Explosion of tastebuds & others

Thursday, September 24, 2009

We tend to put off things we dislike or find tedious. It's a matter of prioritizing and making time. I do find myself quite a procrastinator and I honestly loathe myself to the core for it, but, I wish I can just put a stop to time and do things my way. The most-terrified event of the year is looming around the corner and I'm entangling myself in a warp of emotions. Gastritis is acting up again despite gobbling food whenever possible. Bought a Zinger meal just the other day at 130pm and had to munch on the burger whilst driving. Talk about multi-tasking. Only at 430pm did I manage to take a sip of the drink which came with the meal. Not forgetting the mini whip potato which was an immense savior at 730pm when my stomach started its cacophony of growls. I wallow in insanity and self-pity at times. Who is here to love me? Who is here to cook me a bowl of something? Who is here to boil me that bitter tasting TCM herb which would supposedly bring my blood level back to normal? Well, whoever you are, I can't feel you.

It's a love-hate relationship wherever I go. First it's with mom. I won't exactly call it "hate". Too strong. Afterall, she's the one I had my umbilical cord entangled with for 9mths. but she gets to me at times. In good and bad ways. Just the other day, I was telling her how my health had been deteriorating and that I'm constantly without food (sounds like some famine victim in a rural part of India). She started nagging. Usual. Next few days, she kept calling to check on me and taught me how to boil stuff to "treat" myself. She did suggest for my MIL to do it for me since I'm so busy. But......even the son doesn't care. Pays lip service all the time. Much less others. Can't expect others to know or take initiative right? I take for granted the times I'm forced to drink up the entire pot of god-knows-what...now, I'm reminiscing. Wish someone would fuss over me now.

I think I'm a slave for perfection. Not good. Not good at all. I may just tear myself in two or explode in a fireball of stress. My soul is suffocating. I need to pay off some sleep debt which is long overdue. I'm hyperventilating as I think of the forthcoming presentation and and the practicum which is in the same wk as my students' exams. I guess being persistent does entail some sort of foolishness. Currently m entertaining thoughts of taking a long break to escape from all worldly and matters of the heart. Can I do so? Perhaps as what K would say ..." NO!! LIVES R AT RISK!" Ok. Reality check. Emotions went bungee-jumping, (several catalysts r at fault) will notify you if they return to safe land.

Amidst the lunacy, I managed to seek some sanity last Sunday. Gave in to my intense craving for seafood! The damage? hmmm...you won't wanna know. Nestled comfortably in agricultural bliss, in an untouched part of Singapore, lo and behold a restaruant so famous that several HK and Singapore stars patronised.

The sweltering heat of the merciless sun almost killed my patience as looking for the place was a challenge. Especially so as the both of us hardly venture to the other end of Singapore. Thank goodness it was all worth it. The above --> Top Shell with Fried Dou Foo. Not any ordinary beancurd, but crispy on the outside, soft on the inside. An excellent concoction together with the sweet Thai chilli sauce.

Next up, MUSSELS! The sambal assimilated my nostrils, rendering me weak. Giving in to temptation.
My saliva was hanging dangerously at the tip of my mouth. Bamboo Clam! I'm not really a garlic lover, but the garlic was really sweet. Brought out the freshness of the clam!

The highlight of the day. The star! We were all trying to figure out the recipe. Everyone badgered me to experiment. EXPENSIVE ok? The broth was delactably infused with the sweetness of the lobster. It's no sin to pile up on this. I ate 3 bowls!!

Tastebuds exploded in utter delight at this sight!

Smoked Duck. This wasn't that awesome as I think we could probably get something similar in Cold Storage? hehe..ok, to give it credit, it tasted great. A little oily but nevertheless Tasty!

This fishy was swimming happily out in the tank and now, sadly (for the fish), it's on our plate. FRESH!

Spinach & Abalone. Real Abalone. Probably the canned type though. in anycase, they all send shivers down my spine! HEAVENLY!

I'm piling up on fats in the most undesirable ways but this lollipop drumlets are to die for!Somehow for the above dish (3 egg veg), I seem to feel my version's tastier! Hahaha..NOT SHY!

ok....in stark contrast.... what had been brewing in my little Kitchen:

To treat myself well and to make sure I get sufficient "QI", this was my virgin attempt at boiling Dangui (n lots of other weird herbs) Chicken soup. A very good first attempt (don't be deceived by the layer of oil....it's camera trick I swear!).....sweetie drank two bowls! It was supposedly for me! Fortunately, knowing him well, I boiled extra!

Piling up on the fibre too since I constipate frequently.
Salted Egg Bitter Gourd. He "fought" to be my main chef when I was preparing this dish. Ended up being a tat too raw for my tastebuds. Nevertheless, Thank you! haha
Coffee Pork Chop. Strangely, it's only 70-80% close to what we have at the restaurants. Can't seem to get the right aroma. However, my kind gourmets of the night said it was good. hehe...too kind too kind!

An all time favourite => a mixture of garlic calamari and chicken strips! A very good beer snack too! However, a lot of work goes into it. I was literally battling with the oil splattering out from the wok. Sweetie and Big bro had to come to my rescue. What a sight!

This is one of my late night musings. There's lots more to tell I'm sure, but my aching back and the Eifel Tower of books are calling out to me...............Give stress wings and let it fly away!


Sunday, September 13, 2009

I have been stretched, strangled, constricted and pulled, pinched and pinioned like a medieval heretic. The strange and perverted thing is that I seem to enjoy it. The week had been a really fulfilling one. The onstart of the September hols meant that the final exams are drawing near. How today's youth cope with such encroachments on their future, I can't imagine.

Have been getting up real early and working an average of 12 hours a day. A part of me was pretty convinced that I am made of steel. Classes for diploma in educational studies have started. First lesson was rather disappointing. I should be the trainer. It just dawned upon me that the piece called a "certificate" is soooo important, thus I was coerced into taking up this course. 3 hours of lesson with a trainer whose mantra is "Teach less learn more" wasn't exactly what I had in mind. Her idea of teach less was simply because she was ill-prepared. Everything that she was imparting was what I had already knew. Only difference was, she was using a whole lot of bombastic words to represent psychological understanding of students. Nonetheless, the qualification is necessary and I will press on.

The work-plagued week was complemented by catching up with old friends. Strangely, this is a popular week when everyone wanted to meetup. Caught up with J and M at Brewerkz. Old friends who did not seem distant when we chatted. Was impressed with M's wittiness and accolades and swooned by J's charismatic smile (he didn't contribute much verbally thus nothing else to swoon over! haha). Mid-wk, an old friend from Primary school gave me a surprise tinker to check if there's progress in my life. Sad to say, I disappointed her. haha. Later part of the week, I had a good time out with H who, as usual, entertained me with her many anecdotes and funny antics. Gals sure can yak coz the both of us chilled out till midnight, bridging the frequency closer. Am blessed to have friends like her to keep my sanity checked.

Shall now let the photos do most of the talking.
Disclaimer: I shall not be liable should the below cause excessive salivating or any other food-related withdrawal symtoms.

H and I wanted to patronise BLUE LOBSTER at Frankel but unfortunately, it toiled through several recessions and was probably badly hit by this particular one. IT CLOSED! BOO HOO!
Hopped over to WERNER'S OVEN @ Siglap instead. Ordered their famous pork knuckles and Farmer's Sausage.
Special of the day -- Seafood Pasta. Verdict - I'm not a meat person thus wasn't fantastically impressed. Have eaten better pork knuckles at Thailand. Nevertheless, I hasten to add that it's a good choice should you be shopping for a place to eat. Advance reservations are advised as the place is usually packed on wkends.
H was craving for the mango ice shaving at Hong Kong Cafe, thus we visited that place and chatted till the cows came home.
The next day ie. Saturday, sweetie and I ventured to unfamiliar grounds. I suggested going to Seletar Airbase for dinner. Been hearing about the quaint little place called Sunset Grill set amidst the hangers of Seletar camp. Along the way, whilst travelling on the TPE, the sun was setting and hues of red and orange filled the sky. I was hoping that we could enjoy a romantic dinner with the sunset as a backdrop. Afterall, it was 630pm then.
BY 7pm, we were still trying to spiral around the well-worn track. We made several rounds along the gloomy road. There were absolutely no road-signs or signs of extreme civilization. Abandoned colonial buildings lined the dusty road. A call to the restaurant did not help too as the receptionist was speaking with an accent which was hard to decipher. Finally, after much navigation, we came to a broad sweep of the avenue, made a left turn, then a right turn and a left turn again and saw hanging lights ornamenting the dark gloomy sky.
We finally arrived! This Korean airplane was parked right next to the pub.
The place was packed and we were 4th on the waiting list. Had to wait for half an hour before it was our turn. You can imagine our exasperation as the place was deserted and there was absolutely nothing else to do. Thus, sweetie and I sat in the car and talked. WOW! We actually talked! Today must be a day when we said the most number of sentences to each other! haha
8pm. The moment I sat down, the mouth-watering aroma of sizzling chicken wings greeted my nose. The famous Buffalo Wings. You get a choice of hotness from Level 1 to 10. Being first-timers, we were advised not to venture further than Level 3. So level 3 it was and it was certainly intense enough for us! Sweetie had sausage lips at the end of it! The infamous wings didn't come cheap. 6 pcs were going for approximately $19.50. The hotter it gets, the pricer it gets too!
CLAM CHOWDER! 我的最爱!My all-time love! My tastebuds exploded in utter delight. it's FANTABULOUS! Comparable to Dan Ryan's clam chowder! Whoops of joy! I was eager to consume the temptation and was spoilt for choice.
We ordered half a dozen mussels in white wine and garlic sauce, but a dozen of them arrived. We didn't realise till we were struggling with the last few pieces. The garlic bread was also awesome. Soft and Warm. The right combi. These were by far merely appetizers! I moved one of the pieces tantalisingly close to my mouth, gobbled down the mussle and was eagerly ready for more.
Main course: Mine -- Pan-fried Dory; His -- BLT Sandwich. We engage in an exhausting and exasperating attempt to finish our meal. Over-estimation once more. We had to pack the balance at the end of the night.

Which meal is complete without a satisfying dessert? Cousin P mentioned that the brownie's real good thus I had to make space for it. After what seemed like eternity, the sinful dessert arrived. The wait was long, but it was all worthwhile. I was determined, at least temporarily, to preserve its immaculate and delicate appearance. I proceeded carefully to cut through its smooth texture and savour the warm brownie. My nose picked up the distinct scent of vanilla and this stirred me into a state of frenzy. It was heavenly! Overall, I'd give the place a 3 star (out of 5) for food quality. Ambience is comfortable and a great gathering place. However, if the day's humid, good luck! Service is extremely slow. Our dinner took a total of 2 hours! A little pricey for a small pub in the outskirts but I guess if you are with the right people, it's all worth it. Its destruction to one's wallet and size was inevitable.

Having said this much about food, it's now back to reality. Even a reasonable night's sleep hasn't diminished the euphoria that sees me now unleashing a peal of eulogistic superlatives that can only bring me taunts, yawns and snorts.


PS: By the way, do you know the meaning of "knackered"? a radio DJ was using this word to tease some bimbotic models during one of his "plucking" sessions. I thought it was hilarious! Some people are just dense.