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Showing posts from January, 2014

M Bakes: Chocolate Vodka Cherry Bundt Cake

I have been serving the breakfast ministry for about a month now. This was what I made last week. 
Chocolate Vodka Cherry Bundt Cake12 cafe servings or 24 waist-friendly servings ingredients1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch-process) plus 3 tablespoons for dusting pan1 1/2 cups brewed coffee (I used 2 heaping teaspoons of Nescafe instant coffee)1/2 cup vodka2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, cut into smallish pieces 1.5 cups sugar2 cups all-purpose flour1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda1/2 teaspoon salt2 large eggs1 teaspoon vanilla1 x 850 gram canned cherries (optional: save 1/2 cup liquid)
Special equipment: a 10-inch bundt pan (3 1/4 inches deep; 3-qt capacity)Garnish: confectioners sugar for dusting preparationPut oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 325°F. Butter bundt pan well, then dust with 3 tablespoons cocoa powder, knocking out excess.
Drain your cherries, keeping about 1/2 cup of liquid. Set aside.
Heat coffee, vodka, butter, and remaining cup cocoa powder in a deep …

Delight in Dresses

I love wearing dresses, not a secret and not difficult to conclude. They are so easy to wear and no need to think about the top and/or bottom. I get a lot of queries on where I buy my dresses. So I usually shop online (now that I am no longer based in the US) and the two sites that I have consistently bought dresses from are Jcrew and Anthropologie. Jcrew because they are often simple yet flattering and their sizes fit me perfectly. Anthropologie on the other hand, has all the bright colors and prints, a total opposite to Jcrew and I love how the two brands balance out my wardrobe.  Oh, I forgot, they are mainly for my out-of-work wardrobe.
Just a couple of days ago, my itchy fingers decided to take advantage of the Jcrew sale to purchase a couple of new dresses. My excuse being that there are at least 4 weddings to attend this year :)


In Singapore, occasionally, I swing by into BYSI, Zara or Mango for affordable dresses, usually for work. In the past, I used to go to Far East Plaza …

Parents meet Parents at Jade Palace

So the event came and went. I was a little bit anxious prior to it, just because. But it went really well despite some initial challenges with schedules and expecations.

Yes, the man and I formally introduce our parents to one another and we chose to do it over lunch at Jade Palace Seafood at the basement of Forum Shopping Mall.  I haven't been there in years and a quick scan of reviews suggested the dim sum to be pretty average but the seafood to be pretty awesome. Glad to confirm that the conclusion is quite true.  

We were in a private room (min. spend $500 per room) and they arranged a menu for us without prompting. But I didn't like a couple of the dishes on the menu, namely the Beijing Duck and the waxed meat claypot rice (my sister does not eat pork as well) so I got them to switch from duck to their famous fried frog legs with sliced ginger and the rice to a braised mee pok with crabmeat.

The full menu:

1. fried frog with ginger
2. fish maw soup
3. steamed red garoupe…

Impromptu is Good at Jones the Grocer

Needing to kill some time and a craving for good coffee, we decided on impromptu to stop by Dempsey for coffee. Before we could reach our destination, the Man was distracted by the weekend market over at Carnivore's. Stopped by to check it out. It was not very interesting save a stall selling stainless steel bowls and utensils, etc. 
Then we got on to our destination proper. It was fairly packed still at about 3:30pm but we managed to get a seat by the counter for a coffee and cake.  The big block of gluten free chocolate brownie tempted us and we got it. $5.50 was a good deal as the portion was rather big. Surprisingly it was not very clumpy dense as I would have expected out of a GF baked product but then after a little thought, yup, it's essentially a flourless chocolate cake using egg whites and ground almond meal to give it the lightness yet yet no flour required!  


There was no piccolo latte on the menu so I asked for a flat white with less milk ($5). Bad move as the co…

Of entering a new phase of life - Food for Thought at Botanic Gardens

Just this weekend, the Man had brunch with his army friends, all three of them were married in the last three years, two of them with one kid each below 3 years old and the other one with his first kid on the way.
First time for us where conversations mainly flowed around children, housing matters, maternity insurance(!), etc. So different from the usual and obviously signifies a change in our phase of life. I'm excited!
I haven't been to FFT in ages, and since we were there around 9:30am, noted that we were still in time to make it for the early bird breakfast menu, so we got the Greek yogurt with gula melaka granola and fresh strawberries ($7), and got the eggs and toast set ($5) plus sides of chicken sausages and fried mushrooms. 
Just to share, the gula melaka granola was very good. I don't eat much granola so I have very little to benchmark. But this one, with loads of little sunflower seeds and chopped hazelnuts, a light sprinkling of dried cranberries, dessicated c…

Teppanyaki at Seryna Mon Cher Ton Ton, Tokyo

Located at Roppongi, this seems to be a popular teppanyaki restaurant for both businessmen and tourists alike.  
We ordered one of the sets. Which had a series of courses of food. 
Starters: changes seasonally but this time I had sweetest crab with boiled pea sprouts. 

Next is sashimi of tuna. Not the best kind but suitably fatty and rich. 

Then we start on the teppanyaki with lobster. 

The lobster is diced and served with a bit of miso (liver of the lobster). 

In between we also had a mizuna salad and cooked vegetables. 
Last course for me was a whole abalone because I didn't take the beef as the rest did. 

The beef / abalone is served with teppan butter potato and fried garlic chips. 
We also had a fried rice with silver fish, soup and pickles to finish off the meal. 
Dessert is always served at the lounge area. Tea or coffee is your choice. 

The trio are: Apple sorbet, opera cake and strawberry with vanilla cream.  Not a cheap meal but certainly of good quality and experience. ¥15,750 per …

Revisiting an oldie...Bistro du Vin

Gosh, it has been more than a month since I turned a year older. The family has a tradition of indulging on birthdays and the person celebrating gets to choose where to go. I was reminded of the great lunch deal at the Bistro du Vin and simply decided on that restaurant. I love their set lunches. Hearty, traditional and safe bistro kinda food.

Nearing 1pm on a Sunday afternoon, the restaurant was close to full. Good sign !  The 3-course set meal cost just $26++ per person. Some items require a supplement but the mark-ups are still very decent.

I decided to go with the escargots that were  with a sweet caramlized onion sauce, done with a beautiful fried egg. Broke the yolk to mix up the onion gravy. So umami! I decided I had to relax on my no-bread (self imposed low carb diet) stance and justify the deliciousness by mopping the plate clean. 
The snails on the other hand, were a little soft and slimy. After a few of them, I have had enough. 

Main course was the seafood bouillabaisse. G…

On a Vietnamese roll.....next up at Nam Nam Noodle Bar

Always intrigued by the long queues outside Nam Nam but not enough to wait in line. On a recent public holiday when we were in town to run some errands, we saw no queue as it was after lunch hour and as we needed a bite, we decided to step in.

The queue system at Nam Nam (this was at the basement of Wheelock) can be a little confusing. First, you need to queue to get a table. This line is outside. After being seated, you would order your food and drinks using the order chit placed on the table, then queue again to make order and payment (this line is inside).

We ordered fresh rolls to share. They were horrid. No herb inside the roll, far too much stuffing of vermicelli and the unforgivable? As they arrived like 2 minutes after we placed the order, I suspect they were probably pre-made, left out for a while, because the skins had already hardened along the ends.  The dipping sauce was okay, would have been better with a bit of their pickled vegetables.


I had a banh mi with tofu and om…