

Planning a poker party? These delightfully simple set of poker cupcake toppers from TopCakeDecors are a great place to start. They’re completely edible and easy to pull off with some knifework.

Just a tad bit more complicated, chescreative’s own set of edible poker chips and dice involve more painting and careful positioning of fondant, but it’s actually not too hard considering you only use a few colors.

Don’t be ashamed – it’s alright to love bingo. In fact, bingo aggregate site Free Bingo Hunter has catalogued hundreds of online bingo sites in the UK alone, so the game must be pretty popular, right? If you’re going to play bingo with your friends, you’d best bake this great bingo cake for them. Bingo cards are some of the easiest designs to make.

And last but definitely not the least, the Better Baking Bible’s yummy triple chocolate peanut buttercream cupcakes with bingo toppers are sure to inspire. The only thing you might struggle with when making these toppers is how to draw those numbers on the cards and bingo balls, but they’re lovely to look at and sure to be the highlight of your party.

Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Birthday Cake by jurvetson/Poker Cake Toppers by TopCakeDecors/ Poker Cake by chescreative/Bingo Cupcakes by Better Baking Bible

Four Tips to Make the Most of Your Holidays Leftovers

Christmas and New Year are usually filled with delicious foods, overflowing drinks and some fun and laughter with the whole family. It’s the season wherein we spend a lot on gifts, decor and of course with food. Most often than not, we prepare more food than we can eat and they usually end up in the fridge. They’re usually forgotten until you notice them again and their next destination will usually be the trash. What a waste right?

Here’re some tips on how you can minimize this wastage on food during the holiday season:

Four Tips to Make the Most of Your Holidays LeftoversPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Christmas Leftovers by Kalleboo

Plan Your Meals (and have a backup plan too)

Plan the meals that you will serve during holidays and plan on what you could do with the leftovers (in case there’s any). Encourage your family to eat the ones that will easily spoil like the foods that have creamy sauce or tomato sauce.

Take Away Boxes

Before your guests leaves your home, prepare some foods that they can bring home so they wouldn’t have to prepare their dinner later. Put them in microwaveable boxes so it’ll be convenient and easy for you to prepare it.

Refrigerate Leftovers Right Away

To slow down spoilage, refrigerate your leftover foods right away while you write down a spin off menu for the following days where you could use your leftovers as ingredients.

Kid’s Lunch Box

Maybe you can make a sandwich from the leftover ham that you can then include in your kid’s lunchbox. The internet is full of free recipes that you can utilize for your leftover foods.

These are just some ideas on how you could make the most of your leftover food. Feel free to add more tips and suggestions.

Five Simple Benefits of Cooking Your Own Food

Are you a busy person who always eat out? How much is it costing you on a daily basis? Have you tried computing the total cost for a month? It costs a lot right? Have you ever thought of cooking and preparing your own meals? Most people especially those who are working in a corporate setting often thinks that it’s waste of time to prepare your own meals, but we think otherwise.

Here are five simple benefits of cooking your own food:

Plum Pasta SaladPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Plum Salad by JeremyBronson

Eat Healthier

If you cook your own food, you can choose your own ingredients, you can minimize salt and oil or use healhier alternatives. You can also choose to use fresher ingredients.

Customize the Flavor

You can add more spices if you want to. You can also minimize it to suit your taste. Cooking your own food gives you the upper hand with the flavors of your food.

Eat Smaller Portion

You can prepare smaller portion instead of finishing what was served to you.

Minimize Waste

If you don’t finish your food, you can put it in the fridge and save it for later thus minimizing wastage. You could also use your last meal as an ingredient to your new meals.

And of course, Save Money

If you prepare your own food, you would be able to save more money and use that money to build your savings or use it for other forms of investment.

These are just some of the basic advantages of preparing and coking your own food. Feel free to add your tips and suggestions on the comment section below.

Five Tips on How to Save Money on Groceries

Do you spend a lot of money on groceries and want to cut back on spending without compromising your basic needs. There are plenty of ways on how you could minimize spending and still buy the things that you and your family need..

Here are a few tips on how to save money on groceries:

Five Tips on How to Save Money on GroceriesPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Grocery Cart by GabrielaP93

Use Coupons

Coupons are available in a lot of countries and it’s very popular especially in USA. You could save a lot of money by using coupons which bears a variety of discounts for a variety of items. You could get coupons in magazines, newspapers, brochures and online.

Buy Large Quantities

Buying large quantities is like buying ‘wholesale’ in a smaller scale. Instead of buying a 100ml shampoo, check out the price of the 1L, how about the 2L? Try to compute then on how much it would cost per 100ml. Did you see the savings. Make sure though that you would be able to consume the products that you’re buying in large quantities before the expiry date.

Check the Clearance Items

Every now and then, supermarkets and grocery stores bundle together some items to encourage better sales. Take advantage of this opportunity and buy bundled items. Compare the prices of the individual items if they’re not bundled and you’ll notice that you’ll be able to save more when you buy the bundled items.

Buy Before the Store Closes

Some items like breads and other highly perishable food items goes on sale before the store closes. More often than not, they sell it with more than 50% discount to encourage sales. Visit your supermarkets and grocery stores an hour or two before it closes and you’ll surely get great deals on some food items.

Stick With Your Budget and Buy Only What You Need

And of course, the best tip to save money on groceries is always the simplest one. Stick with your budget and buy only what you need. Supermarkets and groceries often have enticing deals that are very hard to resist, make sure to ignore these deals if it doesn’t fit your budget and if you’re not going to use it anyway.

Do you have additional tips and suggestions? Feel free to share them in the comment section below.

How to Stay Fit and Healthy on a Budget

A lot of people equate being fit by frequent visits to gym and engaging your body in a workout program. It’s a good idea if you have money to spend for it but if you don’t have money to pay the gym or if you’d rather use that money to spend for something else that you feel more important then worry not as there are plenty of other ways that can help keep yourself fit and healthy.

Here are a few tips on how you could stay fit and healthy on a budget:

Jogger im OlympiaparkPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Jogging by dustpuppy

Eat Healthier and In Smaller Portions

Avoid eating fatty foods so you wouldn’t have to worry on how to burn those fats later. Focus on eating fruits, vegetables and lean meat. There are many websites online that offers free recipes for healthy meals. If you want to eat cakes, ice creams and other foods that have high calories then just eat smaller portion. Depriving yourself of a particular food will just lead to craving thus will encourage you to eat more.

Drink Plenty of Water

Depending where you are, drinking water can be free. But in some places where tap water is not potable, then it’s still cheaper than sodas and other kind of drinks. Drink plenty of water to help your body stay hydrated and to help flush out the toxins out of our body. Drinking water also helps in keeping our skin good looking.

Walk, Walk and Walk (and Jog)

Instead of taking an elevator or escalator to the second or third floor then just use the stairs. If the place that you intend to go to is just a couple of blocks away then walk instead of taking a cab. Walking will definitely help you lose some of those unwanted fats. If you also have time every weekend or every morning, then take a short run around your village.

Watch Online Exercise Routines

There are plenty of websites that offer video tutorials on a variety of fitness routines. Take advantage of this and invite your family to join you as well. This can be a great way to save money on gym fes and at the same time to spend fun and quality moments with your family.

Sleep Well

Rest is a crucial part of staying healthy as we give our own body some time to recuperate from all the stress that we went through for the day. Invest a few bucks in making your bedroom conducive to rest and relaxation. There are plenty of tips that you can find online on how to DIY in case you need to do some repairs or overhaul the entire design of your bedroom.

Do you have additional tips and suggestions? Feel free to share it in the comment section below.

Gastronomic Finds Around Dubai and Elsewhere in the UAE!

The United Arab Emirates is certainly not lacking in the food department, and with so much incredible cuisine, it’s no surprise that many of the cities in the country, in particular Dubai, have become internationally renowned hotbeds of luxury dining, with an abundance of top quality restaurants serving up the very best in a whole host of
different gastronomical delights.

Far East Asian and Modern European cuisine are all the rage in Dubai’s top dining sector, with the best restaurants in Dubai offering unique twists on European food as we know it. Across the city, Indian, Middle Eastern, French, Mediterranean and Chinese delights can be enjoyed in some of the most highly rated and established restaurants, and with over 5,000 establishments all battling it out to gain the respect and custom of locals and visitors, you can be sure that you are getting nothing but the best at the most highly regarded of the bunch.

Gastronomic Finds Around DubaiPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Food by rainrannu

So just where should you start in Dubai to get a dining experience like no other? If budget is no issue and you are ready to splash out, you are in for quite a treat. Dubai certainly knows how to cater for those with a bit of spare cash, and their most high end restaurants are winners not just in the kitchen department but also when it comes to service, views and overall experience.

Just take Al Muntaha, for example, a 27th floor restaurant in the Burj Al Arab hotel complex that exudes opulence and class on first entrance. While it’s original and imaginative carte du jour is the primary reason people flock to the restaurant, its breathtaking, panoramic views of Dubai are what makes it that extra bit special, adding the icing to an already substantial cake, with in house entertainment adding yet another layer. House specialities include tasty offerings that give a new meaning to the word unique, including Ceviche of Tasmanian Salmon in Soy Marination, Grain Fed Chicken Breast Australian Yabbies and Hand Cut Wagyu Beef Tartare. Diners can also get a taste of other Al Muntaha specials, such as their Kaviari Farm Caviar.

Gastronomic Finds Around DubaiPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Food by rainrannu

Across the rest of the city and in a slightly lower price range are some of the world’s best Indian restaurants, including another hotel based jaunt, Armani/Amal, located within the Armani hotel in downtown Dubai. Amal has received several awards for its exceptional gastronomy and haute Indian cuisine, and the stunning interior and views over the city’s downtown neighbourhood only add to an experience already guaranteed to be unforgettable. Indego by Vineet is another popular choice, serving high calibre Indian food in glamorous surroundings in
Dubai’s Grosvenor House. With Michelin-starred Chef Vineet Bhatia guiding the kitchen, it’s no wonder Indego by Vineet has caused such a commotion amongst food enthusiasts and visitors to the city, winning two Time Out Dubai awards in 2014.

Afternoon tea at Le Meridien in DubaiPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Cakes by ciamabue

Dubai isn’t all about food, though, and has plenty on offer for tourists, with hours of entertainment to be had in between meals. As well as the famous must sees like The Dubai Fountain and its many extravagant shopping malls, the dazzling, aesthetically awe inspiring Gold Souk, where you can haggle to buy gold – already notoriously cheap in Dubai and the traditional, largely unspoilt Bastakia Quarter are also well worth seeking out when you fancy a break from man made islands, high rise buildings and the hustle and bustle of the busy city.

Editor’s Note: This post is in collaboration with Yadig.

Five Easy Steps in Eating Cheap and Healthy Food

Food sometimes eat a huge chunk of our budget especially if we frequently go to restaurants or eat at fastfood joints. There are ways on how to eat tasty and healthy food without busting your budget. Here are five easy steps in eating cheap and healthy food on the road:

1. Eat Local Food – Local foods are cheap, tasty and gives you a perspective about the culture of the place that you go to. If you go where the locals usually eat, then chances are you wouldn’t pay a lot of money for your meals.

2. Buy Fruits in the Market – Buying directly from the market is the cheapest way to eat cheaply. Eating fruits everyday will help you supplement your body’s daily vitamins and nutrients needs.

3. Eat at the Local Markets – Local markets and supermarkets don’t only sell raw foods but also cooked foods. Go to their cooked food section and you’ll find a lot of appetizing option that will surely fit your budget.

4. Cut Down on Oil – Some cuisines are heavily loaded with oil. Choose dishes that are cooked with less oil or at least cooked in healthier oils such as Canola.

5. Drink Plenty of Water or Juice Instead of Softdrinks – Drinking plenty of water during your travels will help keep yourself well-hydrated and drinking water is healthier and cheaper than drinking softdrinks.

Five Easy Steps in Eating Cheap and Healthy FoodPhoto Credits (Flickr CC): Street Food by LWY

Feel free to share additional tips and recommendations.