Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Chocolate Tart for a 12th Birthday!



My princess turns 12 today! How time has flown. Her birthday this year fell on a Wednesday. Although it was a school day, she woke up early, together with her brother, to watch the Chelsea-PSG European Champions League game on TV. They both woke up at 345am! At 530 we went down to wish her and then she came upstairs to look under her bed for her presents - as is the tradition. For her birthday this year, we got her a few things. First up was a set of 3 mini rubber balls (football, basketball and tennis ball) since she loves to toss them around; next we got her two 'magic' colouring books - just for kicks - the books magically turn into coloured pictures when you apply water to the pictures. Then we got her a really nice Puma tshirt, a Reebok tshirt, some fancy sports socks that she likes and finally the clincher was an Arsenal Backpack!





She was really pleased with the Arsenal backpack. Although I call her my princess, she is hardly a princess in behaviour and is a real sports buff!

While having breakfast, she painted the colouring books with water and both brother and sister were laughing away. Sometimes the silliest presents give the greatest joy. It was then off to school for the kids and off to work for us.


Sunday, 15 November 2015

Chocolate Mousse Royale Ice Cream Cake for a 14th Birthday





Ahh, how time flies. My little boy is no longer a boy and is now a 14 year old young man! His birthday this year fell on a Sunday and we started the day off by going to church. We were running a little late so we didnt wake him up to open his presents as we usually do. I managed to quickly place his presents under the bed just as he left his room and then we went back in and wished him.

He got a Chelsea t-shirt and a lego mini figure. We were supposed to get him a pair of sneakers that he wanted but there wasnt time to go shopping so hopefully we can go get it soon. After church we went for lunch the grandparents and then headed home to cut the cake.




Thursday, 24 September 2015

Egg and Bacon Pie and memories of a Milk Bar




When I was a Uni student in Melbourne I lived an an apartment that had a Milk Bar nearby - less than a 100 metres away. This Milk Bar was our stop whenever milk ran out(obviously) or bread, for a quick chocolate fix or snack. Even for a can of corned beef or when we had run out of something like tomato sauce. The milk bar was also a 'saviour' whenever we wanted a quick meal and that was usually a four and twenty meat pie with loads of tomato sauce squeezed into the pie. Joe and Claudette, the proprietors of this milk bar, served up another fancy pie that I absolutely loved - Egg and Bacon Pie. Joe and Claudette orginated from Lebanon and since I lived in that apartment for more than 3 years, we became good friends. They would know what I wanted based on what time of the day it was. If I sauntered in at around dinner time, Joe would welcome me before asking "Meat Pie or Egg and Bacon mate?"

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Carnitas or Pulled Pork in a Cubano/Sandwhich/whatever




This was made way back in February 2015 but I'm only posting it now. Better late than never right!

For a number of weeks now, my son has been asking if I could make Pulled Pork. We had tried the pulled pork burger in a kids meal when we had taken my inlaws out for dinner almost a year ago at Morgansfields. So over the weekend, I decided I would make some pulled pork!

At first I thought of just making my usual Pork Roast as the meat is so tender that I always serve it 'pulled' anyway. However, I thought I'd take the route of making a real pulled pork where the meat is served in a bowl - pulled away and ready to eat. Also, I figured I would slow cook the meat, kind of like braising it, so that it would absorb the juices and make it more tasty and flavourful.

While looking for inspiration on the web, I came across Carnitas - which basically means "little meats," and is a dish of Mexican origin. Carnitas are made by braising or simmering pork in oil or lard until tender. That caught my eye and I decided to combine a few recipes to make pulled pork simmered in beer and orange juice and also chillis for a bit of spice. So a variation of Carnitas it was.

Then came the decision of what to serve the pulled pork with. Fist thing that popped to my mind was a pulled pork burger. Then I thought of Cubanos! You see, A few weeks ago, we sat down as a family and watched Chef - the movie where a chef leaves his restaurant and starts up a food truck selling Cubanos. The kids seemed to think the Cubanos looked really good and I thought that was the end of it.

However, a recent trip to Fridays triggered their memory of Cubanos as it was on the menu. I mentioned that it didnt look very good though and thats when my little princess asked if I could maybe make it one day.

So with that request in mind, I decided I would make Cubanos.

So on Saturday, my little princess followed me to drop Michael off at band practice. Then we popped into the supermarket at Bangsar Village to get some pork shoulder - without the skin, together with lettuce and nice ripe tomatoes. My princess asked why I was getting Tomatoes and Lettuce and I explained they were for the Cubanos. "But Cubanos dont have lettuce and tomatoes Dads." She remarked. "So you're not really making Cubanos then...."

Monday, 10 August 2015

TLW's Birthday 2015

Today is TLW's birthday but the celebrations started on Saturday night! You see, since today is a working/school day and since Mike had to play with the School Band at some show for the launch of KL Fashion Week at PAvilion later this evening, we thought we'd best celebrate he birthday early.


On Sunday, TLW had a lunch appointment with some of her ex-schoolmates to celebrate two birthdays. I'd say Old Schoolmates but they are all still happening babes so 'old' doesnt quite do them justice! She figured she may be too full from a long lunch to properly enjoy dinner so we decided we'd do dinner on Saturday.

Of course she quietly asked if I could make her a Tiramisu for her birthday. But of course! That was always part of the plan.

So Saturday night, we went for a Japanese Buffet at Eyuzu Restaurant, Eastin Hotel. We had wanted to go to Genji at PJ Hilton but it was closed for renovations. So Eyuzu it was. The food was pretty good although I guess we were a little disappointed at the variety. Dont get me wrong, there was plenty but somehow it stuck to the basics. There was no fancy hand rolls, just the one with crab sticks. The sushi and sashimi spread was basically just Tuna, Salmon and some White fish. The did have Fresh Oysters and Prawns too but I guess we were hoping for more types of Sushi and Sashimi. They also had chicken, beef, squid and salmon teppanyaki made to order as was as Tempura made to order but both were pretty average. There were a lot of other items on offer as well. No cause for complaint but as we all agreed, it was nothing to knock your socks off. Still, we had a good time and indulged at the end of the meal with loads of Macha ice cream and also Moshi.

Sunday morning we went to church and then dropped of TLW and Bangsar Shopping Centre for her lunch appointment. The kids and I went to get some cream for the Tiramisu and also some bacon and ham for lunch and also contemplated what to make for dinner. I decided I would keep it simple since we werent sure how hungry TLW would be. The kids suggested Goulash and my princess asked if it would be nice with pork. So dinner was decided upon as Pork Goulash. I made some BLT Sandwhiches for lunch that the kids relly enjoyed. I think they were just really hungry! After lunch, I whipped up the Tiramisu and then later in the evening, Sarah helped me with the Pork Goulash. I also made a 'Saffron' Rice to go with the Goulash.

Dinner was enjoyed by all and of course TLW couldnt wait to dig into her Tiramisu. With only 4 hours in the fridge it wasnt as cold as it should have been although everything had set nicely. I served the tiramisu with Almond Pralines and that gave it a lovely crunch and added sweetness.




Monday morning and I woke up the kids to wish TLW. We had bought her a small gold pendant in the shape of a flower. She wore it to work and seemed rather pleased with it. We were contemplating going out for dinner later at night and catching Michael's Band Performance at Pavilion.

As it turned out, Michael called from school to say he was having fever and so he didnt go for the Band performance. I took him to the doctor in the evening and so whatever plans we may have had were scuppered. Anyway, the Tiramisu was still enjoyed by TLW and all of us.

On Tuesday, TLW took some to work to share with some of her friends. My little princess 'complained' as that meant that there would be less for us but I told her that the Tiramisu was for mummy and she could share it with whoever she wanted to.

Happy Birthday TLW!

Note: Pics taken using a phone camera due to time and laziness constraints :)

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Giant Choc Chip Cookie Dessert



Mothers day 2015 was celebrated on the 10 May and The Lovely Wife asked if I could make her a trifle. Sure! Why not! While the kids liked the idea of a trifle, they wondered if I could make something else as well. You see, I havent been baking too much new stuff off late and I guess the kids just wanted to try something new. I said I'd make them whatever they wanted but they retorted by asking me for suggestions. The trifle was being made on Saturday for Sunday as it needed time to set. So, since the inlaws were coming over on Saturday night, I decided I'd make something for dessert. I suggested a lemon cake but while my daughter thought that was a good idea, my son didnt seem to keen. I went through a few possibilities while searching the internet but most elicited looks of boredom and disinterest.

I had seen a Giant Chocolate Chip Cookie Sunday offered as dessert at some restaurant, I can't quite remember which one though. So I threw the idea to the kids about a giant choc chip cookie like dessert that you could eat with ice cream. The looks of boredom immediately turned to interest. Deep interest! I surfed the web for a few recipes and settled on this Choc Chip Cookie Cake from Sallys Baking Addiction.

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