Tuesday, January 14, 2014

myriad malaysia

I can never have enough Malaysian food. If there's one thing that I'm proud of our country, is the variety and vast array of food that we have. I like seeing the looks of foreign friends and colleagues when I tell them that Malaysians eat 6 times a day. Yes, if you don't eat 6 times a day you're not a true Malaysian! >.<

Asam laksa for Christmas. I know, people usually have the usual turkey and Western do for this Yuletide season. Well, mum did buy loads of lamb and ham home, which I indulged in. Miss the tangy spicy combination with the chewy noodle and fish broth. I cried of course, sadistic that I am.

Saravana Bhavan vegetarian Indian food. If you see curry in Japanese, you could most likely be having the milder version which is sort of like gravy rather than the more diluted curry that gives you the kick. Oh rasam too. Great for colds.

Missed the gobi cauliflower and fried bitter gourd.  Both great with sliced onions and lemon. Think I ordered too much, so Ms Barbie made me take away.

Dosai with the usual sides and sauces. They should have put a disclaimer here, the midly spicy here actually was bits of cili padi hidden in between the dosai. Needless to say, I had to down loads of ice water to salve my tongue.

Their special set which comes with papadam and rice. What I like about Indian vegetarian food is, they are truly vegetarian. I don't get Chinese vegetarian food that tries to look like, and taste like fish or pork. No offense, but, if you missed steamed fish and sweet and sour pork, why did you become vegetarian then? (=.=)

This is not actually Malaysian or even Asian in origin, but some lovely teatime at Publika with the grrlfriends. We had dinner at the food court, which surprisingly have pretty good local fare.

To make up for a lot of other pictures that I didn't get to take because I was too hungry to savour my beloved Malaysian food.

Fat Spoon in Damansara Utama is one of those little cafe which I find appealing - a mix of homely, vintage, creative eatery that puts you at ease with their eclectic interior and fusion Asian food. This was a tamarind shrimp angel hair pasta which made me wish I could eat more of this. My ex-colleagues seemed to enjoy their choices too looking at how fast they finished theirs.

Of course, who could NOT miss nasi lemak? To make sure it's the real thang, I went to this one at the USJ Taipan area which has a queue especially in the evenings. Just as how I like it, with a quarter half-boiled egg, some sprinkles of ikan bilis and nuts, and generous topping of sweet spicy sambal. And all wrapped in fragrant banana leaf.

Only RM2. Okay, so maybe that's a bit expensive but nothing is cheap in Malaysia anymore. Well, except for kangkung, if you know what I mean :)

The other thing that I missed a lot was dimsum, especially Hong Kong chee cheong fan. Well, any types of chee cheong fan is good enough for me. Something I can't get here at all. Sure, there are some Chinese restaurants in Chinatown, and even stalls that seem to sell dumplings and such, but I have not found anything close to authentic.

I was glad Lai Ying was game enough to indulge with me. Though just writing about this post now makes me salivate again... I wish I had more!

So this is not Asian, but I wanted to remind myself how pasta tasted like in Malaysia. There are plenty of Italian restaurants in Kobe, and some are kinda Japanese-Italian, or even pseudo Italian, so it's interesting to try the different variants.

I had missed the Winter Solstice event, so Dad made some extra for me. I didn't manage to take the actual photos, and these are another type with red bean fillings in them.

I'm so glad my Mum actually took the trouble to make the one dish that I really missed - her mushroom sauce chee cheong fan. It's not too difficult a dish actually, but there's just something about simple home cooked food. Sprinkled with onion oil and a dash of freshly ground pepper, it's best eaten fresh from the steamer.

One of the recommended Indonesian restaurant, Ayam Penyet in the Curve. By this time I was getting accustomed to the spices of South East Asian food, and enjoyed the soto. I have seen some Indonesian restaurants around in Kobe, but I have to ask my Indo friends for recommendation so I don't be disappointed!

Last but not least, mamak food! One of my usual mamak hangouts at SS15, the K3K Benta Kaya was closed down and replaced by, of all things, a burger joint! Had to opt for something next door, which felt like another Old Town Cafe. Nevermind, at least their nasi goreng kampung was pretty reasonable. It was about 10pm+ by the time I got there but was amazed I could finish this plate.

Others that made my day included Nyonya dishes, Taiwanese food, Peking duck, Cantonese stir fry, Nando's, Shanghainese, Szechuan, and Penang food.

I'm thankful for my parents who tried to feed me with as much chee cheong fan as possible >.< And I made sure I included delicacies from all the major ethnicities! I know talking about ethnicity in our country at such a time may well provoke "passionate" reactions, but I'm proud to have all these food that I can freely eat and indulge in.

If only the people in power could appreciate this - the myriad glorious food that we have are just like the people that make them, and live on them - without them, there is no Malaysia.

Monday, January 13, 2014

learning through the idiot box

It has been a habit of mine to watch TV while having dinner. Maybe because in my tiny studio, the TV is just in front of the box I used to call my dining table. Now that I have a proper table, it occupies the same area as the box.

Initially I thought it would be a great idea to learn Japanese through TV, there are interesting Japanese game shows which are either modified or replicated in other countries due to their unique engaging characteristics. I realised, there are quite a bit of educational stuff on TV too, nevermind that it's called the idiot box for a good reason. (I have not watched TV in Malaysia for a long time, and no we do not have Astro either)

There are some which shows simple exercises, like for those who wish to reduce their belly, like shown above. They would invite either some health expert or fitness instructor, and a member of the audience, or some celebrity would try to follow the steps.

The one they were showing tonight was hot yoga. Nothing fancy, just simple ones that you can do in the comfort of your home, for perhaps 10-15 minutes or so. Considering my lifestyle, any exercise is better than nothing!

These 2 shots are not exactly exercise programme like the earlier one, but a talk show which showcases Japanese wives married and living abroad. In this instance, it's the wife of Billy the famous fitness guru, who is shown here as part of the gym member! The audience in the show are invited to try to follow the moves on the video too (top left).

There are also language lessons, different ones for each day of the weekday. I think these were taken on a Tuesday. German lessons after Mandarin lessons. Of course, I'm trying to learn Mandarin now that it's worse than my Japanese.

My usual programmes are cooking lessons, though I never jot down any of the recipes lol! Maybe after watching many of these I'm hoping the tips would be immersed unconsciously and emerge as ideas one day.

NHK does a great job showing all sorts of educational programmes on their channel. If I had all the time in the world, I'd love to actually practice some of these : cooking, sewing, craft making, linguistics, gardening, exercise, and even singing.

If you're interested in other similar self development programmes, there are more tips here : http://www.nhk.or.jp/kurashi/

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

day 8 : coloured hearts


「Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth - 3 John 1:2」

緑 :きよめられた心
青 :神の言葉がう注入する心
Purple : 女王の心
Yellow : 油注がれた心 anointing
Orange : 熱意(ねつい)の心 on fire!

本当に全部のプレゼントは意味があるの贈り物ですよね!よく考えたねドラちゃん~真に有難うございます m(_ _)m