Saturday, November 08, 2008

Results of Karen's Latest Affair with the Oven...

Saintly Carrot Walnut Cake... made Sinful with Cream Cheese Frosting Perfumed with Pure Vanilla...
Chocolate Moist Cake... Slathered with Rich Chocolate Ganache... Death by Chocolate...

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Lunch at Majestic Restaurant, New Majestic Hotel, Singapore

Please do not let these poor quality pictures fool you (it's from my phone camera which I hardly use ever, so settings a bit kaput). I left my camera at home. Bummer! This restaurant is simply amazing. SIMPLY AMAZING! No frills yet superbly done! Highly recommended!

Checout this quaint and chic hotel and also its bar (try it if you are looking for something new than the usual Raffles Long Bar).

Its a stone's throw away from Outram Park MRT station. Taxis can be quite hard to get in this area.

Majestic Restaurant

Strawberries, mango, grapes and pink rose apple lent a fruity sweet and mildly tart bouquet to teh lovely duck - all crispy on the outside yet juicy-fleshed. There was a hint of plum and sesame in the dressing. Well-balanced in terms of flavours.
Marrow soup - I really don't know what goes into the soup to make it thicker than usual yet light in taste. Ahhh.... just perfect!
Our fish dish : perch with beancurd and gluten topped with sliced mushroom. Fish was fresh and sweet (am not a huge filleted fish fan but I loved this one). The beancurd was silky and gluten was soft... all soaking up the fragrant sauce....
Close-up of the perch/beancurd/gluten
Boston lobster noodles : The noodles were very fine and the lobster cooked just right (not overcooked which happens pretty often). Again, very fresh and sweet. The small amount of spring onions and sliced ginger really add another dimension to this dish.
Elaine chose crispy durian ice-cream (I took a spoonful and goodness! like eating good quality frozen durians!)
I chose "or nee" : yam paste with gingko nuts. Came piping hot, smooth and creamy. Best I have had in my whole lifetime thus far.

Every dish that was meant to be hot, arrived piping hot as they should. We were greedily downing our food. It didn't matter that they were hot.

My only complaint : The food is so good that the portions seemed small.... wished there was more of everything....

Bei Ping Restaurant, Shah Alam

My brother bought us lunch over the Eid holiday - his birthday was the occasion. All 22 of us family members were treated to a huge spread at Bei Ping Restaurant! He picked the RM388/table set menu with an addition of Beijing roast duck (which was later changed to roast duck/yam dish at my suggestion - I regretted a bit as I went late and did not find out that there were already yam dishes in the set).

Bei Ping does not serve pork which is great for my brother as he is pretty averse to pork."Three season" - appetisers of a yam basket, shrimp stuffed chicken fillet and vermicelli-wrapped shrimp balls topped with a dollop of mayo each. These were so good... good yam baskets are hard to come by and here at Bei Ping, it was beautifuly made - fluffy mashed fragrant yam with no oily after-taste despite being fried.
Sharksfin soup - light broth with loads of crabmeat (I got a whole de-shelled claw!) and crab roe. So comforting with a few drops of black vinegar.
On the side of the plate is Beijing roast duck and meat with plum sauce while the centre is yam topped roast duck. The family loved it though despite the many yam dishes they had to eat because of me.
Steamed red snapper - I actually prefer their assam fish using siakap (with okra and pineapples) but mom can't take spicy food so we had this instead. Fish here have been fresh every time we ordered. The owner, a Chinese national who is married to a Malaysian said that they bring in fresh supplies every day.
One of the favourites of the day - 2-style chicken wings. I didn't have any as the night before I made Lemon Pepper and Cajun wings over the BBQ. So, Barry and I were pretty "winged" out. More me than him though as he did try a few and gave the thumbs up.
Butter prawns - I find these just OK. Not very outstanding. Probably a little bit over-done.
One of my favourites : Vegetarian dish of broccoli, dried bean curd and mock abalone in superior stock. Refreshing after all the meat dishes.
This was followed by a small bowl of fried rice for every person. We were stuffed but still game for dessert.
Fresh fruits

Caramelised taro and sweet potatoes (we get to dip these into icy cold water and voila! crunchy caramel-coated hot yams!)

Also, I got for my bro a chocolate peppermint cake which was finished off despite our full belly.

Bei Ping has a lot of other choices in terms of food - I would go for their a la carte dishes - even their garlic baby bokchoy is delicious!

Restoran Bei Ping Sdn Bhd
No. 6, Jalan Utas, 15D 40000 Shah Alam
Tel: +603- 5519 9291, +6012 2016 116

Canele, Singapore

My boss who knows I like to buy macarons (what he doesn't know is that my hubby loves them!) egged me to visit Canele at Shaw Centre which is just a minute's walk from our regional office in Singapore. So, I did go after a scrumptious lunch at New Majestc hotel! (more of that later!)

The 6-piece macaron box (SGD2.30 a piece of macaron - comparable price to that of La Duree - so, macarons are an indulgence)
My selection for Barry (2 framboise - raspberry, 1 pistache - pistachio, 2 praline noisette - hazelnut praline and 1 milk chocolate feuillitine). Barry likes the framboise as he is a natural berry fan. I had one hazelnut praline which is hazelnut macaron sanwiching praline cream with roasted hazelnut. I find Canele macarons a little drier and airier though thicker (maybe more cream) than that of La Duree I bought last September. To me it is less sweet too, which is perfect for me. I could really taste the fresh fragrance of the hazelnuts.
I bought 2 caneles just to try (SGD1.50 per piece) - though I rarely have caneles, I can vouch that these from Canele (so, this is where the name came from) are very good stuff! See my other experience eating Canele here (incidentally the same Les Amis is the people behind Canele).
You can see from their website they offer a wide range of patisseries and chocolates. Sweets-lovers would love this place. As for me, I am happy that I do not have to queue to make my purchase!
Canelé Pâtisserie Chocolaterie
11 Unity Street, Robertson Walk, #01-09 Tel. 6738 8145 Fax. 6738 8146
#01-01A Shaw Centre, 1 Scotts Road
#B1-25 Paragon, 290 Orchard Road
#B1-81/82 Raffles City Shopping Centre, 252 North Bridge Road

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Happy Birthday to me!

Just came back from a weekend stay downtown (my birthday!) - away from home, away from 3rd wheel, our pup (missed her a lot though). We had been so busy from before the wedding and wanted a bit of quiet time.

Had Italian dinner last night - freshly shucked oysters with Veuve Clicquot, my fave creamy mushroom soup with a dash of truffle-infused oil, freshly-made tagliatelle with spicy huge shrimp sauce and rounded off with terrine of trio chocolate. Barry had his garden greens with a twist - crunchy walnuts, crusted mackerel and vanilla ice-cream parfait on layers of blueberries and strawberry jelly. All these food and no pictures... didn't want to kill the mood :o)

It started with a bouquet of a dozen red roses which arrived on Friday at work... totally surprised me. Anonymous but from the message, it had the style of the hubby stamped all over.

Today, we had dim sum breakfast at Ming Room, BSC before heading home. It's hard to catch breakfast by 10.30am at hotels when on a holiday... Just found out that Ming Room offers a 20% discount before 12pm.
That's the pearl stud earrings I got from Barry... Picture from Mikimoto site. Been wanting to get a new pair since I lost one side of my previous set down the bathtub some years back.
New vs Old
Silver white - Pink undertones
18KWG - 18KYG
6.5mm - 8mm

Realised that my taste has changed over the years (prefer white over pink and I like bigger pearls now). It must be age.....

It was a great weekend! I love birthdays!

P/S : Just loved the comfort of Crocs Rx Silver Fox that Barry got me... His clinic, Back In Motion Chiropractic Centre carries the Rx range. I got the tan one... It helps a lot to support the arch of my (flat) feet.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

In the papers - The Star, 3 Sept 2008 (Clove)

Two months after Barry appeared in Tatler (Malaysia) - July, here we are in the news thanks to Alexandra Wong, a writer friend who hooked us up with one of her friends Chow Ee-Tan :

I thought it was to be out in The Star (Clove) on 4th Sept but actually it was the 3rd. So, as I was driving to work on Wednesday, my phone started to beep..... and beep... and beep. Both Barry and I had tons of friends and family buzzing us that day about it.... ok, we were teased by some too.... LOL!

And... I found out who reads the paper in the morning, at work, at lunch, at night or the next day :o)

Photo by FIFOTO Photography.

Hope to update more but there is a lot on my plate for now.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Taiwan and Japan - August 2008

Barely a month after our wedding, I had to go back to work traveling....

First stop Kaohsiung followed by Taipei before continuing my journey to Nara, Japan.

I was craving dishes from this lil place in Laohsiung which serves everything cow - head to tail. Too bad, I was ill the moment I arrived Taiwan until I left Japan (so, many restos' name elduded me). Imagine fever, gastroenteritis and colitis for a week! My fault..... I saw the doctor in Kaohsiung but I didn't start on the medication until I got home since I had to drink every night.

I do not mix medication with alcohol..... for fear of not ever waking up in some hotel somewhere. Of course, I got a nice dose from my Dr Barry when I got home for not putting my health first.

One of my lunches : pasta (very delicious though!) Food onboard JAL : Taipei to Kansai Airport
MAS : Kansai to KL (of course the usual chicken and beef satay were served first)
Main course..... and thereafter lil sushi were served just before landing.

I liked Tutto Bello in Taipei where I had :

a. Pumpkin and Truffle Cappuccino with Crispy Pumpkin Gnocchi (oh, what a comfort to my tummy!)

b. Challans Duck Fillet with Fine Herbs, Plum Juice and Aged Balsamic Vinegar (ok, a tad heavy for the tummy)

c. Warmed chocolate cake with almond ice-cream (I changed from tiramisu ice-cream)

Other nice places were the Club Floor of Splendor Hotel, Kaohsiung where we had teppanyaki and shabu-shabu at HSR station in Taipei.

No picture tho.....

Saturday, August 09, 2008


Along with the opening ceremony of Olympic Games in Beijing, news abuzz that many got married on this date : either the number combo looks great, or 8 being a lucky number esp. to Chinese or it's just to have an anniversary date which is easy (or easier) to remember.

I am not superstitious but I do not pooh-pooh at the belief of some people AND I really have to share a part of an awesome news.

Barry and I got back from work on 08.08.08. Both dead tired. And myself, stressed as my nephew is leaving for UK to pursue his lifelong dream (am not kidding) to be a doctor yet there is a lot of costs to be looked into.....And I know that he is still actively seeking financial assistance. I wished I could help totally but thdre is a long way more to go..... I just hope that God sees his determination and efforts (great kid - just graduated pre-u and made it to the Dean's list cum laude!) and things will be easier on him with a good scholarship.

Anyway, as usual, we will check the mailbox on the way up to our condo. As the envelope was nicer than usual, I ripped it open the soonest as we reached home.

And.... it was a letter and a form. Letter states that I've got a free something real nice and superkool worth almost RM2000. No commitments, no purchase, no signing on anything, no scam...all I needed to do was to call to them to confirm choice of item (out of 2 options) and collection location with the form duly filled. All because I was loyal to the service of that company for past 10 years (giving them quite good business too)!!

Surreal.... a rare surprise of a "loyalty programme".

I. am. just. thankful.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Sneak Peek - Wedding Photos

Fiona Lim of Fifoto posted 28 of our pics from our wedding at Westin Resorts and Spa, Langkawi on her website. Do take a peek (the first 28 pictures are from our wedding) :

Over 110 friends and family celebrated our special day in Langkawi - we were very touched that we have so many people from all over the world so supportive of us to travel the distance and be with us. We thank each and everyone who sent their best wishes.

Barry and I have been very blessed to have found location, music, photographer etc at the first try.

We knew Westin Langkawi would be the ideal location the moment we stepped on its grounds... we liked Fiona even as we laid eyes on her website ooking at her works...

I decided on my wedding dress with Bill Keith and came out of his boutique within 20 mins... his brother who connected us was amazed that I made up my mind so fast..... And the red Chinese silk has been with me for 8 years since I purchased it in Beijing and did not know what to do with it until before the wedding. Thus, the qipao in red.

I fell in love with the white jade necklace with a touch of blue-green amazonite when I first saw it at the jewelry store. And for weeks I would go into the store just to finger and caress it.... wanting to buy but held back by its cost..... I bought it eventually just a day before I left for Langkawi as you can see it on me in the pictures.... and, no regrets.

Our cupcakes were decided over an evening of leisure hanging out with Tina and Scott; with us stuffing ourselves silly with her chocolate cake. And some great friends Elsa and Sai brought them from Kuala Lumpur to Langkawi.

12 bottles of Bollinger Brut champagne kindly supplied by the kind people at work while we added on a further 6 bottles.... red wine chosen by a superior who is quite the wine expert and the white by the hotel F & B Director. Barry chose sangria.

I chose the food and flowers and the dresses and the gold bangle for the bridesmaids.... all in a matter of minutes. Barry helped with his input on decor and picked most of the music and Jerry totally helped us with the music for the night while I picked my favourite classical piece, Canon in D by Pachelbel for my wedding march.

Barry selected the wedding vows and Mike Barry, dad of his great friend helped us with it.

Weather was perfect. Sunset was beautiful that day.....

Everybody we spoke to had fun... and so did we.

Everything just fell into place. It was perfect.

We wanted the wedding to reflect us... we wanted to have a classy, elegant, pure, fresh, clean yet fun feel to our wedding. We got all that and more.....

More pics coming soon....

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Pre-wedding Photos : Malacca 8 June 2008

Barry and I have been married for a week today!

Everything went smoothly; from pre-wedding photo shoot in Malacca on 08/06/08 to our civil ceremony on 08/07/08 and our destination wedding in Langkawi 12/07/08.

Here are our pre-wedding photos. We had a lot of fun that day with lil Claudia, our poodle and the photographers. Many thanks to Caleb for helping us with Claudia.

We had long decided on Malacca as we loved its rustic look and feel. Along with its blend of Asian and Western influences, it is the perfect place that very much depicts our union.

Thanks to Fiona Lim of Fifoto Photography and her team for their works of art. Check out their website

Coming up next...... photos of our wedding in Langkawi!