I love Saturdays simply because Maria comes in on Saturdays. Maria has been our part-time helper for the last 8 years. She used to come in 5-6 times a week but because we’re on an austerity drive now, a consequence of the MCO and RMCO (and possibly another MCO/restriction order if Malaysians don’t behave and don’t adhere to Covid-19 SOPs), we have to prune off unnecessary expenses. Part-time helper is one on the list. When the pandemic eases off and hubby’s business rebounds to how it used to be, our helper can come in 5-6 times a week once again. For now, I’ll have to soldier on. Oh. My. Poor. Hands.😓
I first heard of the term “austerity drive” when I worked in the bank some 20 years ago, when the bank I worked in had to implement some austerity measures to cut costs due to recession. That was circa 1997 or 1998. So I learned a few tips and tricks to cut costs from the bank and from my parents, who also had to invoke a host of harsh cost cutting measures during the recession in the mid 1980s when my dad lost his job. I can splurge when times are good and I am also able to ride out a humble lifestyle with no luxuries. I am resilient and so are our girls. I’ve always been drilling into their heads to be thrifty and to always always have as much savings as they can for rainy days like this darn pandemic. Because it sucks and rips your entire dignity off your soul to have to borrow money from friends and relatives. This is something I wish I never have to do but if this pandemic and MCO never ends, I’m not too sure about it. Well, maybe half the world population would be dead by then 😪
As Maria is around to help us clean up, we could cook up a storm! 🤭 I dug out the packet of rack of lamb that hubs bought about a month ago and told our baking queen the menu of the day. She’s always more than happy to cook, especially new recipes. She spent almost the entire afternoon in the kitchen — first with making Taiwanese sweet potato dessert and then seared the rack of lamb.
Pistachio crusted grilled rack of lamb:
My house rule is: if you want to eat, you have to help out. And I roped in the littlest brat to make mashed potato.
Alycia the ‘tai siew jie’ (big princess) with royal fingers who doesn’t like kitchen work was roped in to cut a big cantaloupe. With an inflamed wrist, I have to delegate all the heavy duty chores to the girls whilst I stand, supervise and do spot cleaning 😁. OCD me will freak out at any crumb, juice, sauce and food remnants on the floor. The ants in our house seem to have bionic sensors as they would come and feast on even the tiniest piece of food crumbs within 5 minutes of dropping it on the floor!
Midas touch – this girl seems to have magic in her hands. Everything that she dishes out is delish!
Pan seared + oven grilled pistachio crusted rack of lamb with sides of mash and grilled carrots, celery and garlic.
Hubby’s friend went to Seremban and gifted us a famous Lucky King chicken curry bun. Gawd, it’s humongous! One bun is enough for 3-4 eaters with ravenous appetite. The chicken curry is such a delight and very flavorful. We had this for dinner as well. Yummsss!
A very pregnant bun with a huge packet of chicken curry within.
But mil and I were not too comfortable eating something that’s cooked with aluminum foil and plastic. The chicken curry is wrapped in a plastic bag and a layer of aluminum foil is then wrapped over before the bun is baked 🥶 😱. Imagine the chemicals leached out into the food!
Someone couldn’t wait to mop the curry sauce with the bun:
Photobombed by the hangry brat:
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