Sunday, 3 January 2010

Cinnamon bun

Happy New Year! Nothing much to do today so I might as well update the blog with some more food pics. Will treat this blog as a library of all the food I attempted.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Macaron inspired recipe

Today I thought of making macaron after reading a lot about it on the web so I googled the recipe for it and realised that I did not I have the almond for the recipe. Too lazy to go shop for it, I decided to go freestyle again by replacing the almond with sunflower seeds. Recipe also requires icing sugar but I didn't have that also. Anyway, my 'sunflower-caron' was a totally different recipe altogether. I basically just use the concept and created my own biscuit. Probably the first of its kind in the world. Anyway, I made a chocolate sunflower macaron with banana choc fillings. The result was pretty impressive. A nice crunch on the outside but very light and fluffy in the inside. Since I have never tasted a macaron I can't benchmark what the texture should be. Will definitely try the real McCoy when we visit Paris/ France one day.

I made about 7 for my first batch and left it to cool on a plate. It was an exciting EPL weekend, so I went to the room to check some of the football results. Chelsea was leading 1-0 after Frank Lampard's penalty. I was pretty please with the overall result. When I went back to the kitchen, I saw only 1 macaron left. I thought Steph kept it in a container so when I look at her, she gave me one of those guilty look. I knew something was wrong - yes she has eaten the 'missing' macarons. She said it was very good and she couldn't stop munching. I swear I was only away for less than 10 minutes. :)

- Adrian

Sunday, 25 October 2009

What a fatty weekend

This weekend has been cooking, baking, cooking and more cooking, so much time spent in the kitchen, oven being used countless times, steamer, washing, and of course Eating. On Saturday we made fried popiah with fillings of shrimps, chicken meat, dried scallops, leeks, carrots for lunch to go together with spicy glass noddles. The popiah was absolutely superb! The shrimps and scallops really added a nice aromatic flavour to the popiah. The glass noodles was a mixture of fish sauce, cajun pepper, balsamic vinegar, sugar and chilli flakes. It was topped with toasted peanuts.

As for dinner, we settle for some easy Thai food, noodles in tomyam soup. Dessert was raspberry cheese cake and appple strudel which we bought from supermarket.

Next morning, Adrian made vegetables bun for breakfast ("chai pau"). Basically these are the same fillings which we used for the popiah. The chai pau really made me miss Msia. Thereafter, Adrian made lamb burger for lunch. It was his first time making Lamburger, so good. Have it with some cheese on, horseradish sauce, pickles, jalapeno peppers.. it's better than those served in the restaurant, reallly. Seriously good!!

Friday, 16 October 2009

Moules Frites

Moules & Frites aka Mussels with fries- Had that last night and it was delicious. The first time we had this dish was in Nimes, France. This apparently is a common way of eating them in Belgium, Netherlands and France.
Well, I cooked my mussels with butter, leek, ShaoXing wine, garlic and cream cheese. Yummy!


Monday, 12 October 2009

Roti canai with dal curry

You can't beat a good hearty breakfast like roti canai. Full of calories and yumminess to start your day on the right note :) Accompanied the lovely roti with teh tarik (using English tea mixed with condensed milk). Yummy!

ps: I didn't make those roti canai because I was too lazy. Bought this from the local supermarket, frozen and they call it Pratha in the UK. I made the dal though.


Nasi lemak with beef+chicken rendang

I probably don't know what Malaysia's national dish is but nasi lemak is probably one of the potential candidate for that spot. Strangely enough, I've never attempted to make nasi lemak before. Just never had the craving or the request for it. So yesterday, I finally did it. Made my first rendang daging and ayam - very time consuming dish. Plate it up with a side of ikan bilis, peanuts, telur mata kerbau (translated literally as eye of buffalo egg aka sunny side up) and cucumber. Too bad we didn't make any sambal or curry to go with it but it was pretty nice on its own. In terms of calorie count, each of our serving is probably around 1000 calorie due to the santan in the rice and the rendang but well worth it. I did try to run it off in the evening but I think I only manage to run for 15 mins before I ran out of breath. I'm so unfit at the moment. Didn't help that for dinner, I cooked rissoto with chorizo which was another calorie rich dish. For dessert we had Steph's home made tiramisu and my Banana Nutella Bread. Happy Days!


Thursday, 8 October 2009

Pounds devaluation - pros and cons

For all those family and friends who hasn't visited us in the last 2 years, I think it is probably a good time to do it now with the pound being so weak. Branded stuff like LV and Pradas are probably 20% - 30% cheaper. If you buy enough of it, it might even pay for the cost of your plane ticket here. AirAsia X has just announced the rights to land in Paris as well. Good news all around for Malaysians who plan to visit this part of the world. As for us, it is just the other way around because, pound devaluing is an indirect pay cut for me. Basically the decline in the sterling is importing inflation into this country. All imported stuff is costing a lot more and travelling around Europe is painful now since it is 20% more expensive now compared to a few years ago. Pound and Euro is almost at parity now! Sterling is expected to remain weak until end 2010 so please come visit us when it is cheap to do so. Hope to see some mates and family soon.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Mr. Clarkson disses Proton AGAIN

The man (Jeremy Clarkson from Top Gear) who famously destroyed Proton's reputation in the UK has done it again in his latest article on BMW 135i M Sport convertible. I think somebody from Proton should just spend a little bit of money to bribe (ps: people with moral high ground should not live in Malaysia because bribing is a way of life) Jeremy to say good things about Proton or just don't say anything at all. It is better than spending a disgusting amount of money on F1 to promote our national car.

Excerpt from the article
"I’ve never been able to put my finger on quite why I don’t like cars made by Proton and so on. But now I do. They are not joyous. They are built purely to shore up an emerging nation’s balance of trade, and you will never find any joy in anything where every single part has come from the lowest bidder. "

Original article from here.

Unfortunately there are talks that Malaysia/Proton is joining the whole F1 racing fiesta with their very own Lotus powered car next year. I'm proud and worried at the same time because I read somewhere that everything will be made in Malaysia and staffed by Malaysian crew. Seriously, who are we kidding? Money in F1 can't buy success and if Team Malaysia fails miserably, it will be an even worst publicity for Malaysia, especially Proton and even Lotus.

- Adrian

Yummy 'Nai Wong' Bun

Last weekend we went down to London for Dim Sum with Steph's cousin. Steph's cousin is leaving London and going back to Singapore after 3.5 years here so we thought it will be a good idea to have a farewell lunch and at the same time satisfy Steph's craving for Dim Sum. Too bad I'm no Dim Sum chef so we will have to let the real chefs do the cooking this time. Well, as usual when you go for Dim Sum, you will order the standard Char Siew Bao, Har Gao, Cheong Fun and etc. A conversation came up on Custard Bun aka Nai Wong Bao which Steph recalls was introduced to her when she was working in Singapore. So I told myself that I will attempt to make that for her when I have the time. Well, I attempted it...........and here are the results in pictures. I didn't attempt to make a steamed version this time because I wanted to try the baked version. Turned out pretty nice but the filling wasn't gooey. Probably too much egg and flour this time.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Willen Park @ Milton Keynes

It was a lovely weekend of sunshine. As usual, when the weather is good, we spend our time outside! "Life is too short to be wasted indoor" Adrian's belief . Sometimes (not all the time) I do hope that the weather will not be as good, so that I can stay indoor and chill. "If you have nowhere to go, no point wasting time outside" Stephenie's belief.

We went to Milton Keynes on Saturday, often abbreviated as MK is a new town developed to ease congestion in London. We've been to MK a couple of times since it is quite near our town, just under 30mins drive. It has a massive shopping complex and I to walk the whole complex, you'll probably need the whole day. The town also has an indoor ski, rock climbing, indoor skydiving facilities, and the list goes on. Definitely a more happening town compared to Luton.

This time around, we went to Willen park to take some pictures. We've been to the park a few times already but have not cover the whole place coz it's massive. They have a huge lake at the centre of the park which is a popular spot for water activities such as cable skiing, fishing, wind surfing, canoeing.

One of the main attraction is the Peace Pagoda. Taken care of by the monks and nuns of the Nipponzan, it is the 1st peace pagoda to be built in Europe. The 1st Peace Pagoda was built in Hiroshima after the 2nd World War. Set on the edge of the beautiful and peaceful Willen Lake, there is a spectacular view all around the stupa. A thousand cherry and cedar trees have been planted on the surrounding hill all around the stupa as a mark of remembrance to the victims of all wars. Next to the Peace Pagoda, you have the Japanese Shrine.

Lion at the Peace Pagoda
Granite sculpture
Pampas Grass

Stone arrangements Oh, and the exciting bit of the journey was... we saw lotsa blackberries! Cant resist plucking them, and in the end we have about half a sandwich bag filled with blackberries to bring home. Yummy!Fat spider
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