Thursday, June 28, 2012

Been sick

Recovering from a week's of food poisonings. :(

Got my first case from last week's late dinner at Fat Boys Burgers in Publika.

Then went back to hometown to rest. And to paint.

And got the second episode from the chicken rice shop "He Ji" from Jonker street, Melaka. This time my mom joined me.

So began the nightly episodes of diarrhea, falling asleep on the toilet bowl and having a tummy that's so bloated it looked 4 months pregnant.

That was three days ago.

Diarrhea still going on. T_T

Albeit at a small quantity and frequency. Thank god.

Still.


On the hindsight, I finished my latest painting!!

It's my biggest at 30" x 72".

Will feature it here once I manage to get a proper photo of it. So far I only have camera phone quality photos.

:)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Villa Maria Wine Dinner- Saujana Hotel

The Saujana Hotel recently scouted a Sicilian chef, Filippo Giunta, into their kitchen and when it was time to throw an anniversary celebration dinner to host Villa Maria's (NZ's most awarded winery) 50th year, it was time to whip out a five-course wine pairing concoction.

IMG_5394


So I brought Wendy along with me for an evening of fine dine and good wines.

Despite having just arrived that morning from Cambodia and having to walked 13 hours straight throughout Angkors the day before; we limped our way in our cocktail dresses to dinner.

Good company and good food. Why not eh? (In all honesty, we nearly bailed on attending the event)

IMG_5396


IMG_5397


But I've always enjoyed Saujana's hospitality so dinner it was!

IMG_5399


We started off with a light 2011 Sauvignon Blanc by Private Bin, Marlborough as aperitif which I thought was really suitable. As a white wine drinker, probably the only worth mentioning wine of the wine for me, lol.


Appetizer was Burratina Cheese with Sicilian Caponata and Balsamic Reduction. 


IMG_5406
Tasted like buffalo cheese on ratatouille.
I like the dish but found the cheese a bit overpowering as starter. 




IMG_5408
Green Peas Soup with Prawn and Sun Dried Tomato Quenelle
paired with Hawkes Bay Cardonnay 2010 (bad pairing)

I like the combination of the sun dried tomamto in soup. New and delightful.


IMG_5409
Pumpkin and Goat Cheese Risotto with Crispy Sage Butter
paired with Villa Maria Cellar Selection Marlborough Pinot Noir 2010

My favorite dish. I love risotto, and I love goat cheese. The pumpkin was a nice touch but I thought it a bit rich, perhaps a small serving?


IMG_5413
Lamb Shank with Soft Polenta, Gremolada and Thyme Reduction.
paired with Hawkes Bay Syrah 2009

It would have been more suitable and delicate if it were lamb cutlet, I thought lamb shank was a bit vulgar for the theme of the night. And the polenta was a bit coagulated amidst the thyme reduction.


IMG_5418
Traditional Italian Tiramisu with Coffee and Galliano Ristretto Jelly
paired with Private Bin Marlborough Dry Riesling 2011

Oh gosh. What horrible pairing.
Dry wine with dessert? Seriously?
Not a fan of tiramisu but didn't mind this one.
Coffee flavour wasn't rich (thank god) and not too creamy and not too sweet.
Dessert was very pleasant despite the wine.

Overall, an enjoyable dinner.

Aren't all wine dinners are? ;)


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Taiwanese Snacks and Food

I don't like to dine in restaurants whenever I travel, I guess it's a habit from a long history of backpacking and solo-travelling.

IMG_4931


So whenever I'm travelling these days, I always end up eating out of a 24 hour store. In Taiwan's case, the trusty 7-eleven. Of course, I do eat many other forms of take-aways as well.

Don't get me wrong, it's not that I don't enjoy dining in a restaurant, it's just such a waste of good atmosphere to eat alone in.


So these are the things I've eaten in Taiwan,

IMG_4779
The hot spring eggs you get from ramen shops such as Marutama, but in packaged form!
Golden yolks with a salty brownish egg-white. Love this! I ate so many of them during my stay in Taipei.


IMG_4776



IMG_5036
some yogurt which tasted awful.


IMG_4958


IMG_5037
tried to finish it but just couldn't.


IMG_4781
roasted milk tea in a bottle. Love it!


IMG_4900
my raspberry dessert. nom nom


IMG_4772
I'm kinda getting sick of this, but it's still nice to look at.


IMG_4774
bought it from a hotel. love the packaging.


IMG_4778
guess what's inside?


IMG_4777
pineapple tart!! I simply adore this type of pineapple tart/pie/cake. Does anyone know where to buy them in KL?


IMG_4878
my bento set on the train. ^^ So yummy. Fried pork cutlet.


IMG_4929
my favourite meal in Taiwan.
This is an authentic Taiwanese meal. With soup, vege, usually pork cutlet or chicken cutlet, and 'ru lou fan'. Basically it's gravy minced pork on rice.

IMG_4930


The locals in the old days used to eat this (the 'ru lou fan') with some vege or small pieces of meat on the side. It has something to do with my first visit to Taiwan. I made it down to Tainan and rented a bicycle to explore town like a local of the olden days. And I followed the direction of my trusty lonely planet and ended up in a really old and very Taiwanese style eatery and ordered this form of Taiwanese set meal.

And though I couldn't explain it, it felt like I was transported back in time, sitting in a wooden eatery, with my bicycle outside and me waiting for my food at my tiny wooden table on my tiny wooden stool, it felt like I was living in old Taiwan.

I loved that feeling so much that every time I ate this, it felt sorta 'nostalgic'; despite not being a born and bred local.

Oh, and Taiwan's Tau Fu Fa (soy bean custard?) was heavenly sent!
I never liked Tau Fu Fa till I first tried Taiwanese's tff.
So soft. So smooth. So fragrant. And the syrup was SOOOOOOO GOOD.
I never like the syrup they serve with tff in Malaysia, it's either too artificially sweet or to gingerly. yuck.

And they have my favourite soft sweet peanuts as toppings!

IMG_4925


IMG_4928
with grass jelly!


On my last night, I discovered a wonderful shop that specialized in Tau Fu Fa. It's like our snowflake or blackball in KL but instead of grass jelly and ice, they use TFF.

IMG_5162
Taro Ball


IMG_5167
soy bean jelly/custard





The guest house I stayed in.

IMG_4951


IMG_4935


IMG_4938
the same room I stayed in two years ago ^^


IMG_4939
TV I never used


IMG_4950
had this for snack one day. Bought by the host's mom. It's called 'salty cake'.
I couldn't quite pin down whether I liked it or not till today. I supposed to some extend, it's nice. lol


IMG_4949
It's slightly salt-ish with a tinge of sweetness and very fluffy and have an empty bite to it. It's weird. But edible. And somewhat nice when you feel like it.


IMG_4961
a lazy bento dinner one night


IMG_4964
too fatty for my liking. But it's a lot of FOOOD.


IMG_4984
this was just a very 'bleh' meal. But it's ordered in a franchise coffee shop called Mr. Brown.
Much like our Starbucks here.
It's all over the place, every other street I saw a Mr. Brown.


IMG_4993
Dorayaki with yam, black sesame, red bean, etc fillings.


A 7-11 meal one night.

IMG_5015
pre-heated.


IMG_5019
It's looks so delicious. It's more delicious than some of the food you eat in local stalls.

IMG_5020
this was red wine reduced sauce with beef and rice. ^^


I had it with Mexican chicken wings. Yum. Also pre-heated.

IMG_5018


IMG_5021


I'm beginning to think that 7-11offers an endless amount of services, which I can never finish witnessing. Just when you think you know all about the 7-11 in Taiwan, something new pops up and throws you off.

You can receive and send out fax (yes, it's a service!) in 7-11 in Taiwan, other than printing, heating your food, sit down supper (they have stools and bar tables), free sauce packets for your food (something that's free!), and so many more that I can't remember now.

One time, I saw a man walked into 7-11 and up to the counter with a bag of used batteries, and the cashier took out a weighing machine, weighed it on the spot as if it's something that happened all the time, kept the bag of used batteries, checked a booklet of list of items and prices and gave the man money!

God knows what else they can recycle in that little booklet of theirs. o.O


Oh, and I found out I don't like pudding on this trip.

IMG_5027


IMG_5028

It's like. yuck. period.


Finally, my last meal in Taiwan. Well, last dinner actually.

IMG_5102
milk tea, 'yan su ji' (Taiwanese deep fried salty chicken), vege and 'ru lou fan'.


Best. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Haul from Taiwan: Sasa, SK-II, Korean Apparel, Arm Candies & more

IMG_5038


I got back from a week's trip to Taiwan lately and managed to spend till I drop during my stay there.

Most of the items were beauty products which are much cheaper in Taiwan than in Malaysia: SK-II, perfumes and most items from Sasa.

Bought a whole bundle of clothes, four pieces of Korean imported clothes and two pieces from India, the rest Taiwanese. They're not exactly cheap, each piece I bought averages between RM80 - RM170, but Taipei has such a variety of beautiful clothing it's hard to resist.

IMG_5022
Shilin Night Market


I don't have the photos of the clothes I bought on this trip here, because I haven't worn most of them, you'll see one of them, and a bag of it; but you'll see some of the other items I got and all my Sasa haul.

First I want to show you this top I bought which I absolutely love.

IMG_5054


I decided to go for a 'dark' image one morning during my trip there after getting that top the previous night: shorts, singlet and black translucent hoodie; lots of eyeliner and rockstar arm candies.

IMG_5059


Here're some 'cool' poses (must match image).

IMG_5083


IMG_5082
Also to show off my new arm candies. ^^


It's not usual for me to wear such 'young' punk-ish style but it's fun once in a while. :)

IMG_5062
My black star feather necklace


IMG_5097
my awesome fawsome rockstar arm candies


Here's a photo of my bag of Korean clothes.

IMG_5099
love love love love. The shop owner is a lady my age who flies to Korea every month. Just when I was about to tell her how envious I was of her to have such privileges, she told me she's so sick of Korea and wished, with all her might, that she didn't need to do a monthly Korea trip. Bitch.
But I like her.
Which explains the unreasonable amount of money I spent in that shop.
Bitch.


Ta-da! My amazing Sasa haul.

IMG_5035
I fear for my bill statement next month. T_T


But how could one resist all the beauty products you've ever wanted at a 30-40% cheaper rate compared to Malaysia. It's not fair. :(

Oh and this double eyelid glue is brilliant. It went on the beauty Taiwanese talk show 'nu ren wo zui da'; I tried it and it's super easy to apply, unlike most double eyelid glue in the market.

IMG_5110


I also bought some double eyelid strings, a technology originated from Japan (I think), which won't even have traces of you wearing anything to enhance your double eyelid feature, they're not cheap and averaging at RM2 every single time you apply. I haven't try them yet but it's supposed to be more brilliant than the glue.


My dream polka dot luggage bag which I finally managed to buy (saw it on my last trip to Taiwan two years back), only RM160, medium size. Same design as my iPhone casing. :D

IMG_5011


Other random photos.

IMG_5001
all the anime figurines in the world! Spotted in an underground market in Taipei. 


IMG_5023
cute big bunny in front of a store in Shilin Night Market. 


IMG_5024
floral feminine arm candies


IMG_5210
crop top: Topshop
black top: Taipei (last trip)
tail-drop skirt: Whitesoot (blog shop in Malaysia)
belt: Zara
arm candies: Taipei


IMG_5211
delicate bracelet


gosh my hair follicles sure look big this magnified, I swear it's not that obvious in real life.


IMG_5014

How I looked after a completely exhausting but utterly satisfying shopping day.