Sunday, September 30, 2007

Photo Essay : "A Cookout like no other"


Friday, September 28, 2007

Thiswassupposedtobeaseriousblog! - The Food Update

I was wondering whether to do a one time super update, but I think that would make this blog post far too long for any of you to read, so I decided to break it up into a few posts and tag them properly. Ok, first up, after my initial try at cooking Carbonara, I decided to experiment with it another day, and try to improve on the first recipe. This time, I made sure I took a picture of it. Well, so it doesn't really look like the one in the previous picture. Somehow after mixing the cream sauce in, the whole thing looks kind of gooey. I used streaky bacon instead of back bacon this time, a bad mistake. Streaky bacon might be good to fry on its own in strips, but once you cut it up, it falls apart too much! (Read on more more food recomendations!)

Still on the issue of food, I have been telling some of you about this ice cream shop that I discovered about 15 min walk from my home. Well, I finally went to find out more about it. I have not been there myself, but I think their promotional video looks pretty exciting.

The place is called Ice Cream Chefs and it is located along East Coast Road at Ocean Park (besides St Patrick's Sec). Their concept is pretty similar to Cold Rock at Holland Village - choose your flavours, add your mix-ins and watch them combine it into one lovely concoction! I tried Cold Rock the other day and it was indeed heavenly. (I think I had Pistachio and cheesecake with tim tams and brownies.) Let's plan an ice cream outing soon! For those interested, Ice Cream Chefs is opened Sunday - Thursday 1-10pm, and Friday - Saturday & Eve. of PH: 1-11:00pm. Check out their website here.

Oh, and in case you have not noticed, Blogger has ended a video loading application similar to their photo posting one. About time isn't it? Now you don't have to bother yourself with all that copying and pasting of code from Youtube and others.


Saturday, September 15, 2007

Lunch-time Adventure

Having stayed at home for the past 3 days to "piah" my dissertation paper, I got really bored and decided to try something interesting for lunch. I have grown quite sick of eating rice with soup, mee with soup, kway tiao soup etc. That has pretty much been my diet at home since my mum thinks I should eat "healthy" food since I am still trying to get better from my cough. Don't be mistaken. It's not that I don't appreciate my mum's cooking. It's just too much of a good thing for now. The idea of ordering from Thai pan downstairs didn't seem too appealing either so I decided to be adventurous and cook something for my self. I had a certain craving for Carbonara. Short of paying over $10 for a plate of delicious pasta at Cafe Cartel, which incidentally is one of the best I have tried, I decided I shall try to make it by myself.

I don't profess to be any kind of master chef, though give me Google any time and I can follow instructions pretty well. Read more about my cooking experience after the break.

Here's a recipe I found on Yahoo Answers.

From someone called, iliketorideigohago...
(clicke here for other variations of the recipe)

This is the BEST dish ever - my mother calls it my 'signature dish'.

Right - you'll need eye bacon (about four slices per person) or streaky bacon (whatever your preference). Streaky has a lot more fat, so will be a lot more salty.
2 x egg yolks
Parmesan Cheese (grated) (about half a cup)
Cream - around 350 mls
1 or 2 garlic cloves
Portabello Mushrooms - about 3 large per person

Pasta - fresh and long works best, as it absorbs the flavours.

Cut the bacon in to strips - about 4 or 5cm long, and 2 cm wide.
Put bacon in to medium heat pan (with a touch of olive oil in the bottom) and leave to get crispy.
While bacon is cooking, put raw eggs in to bowl or jug and add parmesan cheese. Mix together.

As the bacon is getting crispy, put the water on for the pasta.

Turn the heat down on the bacon once crispy, and add the one or two (finely chopped) garlic cloves. Once garlic has cooked, add enough of the cream to cover the bottom of the pan, and let simmer.

When the cream has reduced sufficiently (it needs to be fairly thick, but not completely reduced), add the portabello mushrooms (your choice -leave them whole, or slice thinly) I prefer to slice them.

Cook until mushrooms are done and add plenty of cracked pepper.

Ensure that the pasta is done at this point, and drain and put in to warmed dish. take the parmesan / egg mixture from before and mix in to the warm pasta. make sure you mix quickly, otherwise the raw egg will cook and bind to the pasta.

Now add the bacon / cream / mushroom mix to the pasta and mix around (toss).

Grate some parmesan on top, and cracked pepper - and voila!


So I went down to the convenience store at my place which didn't turn out to be that convenient at all since I could not find everything I wanted to get. No cream, no parmesan cheese. After some deliberation, I ended up buying a packet of Linguine, a packet of white button mushrooms and a bottle of Prego's mushroom and herb sauce, costing me a total of $11.55. (Now, maybe I should have just gone to Cafe Cartel.)

By the looks of what I managed to buy, I had some improvisation to do. Digging through my well-stocked-by-mum fridge, I managed to find some nice bacon streaks and a big packet of what looked and smelled like parmesan cheese and started cooking away! Chopped the garlic, sliced the bacon, sliced the mushrooms, boiled water for the pasta, put in some butter, put in pasta when water was boiling. PRESTO! It is done! Ha ha. Not quite lah. Anyways, I managed to almost burn the bacon since I think I put the fire too big Also, the cream sauce end up being a little too thick for my liking. Oh, and yes, the pasta was kind of a little tough (not enough boiling time).

I wished I had taken a photo of the final product for all of you, but I finished every bit of it before I could spell B-L-O-G. Loved the bacon. Anyway, the pic above CLOSELY resembles it I promise. And did I mention I made a small mess of the kitchen? Ha ha. I've cleaned it up, and left no evidence lying around. I'll cook it again for any of you if you dare to try...


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Photo Essay : "Fishy Business"


Friday, September 07, 2007

A new apple Touches down

Introducing the brand new iPod Touch. It's everything we expected and pretty close to what the rumours said it would be. 3.5 inch wide touchscreen, cover flow, iPhone's multi-touch interface, WIFI, possibly bluetooth, Safari web browser, iTunes store over WIFI and Youtube functionality. Apple even has a special tie-in with Starbucks which allows you to preview and buy all those cool songs they play at your favourite coffee place, though they made no mention of this service ever reaching the world outisde of the US of A. How typical of Apple. They should realise by now they are an International product! We pay as much but have no access to iTunes store and Starbucks music. Pity too that with such a gorgeous screen, the iPod Touch maxes out at 16Gb. Not for playing DVD movies I guess.

Go watch Steve Job's keynote speech. It's quite hilarious how he enthuses about everything - especially when he talks about being able to buy a song and pay 99 cents more to use it as a ringtone. Most phones today allow you to do that by just playing an mp3 clip that you can put together from a simple free-to-download audio software. How is paying 50% more for a song I already paid for, just so to convert it into a 30sec ringtone, anything but a rip off and not cool or amazing at all. Don't get me wrong, I love apple products for their attention to design detail and user experience but this sure looks like a scam to me! More gorgeous pics after the break.

Photos from


Wednesday, September 05, 2007


The 7 year old surgeon - Akrit Jaswal

Remember in school, how some people just stood out because they were overachievers? They topped the school every year, did the maximum subjects available and somehow managed to come in tops in most of them. These are the people who kept you wondering if they had a life or if they spent every second that they had mugging away. Well, the young kids in the following videos certainly give the word overachiever a whole new meaning.

What amazes me most about these true-life stories though, is the potential that each of the young kids have. Imagine... that and more lies within each human being. It makes you wonder what the human potential is really capable of, if all limits were taken off. Scientists tell us we use between 3-5% of our brains only. What would 100% be like? I'm sure the effect would not just be mental but also physiological. Perhaps all that is being shown in the hit TV series Heroes isn't that far fetched after all. If you believe in God, this must sure be evidence of his awesomeness. Wow.
More gifted kids after the break.

The Boy Who Sees Without Eyes

The Four Year Old who Ran Forty Miles


Having fun with clay

Martin Klimas, a German photographer certainly knows how to work his clay. This series of photographs by him, entitled Still Life, involves him breaking lots of clay models and capturing the essence of their explosive process in a freeze frame. In doing so, he manages to create a great sense of movement and power in his still shots. I appreciate the fact too that many of the models used are figurines of Chinese martial arts exponents in some sort of fighting stance. That combination of fragility and power captured in a split second certainly makes for a visual and emotional feast! Read his interview and see more pictures of this work at The Morning News Gallery and at his personal website. Enjoy two more pics after the break.