Sunday, February 27, 2011

Jade: Bitemypasta #4

Saturday evening, doctor's mess: [I don't know why I was there on my day off...I'm sad that way]

Jade: No...I can't picture myself wanting children
SHO: What is wrong with you, Jade? Even Elton John adopted a kid!
Jade: .....................

As I sat reading the BTS guidelines later that night, I found my mind drifting as I briefly considered the whole idea of motherhood....To play the role of friend, foe, super hero and evil villain all at the same time...and in between all the calamity-saving, triumphant moments and angry tears..the latter of which you can only hope come few and far between... the realization that a lot of what you do is the small stuff...little things that make a noticeable difference when they're not done, but taken for granted when they are...To have to really pay attention because you know that when something's not right, it is not enough to hand out a chocolate bar and pray the problem goes away...because they generally don't..not until you find the cause; To learn to live your life on someone else's terms...while keeping a smile on your face.

It's a bit like being a house officer....for the rest of your life.

Tuna Arrabiata~ thinking makes me hungry

120g spaghetti
2 cloves garlic minced
1 shallot minced
2 anchovy fillets
2 birds eye chillies, chopped
Half a can chopped tomatoes
Splash of white wine
Half a can tuna chunks in sunflower oil, drained [ I don't do flakes...reminds me of catfood]
salt and sugar to taste
Fresh basil

1. Boil the pasta
2. In the meantime, heat up some oil, n gently sauteed garlic, shallots, chillies and anchovies. Crush the anchovies as you go along so they melt into the oil
3. Add the tomatoes, tuna and wine, give it a quick stir and leave to simmer
4. The sauce should be ready by the time the pasta's done. Season to taste and stir in some torn basil
5. Chuck in the pasta and give everything a good toss
6. Curl up with a good book and your bowl of fiery pasta. Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother is a good place to start ;)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Jade: Bitemyputtanesca

It's been a week since I've left home and I have yet to venture out of my room save to go to work...and even that is within the same compound. I have the post-home blues and online shopping with its guarantees of "free delivery whenever you want" is enabling my lack of motivation to do anything that requires more energy than tapping on a keyboard. Sometimes I think all these modern conveniences do nothing but feed laziness and the general moroseness that comes with it. Take away my swivelly chair and I just might have to walk to the bathroom instead of wheeling myself..or knowing me..just go into retention; Take away my card or my internet and I'll actually be forced to get off my arse and rediscover the satisfaction I once got from exploring the aisles of Waitrose. Better yet, tell me Papa John's website is down and I'll have no choice but to cook something...I suppose I could get some Ensures from the wards but that would require me to walk further..

Spaghetti puttanesca~salty, spicy and definitely worth a walk to the kitchen.

120g spaghetti/ linguine
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 thai chilli, thinly sliced [or pepper flakes, I just happened to have fresh chillies]
2 anchovy fillets
200g tomatoes, fresh/canned [ I used cherry tomatoes..but whatever led me to believe I could/would peel the skins of 20 odd cherry tomatoes..we will never know. I lost the will to live after 4, so I say go canned...or get the heaviest tomato you can find]
1/2 tbsp capers, rinsed and drained
Splash of white wine
salt and sugar to taste
torn fresh basil

** It's meant to have olives but I didn't have any...or rather the grocery store didn't deliver them

1. Heat up some oil, I used the oil from the anchovy can. Gently sauteed the garlic, chilli and anchovy fillets until they melt into the oil.
2. Add the tomatoes, mashing them with your wooden spoon as you go along
3. Add the capers, olives and white wine, and let it all simmer on medium heat
4. In the meantime, boil your pasta in salted water
5. The sauce should be fairly thick by the time your pasta is ready. Season to taste and loosen it with some water from the pasta pot if it's too thick.
6. Add the drained pasta, chuck in some torn basil and give it all a good toss
7. Grate some cheese over it and give your fork a good twirl :)

Jade: Bitemysoup #2

I went for dinner with my friends the other day, 2 of the safest people I know when it comes to food~think white meat only, and the same order from the same fish & chips shop every week for the past 15 years. So when fish& chip boy remarked on how boring my choice of appetiser was, I was, I think, completely justified in my indignation. It was cream of white onion soup with beer, beautifully thick and creamy with bits of sweet caramelized onion. But as much as it pains me to admit this, I secretly knew what he meant...because I used to think soup was old people food...watery broth with the wilted remains of something that could've been a carrot once... And then my mum bought a book on chinese double-boiled soups. Soup of the day became double-boiled free-range chicken with aged cucumber and wolfberries...wintermelon with pork ribs and dried scallops...lotus root and soft peanuts with belly pork....all gorgeously clear yet so packed with flavour and depth..My little bowl of soup was no longer something I gulped down at the end of became the star of my meal, something I looked forward to and eventually savoured..sip by sip..

For the record, 'soup is boring' boy~he had garlic bread.

Double-boiled chicken and dried shiitake mushroom soup~ the perfect remedy for homesickness

2 chicken thighs, chopped and trimmed of excess fat
5-6 pieces dried shiitake
small handful wolfberries
small handful dried scallops
2 honey dates
salt to taste

1. Blanch chicken pieces in boiling water and drain. This is meant to yield a clearer soup.
2. Dump everything in the top half of your double boiler and fill with cold water, leaving about a 2 inch margin from the top. There is a reason for using cold water...I just don't know what it is..I do as I'm told.
3. Once the water in the bottom half of the double boiler is boiling, lower the heat, fit the top half over it and let simmer for a few hours. I normally just leave it for the afternoon. Do check in periodically to make sure the bottom pot hasn't dried out.
4. Season to taste and enjoy piping hot.
5. Alternatively, boil some mee sua and have yourself the best bowl of noodle soup you'll ever have.
** If you don't have a double boiler, simmer over very low heat. The pressure cooker for all it's conveniences is not your friend.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Ice Room, Port Dickson

We decided to drive down to PD for the day to get away from the city. And my awesome cousin brought us to the PD branch of Ice Room.

An interesting little place that you can spot as soon as you make the turning into PD town. The exterior is decked in a bright neon-ish green that you can spot from a mile away!

Anyhoos! The Ice Room is not like the flurry of fro-yo outlets that has been mushrooming around KL.

It's flavoured shaved ice! But the ice is so smooth that it's almost like ice cream! The toppings are quite basic but adds a variety of texture to your eating experience.

This commentor's favourite is the Black Knight, which is the black sesame snow ice!

Price-wise, Ice Room is very reasonable. Each Snow Series special is still under RM 10.

And they have other things on the menu such as the Durian Tempura - which is also highly recommended!

I'm pretty sure they have a KL/Selangor branch - though I'm not exactly sure where it is. The cousin says its in Bangi, near UKM. Will edit the post if I manage to find an address!

But if you're ever in PD, take a break from the hot sun and the beach and stop by this place. ;)

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