Dealing With A Difficult Tween

I’ve been feeling a tad melancholic since the start of school on Monday. On the first day of school, my 11-year old found it extremely hard to wake up for school. And when she woke up after much resistance and kicking, she morphed into a totally different person… like someone has just cast a spell on her.  Errr, it’s still the 7th month in the Chinese calendar  👻🥶

The moment she got up, she was very moody and extremely stroppy. Suddenly, everything that I said to her wasn’t well received by her. Everything I did and said were wrong in her world.  Suddenly she became so volatile and disconnected from me that she’s a totally different person. It’s a shock to me as my previously sweet little baby girl starts tantrumming and hating me!  Hate is such a strong word but this best describes her behavior towards me.

Who is this girl?!

What did I do wrong?!

This went on for two days and today is the third day and she’s still behaving coldly towards me. It could be the lack of sleep that’s affecting her growing body and mind. She’s been waking up at 9 – 10am everyday for the past one week during the school holidays and forcing her to get out of her comfy bed at 5:30 a.m. can be ruffling this angry bird’s feathers. Ideally kids need to get 9 hours of sleep but I’ll be happy if she can chalk up at least 7.5 hours. Sleeping early is another issue that I am currently battling with my Gen Z girls. For those of you with Gen Z tween and teens, you’ll know what I mean.

Another factor is at her age, this girl is seeking to find more independence. She’s a tad more sheltered and controlled than her two sisters when they were her age because of her health issue. Until the repeat MRI is carried out (too long a wait at HKL), we are now waiting to know anxiously what’s going on in her urinary tract that’s causing the issue. Because she feels that her wings are clipped and she can’t fly like her peers who are all like birds who have just learnt to fly, she feels that life is unfair to her and she’s left behind in the baby nest alone.

I’ve read that the more I insist on controlling all her choices, I am inviting rebellion, or worse. If I can find appropriate ways to give her independence, she won’t have to rebel against me to start standing on her own two feet. Of course she’ll make mistakes. That’s how humans learn. And of course she isn’t ready to make all her decisions. I’m still the parent. Deciding how much to weigh in is the hardest part of this parenting dance, especially so when I am dealing with a tween who is facing not only wacky hormones flooding her body but also with an undiagnosed condition that may require another surgery that’s causing the both of us a lot of anxiousness. It’s been a long and frustruating 11 years for the both of us.

Feeling down, I had brunch alone today after dropping Sherilyn in school. Hubs was busy at work.  At the shop,  my eyes were bigger than my tummy ~ I over-ordered and had to doggy-bag some of the food home 😬

Two portions of spinach, 3 types of balls, 1 lobak, 1 stuffed bitter gourd, 1 stuffed brinjal and a bowl of pumpkin barley sago tong sui. This shop uses premium Sanbanto pork in their fish paste. Even their pork balls are from Sanbanto.

It’s an achievement that I could eat so much food for brunch! I was so stuffed to the gills that I felt like my denim skirt was going to burst. I am a pathetically small eater, thus I always find someone to eat with me to share my food.  I had to tapau the stuffed brinjal and lobak home.  I couldn’t finish the pumpkin tong sui.

I love the yong tau fu from Taman Desa Yong Tau Fu & Dessert but the bill can be a tad stressful on your budget if you, like me, get too excited and ambitious and stack the tray mountain high with all the stuffed items, balls, vegetables, etc.  My brunch today was RM18 plus RM1.50 parking ~ budget exceeded for lunch but I felt some of the blues melt away as I tucked into the delish food and yummy tong sui.  Food indeed has some destressing effect!

Exactly my sentiments!! A slow death with doses of cortisol injected into the body everyday 😩

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HFM’s Breakfast

The clock is ticking away to the day that Maria, my beloved part-time helper of 7 years goes on a 3-month maternity leave ~ only two more days with us  😭

Though Maria can’t do much strenuous work lately, we still love having her around in the evening to help us wash the dishes and do other light chores.  We treat her like she’s one of the family members and our 3 girls adore her… more than they adore me! But that’s OK and I don’t get jealous.  Maria gives me a sense of comfort whenever she’s around. I can just leave the house to her to clean up and go out and I will surely come home to a spic and span and clean house, every single time. I hope she’ll keep her promise and return to work for us in October 🙏

My breakfast for the last few days ☺️

Sherilyn’s homemade pie crust with papa’s homemade pandan kaya. So yummeh!!

Tucker’s gourmet caramelized onion crackers with papa’s homemade pandan kaya and a wedge of Mozarella cheese.  I always eat some protein with my carbs to slow down the release of insulin / spike in blood sugar.

Tucker’s gourmet crackers are  made from non-GMO ingredients and yeast-free. They’re pretty low in carbs too.  Goes well with Western soups, curries, jams and even good on its own.

And my mid-morning breakkie with the hubs yesterday:

One of the best pork noodles in KL can be found at Sun Sea kopitiam at OUG, where the morning market is. The coffee shop is kind of unkempt and run down. It’s very stuffy and hot to sit inside, so we sat outside and still had to sweat it out to enjoy our bowl of piping hot pork noodles.

What’s so special about the pork noodles is the broth – it’s infused with the umami sweetness of seafood. We heard that the seller adds seafood into the broth, to add depth and flavors into it.  Outside the coffee shop, you’ll see foreign workers peeling tons of prawns and squids.

Restoran Sun Sea OUG Pork Noodles
(Beside OUG morning wet market)
Jalan Hujan Rahmat,
Taman Overseas Union Garden (OUG),
58200 Kuala Lumpur.

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J’s Gate Dining and The Tokyo Restaurant @ Isetan, Lot 10

We spent half our day at Lot 10 on the first day of Hari Raya on 5 June 2019.  My bon viveur hubs has been wanting to bring us to J’s Gate Dining @ Isetan, Lot 10 to savor the best of authentic Japanese cuisine since their launch early last year but only has the time to do so today.  All his staff are on leave and his kitchen will be closed for a few days before they all work on full steam again next week.

J’s Gate Dining is the Japanese food lover’s one-stop haven to enjoy 17 of Japan’s best authentic cuisines featuring superior Japanese ingredients and hospitality. Depending on what your liking and cravings are, you can pick any of the outlets to appease your appetite.

With so many outlets to choose from, we were really spoilt for choices and it was pretty hard to settle on one or two. Finally my gourmand hubs settled for Umai Sushikan (for sushi and tempura) and Osaka Kitchen (for teppanyaki).

Umai Sushikan
Umai means ‘’delicious’’ in Japanese and sushikan is sushi.  Only fresh ingredients handpicked by the team from the fish market (air-flown from Japan) are used.  The sushi and fish that we had were indeed very fresh and these don’t come cheap either!  The bill came up to over RM300 for only 6 dishes that came in small portions!

Below: Grilled premium cod fish flown in from Japan and this piece of cod the size of half my palm (or maybe smaller) costs almost a hundred Ringgit! So expensive that I ate the super sour pickled spring onion 🤣

This is one restaurant that we’ll probably only try once. It’ll cost the hubs an arm and a leg to feed our 3 hungry piranhas (with a bottomless pit) till they’re well fed and satiated at this restaurant.  Even with two teppanyaki sets ordered from Osaka Kitchen, the girls were still hungry!

Osaka Kitchen
Osaka Kitchen is known for their popular signature Osaka dishes, including okonomiyaki and yakisoba which features food cooked on an iron griddle in front of diners.  The ingredients are also sourced from Japan, including the finest quality wagyu beef.

Osaka Kitchen is situated just opposite Umai Sushikan. For orders above RM200, patrons at Umai Sushikan are allowed to order food from other outlets. Thus, we ordered a beef teppan set and a pork teppan set. Each set comes with a meat, stir-fried pea sprouts, salad, appetizers, grilled avocado with cheese and ice-cream (matcha and yuzu flavors).  The bill at Osaka Kitchen is over RM200.

After lunch we segued into The Tokyo Restaurant for their signature cheese cakes. Hubs has been wanting to try the much raved about “best burnt cheesecake in Malaysia” (it seems) available at Tokyo Restaurant and finally he has the time today.  And indeed, one spoonful of this super smooth and creamy, oh-so cheesy cake sent me to cake paradise!  If not for the price, I would have sent in another order for the Classic Burnt Cheesecake and Matcha Cheesecake.

The original famous Classic Burnt Cheesecake @ RM 20 is Tokyo Kitchen’s signature 6th Avenue Cheesecake. The cake is served with a scoop of silky smooth whipped cream.

The Yuri/Macha Cheesecake @ RM21 is the bomb for matcha lovers. It’s over-the-top delicious, like heaven in my mouth!!  Both Sherilyn and I are matcha lovers and couldn’t get enough of it.  The cake is made with artisan 100% stone-ground aromatic macha powder sourced from Niko Neko, the matcha powder specialist.

Gateau Chocolate cake @ RM18 is rich, very chocolaty and surprisingly not cloy and sweet. Very nice!

Classic Tiramisu @ RM18 looks perfectly executed and tastes just as perfect as the other cakes.

The next time the hubs brings us to Lot 10 again, I think I’ll skip the main course and jump right into cakes at Tokyo Restaurant.  I’m willing to sacrifice gaining a pound or two for these killer cakes and then go on a diet and workout extra hard for the next one week just to get my cake fix!

The Macha Latte is one of the best I’ve tasted besides the one we tried at Sunbather Coffee recently ~ the milk to macha ratio is spot on, I don’t get the heart palpitation and tea drunkenness that I usually do after scarfing down half a cup of it and it’s not sweet. Love it to the max!

I now know what cake I want for my next birthday  😊 😋  Thank you darling. I know you secretly read my blog posts 😉

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Wesak Day Weekend

So Mid Year Exam’s finally OVER for the brat rat.  What a load off my Cass’ shoulders.  Next will be getting the exam papers back, report card day 😖, Jogathon day (I’ll be running with the brat rat again!) and sports day but before all these stress, it’s celebratory time!!  Celebration of end of exam, two public holidays in a week (how awesome can that be!) and upcoming school holidays 🤩

We had our first round of celebration yesterday at My Town as it’s a public holiday (Wesak Day). Hubs had lunch with us at the mall before rushing back to his kitchen and office, leaving us to shop till we drop for 5 hours before taking Grab home.  If not for our part-time helper who was coming at 5:30 p.m., we could have continued shopping for another 2-3 hours, have our dinner there and return home at 9 p.m.. Us girls just love shopping, don’t you too?😉

We first had lunch at myBurgerLab but my bon viveur hubs wasn’t too contented with his Beautiful Mess burger. While the girls enjoyed digging into their sinful burgers with loads of curly fries (OMG!),  I was disappointed with my bun-free low carb burger  as well, as the there was too much sauce on the lettuce. I find the sauce too heavy and it really defeats the purpose of having a low-carb meal when the sauce is too sweet and salty.

After our ‘appetizer’ at myBurgerLab, we had our main meal at a Japanese restaurant 😋

Sorry I can’t remember the name of the Japanese restaurant as I didn’t manage to snap a picture of the restaurant coz my Huawei phone died on me AGAIN after a few photos!  Lately my Huawei has been showing signs of exhaustion and symptoms of a premature death.  I actually intend to get myself a new Huawei phone but with the current  US trade ban on Huawei, I may not be getting a Huawei phone.  What brand of mobile phone do you think I should get?  I still like Huawei though but can’t live without Google. What’s a phone to me if it means no access to Google?  Hopefully Washington keeps its promise to row back on its ban on Huawei.

Cass shopped for more books while her two sisters enjoyed a movie at the cinema.

We tried another new boba tea – Daboba.  A very popular bubble tea brand from Taiwan, Daboba claims to have the most fragrant brown sugar pearl milk tea, so rich in flavour that it leaves you wanting for more. But I think it’s no biggie, Daboba tastes almost the same as its competitors and my review is based on what I tried, which was grass jelly milk tea with 25% sugar. Alycia and Sherilyn both tried the milk tea with cheese and commented that it tastes “OK only” 😐

 

Our trip to My Town will never be complete without covering at least 20 rounds at H&M with countless trips to the fitting room 💃  If only time was on my side, I’ll be gamed for a shopping marathon and walk over 10 hours at the mall without an aching muscle!  I used to do that with my friends before the girls came along.  Thanks to hubby for the shopping spree treat yesterday 😘

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The Fastest and Least Expensive Way to Cater For Your Next Party

Who doesn’t love the freshest delivery pizza with the best pizza toppings delivered to your doorstep on a lazy day where you don’t feel like moving a muscle? Over at our household, we have delivery pizza on the eve of the girls’ exams, when the girls have their friends over to work on projects or when I feel as if my hands are on a strike and don’t feel like cranking the kitchen stove or oven. We also like to order pizzas and fried chicken when we have a party at home. Pizzas are almost every kid’s favorite party food. My 3 girls can live on pizzas!

Throwing a party at home or in the office does not necessarily have to be costly. If time is not on your side and you need to throw a party on a tight budget, there are ways to go about doing it. You can call a caterer and order the cheapest menu available.  However, some caterers have a minimum order requirement.  Another way of organizing an impromptu party with a small budget is to order the freshest delivery pizza from Papa John’s, along with the crowd’s favorite finger food – fries, chicken dippers, pasta, burgers, doughnuts, taco, just to name a few.

We usually take advantage of the best pizza rewards program around. Some pizza restaurants have a buy one free one promotion and some reward you with a free personal pizza or appetizer after you’ve spent a certain amount on their large pizzas.

You can earn pizza delivery discounts when you order from Papa John’s. It’s one of the best pizza rewards program where you earn points each time you order. The more you order, the more points you earn and you can redeem your points for yummy fresh pizzas.

 

When you throw a party at home or in the office, there will surely be one or two people who need gluten-free food.  Papa John’s has gluten-free pizza crust that you can order to cater to gluten intolerance guests.

Have you tried Papa John’s new buffalo chicken pizza with the best pizza toppings? I am craving to try this new flavor now! Don’t worry if you can’t take gluten. You can ask for gluten-free crust ingredients.

The next time you’re tasked with organizing an impromptu party, chillax and order online from Papa John’s.  You don’t have to leave your comfy chair to organize a party. Everything can be done online at your fingertips now!

 

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My Thursday ~ 11 Jan 2018

It’s been a cold and wet day the whole of today.  After 1.5 days of torturous chills, backache and fever, my  high fever finally broke last night.

The downside of being a WFHM (or SAHM for that matter) is that work has to CONTINUE whether or not you are fit or ill.  Donning on a shawl wrapped round my neck and shoulders, I still had to cook and do school runs in a shivering body.  Not to mention waking up at 4:15 a.m. to get the girls ready for school.  And hubs is not feeling too well too.

After gulping down many packets of Izumio hydrogen water and chewing on my homegrown Indian borage yesterday, I was right as rain again at night!  What would make a WFHM and SAHM happiest?  When she’s fit as a fiddle and  everyone in the household robust.

As I felt so much better this morning, I did some brisk walking at our condo grounds but had to cut short the exercise when it drizzled.   And it has not stopped drizzling since.

As I was in the mood to cook, I whipped up Taiwanese ‘Zha Jiang Mian‘ for lunch for Drama Queen and Cass. As this was totally unplanned, I had to make do with whatever ingredients that I had in the fridge. What’s missing was spring onion.

My Zha Jiang Mian is 80% organic cooked using organic pork, organic Mugi miso, organic seaweed noodles and organic cucumber. What’s not organic are the carrots, cooking oil and garlic.

This dish is very easy and fast to prep. If not for Drama Queen messing up the stove, this would only take 20~25 minutes of prep time.   That silly girl put the lid on the pot to boil the noodles and I only realized it much later when the fire was put off by the starchy lava that spewed out from the pot. Hubs had to dismantle the stove to unclog the gas holes and I had to do what I hate the most~ scrubbing the stove, the stove parts and the pot glued with starch!

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Back In KL

Our ETS ride from Ipoh to KL Sentral today was a tad eventful.  A few minutes after the train dropped off passengers at the Sg. Buloh station, the air conditioning and lights in the train were out. Suddenly the train stopped short smack-bang in the middle of no where.  Then an announcement came. The train had run out of power. Great! This has been happening too often. We panicked and hoped that the outage would soon be rectified. Thankfully after a few minutes the train moved again, phew!  However, several minutes later, the air conditioning and lights were out again and the train stopped again!  Thank God the train moved again minutes later.  What a suspense for everyone. It would be torturous to travel on a train without air conditioning with sealed windows and doors when the unforgiving sun is out at full force at 1 p.m.  And this is what my friend had to endure when she traveled from Ipoh to KL Sentral just a few weeks ago.

Thank God we reached KL Sentral station safely.  After alighting from the train, another minor glitch greeted me. The escalator to bring us up was under maintenance.  Double whammy!  I struggled to lug our huge green luggage bag up the long flight of stairs.  Cass kept snatching the bag from me to help me carry it but the bag was heavier than her and I stopped her. Thank God again that a samaritan offered to help me carry my luggage bag up. I thanked the boy (I think he’s a college-going boy) profusely.

Moral of the story:  Kindness begets kindness. And pay it forward.

During the previous ETS ride back to KL 2 months ago, I helped a woman in her 60s carry her luggage bag down the train.


Waiting for the hubs to fetch us.

Hubs brought us to Fong Lye @ Jalan Imbi for lunch. The foodie hubs has been craving to eat at Fong Lye since last Sunday. When he asked us to go to  Fong Lye for dinner at 8 p.m. last Sunday, I didn’t entertain him as it was already late and the girls and I already had our dinner. Finally he had his craving satisfied today. He even told me the list of dishes that he wanted to order before dropping us at the restaurant while he went to find parking.


Sweet potato porridge; lotus root appetizer


Stir fried long beans; sauteed pork strips with yam and big onions; fried lala with basil


Fried rice with meat floss; tomato omelette


Fried fish; Three-Cup chicken


The damage

As we stepped out of Fong Lye, the foodie hubs said he had craving for pork jerky *eeeeyeeeeerr*!!

And he dragged us to the dried meat shop just a few steps away from Fong Lye and bought a packet of pork jerky.

Dinner tonight is dad’s pork ribs and sand ginger chicken which dad lovingly deep freeze the night before after cooking for us to bring back to KL.

 

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Food Pictures During The Holidays

On Wednesday, we waited for almost half an hour to get a table and then sweated buckets under the hot noon sun at the  O&S Restaurant @ Paramount Garden, PJ (hawkers’ centre):

Perpetual long queue at the chee cheong fun and yong tau foo stall…

Assam laksa with extra fish…

Famous yong tau foo with prawn paste chee cheong fun (my absolute favorite and best in the world CCF) and curry noodles…

Char koay teow with big prawns and cockles…

King Royal Rojak Indian rojak is the bomb. It passes with flying colors from the gourmand hubs and gourmand matriarch. The crackers have generous amounts of whole prawns fried within and the sauce is thick, luscious and lip-smacking.  We had this on Wednesday and three days later, which is today, the hubs made a drive to this coffee shop again to tuck into the rojak with his foodie buddy, Alan Yun and bought 3 packets back home for us.

With all the famous Penang food available at O&S, we don’t  need to drive all the way up north.  Some of our friends from KL who drove to Penang were stuck in a horrendous traffic jam, that last over 8 hours. It’s ‘raining people’ in Penang now as it’s the school holidays and there’s a long weekend ahead of us.

It’s a rare occasion that I agreed to join hubs to sweat it out at O&S.  He normally does all the queuing at this coffee shop to get takeout of all our favorite hawkers’ food and we enjoy them at the comforts of our own home.

Yesterday, we had dinner with our usual group of buddies and their kiddos at OUG Jade Restaurant, a Chinese restaurant opened just a year ago at OUG.  There is currently a first year anniversary promotion on going where there’s a big price slash on such popular items from the menu as suckling pig, Peking duck, Soon Hock fish, etc.

Our suckling pig and steamed Soon Hock fish.

 

And breakkie with Cass this morning at the Mamak restaurant:

Breakfast was just the two of us. The other 2 girls were still in slumberland as we had a very late night with our friends the night before and only hit the sack way past 1 a.m.

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Eve Of Hari Raya And First Day Of Hari Raya 2017

On the eve of Hari Raya, we had lemang sold by an Indon lady by the roadside.

Lemang is a traditional food made of glutinous rice, coconut milk and salt, cooked in a hollowed bamboo stick lined with banana leaves in order to prevent the rice from sticking to the bamboo. It is commonly found in maritime Southeast Asian countries, especially Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.  Some lemang recipes add corn and some use a mix of white and black glutinous rice. Lemang is usually eaten with chicken curry or beef rendang and sometimes with grilled fish, durian or tapai. Lemang can be found throughout Malaysia especially during the popular Muslim festival of Hari Raya Adilfitri. You can easily notice lemang stalls along the road during during Hari Raya.

I can’t remember when the last time was that we ate lemang.  I had a sudden crave to indulge in lemang when I passed by the stall and saw the familiar Indon makcik tending to her lemang at the fireplace. I made a U-turn and stopped at the stall to get some after the girls concurred with my whimp.  At RM13 for the short bamboo and RM15 for the long one, the lemang that I bought was scrumptious.  The glutinous rice was santany, creamy, slightly salty and the texture of the glutinous was soft and chewy. The rice has a hint of smoky taste coz at the time when we bought the lemang, the lemang-filled bamboos were still being cooked at the fireplace.  Such affordable street food could taste like a thousand dollars. For someone who doesn’t like rice, I kept popping the addictive lemang into my mouth, while being corroded with guilt!

This is how the lemang looks like inside the bamboo, which the seller chopped into half and got it wrapped in newspapers for us to bring back.

I also bought 2 portions of Indonesian style chicken rendang at RM5 a portion to go with the lemang. Alycia who doesn’t like spicy food ate the lemang with my papa’s homemade pandan kaya.

On the first day of Hari Raya, we left the house at 10 a.m. and only got home after 9 p.m.  We were out gallivanting the entire day  with our usual group of buddies and their kids.

We first had dim sum at Jaya Palace, PJ and then adjourned to Sunway Pyramid for a day of shopping, beer and sausages.

I spent hours shopping at H&M with the 2 older girls and here, you see two very happy campers.

Dinner was at a ‘tai chow’ restaurant at PJ State.

Best friends forever – our 3 girls and this group of 5 other kids have been friends with each other since birth. Same age group with similar background. They’ve traveled near and far together umpteen times. May their friendship last forever, just like their parents with the hubs and me, of which we have known each other since we were teenagers.

Grilled stingray fish with sambal and onion dip.

Clockwise: Claypot pork belly with salted fish, braised pork belly with ‘mui choy’, ‘choy po’ omelette and deep fried fish.

Clockwise: Grilled ‘kai yue’ (chicken fish), braised bitter gourd with canned black bean fish and fruit rojak (swoon!).

When we got home at 9-ish p.m., the girls helped to clean up the house whilst I did the laundry. We had to finish all the chores coz we were to meet this same group of friends again at Sunway Pyramid (again!) for ice-skating at 8.30 a.m. the next morning (what, SO early on a holiday!). We were set for another full day jaunting around the next day. The girls couldn’t be happier to spend yet another day with their besties.

 

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Our Saturday Morning – 3 June 2017

My parents, hubster and MIL left the house at 6:30 a.m. today for the Taman Midah, Cheras wet market. My aunt (my papa’s sister) runs a vegetarian food stall at the said wet market. Today, their mission is to try my aunt’s homemade vegetarian food.  My aunt has been making her own vegetarian food and selling them at a stall at the Taman Midah, Cheras wet market for over 20 years.

Our brunch today is a kaleidoscope of colour. I love all things colorful.


Mock meat rendang, which tastes as good as, if not even better than real meat. Yums, tastes like a million dollars!


Vegetarian ‘Suen Poon Chi’ or Hakka Yam Balls made by my aunt, who is a Hakka.

The chewy ‘Suen Poon Chi’ is another must-try dish at my aunt’s vegetarian stall; she doesn’t make this dish everyday though.

Vegetarian ‘Mee Siam’ and ‘Char Siew’.  


‘Ka Heong Jai’, braised super smooth mushrooms with mock meat and deep fried mock goose.

Vegetarian cheong fun (with turnip and carrot strips), ‘choy po ko’ and ‘mei tau’ (black eye peas) cake. My aunt makes all the dishes herself in her humble home.

Since they were already in Cheras, at my request, the hubster used Waze to find his way to the Cute Cute Angku shop to get me more cutesy handcrafted angku 😋

 


Yummy pork balls noodles soup

A big portion of pork ball noodles for lunch later

My parents will be with us for another day before they return to Ipoh. I’ll definitely miss them a lot. 💔  I’m feeling disappointed that this mid-term school holidays, we are unable to make a trip back to my lovely hometown of Ipoh 😓

 

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My Wednesday – 12 April 2017

Today is CoCo day in school. I left the house for school at 9:30 am to bring lunch (homecooked spaghetti bolognese) for Cass and Drama Queen.  After I left the school, I picked up the hubs from his office and off we went for our ‘week day dating’.  Hubs and I, we try to have breakfast or lunch together several times in a week sans the kids.

Today we went to Charlie’s Cafe. He ordered Sarawak Laksa and I ordered a small portion of fried vermicelli with curry vegetables and a slice of fried Thai style mackeral fish. Hubs also ordered 3 pieces of Musang King durian cheese tart which was so durianlicious!

I was already very full after my second breakfast. I had an early breakfast at home of homemade toast before leaving for school. But the hubs was craving for Portugese egg tart and a cuppa latte from Red Kettle. So we segued into Red Kettle from Charlie’s Cafe, which was just a few steps away. Though I was so stuffed that my tummy could touch my boops when I sat down (HAHA!), I could still polish off half the Portugese egg tart. It’s really the bomb. It’s SO, SO divine – the filling is so creamy and milky and the pastry is so fluffy and buttery. It’s the best Portugese egg tart in the world. I love everything from Red Kettle.  I love their lemon polenta cake and their range of gourmet breads.

After a super heavy brunch, we stopped at the car workshop to have my car’s central locking system fixed. Waiting for an hour for my car under the zinc roof made me sweat buckets. After fixing my car, I stopped by a fruit stall by the roadside to buy fruits, which made me sweat even more!  When I reached home, I had another shower from head to toe.  These days, the weather during the day has been sweltering and in the evening, it would pour cats and dogs. I have been taking 3-4 showers a day for the past week.

Today the mil has a dinner appointment with some relatives, so dinner was mine to settle. But thankfully the hubs sent me food from his kitchen. I am so lucky I don’t have to cook! I hate cooking when the weather is hot. I hate cooking when there is no momentum. After having the mil around for  3 months, I have lost the momentum and mojo to cook.

We had some glorious curry dishes for dinner cooked by hubs’ chef: sambal prawn with petai, assam fish, beef rendang, nasi hujan panas (colorful rice cooked with spices or Rainbow Rice) and Nyonya kuih. The portions were really big and I stashed some away in the freezer. We are going to eat the same stuff again tomorrow 😀

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Our Sunday – 12 March 2017

After church service, we had lunch at Paradise Dynasty @ Pearl Point Shopping Gallery.  Xiao Long Bao is Paradise Dynasty’s signature and award-winning dish.  The xiao long boas sure are droolicious but are a tad pricey.  The innovative 8-flavor / color ones (picture below) are priced at RM29 a set.   There was a good crowd at the restaurant – this goes to show that when it comes to food, we Malaysians are really a generous lot. We really don’t mind paying to fill up our tummies with delectable grub despite the current economic scenario in our country. My connoisseur hubs falls into this category but definitely not me, haha!

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After a sumptuous lunch, we went to Popular Bookstore. That’s our main intention of going to this mall – to get workbooks for Drama Queen who is sitting for her UPSR exam in 5 months (wish it’s 15 months!) and reference books for Alycia.

Next up was an exciting dessert time at Take Eat Easy Modern Bakery & Cafe. This cafe serves up a panoply of gastronomy selections for your ultimate satisfaction; starting from all day breakfast choices, freshly baked breads, pizzas and pastries, multi-cuisine courses, garden salads, sandwiches to gelato for the sweet toothed.  Take Eat Easy opened their outlet at Pearl Shopping Gallery late last year after their successful and booming maiden branch in Kepong.

Below – British Breakfast Set (hello carbs!)…

Below – fresh juice served in a cute light bulb bottle. I love the denim prints on their plates.  Take Eat Easy focuses on classic yet contemporary style in its interior design, i.e. wood and denim. Their chair seats are wrapped in denim fabric with eye-catching prints of your denim pants!

Below – crispy waffle served with fresh cream, strawberries and ice-cream (swoon)!

 

On our way home, we made a stop at Le Point to grab some gourmet bread loaves and buns for the girls’ breakkie the next day.

 

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Yung Kee Beef Brisket Noodles (Ngau Lam Mee) @ Jalan Pudu, KL

If you’re prepared to sweat it out under a canopy in the hot sun to enjoy one of the tastiest Hong Kong style ngau lam mee (beef brisket noodles) in the Klang Valley, head over to Yung Kee at Kwai Hup Restaurant (coffee shop) at Jalan Pudu.  We did just that on our Saturday morning when the hubs was in the mood to drive us to Pudu for breakfast.  Though we sweated buckets sitting under the canopy in the 11:30 am scorching hot sun, we enjoyed our beef brisket noodles with beef balls, beef tendons, wagyu beef and honeycomb like tripe cow’s stomach thoroughly.  And then tapau-ed 50 pieces of uncooked beef balls at 80 sen each.  🐂

Housed in an unassuming coffee shop, no one would have known that inside the coffee shop lies the tastiest beef noodles stall in the Klang Valley. Housed inside the coffee shop is another stall that sells prawn noodles and shredded chicken noodles.

Look for this corner restaurant to get your beef noodles fix.

Albert cooks the beef brisket till the meat is fork tender and the fat is coagulated into a creamy mass.

The honeycomb like tripe is a must-order with a bowl of cow’s stomach.

Below – our order…

 

Below – the homemade ‘lai fun’ with thick goey broth is unlike other ngau lam mee.  The ‘lai fun’ has good texture, the broth is rich and beefy; sesame seeds and toasted peanuts are sprinkled on the noodles to add moreishness, crunch and an earthy hint to the bowl of goodness.

While hubs had ‘kon lo lai fun’, I stuck to meehoon (my all-time favorite noodles) in beefy soup.  The soup has a robust beefy taste and is thicker in consistency than those from other stalls.

Below – our mean bowl of Wagyu beef which tasted heavenly! Check out the thinly cut strips of Wagyu beef, cooked to a tee, with hues of pink  and a little fat. They melt in the mouth. After snapping a picture of this, nothing was left in the bowl for me anymore!  They were wolved down in a jiffy!

Below – Albert Lai (the owner) had honed his skills in Hong Kong to prepare beef noodles.

Albert Lai had honed his skills in Hong Kong to prepare beef noodles. — Pictures by Choo Choy May

The total bill for our breakfast including the 50 pieces of takeaway beef balls cost  over RM130 for 3 adults and 3 big-eater kids. Reasonable?

We’re having another round of beef balls with  noodles at home for dinner tonight. The smell of the beef balls simmering in the beef broth wafting in the air is making my tummy growl now! 😋😋😆🍜🍜🍜

Yung Kee Beef Noodles,
Restaurant Kwai Hup,
24, Jalan Kancil,
Off Jalan Landak, Pudu, KL.
Tel: 012-215 8009.
Open: 8am to 3.30pm. (On Saturdays and Sundays, they usually finish by 2pm).

 

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Our Friday, 2 Dec 2016

Brunch on a breezy and gloomy Friday morning was Indian food at our regular Indian eatery – me, the girls and the mil.  Hubs had to be at his client’s event.

We had mutton murtabak – so yummy!!

The mil had roti canai, Cass had roti telur and I had my favorite tosai rawa.

Today is a day of baking for the girls. While waiting for her 2 sisters to  prep the ingredients for blueberry lemon cheese tarts, Cass made an array of pastries and cakes that look as enticing as the real thing… from magic clay!

Cass wouldn’t let anyone touch her clay cakes, lest her babies get dented.

After a laborious 4 hours in the kitchen, the girls with supervision from their grandma managed to whip up these super delish blueberry lemon cream cheese tarts. They are SO SO SO good that they should be illegal. Seriously.  Best in the world tarts with crispy pastry and super creamy lemony cheesy filling oozing with drug-like ooooommmph.  Plus with fresh juicy and sweet blueberries accompanying the cheesy crispy tarts, the tarts are totally out of this world. Swoon!!

While the girls busied themselves with tarts baking in the dry kitchen, I was busy in the wet kitchen cooking up dinner. There’s been a hive of activity in the kitchen every evening as the 3 girls converge there to help to cook.  The mil is still feeling under the weather and I am still fully in charged of cooking dinner for 6 – 7 people each night.

 

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Isetan The Japan Store @ Lot 10, KL

The foodie hubs and his foodie buddy went to the brand new Isetan The Japan Store @ Lot 10, KL early this week to take a peek at the much raved about newly refurbished Lot 10, which opened its door to the public on 27 Oct 2016. There are only two Japan Store concept stores in the world, the other one being its smaller counterpart in Paris.  My foodie hubs was very impressed and could not wait to bring us there.  Despite a heavy thunderstorm on a Saturday evening, we braved the rain to the heart of bustling KL to where Lot 10 is yesterday. Traffic was heavy as expected and we had to queue to the car park.

Each floor is designed to generate its own distinctive appeal:

LGF: The Market – experience the seasonal flavours
GF: The Museum – experience the ultimate japan
1F: The Studio – experience the fashion live
2F: The Room – experience the grateful lifestyle
3F: The Cube – experience the inspiring culture
4F: Restaurant Floor, will open in 2017

The Market:

What attracted the hubs the most is the food hall. Oh well, he is a gourmand isn’t he? He lives to savor the finest food and is happiest when his tummy is satisfied.

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The food hall was flooded with fans of Japanese cuisine.   It was hard to find a table. We spotted a table at Yakitori Hanabi and quickly got ourselves seated and ordered several yakitori items before the foodie hubster went to the individual stalls to order more food.

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I never liked natto, a fermented soy superfood but over time, I have acquired the taste and have now learned to appreciate the distinct pungent flavor of the natto beans.  This bowl of natto + egg rice is very flavorful but the kids haven’t yet acquired the taste.

This skewer of humble grilled salted cherry tomatoes is so flavorful and juicy.

Yakitori with leek.

Teppan sirloin steak bought from one of those individual stalls.

 

 

We also brought home 2 packs of frozen saba fish at RM20.80 a pack. Can’t wait to do a grilled terriyaki saba for the girls next week!

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After our ‘main course’ of meat, we had desserts from Tsujiri.  The girls fell in love with the matcha ice-cream from Tsujiri when they tasted it for the first time in Hong Kong during our vacation last year. We had to queue up for everything albeit the prices of food there ain’t cheap. Well, if you’re a fan of all things Japanese, you wouldn’t mind the long queue and the price.

Part of our desserts from Tsujiri…

After a satisfying dinner, we walked around the impressive Japanese food hall.  For a moment, the girls felt like they were in Hong Kong. For me, I felt like I was in Japan as all the petite and pretty Japanese food stuffs that the mil and sil normally get for us from  Japan are mostly available here now.

**coughs**  Would you pay RM49 for a punnet of two apples flown in from Japan?  Not me!!  The most expensive apple that I am willing to fork out is Envy apples costing RM5 each.

Grapefruit juice right out from a fresh grapefruit! Total awesomeness!

A grapefruit only costs no more than RM2 each. Here, we paid RM10 more to suck the juice out from the fruit directly. I am in total awe with Japanese technology!  I am more in awe with the level of cleanliness of their toilets.

Fancy getting one of those grapefruit hole puncher thingy for yourself?

Frozen fruit popsicle sticks. If not for a tummy with Tsujiri ice-creams and desserts sloshing around, we would have tried these alluring colorful fruit popsicles.

A wide variety of sweet potatoes flown in from Japan. Some are designed to be low in sugar and high in nutrients but  at RM7.20 per 100gm, would you buy them?  Errr, my trencherman bought one to try and it cost a frigging RM12 each *choke*

We had the sweet potato for breakfast the next day (today) and it didn’t taste good anymore. It was bitterish and the skin was super hard. There goes his RM12 but at least we tried grilled Japanese sweet potato without having to fly to Japan 😀

As we walked into the hall where all the Japanese sweet delicacies are sold, I could not stop telling everyone that I felt like I was in Japan.

My connoisseur of food bought World Champion Financiers from Henri Chapentier.  He wanted to try the best financiers in the world listed in the Guiness World of Record, 2 years in a row.  At over RM50 for 3 super tiny financiers, I really think that the financier sponge cakes are over-rated. It is so small that our 3 girls commented that they can stuff all the 3 financiers into their tiny mouths at one go!   Well, at least we tried this award winning financiers without going to Japan! haha!

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Sake…

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Pick your choice of vege powder, freshly pounded for you…

A panoply of smoothie and fruits…

Vegetables planted in state-of-the-art LED lighting plant…

Many of the staff at Isetan The Japan Store are Japanese.  As we left the store at 9pm, which is the store’s closing time, the staff wished us good night and thank you while doing the courteous Japanese bow.  We were all truly impressed with this awesome Japanese store. This makes me want to visit Japan soon to immerse in the real Japanese culture. I love everything Japanese! 🙂

Isetan The Japan Store
Lot 10, 50 Jalan Bukit Bintang, KL
Tel: 03 2382 7777
Website: www.thejapanstore.mistore.jp
Hours: Daily, 11am-9pm.

 

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Awal Muharram Holiday – 3 Oct 2016

One of the best things to happen on a weekday is to have Monday off – off goes all our Monday blues 🙂  And we had just that yesterday. It was such a LUXURY to sleep in on a Monday morning of a school-going week. Total bliss.

We spent our holiday at Avenue K. It’s been more than half a year since we last visited Avenue K.  The one restaurant that we craved to eat at was Tokyo-based Bankara Ramen.

Bankara Ramen serves one of the tastiest ramen in town. If you have tried their pork-infused creamy and luscious broth that comes with each bowl of ramen, you wouldn’t want to have ramen anywhere else.

Check out the spoonful of spicy bean paste chilli. It was so spicy that we wouldn’t eat it but when hubs told us that it costs a frigging RM2 (or maybe RM2.50) as add-on, Drama Queen quickly poured some onto her noodles.

If you are not into ramen, try their Oyakodon, soul food of steamed rice with succulent chicken, soft-boiled egg and shredded seaweed.

Ramen (volcano) egg and Onsen egg.

Deep fried baby fish.

As we walked out of Bankara Ramen, we saw the newly opened Hokkaido Cheese Tart stall at the concourse.  Being the foodie that he is, hubs wanted to try this much raved about baked cheese tart from Hokkaido.

The baked cheese tart craze started in Hokkaido, Japan, took over the country and eventually invaded Hong Kong, Thailand and Singapore, before making its way to Malaysia.  The mousse centre is made with a blend of three different types of cream cheese, piped into a crunchy shortcrust pastry base. To ensure freshness and perfection, each tart is baked fresh daily at the outlet.   With a crumbly exterior and warm, soft, meltingly cheesy filling, it is no wonder this treat has taken the world by storm.

Each tart goes for RM5.80, and there is a six-for-RM29 promotion going on currently.

So are the cheese tarts really worth a whopping RM5.80 each? If you are a cheese and tart fan, then it is absolutely worth the price. I would give it a 5-star rating for taste and quality. I ate one this morning right out of the fridge and the tart still tasted heavenly.

 

A few steps away from the Hokkaido Cheese Tart stall were some token-operated kiddie rides. Guess who wanted to ride on it (without buying the tokens of course)? Hahahaha! I guess the big girl missed being a kiddo again.  Once upon a time, she used to love riding them.  I remember hubs and I once collected so many one Ringgit and fifty sen coins just so we could use them for such rides during the weekends.

While I brought the girls shopping, the hubs went for a Thai massage to kill time.  We went to H&M and were pleasantly surprised that there was a sale going on. Lucky us as we managed to grab some real good deals. We also popped by Popular Book Store and Daiso before meeting hubs at Franco Japanese French restaurant for a very early dinner at 4pm!

While waiting for our food to arrive, we sampled the Hokkaido cheese tarts. They were SO good I think I walloped 2 tarts! Drama Queen whacked a tall glass of matcha ice-cream milk shake. Gawd, I would have puked had I put this entire cup of creamy milk shake into my tummy.

Hubs ordered a squid ink rice with mushrooms, squids and omelette which was really rich and delish.

Ham, cheese and egg on a super thick slice of toast.

Warm and soft chocolate pudding.

After stuffing myself with so much rich food, I felt really cloy and had the familiar overeating stomach discomfort. For someone who eats very little food each day, my stomach had a hard time digesting so much high calorie food.  But I think I burnt off all the calories  by this morning. Before I plonked myself onto  bed last night, I did 80 bicycle crunches on the bed. This morning I brisked walked for 40 minutes and back home, after downing a packet of Izumio, continued with a few sets of Swiss Ball crunches on my fitball.

 

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