Thursday, January 10

Jan DOTM: Fried Laksa

Have you tried dry laksa? It’s life-changing! I know I’m being melodramatic but it’s like Laksa v2.0, an improved version with powerful battery life. Haha! Anyho, for the first DTOM of 2019, I’m going to talk about dry laksa because it’s effing delicious and not at all difficult to make.

I’ve always been a laksa “yellow noodles” kind of person and I find yellow noodles tend to soak up more flavor, hence the I used mostly yellow noodles for this recipe. But if you prefer just thick vermicelli, by all means, do what you prefer.

The Dancing Chef has quite a bit of kick, hence this dish is not exactly kid-friendly. But is great for parties – you could make a huge batch and incredibly satisfying since you could add as much ingredients into it as you want.

Hope you enjoy this dish as much as I did when I first discovered dry laksa!

Serves 8 adults

  • 1.5 kg noodles, mix of yellow noodles and thick vermicelli 
  • 3-4 TBSP dried prawns (hae bee), finely chopped
  • 3 packet laksa paste (I used Dancing Chef) 
  • A bunch of laksa leaves, plus 2 tsp of finely chopped ones for garnishing 
  • 200ml coconut cream or 300ml fresh coconut milk 
  • ~6 large-sized fish cake, thinly sliced 
  • ~12 pieces of taupok (tofu puff), thinly sliced 
  • 250g prawns 
  • 250g clams (or cockles)

  • Blanch your noodles for 1 minute. Drain and set aside. Best to lay them out on a wide surface otherwise they might clump. 
  • In a wok, under medium to high heat, add 2 TBSP oil and stir fry dried prawns till fragrantt. They will smell amazing. 
  • Reduce heat and pour laksa paste and laksa leaves in. Stir fry occasionally till fragrant. Watch out, don't to burn the paste. Add coconut cream or milk and turn the fire back to medium heat. 
  • Add all other ingredients, except the prawns and clams, and stir fry with the paste. 
  • When well incorporated, add clams and prawns. Turn off heat when prawns turn red and are cooked. 
  • Remove from heat, and in a mixing bowl, mix well with blanched noodles. Garnish with chopped laksa leaves.

Wednesday, January 9

An An Vietnamese Street Kitchen, Pasarbella Suntec

This Spring Roll Vermicelli was absolutely delightful. The spring rolls were stuffed with minced chicken, carrots, mushrooms and glass noodles - super moreish. While it might look plain, I love refreshing and filling this dish is, especially when you toss in the sauce and condiments and create one festive mess.

Sunday, January 6

Lucas, you are four

Minutes before this, my white chocolate mousse failed miserably (might have scarred me for life). Thankfully, I had some leftover coconut cream from the dry laksa dish I was preparing... 10 mins later, I had coconut buttercream, which actually worked out for the better. Presenting Lucas’ 3rd and final birthday cake: a homemade Caramel Popcorn Chocolate Cake with Coconut Buttercream.

Dear Lucas,

You are an incredible bundle of joy. At four, you have started to develop an acute sense of self-assurance and assertiveness. Instead of the shy space cadet we thought you were, you aren't afraid to use your voice to make a claim or defend yourself. Though sometimes I'll admit I miss that innocent hushed little fellow, you are making your presence felt and it's your turn to shine. Plus coupled with your cheeky innocence, it's hard to stay mad at you for long.

This is the year you are attending preschool by yourself and I'm glad you aren't disturbed by your brother's absence. With your brother in primary school, I feel ever the need to let you savour preschool.

Above all, performing is what you love to do these days. From Sam Smith to Macklemore and John Legnd, nothing gets you going like a good ballad. I'm remarkably impresed by your ability to memorise most of Sam Smith's greatest hits - though I have to admit your interest in rapping is both bewildering and amusing. When I see you perform, the way your eyes twinkle and the way your cheeks beam with such joy... I hope you never lose that sparkle.


Wednesday, January 2

And just like that - he entered Primary One

I think subconsciously this has been weighing on my mind over the past couple of weeks and I was secretly dreading the countdown to 2019. I don't even know why I'm this anxious but I'm desperately trying not to let it show. This boy, he's a fighter. He surprises me by being enthusistic and fearless about primary school. I truly hope, with us by his side, he emerges from the system developing a deep sense of self-awareness, discernment and mindfuless.

Russell, you are stronger than I ever imagined and I'm extremely proud of you.

Tuesday, January 1

Au revoir 2018 & hello 2019

We sent off 2018 an early birthday celebration for Lucas at my parents' NYE party. If you follow me on Instagram, you would see we had quite the spead, including this vanilla cookie dough speculoos cake, a lychee rose cake baked by my cousin, bread & butter pudding and açai bowls from Thrive (Acai affair).  

Wishing you an awesome and unforgettable 2019!



Monday, December 31

Cousins *Heart*

Last day of 2018!

Over the past couple of weeks, KW's brother and his family were back in town. Unfortuantely, the boys were down with fevers over the past week and had to cut back play time wth their cousins tremendously. Thankfully, they recovered just in time for a family wedding affair and to their delight, much fun with their cousins.

Festivities took on a romantic turn, as KW's cousin got married over the weekend. This time, the kids served as page boys and a flower girl, which really made the wedding 10 times cuter. This was especially meaningful as KW and his brother were their uncle's page boys more than 30 years ago. The kids might not rememebr this in the years to come but we have lots of evidence documenting their cheekiness and love.

Reporting for Page Boys duty 

We scrubbed ourselves clean

OMG, they had a Magnum bar!
L - Dark chocolate vanilla with speculoos cookie, pretzel and sea salt
L - Dark chocolate vanilla with pistacios, pretzel and marshmallow

These four are just too cute!

Tuesday, December 25

2018 - What a year

It’s always fun - albeit daunting – to look back at the year and figure out what the heck happened to it all. This was a fun year. Challenging at times no doubt but eventful and memorable.

Autumn in Hokkaido: Family vacations are a big deal for us. We made our first visit ever to Hokkaido basking in the autumn feelz and eating one too many soft serves. Japan never fails us, I swear. I’m afraid we are running of out places to visit in Japan. Ahhh, help!

Sidenote: We have booked our trip next June. #earlybird I'm rather pretty super excited!

Staycation at Shangri la: Well I also realized my boys absolutely love hotels. They’ve memorized all our rooms numbers since Tokyo 2015. Due to a last minute change in travel plans, we decided to do a staycation and it was a h-i-t. We stayed at Shangri La for sentimental reasons (we got married there), but now we love it as the boys had a blast. I know some people don't get staycations but we might just make it an annual thing.

New job: I changed jobs this year. Again. I joked with KW that this is my 6th job since we have been together while he’s still at his first. I won’t say too much about my job but things are good. Fingers crossed. The boys had a ball of a time on Kids@Work day and they are looking forward to the next.

A weekend in Bangkok: New job equals new colleagues. I took a trip with my colleagues to Bangkok. I never got people who travelling with their colleagues for fun. But that’s because, I also meet a bunch of folks I could well tolerate beyond Mondays to Fridays. Bangkok was a blast and it made me feel like an annual girls’ trip is much needed.

First trip to India: It travelled to India for the first time for work! I must admit, it's a country I need to ease myself in gently HEH. The food has been amazing as I've discovered I've quite the palate for Indian food. Though I've been in a cloistered environment but the locals I’ve met here are amazingly hospitable and I'm utterly hooked on masala chai.

Lucas' 3rd birthday: We kicked off the year with Lucas’ birthday celebrations at home and in school. My baby is turning 4 soon. 4 going on 14.

Russell's 6th birthday: Russell loved Lucas’ monster cake so much, he decided to have the exact same cake in green. For his home celebration, together, we made a 2-tiered chocolate beetroot cake. I absolutely love this recipe. Such a treat and wholesome one too!

Sam Smith Live: I bought tickets to Sam Smith's concert for KW's birthday and he was absolutely amazing! Such incredible talent - one of those who sound better live than recorded.

Flower power: I think I upped my flower game this year. While there weren’t a whole bunch of opportunities to get my hands dirty, creating those beauties and Chinese New Year and my mums’ choir performance felt like incredibly gratifying.

Dish of the Months: Speaking of getting my hands dirty, I challenged myself in the kitchen this year by creating 12 signature Dish of the Months (DOTM), in a bid to add some variety to my repertoire. From deep crunch pork belly to Lemony Bundt Cake, I learnt a lot from researching and creating these dishes. Next year, I’m really hoping to up my game and perhaps tryout ingredients such as lamb and scallops.

As always, thank you for reading. Hope you all have a fabulous 2019!