12: Food and Books 

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"One of the nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating."- Luciano Pavarotti

I've completed reading almost all of Jimmy Liao books. Starry starry night- that's his first book I chanced upon a few years ago. Jimmy is one of Taiwan's very popular illustrator and writer. Very reluctant to start reading his books because I know how realistic and melancholy the stories can go but I would like to look at how he illustrated those gorgeous drawings; quirky imaginative creatures. His books is filled with lively colours but the texts are haunting and a tad bit too sad. How ironic. And so I thought, they're good books and poetic most of the time, however the content is definitely inappropriate for young children. Still, I am mesmerized and admiring his every single drawings; the way he illustrated those perspective and captured the mood/ world he wish to picture.

Lately, I've moved on to continue this psychology book from Dr. Cialdini. Very well researched case studies on the human psyche; giving a good insight to the reasons why/ how people are persuaded to act. More of the social psychology behind compliance strategies are very well articulated. Now, he answered my question to why people comply with requests that sometimes make no sense. Most of the content in the book was familiar but he further examine the concepts deeper in the context of compliance and influence. In case you're wondering, no no, not the kind of book that taught you how to decipher the human mind. Haha!

Recently, I had this conversation with a group of psychology/ communication students, yes, we tend to have the misconception that psychologists are capable of reading minds. In actual fact, they're experts at understanding the human behaviour but is in no way means that they are able to read your mind (given the complexity of it).

Happy Easter day!

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11: It's something "Fishy" 

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Ingredients♥ Salmon fillet- season with salt/ black pepper/ one or 2 herbs/ alittle lemon 
juice/ grilled with butter or olive oil
Mashed Potatoes- Russet potatoes/ milk/ butter/ salt/ pepper 
Broccoli/ Carrots- Boiled with alittle salt 

Happy New Year!

Its a little late contemplating my resolution for the year but I ought to jot it down somewhere, not over here though. By that, its not going to be massive but keeping it simple. More outta life. :D One thing for sure, there will be a trip sometime in October, not sure of the destination but gonna start planning. I can't wait, wherever that may be!

I always want to make a salmon dish, so there you go! Ta-dah~ Presenting the first grilled fishy-dishy of the year. I realized Salmon cant go wrong with herbs, so just season with one or two herbs (+ black pepper and salt) in the pantry and you get to taste the wholesome sweetness of the fish. A simple, healthy and quickie recipie. 

YUM! This is really good! (:


10: Cat's Tongue Cookies

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Ingredients♥ Butter/ Icing sugar/ Egg white/ Vanilla essence/ Cake flour

09: Meringue Cookies

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Ingredients♥ Egg White/ Caster sugar/ Icing sugar/ Strawberry essence/ Lemon juice

With December 25th drawing near. Happy Holiday!

When I was much much younger, I used to request for a Christmas stocking so Santa could stuff me a gift at the turn of the holiday. So it was a real disappointment to learn that there was no Santa Claus. Those were moments as a kid.  

If you know me, I've always love Christmas :D..it gets so warm and fuzzy despite the weather getting cooler (even in Singapore). It marks the birth of Christ, the day when God had a son, and when everyone celebrates good spirit. Christmas just isn't Christmas unless you spend it with the love ones/ people who are close to the heart- family and friends included, a time of sharing and giving, listening to the Christmas carols, glittering lights of Christmas trees and have some logcake and turkey. It seems like every year is the same ritual. Its so true when they said that the only constant is change but funny how traditions are, they make you feel like at least something in the world doesn't change! (:

To you who are reading, a Berry Merry Christmas in advance!(:  May you have a truly blessed holiday. Sending out lots of love, hugs and cheer over this wonderful season. 


08: Osmanthus Flowers Jelly

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Ingredients♥ Konnyaku jelly powder/dried osmanthus flowers/Nata de coco  
(didn't get wolfberries in time; otherwise 2 tsp wolfberries soaked in water until puffy; drained)

Made this specially for Stephanie. She has been craving for this dessert for the longest time. *guilty* Nevertheless, so glad I made this just in time, before she went for her maternity leaves. Safe delivery Steph and looking forward to a healthy baby!(:

Side track a bit. Recently, a friend gave me a pot of Mozzie Buster. There's a piece of cultivation instruction/paper in the pot and it goes like this:-
-All the seeds provided by us are directly from their original places. They are precious.
-And all things with life are precious
-A sprouting plant is as delicate as a new born baby. If you decide to cultivate the plant, please take good care of it with your love

Oh woah. Well-said.This somehow reminded me of a note from J. Krishnamurti.
( J. Krishnamurti is regarded globally as one of the greatest thinkers and religious teachers of all time. He did not expound any philosophy or religion, but rather talked of the things that concern all of us in our everyday lives, of the problems of living in modern society with its violence and corruption. He explained with great precision the subtle workings of the human mind... )

" We never seem to have a feeling for all living things on the earth

It is odd that we have so little relationship with nature, with the insects and the leaping frog and the owl that hoots among the hills calling for its mate. We never seem to have a feeling for all living things on the earth. If we could establish a deep abiding relationship with nature we would never kill an animal for our appetite, we would never harm, vivisect, a monkey, a dog, a guinea pig for our benefit. We would find other ways to heal our wounds, heal our bodies. But the healing of the mind is something totally different. That healing gradually takes place if you are with nature, with that orange on the tree, and the blade of grass that pushes through the cement, and the hills covered, hidden, by the clouds. This is not sentiment or romantic imagination but a reality of a relationship with everything that lives and moves on the earth. Man has killed millions of whales and is still killing them. All that we derive from their slaughter can be had through other means. But apparently man loves to kill things, the fleeting deer, the marvelous gazelle and the great elephant. We love to kill each other. This killing of other human beings has never stopped throughout the history of man's life on this earth. If we could, and we must, establish a deep long abiding relationship with nature, with the actual trees, the bushes, the flowers, the grass and the fast moving clouds, then we would never slaughter another human being for any reason whatsoever.Organized murder is war, and though we demonstrate against a particular war, the nuclear, or any other kind of war, we have never demonstrated against war. We have never said that to kill another human being is the greatest sin on earth.

Krishnamurti on 25th February, 1983 "
(Good read :)

Alrighty, back to my Mozzie mozzie. Have googled further on how to take care of it. I need green fingers. Hopefully, it does blooms into flowers. :D



07: Gâteau au chocolat (ガトーショコラ)

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Ingredients♥ All-purpose flour/ unsalted butter/ unsweetened cocoa powder/ dark chocolate chips/ cold eggs/ granulated sugar/ whipping cream/ raspberries/ icing sugar

Ta-dah! Presenting Chocolate Gateau (Japanese keiki), also known as gâteau au chocolat (ガトーショコラ).
For those who like really dark, rich and dense texture, you would probably find this melt-in-your mouth chocolate cake divine.
A little disappointment as it was not the texture I was looking for as I adore cake with texture that are light, soft and moist. So I guess it really boils down to personal preference. Nevertheless, It was fun baking with YongLing-san!(:

By the way, Christmas is around the corner and among the close friends there will be gift exchange. So a friend asked me for my ideal gift. Couldn't give an answer at that juncture.
After some thought;- I hope for the restoration of lives to the victims of the recent disaster in Philippines. So I feel a meaningful gift to me this year is a donation (any amount) to Singapore Red Cross- Haiyan Relief 2013.

God bless.


06: Shepherd Pie/ All Day Breakfast

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Ingredients♥ wild mushrooms is love/ potatoes/ carrots/ broccoli/ hot dog/ egg/ tomatoes/ cucumbers/ salt, black pepper and butter to taste

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Ingredients♥ Potatoes/ butter/ salt/ ground black pepper/ cooking oil/ ground pork and chicken/ carrots in cubes/ mushrooms in slices/ chopped onion/ corn flour mixed with water

With the popularity of smartphones and digital cameras, everyone can easily be a photographer. It's like a whole new culture ingrained- to capture that moment and sharing them across all platforms (Instagram for eg.) with friends/followers alike.

I always find food difficult to photograph. Fail to use the right angle, composition and natural  light, the dish you're trying to snap might prolly lose its flavour; looking less appetizing. 

And so I feel Food Photography is an art form of its own and the little things in the picture can make a great difference. :D

Happy Sunday! ((:


05: Roasted Chicken and Vegetables

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Ingredients♥ chicken/ russet potatoes/ carrots/ zucchini/ cauliflower/ corn/ mushroom/ thyme/ rosemary/ bay leaf/ garlic cloves peeled/ olive oil/ butter/ lemon/ salt/ back pepper to taste

So Summer has arrived and for the students, classes will commence next week. To sum it up, have been really busy busy happy happy. Before i realized, we're already 3rd week into May. Amidst all the busyness, and as much as i like my current team, i do miss my ex-colleagues occasionally. Well, a lot actually. 

Can't wait for Fall to come when things will slow down a little. By then, there will be a lot of catching-up to do. :D