Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Yuan Yang Steamboat at Geylang

Yah... we are super hungry after the whole day of activities. So what's better than a buffet? We decided to try out the stretch of steamboat stalls we seen while driving pass Geylang. It is quite an experience...

Not only are there stalls of steamboat... there were tables all set up at the walkway and even the back alleys... quite like HongKong. There were a few that serves Ma la steamboat, korean bbq steamboat and those with china kind dumplings. Be prepared to see hordes of PRC here as well.

We enjoyed ours though secretly hoping for more variety of meats. But the chilli was good!! And I especially like the pickled cucumber salad a lot... free flow of course! If only i can get my hands on the recipe for it.

Fun Filled Day at Sentosa

Jem had been playing with the Sentosa map for a week plus now.. He can even point out which beach he would want to go to.. thus, we grant him his wish to go for some digging at Palawan beach.

We settled at Islander Club which has beach bench laid out and the kids can play nearby. Mark and I happily slack while sipping on our beers.. a luxury we don't often have nowadays.

But dark clouds rolled in and soon it started to pour.. we managed to move into the pub with cushy cushions seat though and the kids continue to have fun snacking on potato wedges n chix wings. The food was quite a disappointment though being a tad too salty.

When the rain cease.. we took the beach tram down to Siloso beach where they get to watch the turtle feeding. Jem enjoys looking at them and made up his mind that vegetables are good after watching them being gobbled up by the hungry turtles... Jay seems to prefer the fishes more especially darting ones. It's always a relief for us to see the 2 Js enjoying marine life.. bringing the dream of us diving as a family nearer.

Brunch at Keppel Marina

There are times when we simply needed a place that can soothe our souls... and was one of the day. I had been feeling heavy from the recent calamities happening around us and needed some place to clear the gloom.

Jem wanted a day at the beach so we headed off to Sentosa.. halfway through, Mark though of a place to have the long brunch I wanted.. Keppel Marina. We have been there twice and all in the evenings.. This is the first time we go in the day.. and oh my, what a view!
I can't resist not having my usual rich chocolate cake and jem wants his chocolate muffin as usual. Mark wanted a sandwich with mango but it was not available and settled for this chicken pot pie instead.. It's heavenly!! yummilious!!
Did my soul gets healed? Of course! Standing in view of the sea, shiny white yachts and clear blue sky... it reminds me of the time when I'm all alone at Nice. There are always people ready to smile and bring on a smile. Even in the midst of tough time, there is always a reason to rejoice and smile for someone close... :)

Monday, May 26, 2008

A Haywired Day

This is the first day of Jem's long school holidays. It was an awful day trying to cope with 2 hyper kids, cleaning up the weekend's mess and maintain day to day routine. I was totally bushed at the end of the day to cook dinner so chose the easy way out.

I had leftover pasta sauce from making pizza recently so decide to finish up my remaining spagetti. Thankfully i had some extra white button mushrooms and enoki in the fridge as well. I love the subtle earth flavour of fresh white button mushrooms..

Spagetti with white button mushroom, enoki and minced pork

Pan fried some camembert cheese to go with meal as well but who knows I started to have gastric pains. In the end, its Mark that gobbled up the whole plate of it.

Pan fried Camembert with raspberries sauce

The kids had their ABC pasta with fishball, enoki and minced pork with chicken stock. Yeap.. its Stock Replenishment Day. I freeze stocks almost every fortnight nowaday. It's used to braise, make quick noodles for the kids or 'instant' steamboat base. This is the recipe i use :

Chicken Stock
1 chicken carcass
2 carrots
2 potatoes
2 tomatoes
1 big onion
1 celery (optional)
water to cover slightly above all ingredients

1) Boil the water
2) Rinse the chicken carcass with hot water
3) Add all ingredients and bring it to boil
4) Lower heat and simmer for 20mins or more
5) Skim off oil and leave to cool. Remove ingredients after cooled.
6) Store the soup in bags or containers suitable for freezing. Stock can last for up to 2 months in the freezer. If there's little amount left that can't fill a container, freeze it in ice cube tray. These little cubes are great for stir frying vegetable, bringing more flavours without needing to add salt.

**Note : do not add salt/seasoning before freezing. Season only when defroze for use. Actually the soup is flavourful ehough to skip the salt.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Spreading its Little Green Wings

How often do we zoom in life and ignore all the little miracles that's around us?

Ever since i started gardening, time seems to go real slow when i'm near my plants for the daily watering and pruning. I know I know... can hear you commenting about old age catching up.. blah blah blah. But one has to experience it to understand the sense of awe that Life is giving.

I love to plant from seeds. It gives the most sense of satisfaction to see little seedlings spring out from those seeds. Then the two leaves gives way to mature leaves to signify its graduation from a seedling to a proper plant. Then the thickening of the stem.. more branches... budding flowers... and hopefully fruits.

This pot consists of seeds from some calamansi i bought to go along with my chinchilok recently. I nearly gave up after weeks of no signs and wanted to use the soil for basil seeds instead. While waiting for a goood weather to do the planting... little green wings appeared. Mark jokingly says that they might be in time to decorate for next year CNY *roll eyes*

This is my tomato plant... growing very very slowly. I kept having to remind myself patience patience... i do hope it grows well.

This is a pot of chinese celery... the only pot that was not grown from seeds. It's not really growing well.. somehow i just don't have a knack for herbs. But i'm still trying to keep it alive with organic plant food bought from Far East Flora. I love chinese celery in my soup but Mark doesn't appreciate. Thus i hope to pluck from the pot rather to buy from the supermarket as I always have to throw away quite a fair bit.

I still have a pot of chilli padis at my corridor that I started from seeds as well. It has little buds on it now.. will make it a point to take photos should flower blooms.

I still have a packet of basil seeds untouch.. let's wait for a good day to sow "little miracles".

Whizzing Down the Path of Labrador Park

Yah... we finally bought our inline skates 2 weeks back. I attended lessons twice now but still lack the guts and confident to skate well. Not too sure whether age is a factor but in the midst of my wobbling, i'm still having great fun with my family.

Mark has mastered pushing the pram while blading to keep little Jay entertained. Though it still gives me the creeps to see 6 wheels rolling down the slopes with little control, i felt that it does works well to keep the family having fun together.

We bought Jem a kiddie scooter to roll along side with us as well. He had a fall and grazed his knee. Thank God it did not not stop him from stepping onto the scooter again

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Butterfly Prawns

It's been ages since i made these!!

Gina ! Xiu ! Rong ! If you are reading this post.. do you gals remember these 'little jewels'?? hehehehhe

I happened to have some breadcrumbs in the fridge that's meant for my camembert cheese and some miserable prawns from Giant. So i decided to make these for the kids to try out. Jem loves tempura prawns since young so he took a liking for these immediately. Jayden seems to like the crumbs and prawns individually on their own the way he had to pull them apart before biting them separately. Mark's verdict? Nice.. if only the prawns are bigger and juicier... argh!!

Flip Flop Flip Flop

Bought these at Metro Warehouse Sales for 7buck... little Jayden's still trying to get used to it. It's so cute to see him trying to shuffle through without having it slip off.

4th May ~ Sunday

Hahahah... I'm definitely behind in my posting but I'll try my best to catch up. We finally get our cdan's cards ready and here we are, trying out the swimming pool. It's definitely less taxing than bringing them to the one at Boon Lay which has the children's facilities. I'm more at ease to leave them with daddy while doing my laps as well... it is a wonderful place. We checked out the shower rooms and found heaters in the shower!! Cool!

This gonna be our hangout place on Sundays after church... with its swimming pools and bowling alleys not to mention comfortable lounge areas. It suits our low budget outings just fine..

Here's our boys after their swim.. engaging in a moment of sizzling passion??

Monday, May 5, 2008

3 May ~ Saturday

We had to wake up early to try out the new Mac's breakfast but it was quite a disappointment. Oh well, we had to do our grocery shopping before rushing for a party anyway.

After the party, we went down to Playground @ Big Splash to sign up for my blading classes. Oh my, long waiting list... gotta wait til mid/end May. I'm so anxious to start whizzing!!! Anyway, we gotten kites from the party earlier on so went to the beach to fly. So happy to finally get it up in the sky and happier when Jerome fly it on his own. It was hilarious the way he kept repeating,"cannot fly near the trees.."
Walk back to have dinner before rushing down to MPH Bookfair (we r always in a rush aren't we?) There was a Tamiya race going on. Yah... my boys were totally mersmerised by the remote cars whizzing by.
Thank goodness we managed to reach the fair only an hour before closing... within that hour we picked up 10 books... can't imagine if I have more time to go through the budget books. But i'm really really happy to find 2 books of Paulo!!!


Check this out!!! It's been ages since i made these...

It didn't turn out well this time round. The weather's real warm thus melting the pastry margarine faster than desired. Not to mention I had to leave the dough halfway thru to run down to pick dear Jem from the school bus.
It's still flaky, nicely layered but on the dry side and unevenly risen.
It was filled with tuna stired fried with shallots and seasoned with black pepper, tomato and chilli sauce... yum!