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Monday, December 7, 2009

Post # 300 : An Ode to the Past

A post written some time around this time, some time ago... when these fingers flexed to write more than usual!

**

Early Morn

Melbourne sleeps peacefully...not stirring despite the noisy clicking of my keyboard... it appears to be lulled still by the birds' constant chorus outside.

I opened the windows and let the breeze in, and if i closed my eyes it doesn't take much for the mind to be in the middle of a forest, where there is peace, fresh air, harmony, and a cup of coffee.

It's 4:51am and my notes are still waiting for my eager fingers... but the smell of paper didn't quite appeal as much as the scent of this new beautiful day.

As I enjoy the odd hours of a weekend and the solitude in my living room, an unknown winged one decided to share my space. It stayed in a distance, hovered around and then left me alone again. I liked it.

Traces of brown sugar kept me high still. Flashes of expressive eyes and sunrise somewhere come to a corner of my mind. I let it stay there. Broken fragments of thoughts scattered in my head begin to form another picture. I let it merge unhurried.

A deep inhale. There's always time to pause and breathe in.

Again I hear the birds' song - i think they're rejoicing for my shallow appreciation for life's little moments like this.

Good morning.

**

And indeed, there's always time to pause and breathe, and be grateful of the wonderful things that life brings. The ingredients vary - some find it easy, some find it hard, some need a little luck, a little nudge, and a lot of sacrifice and hard work.

Happy holidays everyone. :)

**

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Saturday Snapshots






Thursday, November 26, 2009

After the Rain, v.2

Dead, or alive?


Dead
Notice the hole in the middle - no flesh left inside.




Bent


cant get enough of this blooming beauty



Previous rain dance here





Sunday, November 22, 2009

Singapore Style Chili Crab v.2




Made the same way as the last time, and with blue swimmer craps as well, except that I previously substituted bagoong for the belacan, and now I used the real deal!

If you haven't seen it before, here it is -


the cover


Top layer, plastic, to contain the distinct smell which some people may not like :)
and a thin parchment underneath, to keep moisture in (i suppose)


no it's not a chocolate bar!!!


This time, I made some steamed white buns to mop up the spicy sauce, and fried a few freshly steamed buns for a semi-authentic Singapore Chili Crab experience, just like in the restaurant! Except I screwed up the size and shapes of the buns. Hahaha. But the taste wasn't bad! I just used the same recipe as the previous steamed pork buns, and shallow fried several pieces in oil for a crispy outside, yet soft inside.



serving suggestion



and like most Sunday lunches - it is best served with beer! :D

Spell Check

Remember this?

They spelled it correctly this time.


good work!

Pearl Jam Concert

20 Nov 2009
Etihad Stadium
Front Act : Ben Harper, Relentless 7 and Liam Finn
Truly one of the best concerts ever! (and the crowd was not rowdy at all!)





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Ben Harper

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more Ben Harper

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""Due to the possible injuries that could occur from moshing and crowd surfing, we ask that you refrain from such activities tonight"

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Yay!

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awesome

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*screams!*




Pigging out at the Fiesta

Every year, Filipinos in Melbourne gather for the Philippine Fiesta of Victoria. Just like back home where towns or barangays would have their special day of celebration (we'd look forward to it because the main street would be closed, meaning more room for playing games!), this one happens every November for two days (Saturday and Sunday). This particular event has been going on for 26 years now here in Victoria.

In this event we have successfully filled our stomachs with all the nice Pinoy food made with pork like dinuguan (sample recipe here), lechong paksiw - a stew made with leftover roasted pork with a special gravy and vinegar, menudo - pork meat and liver in tomato sauce, pork bbq (Pinoy blend tends to be on the sweeter side), bopis - minced pork lungs and heart sauteed in onion, garlic and chillies.




foreground - bopis and rice, with laing (the grayish/greenish-tinged veggie dish made with sundried taro leaves, minced and cooked with coconut milk)
top left - dinuguan
top right - menudo



lechon paksiw


summer cooler - a drink called "sago't gulaman" - "sago" refers to the tapioca balls and "gulaman" is gelatin, usually colorful and cut into cubes, mixed with a sugar syrup made from brown sugar, and served with ice


pansit - noodles

carioca - skewered balls made with glutinous rice and milk. the balls are deep fried, coated with brown sugar.


The program was of course composed with karaoke singing contests, beauty pageants (Miss and Mrs. !) and some celebrities. Several stalls of migration agents, real estate and Pinoy merchandise also found their spot in the big hall at the entrance of Melbourne Showgrounds, this year's venue.

Previous Filipino food dose from the fiesta here and, a bit disappointed that this spiced vinegar wasn't sold this time!

And what could be more Filipino than this?


Aussie soft-serve ice cream. And gelati :)


a Baby Dora. ??!







Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Sage Has Really Grown

Last year's sage turned out to be a mutant.

A Day's Harvest

baby cos lettuce
and there's still heaps more from where that came from!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Buzzed

The Fly

Let me tell you about the birds and the bees...

Candlelight


Reminiscent of the days when the power will be out by even up to 10 hours, back in the Philippines, several years ago. My father had to use a car battery to power a light bulb for evenings. A "pamaypay" (handheld fan made of dried leaves or paper, like those foldable japanese fans) would be an important device in warding off mosquitoes.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tickled Pink

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Iris

and i'd give up forever, to touch you... ?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Drunk Jellyfish?

seen at St. Kilda beach

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Spell it

Seen near the city

Two Peas in a Pod


literally!
(ok, maybe 3.)

Grapefruit-Gin Summer Cooler


With temperatures reaching 30C Melbourne is sweltering in the longest run of November heat in more than 80 years. While the weather permits sleeveless shirts and shorts, the fruits and veggies enjoy (or torment?) the sun and bring forth a wonderful bounty, like the first harvested grapefruit.

So the second fruit taken from the tree landed in tall glasses with gin, cointreau, honey, mint and soda water, to help HYDRATE those who are thirsty amidst the hot weather!

In a tall glass (a very tall glass for very thirsty people, if you have one!) Muddle mint (as many as you like) with a teaspoon of honey (which normally would be a sugar syrup, and by using a muddler). This one was 'muddled' by the other end of a wooden spoon, briskly rubbed in between my palms.

Add your dose of gin (bombay sapphire in this instance, 2 and a half shots), half a shot of cointreau, 3 wedges of grapefruit (squeezed and then dropped into the glass!)

Garnish! Do not forget to garnish in however which way you like! This one was with a sprig of mint and a grapefruit wedge. Yay!

Happy days!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Grapefruit

First harvest from the citrus tree which we first thought was an orange tree.



juicy-licious!

This color called...

fushcia
fucshia
fushia

PINK!





and RED
(some scene stealer, really.)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Piano!


This was for a housewarming party for someone who knows how to play the piano, so I thought I'd do something different! Inspired by an idea from a baking magazine, this chocolate cake is frosted with ganache, the ebony-ivory is made of licorice and white chocolate. The cake base is my basic chocolate cake.

To make the piano body, I used two small loaf tins to bake two rectangular pieces of cake.


Cut tops off to make them evenly shaped


Place one on top of the other


And if you cut the top part lengthwise, (just the top cake), one half of this trimming could be used of the piano chair

But since it didn't look straight i just halved the 'chair' too!

Frost body with ganache (made by heating 400g thick cream and 250g chocolate - although i had heaps of leftover).

To make the piano keys :

Melt white chocolate and spread on baking paper


- not too thick to decrease chances of it cracking when cutting, but not too thin to give it a bit more dimension (you know, when looking at the keys). Let cool. To cut these up, dip a sharp knife in hot water and slice one inch by 1/4 in.



Cut licorice into 8 parts (or to desired length).


Arrange white chocolate and licorice on the lower part of the frosted cake.


I find that the white chocolate would go 'limp' quite easily (or perhaps its just because of the recent hot weather!) so had to refrigerate the whole cake until it had to be transported.

This was fun!

Those Who Stopped By

Scribe's Notes

This pitstop is where incoherent ramblings seem to have meaning, where things or events are thought of and assessed, where great things are documented and perhaps any not-so-good happenings are written down in attempt to be forgotten!

So from the diversely abstract to the intensely specific, it's off to making tracks, and it is here where it stops for a thought or two.

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