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Sunday, September 29, 2013

Simple Homecooked Meals

Here are some of the simple yet wholesome meals that I whipped up for the kids this week....

Dinner on 24 September 2013...

Braised pork ribs with wine and potatoes, sardines with big onions and lime juice and a veggie dish.


Close up picture of the delish braised pork with potato dish...

Dinner on 25 September 2013...

Chicken rice and a veggie dish

This bento set was for Sherilyn as she came home late from the tuition centre that night...

Papaya, coconut water, chicken rice and veggie and a cream puff for dessert.


I cooked porridge for dinner last night as Cass had fever. We had planned to  have a relaxing dinner outside but had to cancel our plan when Cass' fever did not subside. Thank God, she is well again today :)


My girls like really watery porridge, thus you will see that the porridge looks like soup here. It was delish, sweet and tasty as there was a whole load of ingredients in the porridge, yums!

Alycia's New Hair Cut

Today I brought Alycia for a hair cut. She had been bugging me to bring her to the hair salon since last week but I only did so after she told me that the prefectorial teacher gave the prefects an ultimatum that if anyone with hair touching the collar of the shirt  tomorrow, the hair would be snipped off by the teacher!

After the hair cut, Alycia has been fretting about how awful she looks. While I really think that the hair style suits her type of hair and her face shape, I think she is still not used to her new look. I told her jokingly that if she did not like the new hair, there is really nothing much she can do except to get some natural noriko wigs to don on while waiting for her hair to grow LOL!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Cassandra's Doodle

Cass loves drawing and 'writing'. She definitely has her daddy's artistic DNA running in her blood.

While eating lunch yesterday, she doodled this :


I am putting this picture in this blog for online storage before I bin it. She has too many drawings and I am already running out of space to keep them.

 Cass at 5 years 5 months

Monday, September 23, 2013

Cheese-Baked Rice

Last week, I tried a new dish - cheese baked rice.  The girls and I had tried cheese-baked rice at several restaurants when we were back in Ipoh this year and I had told them that some day, I am going to try dishing it out.

It is pretty simple and I did not follow any recipe. I diced some chicken fillet and marinated them with soy sauce, mixed herbs, garlic salt and pepper in the morning. I like to do all the cooking preparation like cutting and marinating in the morning. Once this chore is over and done with, I can sit at my work place without having to worry about it.  In the evening, I stir fried the chicken fillet with big onions and garlic, red and yellow bell pepper, diced pumpkin and fresh sweet corn kernels.

Cooked rice is placed in a corningware. The ingredients are then transferred into the rice-filled corningware.

Then Alycia helped me to mix the ingredients with the rice.

Next Alycia poured in half a packet of parmesan cheese and 4 slices of cheddar cheese on the dish. 
This is how it looks before being baked in the oven for about 15 minutes, uncovered.

That's the final product!   Add some chopped spring onions or you can even throw in more cheese if you like it really cheeeeesy!

My homemade baked-cheese rice was absolutely delightful and my girls totally loved it.  It ain't very hard to whip up and I am definitely going to cook this dish more often! :)

The yellowish outcome of the last two pix was caused by the yellow lighting at my dining table. Actual color of this dish was way more appealing ;)

Friday, September 20, 2013

Multi-tasking Aunty

This is the aunty who wants to accomplish a lot in under an hour in the morning but does not have enough hands to do so like an octopus.

With  no hands to press on the button of the car key, no hands to hold the card to swipe on the door scanner and no hands left to open the house door,  this ah-soe has to clip the car keys, house keys and access card to 3 card holders and hang them on her neck.  Like soh por or not?

This aunty bought breakfast for the kids, bought newspapers and has bags of veggie and meat to whip up a warm and healthy dinner for her family tonight!

That is why this aunty has strong arms and muscles on her hands. No flabby auntie underarms, earned from years of hardcore training holding weights like a kuli to her 3 kiddos!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Food Glorious Food!

After days of eating bread with jam or wholewheat crackers with jam for breakfast, my taste bud yearned for something different this morning. So I asked the hubs to join me for breakfast at a nearby food court after dropping off Cass at school.

This was my bowl of  Ipoh Kai See Hor Fun with shredded chicken meat and wanton, which tasted very good but just not there yet. If you hail from Ipoh and have tasted the best of the best, nothing beats the authentic Ipoh Kai See Hor Fun, especially the distinct taste and sweetness of the broth and the smoothness of the hor fun (flat rice noodles). And the plump, crunchy and sweet beat sprouts too!  Oh, talking about this, I am already missing good old Ipoh food!

This bowl of noodles cost RM8 alright. No more RM3.50 or RM4 like it used to be just  a year ago.  A hike in the cost of petrol causes a chain reaction and the price of everything goes up! 

The next dish on my To Cook List is to learn how to make Ipoh Kai See Hor Fun broth!  Shall google for it when I am absolutely free.

This was Sherilyn's simple dinner bento yesterday.  These days, she comes back from the tuition centre between 6:30pm to 7:30pm.  If we eat first, I will prepare a bento for her.


The set consisted of a peeled orange, fried fish, freshly grated organic raw radish with Japanese soy sauce, beet root soup and a bowl of soba with veggie and seaweed. Someone at home was green with envy when she saw the bento set yesterday and today.  So it looks like I will have to prepare a bento set to ease the jealousy from raging!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Simple Lunch For The Girls - 13 September 2013

This is for my anti-rice but noodles-loving Cass...

Vermicelli with minced meat (left-over from the previous night's dinner), steamed chicken drumstick and a free-range chicken egg.

Tiny but she's got a very ravenous appetite. She polished off this big Pyrex bowl of food!

And this is for my rice-craze Alycia...

This is a pretty no-sweat meal which I managed to whip up in under an hour.

Steamed chicken drumsticks with sesame seed oil, pepper, sea salt, red dates and since I had an excess of pandan leaves which were starting to whither in the fridge, I dumped in a few sprigs of pandan leaves to add flavor to the chicken drumsticks.

The girls were very satisfied with their lunch :D

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Can You Guess What This Is?

Some of you have probably seen and used this modern gadget but this jakun me saw it for the first time at a 5-star hotel the other day.  My girls and their outmoded mommy had a good laugh when the gadget finally functioned and we were all wowed by it muahahaha!

Would you like to guess what this is?

Friday, September 13, 2013

Dinner In A Jiffy

Here's the dinner that I dished up in under an hour. I love using the oven to cook as there is no oil splatter and I can do other chores when the meat is grilling inside the oven.

Oven-grilled wild salmon with herbs, garlic salt, black pepper and olive oil...

I also made a quick chicken soup using chicken bones, carrots and pumpkin and threw in some green veggie and an egg each for the girls.  Also reheated the frozen braised Hakka pork dish that the MIL cooked for us before she left for HK.


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Of Maids And Lovers

I am now in a dilemma. And I feel like one of those very lost and confused lovers who cannot make up her mind on which man to choose to marry!  If you have been following my blogs, you would have read my struggles and frustrations with finding a good part-time maid.  Well, in December last year, I found a very, very good part-time maid (Maid M) who worked for me for half a year until she dropped the most dreaded news to me -- that she wanted to quit as she was very worried over the sudden appearance of a huge lump in her neck. She was not lying to me as I saw and felt the big lump on her neck.

When she left, I felt jilted, like a girl who was ditched by her most beloved lover. I was lost without any help. I engaged those part-time maids who were paid hourly and I hated their services. I'd rather do the work myself than have those hourly paid maids in my house. I went searching high and low for another lover part-time maid. At one point of time, I was on the verge of hiring a live-in maid from an unregistered maid agency as the low fees were too good to be true. Yea I said it.  Can maids be good and cheap legally these days? NO!  Crap! Not anymore.  The hubs said NO, don't be stupid and gullible!  We made up part of the statistics of those victims being cheated by  unscrupulous maid agents a few years ago and the maid agent was Alycia's classmate's father! Well, that man went behind bars later.   So I had to bite the bullet and forget about the whole idea of getting a live-in maid and do the work myself. Those days were tough and I felt like crying. My online business went from soaring to a sore as I had very, very little time left to do my online work.

I went to almost all the coffee shops and roadside stalls at my neighborhood to spread news to sellers that I was looking for a part-time maid who could come for 2-3 hours daily, Monday through Saturday.  A month past, still I had no luck.  Then one fine day, when I almost lost hope of ever finding someone like Maid M,  I received a call from Maid Y.  I immediately asked her to come for an interview at 5pm the same day.  When I saw her, my guts feeling told me that she's the one and she started to work for me the next day. That was 2 months ago. She is still working for me and she is almost as good as Maid M but she is just not there yet. Anyway, I am very thankful that she came at a time when I needed some help.

A few days ago, Maid M sent me a text message.  We have been sending each other text messages quite often, with me asking her whether the lump on her neck had subsided and how her check ups at the hospital went.  She always replied me by telling me that the lump was still there and she still had a few more appointments at UMC.  Coming back to Maid M's text message 3 days ago.  She told me that she was well and that the lump on her neck has subsided. She wanted to for me again!  I did not know how to reply her.  I wanted her back badly but if I accept her back, I would be unfair to Maid Y.  What if Maid M leaves me again after I have turned Maid Y away?  It was a very hard decision to make, just like a girl choosing her life partner LOL!  Finally, I retained Maid Y and told Maid M the truth about my predicament.

Maid Y will be going back to Indonesia in December this year.  There is a high percentage that she will NOT return to work for me though she assured me that she will come back. She kept telling me that she likes working for me. Well, I have seen too many cases where maids who had worked for my friends for donkey years never returned and my friends were left waiting at the airport, like a forlorn lover.  So I told Maid M that I may need her again in December when Maid Y goes back to Indon for a holiday.

I hope I have made the right decision. The hubs is unable to make a decision too.

Maid M is friendly, was paid RM700 per month and worked 5 hours each time she came. She is very simple and not calculative. Her work is detailed and her work is very good, albeit quite slow as she pays too much time to details.  She was ever willing to work longer than what she had to.

Maid Y is very reserved, quiet but her work is good. She is currently paid RM900 per month and works only 3 hours each time she comes. She will leave on the dot when it is time to leave.

What would you have done if you were me?  

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Simplest Lunch Ever

A few days ago, I was clearing the fridge and found 2 packets of organic Japanese sweet potatoes and 2 packets of sweet corns that the mil had bought before she left for Hong Kong about 3 weeks ago.  The sweet potatoes were starting to sprout shoots and the sweet corns look like they were starting to dry up. So I told Alycia and Cass that we would have to quickly clear those stuff before they go to the bin. They had no objection to my suggestion as they are hardly served such 'simple food'.  Whoopie, that was music to my ears as I needn't have to sweat it out in the kitchen to dish up a proper meal for lunch!

Here's Alycia's very simple and very healthy whole food lunch, consisting of papaya, steamed Japanese sweet potatoes, steamed sweet corn and 2 sunny side up free range chicken eggs. 


By the way, this kind of meal is known as The Caveman Diet, which is also called the Paleo / Stone Age / Warrior Diet.  It is a  plan on eating plants and wild animals similar to what cavemen are presumed to have eaten around 10,000 years ago. The diet is based on the foods that could be hunted, fished, planted and gathered during the Paleolithic era -- meat, fish, shellfish, eggs, tree nuts, vegetables, roots, fruits, and berries... all eaten raw or cooked using the cavemen way.  So go figure ;)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Random Events

The weather for the past few days has been awesome and just too good, well, at least for me, who is absolutely terrified of being hot and will literally melt under the sun. For the past three nights, I have been sleeping sans air-conditioner and sans fan.  Thankfully the hubs has no complaints as well and he went sans blanket.  Just a month ago, the temperature was hovering at 33 to 35 degrees Celsius and it is now about 22 to 23 degrees Celsius at night and during pre-dawn hours. Jogging at 6:30am is such an exhilarating time for me as the air is crisp and cold and I find so much peace exercising in the stillness of the pre-dawn darkness. Perfect for emptying all negative vibes from my mind and to absorb positive ones.

All in the name of charity, I paid RM10 to have this picture taken with these Star Wars characters at Bangsar Village on 1 September 2013.  The donation went towards the Society For The Severely Mentally Handicapped.  The 'package' also came with a copy of the picture and 3 badges. If I have the financial means, I would love to continue to donate more to the needy, like I used to when I was in the corporate world.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Impulse Buying

I love shopping at this shop in my neighborhood that sells everything at 5 bucks but I try to refrain myself from stepping foot into this shop. Each time I enter this shop, I end up buying stuff which I do not need and overspend. This shop is a bane for those on a tight budget. Although everything is cheap, many people actually indulge in impulse buying and end up wasting money buying things that they do not really need. One time, the hubs bought a couple of stands & mounts , trays and containers and they are still unused and collecting dust in the storeroom! I have a love-hate-relationship with this shop and now only visit the shop if I have something that I absolutely need to buy.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Radish Cabbage Soup For The Soul

This is my lunch and dinner today:
Organic radish + organic cabbage + roast pork bones + pork ribs soup.  No rice. No noodles.  Just an awesome bowl of soup.  I also ate one half-boiled free-range chicken egg for lunch. Cass ate the same thing and had 2 half-boiled eggs and 2 slices of homemade kaya toast.

The girls did not scoff when I told them that they will be having just soup and sunny-side-up eggs to go with rice for dinner.  They managed to polish off half the amount of pork ribs from the soup.  There is still a bowl of soup with ribs and that will be my lunch for tomorrow.  This is good stuff and a complete meal with protein, fibre, calcium, iron and much more, all in a bowl of soup.

And guess what the girls will be having for lunch tomorrow? Steamed purple sweet potatoes!  Just now I found 2 packets of organic sweet potatoes that my MIL had placed in a bag in the kitchen. I told the girls that since the sweet potatoes were starting to sprout shoots, we had better finish them off instead of binning them as they ain't cheap being organically grown.  The girls were A-OK with my suggestion and requested for sunny-side-ups again to go with the sweet potatoes, LOL!  Good girls, mummy is so proud that you all ain't fussy after all. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Pesto Pasta For Lunch - 4 September 2013

This is Cass' lunch today...

Leftover pesto pasta from last night's dinner. I added 1 teaspoon of pesto sauce, a little hot water and a little olive oil to the pasta before heating it up in the microwave oven. This way, the pasta will not be hard and dry after reheating in the microwave oven.

I also made some hard-boiled free-range chicken eggs, mashed them up and squeezed in some Japanese mayonaise and pepper, coz that's just how this sweetie-pie likes hard-boiled eggs eaten.

I now love Wednesdays as I only have to settle Cass' lunch. She is the least fussy of the 3 rascals and is pretty easy to please too, when it comes to food.  Alycia comes home at 4ish pm and Sherilyn who has started to attend after-school care at a nearby tuition-cum-daycare only comes home at 7pm for dinner.