Thursday, October 29, 2009

Singang -

Everyone loves fish, I guess... It happens to be my all-time favourite meat! And the more simple we prepare the fish, the more juicy we're going to have it. Am I not right?

Instead of having it elaborately steamed with mixed pickles and a dazzle of lemon, my much preffered style is the "masak singang" - fish in turmeric soup. It's actually a traditional Malay-Javanese recipe.

My parents have a very strong Javanese backgrounds, so it shows in our daily meals during my childhood. In fact, mum specializes in Javanese recipes! And one of them is the singang fish (Ikan Masak Singang.)

I went to the Marche to get the most imporatant ingredients - the fish and fresh turmeric.
This is what I had for my dinner, Ikan Masak Singang.

All you need to prepare this fish soup are:

1 fish (your choice!)
1 clove of garlic
2 small onions
1/2 thumb size of kunyit (turmeric)
1 chilli (pits removed)
1 dried asam keping or u can replace with 2 spoonfuls of lemon juice.
1 bowl of water

To prepare:

1. Pound clove, small onion and turmeric in a mortar.

2. Heat up the pan and put 2 tablespoons of oil. Fry the pounded ingredients till fragrant and pour in the water and asam keping.

3. Leave the pan of the water to boil. Once boiled, reduce the flame and put in the fish, salt,sugar and turmeric leave (optional). I couldn't find the leaf here :(.

Slow-cook until the fish is well done, and serve it hot.

Anyway, in some other versions they include ginger and other spices; but I am not really into it.
Spanner Crabs
and Balmain bugs... I just love the color combination when they were put side by side. I have planned to cook Balmain Bugs in spicy coconut milk (Balmain Bugs Masak Cili Api) one day!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

All-season Peacock

Of late, I seldom upload my paintings to my blog, the last being sometime last year. The last series I uploaded was my mengkudu series. Thanks to Mr Saufi for his appreciation for my artwork. He had bought two pieces of that series ;) If you are reading this, I hope u can send me some pictures of my painting now hanging on your office wall :)

I am now doing better at painting, since I recently joined the art classes in Paris. Here, I am proud to present two paintings from a series of four. They are for sale, too!

I had named this series the "All-season Peacock"!
WINTER PEACOCK - Acrylic on canvas. Size 24"(H) x 36"(W)
Selling for € 180 / RM900

AUTUMN PEACOCK - Oil Paint on canvas. Size 24"(H) x 36"(W)
Selling for € 180 / RM900

Will upload the other two paintings, Summer Peacock & Spring Peacock later!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I Forgot A Few Things About KL — J’ai oublié quelques choses de la KL

View from the train...

I was in a TGV train from Metz to Paris... listening to my iPod and enjoying every passing scenery... and I got a bit hungry... then suddenly, KL was on my mind. Why? Because I really missed my favourite mee upih at the Pavilion Kuala Lumpur food court... I just realized that I had sometimes forgotten a few things about KL!

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This is the "upih" - the dried pinnate stem of a betelnut tree.

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This is where they cooked the noodle, and serving it in the upih...

The Mee Upih that I was craving for!

* all pictures above were taken from my old blog. Sorry, picture quality of yesteryear! :)

Anyway, while shopping thereon at the malls in Paris, I just realised, most of my favourite shopping malls in KL namely, Suria KLCC, Pavilion, the Curve, Star Hill Gallery, the Gardens and many more, are up to world class standards. The facilities provided by these places are definitely superb! I hate to do comparison, but no single shopping mall in Paris can beat Pavilion so far. Still, every place has its own uniqueness. My point being, how good the facilities are, in malls we have in Malaysia! Frankly, even Singapore's Orchard Road is no match!

I encourage those who love shopping, to not forget to visit Kuala Lumpur. If you are hungry while you shop, don't worry! Shopping malls in KL serve a wide variety of food, from all our own heritage as well as the world over. And if you are a die-hard shopper, malls in KL close at 10PM! I am sure you will not regret coming at all!

I flipped through some old entries in my old blog, specifically entries about shopping malls in Malaysia and below are a collection of my favourite momments from the bunch.

These were taken last Christmas in Pavilion Kuala Lumpur.

I encourage you to read this touching story about an old, lovey-dovey couple at the entrance of Pavilion that I had managed to capture during the same outing .

I saw an old Chinese couple standing at the foot of the giant X'mas tree at the entrance. This happened just moments before I left Pavilion. The wife needed two walking sticks to walk, and the hubby helped her with her hand bag. Both looked up the massive X'mas tree peak, probably in awe of something they had never experienced in their long-gone youth.

Moments later, the wife displayed a tired and unhappy look, and her hubby tried to cheer her up... Hubby made some funny gestrures to make her happy, but still, she looked unmoved... Undefeated, he didn't stop but continued trying to make her happy, by rubbing her back and saying something in Cantonese. Still, the wife remained silent and unconvinced... I, on the other hand, continued to observe them through my lens...

Probably with a tinge of frustration, the man left his wife, and walked ahead for a few meters... which made the wife looked worried and scared. She retaliated, and said something really loud. Hubby made a sudden turn, back to his wife and immediately snapped a candid shot of her on his mobile phone. This took his wife by surprised, and she looked really shocked for a split second, but ended up laughing... And both continued walking on, with big smiles which light up my heart... Ahh... Such simplicity... such bond!

To learn more about Pavilion Kuala Lumpur, head for their website:

Monday, October 19, 2009

Home-made Fried Apple Pie

In Paris, fruits are sold everywhere. I could get my fruits supply very, very conveniently. Remember my marche entry? Apart from the marche, some of the bakeries and the snacks stalls sell fruits too. Not forgetting of course, at the supermarche!
Fruits everywhere you turn...

My all-time favourite fruit is the apple! Instead of just having it as a fruit, I love cooking it. I am a fan of apple pies! Specifically, fried ones are my top favourite - especially those from McDonald’s.

Anyway, since I'm so conscious about nutrition in every food I put into my mouth, home made pies are the best solution to it. Here's how I had prepared my home-made and nutritious apple pie.

Peel an apple and dice into chewing-size. An average size apple can get you three fried pies.

These are what I needed to prepare as filling.
A spoonful of cinnamon powder. For the right sweet taste, I had used three pieces of caramel sweets. You may replace them
with 2 tablespoon of sugar and some grated of nutmeg (biji buah pala). Two tablespoon of water and a teaspoon of butter.

This is my favourite sweet, Le Perruche. Its caramel type is the best for cooking, too! It does not only give a great caramel taste, in fact it turns the graving into a dark, chocolate colour.

Heat up the pan, and put in water until the sugar dissolves. If you use white sugar, stir to caramelize it. When it caramelizes, pour in the butter. Once the butter melts, pour in your diced apples, cinnamon powder and a dash of grated nutmeg. Stir until the apple is half tender. I luv how the la Perruche turns into a deep chocolate tone.

Remove the crust from three slices of whole grains bread. Using a rolling pin, flatten the bread until they are thin.

Don't throw away the crust! But fried them in a hot pan, without oil . When they cool down, grind them with a grinder machine.
Beat up an egg. Fill up the flattened bread with apple filling, and seal them with the beaten egg. Then, dip the filled bread into some beaten egg and then roll them over the bread crumble. Then, deep-fry for ten seconds in hot olive oil.

Serve the pies hot, with a scoop of fat-free vanilla ice cream or any preferred gelato. If you like, you might want to serve them with grilled apple slices. (Marinate the apple with sugar and cinnamon powder, and grill it)

This is really my devilish indulgence of the day!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Pictures Collection : Planter Box

Planter boxes can be easily spotted everywhere in Paris, especially on their windows.
Here are some of my favourites!

How about having a bicycle on the planter box? I just luv the idea!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Saiful Nang? Who is he?

I was supposed to upload my fried apple pie recipe today, but I do not have the time yet, to select the right pictures from the bunch. I'll do it soon! Actually, I have more important things to attend to... I have to do some research on architechture drawings.

I'm so used to designing Malay architechture concepts, but have never tried any Western designs before. Am helping a friend with some ideas for their dream home - which I consider a freelance job.

I digged through my old magazine collection and found something really useful among them. Bought this magazine a few years back and have never flipped through it since. Managed to do that just a while ago during breakfast, and find it kinda useful!

I had this waffery cracker while I read the magazine. It is so thin and small, but delicious! While at it, I had also managed to reply some messages on Facebook, too.

Anyway, I've been told many times that my photography is nothing, and that Saiful Nang - a professional photog, is anytime better. Just wondering - why must my photography be subjected to comparison? Life is not a competition! I blog as a hobby, and for fun. Most importantly, photography is my passion. So, why bother comparing me to someone whom I do not even know? Of course he's said to be good - he has to be, because it is his profession!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Time, you fly really fast!

Time flies really fast and now we are already in the middle of October! Talking about how fast time flies, it suddenly brings me back to my childhood memories. I still remember those sweet days before raya. Dad would always bring home some basic ingredients for baking cookies. Since were a middle-income family, fancy or luxurious ingredients were never on the list. But mum had always used her creativity, and turned her cookies into delicious ones. But when it comes to traditional cookies, it's undeniable how delicious our local cookies can be, with just simple recipes.

I started to love cooking when I was kid... that's when mum always asked for my help in the kitchen, teaching me the art of cooking at the same time. And now, I am so thankful for those moments. Still fresh in my memory, they seem to have happened only a few months ago... But in a reality, it has already been 20 years! Oh, how time flies really, really fast!

Anyway, all the pictures below were taken during Autumn. Picture number one and four were taken at Blue Mountains, off Sydney, Australia on 9/5/2008. And pictures number two and three were taken in Paris, dated 5/9/2009. I just love the combination of these two dates... Altough captured at two different countries, they looked like they belonged to each other.

I still remember the freshness smell of autumn at Blue Mountains... and that too, has been a year ago!... Time, you fly really fast!


Talking about apples, I have cooked some apple pies yesterday using my own recipe. Actually I was inspired my mum's tuna pie recipe; and using my own imagination, I modified it to create my apple version!

Will share with you the recipe and some pictures later.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

New Color

I woke up really early this morning, did my laundry and some spring cleaning... and wound down with the simplest breakfast - a glass of milk and some musseli crackers, dipped in fruit dessert from Tre's fruit.

If you noticed (of course! lol), I had just changed my blog's color to white. Also, a new masthead. Thanks for your replies on FaceBook about this new colour, but I think I kinda love this new colour instead of green. Yeah green was nice, but I really look foward to something new to refresh my blog, done in conjuction of my birthday a few days ago. A new age with a new colour! For the new readers, a warm welcome to my blog!

My blog, seen from my breakfast table...

A bowlful of my fruit dessert. My favourite flavour is figue!
Previous colour and banner of my blog.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Pont Alexandre lll Bridge, Paris

I really love the views at this bridge...
To me, it's the most ornate and extravagant bridge in Paris!
The statue on the bridge...
Someone wrote this on the pedestrian walkway's wall at the tunnel where Princess Diana met with her fatal accident. The Pont De l'Alma tunnel is just a short walk from the Pont Alexandre III bridge.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Paris Disneyland (Euro Disney)

Paris Disneyland, also known as Euro Disney, is the one and only Disneyland in Europe. In August 2008, Disneyland Paris was the most visited attraction in Europe. Located in Marne-la-Vallée, a new town in the eastern suburbs of Paris, France. The complex is located 32 kilometers (or 40 minutes by train) from the centre of Paris. You can actually purchase your entrance ticket at selected train stations, so that you need not wait in long queues to enter the park.

Anyway, just one station before Paris Disneyland, is the most happening Designer Factory Outlet, the Val de Europe - it's a must visit if you happen to spend some time at Paris Disneyland. From labels like Paul Smith, Kenzo, Ralph Lauren to Jimmy Choo - you can get them at extremely low price! OK, back on track, Paris Disneyland!
On the train to Disneyland. Oh, I just luv his jacket so much!
The weather wasn't so good during my visit.
It was cloudy with some rain till early afternoon. I spent a lot of time in its indoor park.
Just after the downpour...
My most favourite ride, the 3D Space Mountain rollercoaster...
the rollercoaster actually moved within that huge dome!

I took a lot of pictures actually, but here are just some of them...
See? Even a grown-up will act like a kid in Disneyland...
En Arip couldn't resist hugging Tigger...
What is Disneyland without some souvenirs?

My personal rating for Paris Disneyland is 2 stars out of 5. In my opinion, the smaller Movieworld in Gold Coast, Australia is anytime better than this. I had high expectations for Paris Disneyland but was a bit dissapointed... Only their pizza restaurant was fabulous. To me the best place to experience Disneyland is still in United States. And luckily, I later got back my mood at Val De Europe... LOL
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