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Showing posts from January, 2013

Singapore - Whampoa Drive Food Centre on a Saturday Night

Those of you reading this who are based in Singapore will know what I mean when I say it didn't stop raining for 24h on Saturday a week and a bit ago. And it kept raining on and off on Sunday. It sucks, as it might only be drizzle but it really doesn't make you want to leave the house. So we were all chatting (moaning) on Twitter about the rain and saying it would be easier to be all together, how we could watch movies etc, and suddenly friends and their kids were on the way over, with another friend planning to meet us after she finished work! Very cool :) So over they came and we watched Bond (the adults) and Monsters vs Aliens (the boys) and then we decided to wander over to Whampoa Drive Food Centre, not far from our house. And we were very glad we did, and our other friend met us there. 
It is a great place, with lots of choice, totally local (we were the lone foreigners there getting a lot of interested curious looks :) ) and a place where people go to hang out for the …

January - White #worldcolours

As introduced yesterday, we have kicked off a project for a selection of photos, a colour per month. January is the month of White. 
My orchid back in Nice:

Cap Ferrat, Nice, love the white in the sky combined with the blue blue sky & water & mountains

World Colours - new project #worldcolours

Naomi over at has invited us to join in with a new project for photography called #worldcolours (or #worldcolors for the Americans among us)

The idea is that each month there will be a different colour that is the theme for that month and all the photos (from different locations) should somehow reflect that colour. We would love for more people to join is!

I decided to cheat slightly and start in this introduction with some of the colourful pictures that I won't manage to slot into a month in particular ;-) The month of January, as demonstrated by Naomi, will be white. but first, lets go technicolor / rainbow style!

Apartment blocks in Singapore:

A jukebox at Juke House Cafe in Nice:

A colourful wall in India:

Singapore - Yummy food at the local Indian Hawker on Kitchener Road

We both had a dreadful week last week. Very busy and very stressed. So come Friday night, neither of use was particularly in the mood to cook. I decided to kick us out of the house and go get something to eat  before I was so starving I ate crap or went to McDonalds or something like that (side note, we have a 24h McDo 500m from our place). I wanted to avoid that so insisted we went down to Little India as we can walk there, it has yummy food, and the atmosphere is so very different that it is utterly relaxing. 
We settled on going to the hawker centre I have mentioned before, a handful of stalls on Kitchener road, next to Komala Vilas, across from City Square Mall. 
First things first. Off to the first stall when you enter, to request a masala dosai. Different to Komala Vilas but very very nice. More standard Indian tasting, the masala filling was full of spices such as fennel seeds and cinnamon. Decent dal in the cup and behind you can see the green coconut sambal and the pink coco…

Singapore Eats - Eating out 4 of many many many

It is now time for the 4th edition of my Singapore lunches / snacks out. First for 2013! 
One of the first things we did upon coming back into the office was to go to Rochor Centre for some lunch. I was craving Pad Thai. Badly. I was also craving green veggies when I was back in Europe. So I got both :-) 

Penang - Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion - Gorgeous Blue Hotel

When we went to Penang, G insisted that when in Georgetown, we had to at least go visit Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion and ideally stay there. I checked out the prices and whilst not too outrageous by European standards, especially for the quality, but actually when you have been wandering around Thailand before, it does feel very expensive! If I remember correctly, it was about $120 (US) per night and we stayed 4 nights. Penang is lovely, Georgetown is fascinating. We got there from Langkawi by ferry.

I went into writing this post with the intention of only selecting a few photos to show you. I have failed. Miserably. Really really badly. I am now giving up. Cheong Fatt Tze is just so gorgeous and magical that I can't just pick a handful so this post is becoming just a selection of pretty pretty pictures. Of a gorgeous mansion that we loved staying out. We ended up not doing so much and just chilling out and hanging around, lounging on the lovely wooden sofas and reading. Relaxing. Hav…

Singapore - Jai Thai - Purvis Street - Cheap & Cheerful Thai food

The other day, we had a girlie tweet-up lunch in Kampong Glam to which I brought my friend who was staying with me and a colleague.  I had to go back to work and off to see my customers, but the girls hung out afterwards, shopping in Haji Lane (I was very jealous!) and chilling out at Blu Jazz and having shisha. So when I finished work up near Changi, I got in touch (as my friend had so kindly been sending me pictures of the chicken balls of fire!) and a couple of them were still hanging out so we met up again at Blu Jazz (my friend who was staying had gone off the the Night Safari at the Zoo which she said was utterly amazing, so I have to do that when my family comes to visit!). Then, we fancied dinner and I for sure didn't fancy cooking, so G suggested we go to Jai Thai on Purvis Street where we have been before but the girls haven't. It describes itself as the "most wallet friendly authentic Thai restaurant in Singapore" or something to that effect. They have mu…

Singapore - Wandered past a religious celebration being set up

We were wandering home yesterday (Friday night) from our local Indian hawker centre down in Farrer Park across from City Square mall when we came across the set-up of a celebration, of seemingly religious original, up the top of Race Course Road. We weren't quite sure what it was, so were tentatively looking at it when the uncle setting it up told us to take pictures. I happily obliged of course. 

We couldn't quite figure out what it was and what was going on, so we asked him. His English was minimal but he was very very nice and explained that the next day (ie. today, Saturday 19th of January) everyone would be coming and they would be praying from morning to night and celebrating. 

Even after looking around we didn't know which religion it was for, there was a picture of a god that looked a lot like Ganesh with all the arms, but with distinctly more Chinese / Eastern Asian features. There were a lot of offerings that seemed to be more of Chinese origin to me but I could…

Meatless Monday - Ratatouille Receipe

A receipe for French food from G :-) Given to a colleague of ours who liked when G cooked ratatouille for the office Christmas pot luck lunch. Ratatouille is not just a rat in an animated movie, it is actually a traditionally Southern French veggie dish which is amazingly tasty in summer with the fresh summer vegetables, especially with the awesome vegetables you get in the South of France and in Italy. Gorgeous courgettes (especially the Trompette type which we love), sweet tomatoes and fragrant peppers and aubergines. Mix those with olive oil, onions, garlic (of course, there is garlic in all Southern french food and pretty much everything we cook at home :-) ) and some herbs and you have ratatouille. Something so delicious you forget it is good for you. Healthy tasty food.

Singapore - Home Cooking - In our kitchen.... 4 of infinity... BBQ, hummus, noodle soup, curries, stir fries,

We do love to cook as you probably already know if this isn't your first read of my blog. When we cook something new or pretty, I try to remember to take a picture of it. I used to take them using my Iphone which now is entirely unusable (side point - need to replace it. Any ideas which phones I should be looking into?) as whilst it has had a cracked screen for months, I spilled water on it (again) and this time it has broken the camera and the flash is always on! So not very useful. I tried using the Blackberry but the camera sucks, so I am now just pulling out my proper camera each time. Not the most handy, especially when you are starving and your food is getting cold, but it really takes such better pictures than a phone! 
So here is some homemade hummus that I made for a gathering. Nice and easy and tasty. Chickpeas, tahina (which G hates so he never eats my hummus), garlic that I cook on low heat in some olive oil, salt, pepper, toasted cumin seeds, olive oil and paprika. 

Singapore - Haji Lane.... Shopping heaven in Kampong Glam

As you probably know by now, we work in Parkview Square, right next to the Malay Quarter of Singapore called Kampong Glam. We love being based here as it is next to rather than in the Central Business District (CBD), has lots of food options, shopping options and good public transport. 
One of the major benefits is being next to the Malay Quarter. We often eat lunch there in the malay cafes, there are other options like Singapore Zam Zam or Bergs Burgers. After eating lunch at Bergs which is on Haji Lane, N & I convinced G to come shopping with us! The excuse initially was going here: 

This shop is called Tokyo Bikes and has lots of cool old school style bikes from this Japanese brand. They have 5 models with options on each model such as colours, saddle, handlebars etc. Both N and I are in the market for a bike so we popped in and took photos of the bikes. I love this bright green colour! They are pretty expensive though so we might shop around a bit more. They go for between 98…

Penang - Fascinating old run down houses

One of my main memories of Penang is the number of slightly run down and dilapidated beautiful old buildings. In some cases just a shadow of their former glory remains and is replaced by plans growing out of the walls, trees in the roof and flaking and fading paint. 

Singapore - Shopping: Threadbare and Squirrel - Ophir road/North Bridge Road

Working in Parkview Square in dangerous. You have far too easy an access to Haji Lane in Kampong Glam and other places like Threadbare and Squirrel on the corner of North Bridge Road and Ophir Road. 
We walked past it on the way to Singapore Zam Zam, and my colleague and I spotted an awesome bag we both wanted:

And my boyfriend saw some lovely shoes. No pictures, sorry! You will have to go visit them. So we agreed to go check it out on the way back from lunch, with the excuse of needing to walk off our murtabaks and biryanis.

Sri Lanka - Induruwa / Bentota / Aluthgama

We spent quite a lot of time in the Bentota area as our friends got married in Induruwa and my 30th birthday was a couple of days earlier so we decided to celebrate it by the beach in style :-) we booked a lovely place on the river in Aluthgama and settled in for a few days. We walked over to Bentota and went to the beach there for a wander also as they are very close by. 
Here is the sunsetting over the Bentota Ganga, from the Aluthgama side. 

Singapore - Zam Zam: Yummy murtabak and biryani

When I asked for prata recommendations and Indian food recommendations in Singapore, muturbak kept coming up, especially for restaurants close to Arab street such as Zam Zam and Victory. I had been planning on giving it a go for a while, and this gave me the excuse to have lunch there. I had asked my other half and today he decided he wanted to have a biryani and that is also good there, so we went. And we took 2 colleagues along with us.

Singapore - Khansama - North Indian Restaurant in Little India

A friend met on Twitter @beirutibrit (and who is now a friend in real life - IRL for those into their Internet lingo) is a big foodie like us and even works in the food industry at a swanky restaurant. She had recommended different places that we loved so far like Artichoke Cafe and Bar. So when she kept raving about Khansama in Little India on Serangoon Road (see her review here), and kept asking us to go there, or saying she needed to take us there, we decided on a Friday night when we couldn't face cooking that we would give it a go. And we are glad we did!

Singapore - Recommendations for Indian Food in Singapore?

As you may have noticed if you follow this blog.... I am a bit of an Indian food fan. Love cooking it. Love eating it at restaurants. I am calling for all fellow Singaporean foodies to share their best tips on Indian Restaurants / hawker centre stalls in Singapore! Where is the best place to eat Indian Food in Singapore? And what are the best menu items from these Indian restaurants?

The reason I ask is that friends want to go for Indian food this weekend and we already took them to Komala and I would like to try something new. I have received a huge number of recommendations via Twitter. Thanks so much to you all and to @hellofrmsg! There were so many I thought it would be a good idea to track them all in a post - also so we can discuss among ourselves where to go. We will let you know where we end up. 

A new one we love is Tandoori Corner on Balestier Road, super authentic. 

Here are some I know already:
Komala Vilas - here is my post on it and @hellofrmsg agreesKhansama - been twice (…

Singapore - Bergs Burger - Haji Lane - Gourmet Burgers

We fancied a change from our usual lunch routine so decided to go to Kampong Glam and not our usual Malay / Indonesian place (Minang). I fancied maybe trying muturbak at Zam Zam as I haven't been there yet but G wasn't so up for it (but has promised to take me some time soon for lunch). 
So we agreed on burgers for a change, and a work friend came with us too. Off we wandered down Haji lane, getting very distracted by the shops on the way, though luckily at that time most of them were shut for lunch. We did decide to go past a few later on though, but after food. It was hard to tear ourselves away from the Tokyo bike shop but we managed. And we made it down to Bergs Burger which has relatively recently opened a second store on Haji Lane. The first outlet is on Amoy Street.

Singapore - Komala Vilas - Little India - Wonderful Southern Indian vegetarian food

If you have been following my blog, you may have seen my post earlier this year which was basically  Lunch and snacks in Singapore. I made the mistake of posting it in the morning (I had been up since 2am with jet lag) and I caused a lot of hunger pangs and drooling amongst my friends when I posted the link on Twitter. To make sure they didn't make their way over to my office to eat my brains zombie-style, I suggested we take them to the place that caused the most need to like the screen (you know who you are!). The food was the Onion Uttapam, Tomato Uttapam and the Masala Dosa from Komala Vilas, an Indian vegetarian restaurant in Little India, the least Singaporean place in Singapore. 

So we decided to go there on the weekend, 5 of us as unfortunately one of the gang has to work on Saturdays. We met up at Tekka Centre and made our way to the Serangoon Road branch of Komala Vilas. There was no room for us downstairs in the area which is "snack only" which just means you…

Singapore - When it rains in Singapore.... it pours!

Now for a non-food related post! 
Before moving to Singapore, I knew of course that it was a tropical climate. Close to the Equator and all that. So you expect it will rain, naturally. But you don't quite get just how much it will rain until you are here. Granted, December and January are the rainy months, but it rains all year round, just less frequently. And Singapore does not do drizzle. Nope, no drizzle. Only lots and lots and sheets and buckets of rain with cats and dogs flying all over the place. It is very hard to capture on camera but I have tried. I hope this will give you an idea of just how wet it gets. Walking from the pavement to a taxi and you get absolutely drenched. When it rains in Singapore, unless it is urgent, you are just better off waiting it out. You probably also remember my post about thunderstorms in Singapore, written just after one horribly scary one finished (so it may not be very coherent as I was totally freaked out!). I don't mind the rain so m…

Singapore - Prata...... nom nom nom.... Prata! Fatiman Stall at Tekka

As you may know from my New Year's Eve food post, we were hosting the New Year's Eve party for our friends at our place. And as per my previous posts on shopping at the Tekka Centre and how much things cost at Tekka, we like to pop down to Little India for our shopping as the best and cheapest chicken breasts are there (he happened to be closed *sigh*) and there is a huge amount of vegetables on offer at decent prices. 
We had woken up super early due to jet lag, we got up around 6am and decided that breakfast would be a good idea, and what better for breakfast than roti prata??? :-) So we hit two birds with one stone and jumped on the MRT down to Tekka. Luckily for us, we live on the Food and Beverage line (aka the purple line which I think is the North East line officially? I prefer our name for it) which is known as such, by us only, because it links Little India with Chinatown, plus Clarke Quay and Outram Park (for Duxton Hill). Very handy little line! However, it does of…

Singapore - Eating out / Lunch in Singapore 3 of ????

This being Singapore, we of course eat out quite a lot. It is cheap and fun and varied. From hawker centres to food courts to canteens to proper restaurants, the choice is endless. Even so... I seem to, based on the pictures below, always end up eating Masala Dosa! For those of you unfamiliar with dosa, it is a kind of pancake made with fermented rice and either eaten as is, with the various dips, or it can also be filled. I tend to go for masala filling, sometimes onion masala. Yummy!

Another favourite is uttapham/uttapam, discovered in Little India at Komala Vilas, the traditional one on Serangoon road, not the fast food version on the corner near City Square Mall, no, you have to go to the original one! We like both the onion and the tomato version so tend to get both and share. We have discovered that the tomato, being sweeter, goes better with the sour dal, and the onion one goes best with the pink chilli sauce.

Singapore - Home Cooking - New Year's Eve Party 2012 - Food

Hey all. Hope you had a great New Year's Eve party and celebrated well. G and I played hosts for our party. The preparation was interesting due to arriving home the night before, jet lag, unscheduled afternoon naps and waking up at 5am! We did our shopping in Tekka Centre, Bendemeer market, Sheng Siong and Fairprice! We were exhausted by lunch time! Hence the afternoon nap, finally waking up less than an hour before our first guests arrived and needing to clean the floors amongst many other tasks!
But it was all worth it in the end. Our friends had to bear with us for a while as we got ourselves organised, started the BBQ, made dips etc etc etc. But we got there in the end. We had some of the usual suspects over and made two new friends! I even got to watch Ice Age 3 with two little boys on my lap. Lots of fun.