good ol fashion workout

By , January 31, 2008 2:35 pm

i called my contractor to ask if they could lacquer my newly tiled floor cos no matter how many times i mopped, they look dusty when dry. he said he’ll send someone round to clean it properly tomorrow. impatient  home loving that i am, i asked if i could do it myself. he suggested in a ohreallyYOUcleanthetiles? tone, that i could use white vinegar cos that’ll dissolve whatever’s making the tiles look dusty.

so i armed myself with a pail, dishrag, bottle of S&W vinegar (altho its taste is wasted on the floor) and a defiant attitude, then proceeded to scrub the tiles. one. by. one. for a good half hour. it’s like benchpressing my weight and it’s ALOT of bench presses you can do in half hour. could barely feel my arms when half the kitchen was done. i have a teeny kitchen but i also have weak arms :p

anyway, i took a break and took pictures as evidence of my hard work. i could definitely feel my hands then cos they were shaking for my attention(thank God for auto focus).

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so have u guessed the name of the workout already? it’s called housework.

oh and i really should’ve reverted with a ohreallyYoucancleanthetilesthen tone and said “see you tomorrow”

living in harmony

By , January 29, 2008 10:07 am

everytime i hit bloomberg.com or channelnewsasia.com, the ratio of bad news to good news is maybe a good 9:1. 

there’s the record breaking snowfall/winter temperatures/summer temperatures/floods/volcanic activity/<insert latest headline> on the weather front; the staggering drop in stock market indices/company share prices/profit forecast/<insert latest headline> on the business front.

there’s the culling of birds/chickens/cows on the outbreak of bird flu/mad cow disease/<insert latest headline> on the medical front. and then there’s also the refugees/racial dissention/religious differences on the social front. i’m not even including the accidents/deaths/murders/robberies.

how could anybody working in the newsroom not get chronic depression.

so while all of that is going on in the world, i’m sitting in my safe haven of a home, tapping on my keyboard. with my chocolate milk beside me (latest favourite), and counting my blessings for being born in singapore. how can you not love it here?  even our stray cats and dogs (minus the issue of their existence) live in harmony. i saw them on opposite sides of a carpark yesterday and they were going about doing their own thing.

harmony and security is so underrated.

counting the (de)merits

By , January 28, 2008 11:21 am

the kitchen is now officially out of bounds until after after we properly clear the choke in a something-impolite-to-put-on-a-food-blog pipe. it sounds very trivial, but the damage extends to having to tile my previously laminated kitchen so it’s going to take awhile *sigh… meantime, i’m blogging outside the house to prevent myself from inhaling (maybe imaginery) toxic fumes. 

on a happier note, i’m blogging outside the house with my new laptop! i did the transfers and installations over the weekend and it’s finally good to use! 🙂 you see, it’s also lighter (altho that shouldn’t matter cos i don’t carry it when using it)… and it’s got this nifty built-in flash card reader so it’s really convenient to upload pics (works the exact same way as my old usb connected reader but it just Looks/Feels more convenient) … it’s a great orange color and it’s erm.. smaller (which is not a plus technically speaking).. and it’s on windows vista (which i had dissed earlier citing another require-more-space operating system that works the same way) which is an upgrade and we do need to upgrade ourselves every so often in life, right?

hm… ok. i just like it cos it’s new can?

air flown fruits

By , January 24, 2008 3:23 pm

yay to a new laptop!! 🙂 now, if only there was a way to sync everything to it effortless (including only programs i want), i could be enjoying it instead of waiting for transfer cables and having to springclean the gadzillion files i’ve got 😛

on a positive note however, i found these interesting pics in my ‘misc’ file which brought back memories :

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dan and i had stared in disbelief when we saw these at meidi-ya, the japanese supermart beside clarke quay. when we asked why they were so costly, the supermarket attendant said it was cos they were air flown.

so for a few days after, dan kept trying to convince me that we could buy fruits from the neighbourhood market, toss them into the air a coupla times and then sell them as ‘air flown’ fruits too.

hurhur.

skin (s)

By , January 23, 2008 10:00 am

i never liked eating skin. there’s the bite off your fingernail variety which usually happens during the experimental growing up phase (but is not always confined there), and the more regular chicken/duck/fish skin.

my family strictly advocates ‘finish everything on your plate because children elsewhere are starving and you should be grateful you’ve got food’. so when i was young, i had to finish everything including, yes you guessed right, the skins. it’s actually a bonus when the skin is fried to a crisp. i like that. but steamed/broiled/boiled skins just taste sorta slimy. not so noticeable when you cut it to bits, wrap it in rice and swallow it whole.

during my teenage years when i learnt how to better argue, i cited health reasons (ie: my teachers say skin is fatty and unhealthy) to avoid eating poultry skin. with fish skin, i just insisted that it tastes weird and y’know, personal likes and dislikes were more permissible cos i was at that age. 

so imagine my surprise really, when i was having chicken rice with dan’s family, and saw dan’s (uber adorable) niece pick out the white skin in favor of the meat. she actually likes it!

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dan’s sister explained that it’s cos the skin tastes smooth and soft to her(interesting how slimy and eeky can be used so interchangeably from different perspectives haha) oh and i think i remember hearing that zoe tay loves chicken skin too.

man…. there’s alot of truth to ‘one man’s meat is another man’s poison’.

a visual feast Part 2

By , January 22, 2008 9:14 am

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i ticked the dishes i liked most 🙂 the sauce with the noodles especially. there was this other hokkien noodle/beehoon i tried which was so good i ordered another plate of (it was after that meal that i asked for help to remember to take pictures. and it’s not so embarrassing to do the photo taking in kl cos i am a ‘tourist’ afterall. all the time in sg? ok ok, we’ll take this up another post).

actually, i do know why the sauces taste so good. and i do know that it’s bad for me. but it’s really really hard to do something about it when my tastebuds are yelling for another bite and the body goes into autopilot – open mouth, shove food in.

here goes :  the food’s cooked with alot of ….. l. a. r. d. i’m trying to make it look like a different word by spacing them apart but it isn’t really working. oh well, i stand by ‘once in a while is fine’ and i’m not referring to pauses between bites. any coffeeshop(part 1)/restaurant(part 2) in KL serves most of the food i’ve put up so you’ll forgive me for not putting up an address 🙂

a visual feast Part 1

By , January 21, 2008 4:20 pm

i absolutely love hawker fare. it’s not just that hawker fare’s more affordable on a daily basis. it really is all about the variety. and i’m sure you’ve heard about KL’s hawker fare. two words : Must Have.

so with reminders from those around me (cos i asked for help there), the dishes managed to get photographed before i stuffed my face started on them 🙂

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it’s like local hawker fare cooked with a different sauce. so they all look familiar yet taste different. nice and more salty flavorful kinda different 🙂 oh oh when dan wanted the spinach noodles, i kept thinking it’s noodles with spinach (and thought it an awfully boring dish to order). i mean with wanton/chicken/char siew noodles, you expect the prefix to accompany the noodles, right? wrong. spinach noodles are noodles made WITH spinach in it. so it’s slightly (but not obviously, obviously from the pic) greenish. a tad hard but the sauce made it a different nice too 🙂

it’s so easy to forget how to eat moderately when faced with a feast. i think i’ll write the word in caps on the back of my hands the next trip up :p

coming up….!

By , January 20, 2008 9:50 am

pictures of KL food fare 🙂 uh huh, i’m away for the weekend and am stuffing my face because there’s too much food and too little time so… excuse me while i (continue to) stuff my face.

mushroom meringue

By , January 18, 2008 4:22 pm

here’s the original recipe. it calls for 1 cup of sugar but i used 3/4 (cos i remembered it being too sweet for my liking). it’s still a tad too sweet but that really is about personal preference. i’d suggest 3/4 cup still 😀

1/2 cup egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
3/4 cup white sugar (a halfway between 1/2 and 3/4’s good if you dont it too sweet)
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)
4 ounces chocolate confectioners’ coating (i use whatever chocolate’s at home)

1. Preheat oven to 110 Celcius.

2. Whip egg whites in a large bowl til foamy. Add cream of tartar, salt  and vanilla. Whip for another 3mins.

3. Gradually sprinkle the sugar into the egg white mixture as you whip it so it does not sink to the bottom. The mixture should look glossy, and the peaks, stiff and shiny :

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4. Put the egg white mixture into a piping bag. if you dont have one, use a ziploc/plastic bag and then cut a hole in a corner to pipe the mixture out. To make mushroom meringues, you’ll need to pipe the caps on one tray and the stems on another. (Tip: Damp your finger (not wet!) to flatten the top of the caps if you want to. Oh and it’s easier to assemble short stems.)

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5. (optional : sprinkle the caps with cocoa powder before putting in the oven) Put in the oven for 45mins or until the caps are dry enough to remove from the baking paper. Let it cool completely.

6. Melt chocolate in microwave. (tip: if you’re using regular milk chocolate (cadbury/van houten), add a tsp of milk when you’re melting it to make it easier to spread later)

7. Spread the chocolate on the bottom of the cap. choose a proportionate sized stem to go with the cap. Lightly press stem onto cap. it breaks quite easily so the operative word there is GENTLE. (tip :Poke a hold in the cap before you apply chocolate if you can’t seem to join the stems to the caps)

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All spoils (accidentally crushed caps/stems) are for immediate consumption but i’m sure you know that 🙂

They look most like mushrooms when you put them in a woven basket. but here’s how it eventually looks 🙂 have fun!

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gentle reminders.

By , January 15, 2008 3:20 pm

i must be on the road to recovery because my appetite has suddenly become this black hole. after a big lunch, i still felt like munching on something, so i did. bought myself some pork floss bread and peanut pancake.

some people think eating and walking is a bad habit. i dont think so but i’m sure it’s only because i do so. (people are almost always only against things they don’t do. what they Do do most times becomes a social norm to them).

back to my peanut pancake : as i was walking into a lift, i took my still warm peanut pancake out of its plastic bag and had a big bite. it’s chockfulla peanut the way i like it. i happily settled in the corner of the lift, with all my attention focused on the next bite i was going to take.

it happened without warning.

dan reached over and gently pinched my cheek. he looked at me a little funny. and then he gently pinched my arm.

i couldn’t believe what he just did. i know he knew what he did. he just put on a “i know you know but until i say i do, you don’t know for sure that i know” look. 

i glared at him somemore “you’re so sly. i can’t believe you did that!”

after a long pause as if trying to decide to own up or deny somemore, dan quickly said “it was just the lighting la… i thought you suddenly gained all this weight after ONE meal. cannot be right?

my appetite fled and the peanut pancake went straight back into the plastic bag.

the powers of suggestion (and vanity).

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