Monday, 14 November 2011

Dear you...

It's been ... close to four months since you went away...

I can't say I don't think of you... I do... slowly, it doesn't hurt as much to talk or think about you.

I've been busy...

Pole-dancing is very fun to learn, and challenging, too... I like it. I'm now at the Intermediate One stage, learning to go upside down. I am not going upside down anytime soon, but the instructor said to keep positive. 

The balcony's filled with more plants than before... most are thriving, I'm having problems with one tomato plant, but I'm doing something about it. I've harvested a grand total of two blueberries, which were sweet and juicy. You would have liked it. I've plucked quite a few cherry tomatoes, which you would not have liked. 

I've started to do some HMRs, which means more money on the side, which is always good. 

I'll have to let you know that you were a good stress reliever, just to look at you made me happy. I miss you...  


Thursday, 14 July 2011

Little Critter Sick Again

I felt a lump under Bluey's chin. The vet will come tomorrow morning to have a look at him and take him to her surgery. 


Hope for the best. 


Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Tuesday Dinner

Was too lazy to go to the city to get groceries.

I looked into the drawer of dried goods... it is laden with stuff... now what could I cook tonight?

The snap-lock bag of split yellow peas stared back at me, beseeching me to cook them up before they get infested by moths. 

And tonight's dinner is dhal.

Dhal is probably the one of simplest and most satisfying food to cook and eat. Perfect for a cold winter's night. :)


Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Little Critter's First Trip to the Vet

Bluey's at the vet now. Apparently he has an abcess in his right cheek. Could be due to his teeth. He's spent the night at the vet's, due to get the abcess cleaned out at noon.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

On This Day

This year I celebrate my birthday with my family and KT.

I was woken up at midnight to the sound of people singing "Happy Birthday". It took me a while to register in my sleep-fogged mind that they were wishing ME a happy birthday. 

I must have looked like a stunned mullet. :)

My expression has been digitally immortalised.

The cake? Coffee swiss roll. 

C gave me a headband decorated with peacock feathers; I've wanted that for a while. 

Dinner tonight? Hot pot prepared at home. 

My birthday the way I like it.


Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Banana Bread

At this moment, the sweet scent of banana bread permeates the air. There is another 20 minutes to go before I check on it.

Rising up nicely

I sit at KT's computer typing this entry whilst waiting for the bread to be cooked. It is a sunny day, with a slightly cool autumn breeze. 

The smell of good food makes me happy. 

I found this recipe on Christie's fig&cherry blog, and was attracted by the lovely photos of the finished banana bread. Lots and lots of nuts? That is right up my alley.

125g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 very ripe bananas
1/2 packed cup brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cloves
1 and 1/2 cups of plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
Two handfuls of pecans, toasted and roughly chopped


  1. Pre-heat oven at 160°C fan-forced. Grease then line a loaf tin with baking paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the melted butter, mashed bananas, sugar, egg, vanilla extract, cinnamon and cloves. Mix to combine.
  3. Gradually sift in the flour, baking powder, and salt. In between adding in the flour, add the chopped pecans. 
  4. Bake in the oven for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until a skewer inserted leaves a few crumbs.
  5. Remove from tin and cool on a wire rack. 

Missing a tiny slice from the left corner. :) 

I have taken the bread out of the oven. It is very, very dense. I have cut a slice and slathered it with Harmonie Organic Butter (I happened to use the same brand as Christie). It is dense, moist, crunchy with nuts, and surprisingly, just nicely sweet. :) 

I have to restrain myself from having a second slice. 

Mmm, I am indeed happy. :)


Much Ado About Chickens Roaming Free

X came down with a sore throat on Thursday morning; she has since not fully recovered. 

I have been cooking congee almost every dinner since Thursday.

Twice I have cooked chicken congee, using different brands of free-range whole chicken.

Before I go any further, I would like to stress that I do not endorse any brand, I only state my opinion.  

On the first occasion, I used Red Lea free-range whole chicken to cook the congee. I did not add anything else to the congee other than a few cloves of garlic and salt.
Verdict: KT, X, and I found the chicken to be "sweet"-tasting.

On the second occasion,  I used Macro (Woolworth's brand) free-range whole chicken. I added Astragalus membranaceous (bei qi / huang qi) slices.
Verdict: the chicken tastes "sweet", but not as sweet as compared to that of Red Lea's.

I found Red-Lea to be sweeter-tasting, but due to the fact I added different aromatics to each batch of congee, it may have altered the taste slightly. The take-home message is, free-range chickens taste better than non-free-range chickens. :) 


Thursday, 24 March 2011



That she may be free from pain and suffering...

That she may be at peace...

That she may find salvation.


Thursday, 17 March 2011

X's scarf

Scarf motif shown top left corner. 

The day before X and I were to leave for Sydney (this was during the CNY trip back home), we were at Sunway Pyramid window-shopping whilst waiting for our father to pick us up after a karaoke session. X wanted to get a scarf for herself; after much talk, I promised her I would knit her a scarf by April. 

She decided on a pattern, I went about knitting it. My knitting skills are horrendous. After much picking, unravelling, and countless mistakes, I have managed to produce half a decent-looking scarf. At least X likes it. 

I bought the yarn Lily Sugar 'n Cream in Wine (100% cotton, use 4.5mm knitting needles) from The Granny Square in Newtown. The fern lace swatch is from the Hamlyn How to Knit book.

How to knit the scarf:

Cast on 31 sts.

The pattern is repeated over 16 rows.

Row 1 and every alternate row. (WS). P.

Row 2 K3, *K2tog, yf, K1, yf, sl 1, K1, psso, K5, repeat from * ending last repeat with K3 instead of K5.

Row 4 K2, *K2tog, (K1 yf) twice, K1, sl 1, K1, psso, K3, repeat from * ending last repeat with K2.

Row 6 K1 *K2tog, K2, yf, K1, yf, K2, sl 1, K1, psso, K1, repeat from *

Row 8 K2tog, *K3, yf, K1, yf, K3, sl 1, K2 tog, psso, repeat from * to last 9 sts, K3, yf, K1, yf, K3, sl 1, K1, psso.

Row 10 K1, *yf, sl 1, K1, psso, K5, K2tog, yf, K1, repeat from *.

Row 12 K1, *yf, K1, sl 1, K1, psso, K3, K2tog, K1, yf, K1, repeat from *.

Row 14 K1, *yf, K2, sl 1, K1, psso, K1, K2tog, K2, yf, K1, repeat from *.

Row 16 K1, *yf, K3, sl 1, K2tog, psso, K3, yf, K1, repeat from *. 


Wednesday, 26 January 2011


Lately I've been a bit emotional.

The bedroom's too quiet to be in on my own. I'm used to walking in and seeing my sisters sprawled on the bed, either asleep, or on the laptop. I'm used to being by myself in the living room, the sofa being my favourite hangout. I spent most of yesterday evening watching Family Guy on my own. 

I don't miss the things I've never had, but I do miss the things I've had.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Pizza for Dinner

Four cheese and sage pizza - Gruyère, Cheddar, Gorgonzola dolce latte, Mozzarella

Four cheese and sage pizza fresh from the oven - salami (sopressa) and mozzarella pizza in the making

Sunday night we had pizza. Sunday night we had pizza we made. We bought a 33cm pizza stone for the occasion. It was a successful first attempt; very, very satisfying to make as well as to eat. We used recipes from the Gourmet Traveller, with embellishments. :P 

The pizza dough was surprisingly easy to make, 1 quantity of pizza dough yields four 33cm pizzas (we like the crust to be thin and crisp) which was plenty for 4. 

The ingredients for each recipe were for 1 quantity of pizza dough, but we made half-quantity for each recipe, and pretty much overloaded the base with topping. :) 

The oven was set at 230°C fan-forced. The pizza stone should be pre-heated so that the crust is crisp. 

Pizza dough
(Adapted from the Gourmet Traveller)

15g yeast
400g strong plain flour / '00' flour
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1. To activate the yeast, combine yeast with 100mL of lukewarm water in a small heat-proof bowl. 
    Stir to get an even mixture, then stir in 2 tablespoons of flour. Cover and stand in a warm place 
    for 30 minutes or until mixture is foamy.
2. Place remaining flour into a large bowl, create a well in the centre, add in yeast mixture, olive oil, 
    a pinch of sea salt, and 140mL of water. Mix until combined. Knead until dough is smooth and 
    elastic (about 5 minutes). Divide dough into four, and place onto an oiled oven tray.  
    Brush dough with olive oil, cover and stand in a warm place until doubled in size (45 minutes - 1 

For the four-cheese pizza, we used Gruyère (coarsely grated), Cheddar (coarsely grated), Gorgonzola dolce latte (crumbled), and Mozzarella (thinly sliced). Roll out on a lightly floured surface one portion of the pizza dough. Scatter the cheeses evenly onto the base, making sure to leave a little margin. Top with sage leaves. Bake on the pizza stone for 10 minutes or until golden. Drizzle with garlic-infused olive oil and serve immediately. 

For the salami and mozzarella pizza, we used sopressa (roughly torn) and Mozzarella (thinly sliced). The sauce was made by frying up some chopped up garlic and onion, adding in passata and blended red peppers, season slightly with sea salt (not too much, as the salami can be quite salty), then simmer until it becomes thick (10-12 minutes), stir constantly. Remove from heat and let cool. Roll out on a lightly floured surface one portion of the pizza dough. Spread tomato mixture evenly onto the base, making sure to leave a little margin. Top with cherry tomato slices, sopressa, and mozzarella. Bake on the pizza stone for 6-8 minutes or until golden. Drizzle with garlic and oregano oil and serve immediately. 
For garlic and oregano oil, cook oil and garlic in a small saucepan over medium heat until garlic is golden (3-4 minutes), add oregano, remove from heat, season to taste and set aside.


Sunday, 9 January 2011

New Year Revelation

I went to a friend's birthday party at Hugo's Lounge, Kings Cross. I realise that I love my alcohol; had a Corona Extra, followed by an espresso martini (thanks to the bartender). Surprisingly, I hold alcohol quite well, too, considering that I don't drink much. :) 

We were served good pizza, too... the prawn pizza was so good that I over-indulged. :P It gave me the idea of making pizza for dinner... mmm...

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