Saturday, 25 June 2011

blue moon at stargal’s…

2 weeks ago, it was my turn to have a blue moon… actually, it was sweet sheila and yakking yvette’s blue moon, but they thought it’ll be more comfortable to have it at my place. so the 3 of us shared this “blue moon session”.

DSC07296 it’s steamboat again, since it’s the easiest to prepare and requires almost 0 cooking skills! “almost” coz u still need to know HOW to prepare the raw stuff :P

DSC07300sempat cam-whoring even while eating. see that little blue japanese bowl on the table there? it contained a “special sauce” that i made using garlic, cili padi, coriander and soy sauce. not to brag, but it was a hit! :P

DSC07301nice girl natalie and joyous josephine…

DSC07303lovely lily and stargal…

DSC07309for desserts, i brought out the chocolate liqueurs that my ex-colleague bought for me from her trip to langkawi, that i shipped over (resulting in a few getting dented). what better way to enjoy these than with a bunch of good company, right? besides, they’re nearing their expiry dates and i dun wanna be stuffing my face with all these chocs so as not to waste them!

DSC07316 actually the “real” dessert that night was supposed to be ice-cream (that pink stuff there) but a few of my guests have not seen these chocolate liqueurs before. in fact, i think only nice girl natalie has ever tasted them.

DSC07314so it was clear who took centre stage that night…

anyway, at nearly every blue moon or makan session, we’ll come away with some funny remarks/phrase that we’ll joke and laugh, quote and re-quote after. here are 2 from our previous sessions:

"i'm shy" at chinese steamboat buffet:
joyous josephine: stargal, finish up this last piece!
me: dun wan lar. i'm shy!
joyous josephine and everyone else: =_='''

"we don't care" at korean restaurant:
smiling rachel: eh, u all scoop out the rice into your bowl ar? aiyo, i'm eating it straight from the claypot. so embarrassing...
nice girl natalie: it's ok, we don't care... just eat!

and at this latest blue moon, we had one more…

"built for comfort" at blue moon at stargal's:
me: aiyo, so full! we'll never become slim at the rate we're going!
lovely lily: it's ok, darling. we're built for comfort, not for speed!

kitchen goddess in training…

this is just something frivolous that i bought from daiso… :P

P1080876what i wear when i’m cooking… ;)

not that i cook that very often, but hey, it makes me happy to be cooking in a cute red japanese-style apron, even if it’s just a simple weekend lunch!

the note on my front door…

our staff accommodation had another round of pest control the other day, so i left my usual note on my front door. then when i came home from work, i saw that there were some scribbling at the corner of my note.

P1080881 note on my door…

at first i thought one of my colleagues are making fun of my again, but upon closer inspection, i realized that it’s from the pest controllers.

P1080882“good sanitation of all area but only… need clean behind at fridge and washing machine”

hello, did they actually look into my kitchen and see the way my fridge and washing machine are arranged?

P1080884 the cracks between the fridge and the wall on the right, the build in cabinet on the left and the floor can’t even fit my mop. how to clean lar??? and the fridge is so big that they can’t possibly expect me to move the fridge out from that space every week when i mop…

P1080883 same goes for my washing machine… got space meh??

but at least they commented on the cleanliness of my place! hehe… :P

Saturday, 11 June 2011

mamak in sandland!

hehe… saw this shop at al karama after our indonesian dinner sometime last month, while on our way to catch the taxi home.

P1080776“malaysian fast food destination. kdai makanan malaysia mamak” they have abc and rojak!!!

dunno how authentic it is, coz they even spelled “kedai” wrongly. too bad we were full from our dinner. if not, i’d like to give this shop a try. maybe i can go again. but then again, it’s quite far and out of the way, so maybe not.

me and my gang members…

i’ve formed a gang here recently. or rather, a few of my colleagues and i have formed a gang recently. actually, most of us don’t have much in common. yeah sure, some of us love books… some of us are chinese… some of us speak malay… some of us are from the same departments… some of us even have a few overlapping similarities to the common grounds as mentioned earlier, but that’s not the reason our gang was formed. the one and only reason for the existence of our gang is that whenever we get together, we’re always talking about food! so we’ve called ourselves the makan-makan gang! :D

every beginning of the month or so, when we get our salaries, we’ll always think of places to go have a good meal. so far, we’ve been to:

P1080620chinese steamboat buffet…

P1080646korean food…

P1080774indonesian food… this is mee soto, by the way.

other than going out for meals, we’ve also started inviting each other over to our place for some home-cooked makan, especially now that the weather is getting too hot for us to venture outside.

P1080640joyous josephine, an indonesian chinese and nice girl natalie, a filipino are from the hr department. they were very kind to invite me over to nice girl natalie’s place for some home-cooked dinner when they heard that i’m just gonna go home and cook myself some mee cup.

DSC07263home-made steamboat, also at nice girl natalie’s place.

actually, all of us claim that we seldom cook, only cooking “once in a blue moon”. so every time we get an invitation to someone’s place for home-cooked meal, we’ll joke that there’s a blue moon that day. hence the “blue moon” has turned into something like a code for us, which means that someone has decided to cook on a certain day. so it’s not uncommon to hear us saying, “the moon at nice girl natalie’s place is going to be blue this thursday!”, or “so, where and when is the next blue moon going to appear?”, or “your turn to have a blue moon, huh?” etc.

anyway, our gang consists of:

DSC07285 yours truly, of course! :P

P1080617 the 2 gals from hr as mentioned…

P1080618 sweet sheila, my artist from china and smiling rachel from finance, an indonesian chinese

DSC07268yakking yvette from sales, another chinese national

P1080651and finally, the latest member to join us, lovely lily from events, a fijian (she’s the one sitting opposite me). sorry for the blur photo, but i can’t find a good one with a clear shot of lovely lily in it.

looking forward to the next makan, either eating out or a “blue moon”! :D


since giving away all my plants when i had to move here, i’ve wanted to have some plants in my new apartment for quite some time, but kept putting it off… then when i was out shopping for groceries at carefour today, i saw that they have some really nice peace lilies on sale there. so i bought a small pot.

DSC_0554 i’ve always liked this plant…

last week, i was at daiso (yes, again! hehe…) and i bought a pastel coloured tin bucket, a cute lil tin watering can and some plants deco.

DSC_0556 always have a thing for cute lil watering can

DSC_0555don’t they look so sweet together? :)

i’ve read that the peace lily is a somewhat easy to care for indoor plant, so hopefully mine will grow healthily!

Monday, 6 June 2011

porridge with conpoy and century egg…

as mentioned yesterday, i was thinking of cooking porridge with conpoy, so that was what i had for dinner last night.

P1080822 also added in a century egg, as well as some kei zhi and had it with some pickled szechuan vege.

the porridge tasted a bit bland, so i added in some sesame oil at the end. sedap! :)

Saturday, 4 June 2011

lotus root soup…

been craving for lotus root soup for quite some time now and when i saw some frozen ones being sold at the chinese groceries store, i decided to cook some this weekend.

P1080815 my lunch for today…

it’s kinda oily because i boiled it with some chicken wings (with skin). chicken wings are really cheap here, coz most of the people here like to buy skinned chicken meat. so since they can’t remove the skin of the wings, most people won’t wanna buy the wings. normally i get about 4 wings for only dhs 2 (rm 1.70).

other than chicken wings, i also threw in some wolfberries (kei zhi) and red dates. i also bought a small pack of mini chinese dried scallops or conpoy from the chinese groceries store. so i threw some of that in too…

P1080819 mini conpoy for dhs 25 (rm 20.80)

actually i threw in all the ingredients into my phillips rice cooker yesterday night, set the timer for it to cook for 3 hours, finishing at 1pm and then keep warm thereafter. ah, i simply love my rice cooker, which i bought when i moved into my one bedroom apartment back in kl last year. it has artificial intelligence! just pray that it don’t decide to take over my apartment one day! lol!

anyway, i’d love to throw in some peanuts in the soup, but i discovered the pack of peanuts i bought from lulu’s hypermarket some weeks ago was infested with worms! yucks! lucky thing i stopped to scrutinize it, rather than throwing them in blindy!

still, the soup was delish! and i threw in some “transparent noodles” when i’m ready to eat, for a more filling lunch. i don’t know what’s the actual name of that noodles – you can see it in the 1st picture above. it’s broad like kue-teow, but will become transparent when cooked. i think it’s made from yam or something. the menu at xiaowei yang steamboat labeled it as “mongolian noodles”, but sweet sheila said that’s not their real name. she mentioned something else, but i totally forgot.

i had 2 big bowls of this soup (1 with the yam noodles and one without), and there’s still one more bowl in the pot for later. now i’m thinking of cooking some porridge with dried scallops for dinner. ah… satisfying weekend meal! :D

Thursday, 2 June 2011

getting used...

it's been nearly 8 months since i first step foot in sandland... after the first month or so, time seems to be whooshing by! it's summer now... today is particularly humid, with an average high of 44 deg c and average low of 33 deg c. and i just read in a magazine that when the air is humid, the weather will feel hotter than when compared to dry air on a higher temperature. the weather has been getting gradually hotter since a month back, so most of us are staying indoors more and more. ah, the blessings of centralised air-conditioning! :D

anyway, after so many months here, i've gotten used to:

1. people calling me m'am or madam
i used to feel so weird when my own colleagues (even those of higher levels than me!) call me that. but now, i don't  even think about it, coz i realized that it's their culture and something that comes naturally to them. much like us calling people "miss" or "mister".

2. inserting a tiny bit of arabic into my daily conversations

at the post office
clerk: madam, you have no small change?
me: mafi (arabic: don't have)
clerk: i also mafi...
me: sho hada (arabic: what is this?)
clerk: *hands me my receipt*
me: khalas (arabic: done/finish)?
clerk: khalas, madam
me: shukran (arabic: thank you)
clerk: afwan (arabic: welcome)

p/s: i also know some arabic words to scold people! but let's not go into that, ok? :P

without a valid driving license nor a car here, i dare say i've gotten pretty good at taking the bus and metro here. actually not having to drive is a good thing also. not only do i save a lot on petrol money, i also don't have to worry about parking when i go to some place unfamiliar. i don't even have to worry about my car getting dirty and needing a wash! :D

4. not worrying about food
with my meals taken care of, i no longer have to fan (canto: crack my head) about what to have for breakfast/lunch/dinner. just traipse down to the staff cafe and take what is served. of course, the food are all repetitive and tends to get "not very appetizing" after a while (mostly indian and arabic food, and not very tasty one at that!), but at least they're free and we don't have to think of what to eat everyday. however, i do try to cook something on my own during weekends, coz really getting fed up with the food.

5. filipino sales girls mistaking me as their kabayan (filipino: fellow countryman)
can't blame them actually, since i don't really look like a chinese myself, thanks to my maternal grandfather. so now i'll just do one of these:
a. pretend i don't hear them when they're calling out to me
b. say, "sorry?" when they're speaking directly to me
c. say, "hindi ako pinay" (filipino: i'm not a filipino) when the fancy struck me, just for the fun of it

6. not speaking much malay
back at home, we're so used to inserting malay words into our daily conversations, that sometimes we don't think twice about it. but here, i have to be careful not to do that, even though i still speak malay with a few of my malaysian and indonesian colleagues. but i've also taught my colleagues some malay words, such as makan (malay: eat). also, they've started using the lah, even when not talking to me! :D

ok lar, that all i can think of for now. good weekend to everyone! :)