Chamomile, Blueberry and Almond Smoothie and the Imperial Fora of Rome

Every weekend, ever since my son could utter some communicable words of some sort when he was small, he would always demand that we sit together as a family in the kitchen for our breakfast.  He has a rightful point, that sensitive kid of ours and we do follow him without fail.  Even if it means that breakfasts are synonymous to kitchen pandemoniums, we are there to serve his and his sister's demands requests. After running around the kitchen preparing what-have-yous, my husband and I finally do get to sit down and eat only after both of them are on to their last bites and when they bid us goodbye.  That's our weekend family breakfast together  - on their last bite and our first.

We start our mornings with "democratic breakfasts".  No one decides for the other what he or she is eating.  It's the only main meal of the day when the kids are allowed to choose freely what to eat  and I  have to say that their choices are rather impressive and  healthier than  mine.   My daughter chooses water over any juice or my son would always have toasts with honey and a cup of hot tea.  Me, I cannot drink water first thing in the morning nor eat toasts with honey because they bore my taste buds. 

I need to have strong flavors and perhaps a little sugar shock to wake me up.  Jams, juice, tea, coffee, biscuits, tea or smoothies are my thing.  My choices are an embarrassment compared to my kids' in the morning.  However colorful the smoothies are or even if they are loaded with berries that they both love, they shake their heads no and walk away.  Sigh.  So smoothies are enjoyed by me and my husband and drank in companionable silence in the kitchen. 

Remember the Chamomile, Strawberry and Quinoa Smoothie I made last year?  Well, that particular smoothie raked in a lot of traffic, pins and other good things so I thought that it's high time I make another one with the combination of blueberries and almonds with the base of almond milk and chamomile tea.  Like its sister smoothie, this one came out really, really well.  If you liked the other one, you have to try this one too! 

Now, let's scoot over to the Imperial Fora of RomeIt's the part in between the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia.  Left and right, the road is completely full of old Roman ruins and since every Sunday morning (I don't know if it's all-year round) the road is closed to traffic, it's a magnificent experience to walk on that road.  Sometimes, we take the kids biking there or take a passeggiata (a stroll) and enjoy the ancient Roman architecture.  It's one of my favorite areas in Rome without a doubt.

The Fori Imperiali (Imperial Fora) is a series of fora or public squares constructed over a period of one and a half centuries between 46 B.C. and 113 A.D.  They served as the center of politics, religion and economy for the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire.

The first forum constructed was the Forum of Caesar built by Caesar himself and finished by Augustus which was inaugurated in 46 B.C. (Picture above with the 3 columns.)  It was built to commemorate his great power.

Other fora constructed over time were the Forum of Trajan adjacent to Trajan's Market (pictures above), Forum of Augustus, Forum of Nerva or the Transitional Forum (picture below) and the Temple of Peace.

The second forum constructed was the Forum of Augustus in 2 B.C.  It is believed to have been built to avenge the death of Caesar by Augustus, thus he dedicated the forum's temple to Mars Ultor or Mars the Avenger.

In 75 A.D., Emperor Vespasian built the Temple of Peace (picture below with the steps), otherwise known as the Forum of Vespasian.  Because it didn't have any civil functionality, it was never classified as a real forum therefore it only remained as the Temple of Peace until the late empire.

The Forum of Nerva (picture above) which is also known as the Transitional Forum was built as a way to connect two forums together.  It was built by Domitian but since it was inaugurated after Domitian's assassination, his successor, Nerva, named it after himself.

Started by Domitian and resumed by Trajan between 112 and 113 A.D., the largest and greatest of all forums was the Forum of Trajan which was built after the conquest of Dacia (now Romania).

If you want to learn more about the Imperial Fora, please click on this link that will take you to Wikipedia or this link that should take you to A View on Cities where I got all these information about the Imperial Fora.

I hope you enjoyed this post.   Have a wonderful week!

Chamomile, Blueberry and Almond Smoothie

Makes 1 glass
  • 1 cup almond milk (or regular milk)
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 1 tablespoon dried chamomile flowers (or 1 teabag) 
  • 1 tablespoon ground almonds
  • 1/2 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • honey (if almond milk is unsweetened)
  1. Steep the chamomile flowers in 1/2 cup hot water for about 5 minutes.   Strain the flowers if you don't want to include them in the smoothie.  If you want to include them for a more intense flavor, just leave them.  If instead, you are using a teabag, remove and discard.  Refrigerate until it cools down.
  2. Put the almond milk, cold chamomile tea, ground almonds & blueberries in a blender and blend until smooth.  
  3. Sweeten with honey if needed.