Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A summary

I've become very lazy lately, I have to admit. Don't blame me, blame facebook. :)

I find it easier to do an all-in-one post these days, a summary of the stuff that I've done in the past week. :P

It was a busy weekend and 2 busier ones to come. I needed a break, and most of my Sundays are not packed with activities unless there are birthday parties, just time for church and time to rest, either at home, at dad's, or at Miz K's. This past Sunday, we spent it with Miz K and her family. I love going there. I only only wish they will move to our part of the world soon. :(

As we celebrated Father's Day with my grandpa, dad, and uncles on Saturday, Sunday was a free day for us. We had lunch at Bakerzin before proceeding to Miz K's. Got some macarons as Father's Day gift from princess to her godpa. I brought over some beef & chicken rendang leftovers from Saturday, so knowing the kids will not eat spicy, decided to make some onigiri for them. However, J asked if I was making bento, and not wanting to disappoint him, I decided to make them up on the spot. Thankfully Miz K had the necessary stuff, like takeout box & sausages. All I had to do was assemble them with the rest of the food, such as steamed fish and broccoli, which was part of dinner. We also had some honeydew beancurd which was a free gift with purchase of tofu from NTUC. The kids loved their bentos and it was a real delight watching them finish all their food. :) That made my day. :D

This wanton noodles was my dinner last evening. Totally loved it! I do not have the address but it's from a coffee shop at East Coast Road, called Mei Yuen. They serve chicken & duck rice too. It's in the row opposite Jago Close, near Holy Family Church. Yummers!

A sinful indulgence of mine this noon. It's durian season now, and each time we pass by the Ntuc near my place, lots of people will be at this stall queuing to buy the king of fruits. I've been tempted, but haven't had the chance. I thought yesterday was a good day to get it, but who's to know, while I was at the supermarket, dad called to say he wanted to take us to lunch. Durian plan abandoned. :( So by hook or by crook, I had to have it today. I got myself a $2 one, and the man says he won't open it to put in box, because why? It only costs $2! Oh well, I'd have to do it myself then. Verdict - It was ok, can't exactly say it satisfied my craving, cos it wasn't great. But it'll do for now. I did panic when I realised that the house stank even though I had it in the kitchen. Hehe. So made sure I opened all the doors and windows to let the smell out before hubby got back. :P

For lunch today, I made princess some boiled broccoli sausages, baby corn, pasta tossed in olive oil and seasoned with salt and Italian herbs, plus cream of corn soup and some cherries which are also in season.

Her teatime bento consisted of cheese sandwiches in the shape of miffy & friends, some golden kiwi, grapes, pistachio nuts, chocolate, and piggy gummies. I used the gel pens and thus the ink spread on the eyes and mouth, making them quite ugly. :P

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Pork Bulgogi Udon

I have been preparing lots of one-dish meals lately. Firstly, to minimise cleaning up, and secondly, to make life easier for me. School holidays are busy times, with lots of activities to do, which leaves very little time for food prep. Of course, it's not really all true, just being lazy. :P

Sick of pasta all the time, I decided to do this using udon. I remembered seeing Peony do a fried udon dish recently. That gave me the idea. I have done fried udon before, and I thought the bulgogi will go very well with the noodle. Mum recommended the bulgogi marinade and it looked good. I do like some of the Asian Home Gourmet ready-mixed spices which I've tried so far. I love the convenience of it and I do use it a lot. The Thai pineapple rice is nice too. Mum has a whole fridge-ful of such ready spices hehe.

Here are the ingredients I used for this dish...

I marinaded the pork yesterday, thinking I was going to prepare this dish for dinner. However, at the last minute, we had a change of plans as princess wanted to swim at her friend's place for a lot longer than planned.

I picked these up from the Cold Storage at Takashimaya, and was delighted to see Japanese cabbage & bunashimeiji, from Japan. The best part is that both of them were selling at very affordable prices. I also added in some broccoli for fibre.

Ooo... look what I found at the supermarket?? Cold Storage's very own kids' sausages. What I love about them? Well, I haven't tried them out. But what made it very interesting was the various flavours they come in. Here, I picked the broccoli & cheese ones. I saw yoghurt & apricot, and carrot & apple, not sure what else there were. For sure, these will be a regular in my fridge. I love how they take the basic sausage and add in veg & fruits which most kids do not like, and make them into yummy food. Well done! I'm sure most mummies will approve. Love the very cute packaging too.

For tea yesterday, I picked up some 'happy donuts', and sushi to take to her friend's place.

I couldn't resist the hello kitty ones.

Today, she's off to art camp an entire day. Thanks to IM who introduced me to this place. I do love it. And I think the girls will have loads of fun. I prepared the bento below to take with me when I collect her from art camp. I know this girl of mine when she's hungry, she's not very patient. Many a times I have been nagged at while preparing dinner, as, it's late mummy, it's already 6pm, still not ready?? It's 6.11!

In the bento are hello kitty sushi, broccoli & cheese sausage, and white nectarine.

This is the end result of my udon with pork bulgogi... err... not very appetising-looking, but it wasn't bad at all... subtly flavoured, although I had to add in some soy sauce, a drizzle of sesame oil, and some black pepper to make it more tasty.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

All about bentos

The bento above was made for dinner one evening. I thought it was easier to eat the hotdog in the bento box than on a plate. I boiled some young corn and cut up an apple. The hotdog was drizzled with cheddar cheese. It was delicious!

On most Saturdays, we spend approximately 5-6hrs at ballet school. As we are preparing for a concert, we've been busy helping with the sale of tickets. When we eventually leave the place and head home, it'd be after 3pm before we have our lunch. The week before, one of the dads went to pick up some pohpiah as snacks to munch on while we worked. However, I was told that I was the only there last Saturday, so I decided to pack princess and myself some lunch, since there won't be anyone to take over me if I wanted to pick up some food at the coffee shop. It was decided upon waking that I would prepare something quick, easy, and convenient enough to eat. I haven't been preparing much bento, thus decided I should do one for Princess.

I picked up some short grain brown rice from the supermarket last week, and haven't had a chance to put it to use. I thought I'd try it mixed with the white short grain rice. It was nice. For princess, it's the usual suspects of broccoli, ham, crabsticks. The onigiri had furikake mixed in.

For her dessert portion of the bento, there was golden kiwi, pear, and two macarons from Mezza 9, which were a gift to her from her godma's friend.

This is my big portion of furikake onigiri. It was yummy!

Two pasta dishes (Presto Pasta #118)

Dish number 1 - Pasta in cream sauce

One day, last week, dear princess was out with grandpa an entire day. He took her to the Science Centre in the morning, and to his house afterwards, and they spent a whole day together. How nice to let them have some bonding time. He took care of her meals, so all I had to do was cook dinner for hubby and myself. It was a chance to cook something that she doesn't like to eat, and that is pasta in cream sauce. It isn't my favourite as well, but hubby loves that, so decided to let him indulge.

My version is very simple. The ingredients are ham (any sort sliced up), capsicum, onion, garlic, fresh button mushrooms (sliced), Nestle cream, salt, Italian spices, black pepper, and pasta of course.

You can mostly find Nestle cream in a tin at the baking section of most supermarkets.


1. Boil pasta till al dente.
2. Fry onions till soft and slightly brown. Add garlic and fry till fragrant. Next, add button mushrooms & capsicum. When all is cooked, add ham and pasta. Pour in Nestle cream approximately half a tinful. Think it's around 125ml. You can add more as you go. Add some water to dilute it. Season with salt & spices to taste. You may like to garnish it with freshly shaved cheese, to give it more flavour. Or for those who love a spicier kick, chilli padi will be great!

Dish number 2 - Pasta in beef sauce

This is something that I cook very often for the family. It's such a staple and basic dish, I didn't see any need to share it. It's something that is cooked in most households. However, when Daphne said to 'share your everyday recipe', I thought, why not. I haven't been posting a lot lately and I have become lazy with my blogging. These days, I only share the bentos that I prepare for my princess, so I guess, it's time to go back to where I started... more about food.

All you need are minced beef (I used slightly over 200g for the 3 of us), tomato sauce (not ketchup haha), onions, garlic, button mushroom, shredded carrots (for added vegetables), salt, black pepper, Italian herbs, sugar, and penne. I do add in chopped tomatoes all the time, but didn't have them in the fridge today.

Method :
1. Boil pasta till al dente.
2. While pasta is cooking, brown onions, followed by garlic till fragrant, then minced beef. Once slightly cooked, add in mushroom, carrots and herbs.
3. After the above is cooked, add tomato sauce, salt, black pepper, and sugar to taste. I also added some water to dilute the tomato sauce. However, I am not fond of bolognaise sauce being too wet. I like it to be slightly thick as can be seen in the picture above.

With Daphne's encouragement, I've decided to participate in Presto Pasta Nights, founded by Ruth of Once Upon A Feast, I hope you'll find some comfort in these simple homecooked dishes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Bumble Bee bento

My very weak attempt at a bumble bee bento. Mini hotdog rolls were spread with strawberry cream cheese. Facial parts done with edible ink markers, heart-shaped cheese for wings, and feelers were secured using vermicelli. I'll try to do a better bee the next time. I was getting spooked when I saw 4-5 ants running on the table like vultures, so I had to get it done quickly and outta there! Haha.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Yippee, I finally received my wares... waited a week for them and was panicking because it was taking too long. Am truly in love with this man. Hehe. And I love the picks as well. The postman delivered them this morning, and I wasted no time in putting them to use. Made a teatime bento of donuts & golden kiwi for princess, after her ballet class. The bento turned out to be smaller than expected but it's very cute. It's also different in design from the other die cut bentos, with a piece in the middle going round the entire bento, where the cover ends. Ok, it's confusing. Only I can understand what I am jabbering about haha.

This bento below was served at dinner. A gift from a friend... the Cinnamoroll bento comes in a bag with a cooler pack, and it's really handy and compact. It has a main compartment which holds a pair of chopsticks as well. There are two smaller compartments and they all fit into a beautiful bag. I thought I had taken a picture of it but I thought wrong. Oh well... another day then.

Tonight's dinner was Jap curry, again. I know, I know, just lazy me. Cherry tomatoes adorned with a top hat and a crown. I wanted to put faces on them but princess was grumbling that she was very hungry, and why wasn't dinner ready! Too bad then. :P

We were over at my mum's place the Sunday before last, and princess accompanied her to the supermarket and tried these yummy fingers. She got grandma to buy them for her, convincing her to try them and that they were very good. Haha. Grandma bought two packets, one for each of them. I baked them today, as I didn't realize I had run out of cooking oil, and they were alright, not fantastic. I believe they would have tasted much better fried.

I didn't even keep track of my blog's birthday and only remembered it a while ago. So, happy belated 2nd birthday, dear blog. I'm sorry to have neglected you quite a lot lately. Going through the archives, I see that my blog was much more interesting and colourful in the early days. I have stopped baking and only cook once in a while now, so not much to blog about. I do miss baking, and hope to go back to it again, once my house can be rid of those creepy crawlies. Argh!!