Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Singapore Science Centre - 20 years on

It used to cost just $0.50 for children visiting the Singapore Science Centre (SSC), compared to the $5 now. So we used to pop in often during the school holidays, enjoying the air-conditioned, dark and mystic setting that holds many interestingly fun scientific displays.

I never expect today's trip would be appealing (just didn't want to waste the 2 complimentary tickets from the HSA); SSC just for kids isn't it? But being now older, i could better appreciate the aspects of Science and the exhibitor for putting them across to the general public so simply; relating Science to our everyday life.

In retrospect, we were definitely lucky kids to have the Science Centre, 20 years back.

Some scientific observations still fantasies me, such as this anamorphic print painted by Istvan Orosz where an image is cleverly hidden in an overall scene, only revealed from specific angles or reflections onto the column. Can you recognise any part of the image from the painting?

Portrait of Jules Verne

An interesting poster. "This quirky cat hides more than its growl. Can you perceive the hidden bunny?"

Gravity Iron Ball Drop

Dance Patterns of the Dry Ice

I couldn't cover even half of the 1000 individual displays in the 10 halls. But surely, nothing beats watching these kids held spellbound by these interactive exhibits - just like how we used to.

It maybe this belief of bringing Science to the people of Singapore that kept the Science Centre going through these years..!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Bangladeshi Lady Finger

A sizzling wok is always enticing! Can't help peeping in while my Bangladeshi friend whips up a vegetable dish to compliment our packed lunch. Mmmm...

It is an easy and really delightful recipe - enliven with sweet Onions and zesty Green Chili!!

1. Chop up the 500g of Lady Fingers, 1 Onion and 3 small Green Chili.
2. Heat up Oil in wok, throw in the Onion and green Chili. After a while, give a generous pinch of Salt.
3. Add in the Lady Fingers, stir fried a little before covering it.
4. Open the lid and stir the mix from time to time for about 2-3 minutes apart. During these time, sprinkle some water to create steam.
5. Continue this simmering process until the vegetables reached your desired softness.

Serve. Yum!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Andersen's Ice-Cream Creation

Single Fondue ($11.50++), Banana Split ($11.50++)

I love my ice-cream served pure, without any accompaniment; it was not until the ice-cream creation from the Haagen dazs that i learned to appreciate the complex richness from such put-together.

Today we have a much simpler blend from the Andersen's of Denmark. Ice-cream flavors of Yogurt, Rum & Raisins for the Fondue, Bailey's scorched almond and Macadamia Nut for the Banana Split. Both creations were served with a luscious helping of chocolate fondue sauce.

Apart from ice-cream and baked waffle cones the Andersen is so famous for, i wish to endorse their chocolate fondue - it is so good you can even eat it on its own ;)

Banana Split

Indian Fare about the Little India

Always wanted to dine at these little Indian food stalls plying along the streets of the Little India - but even for locals like us, it is still quite an intimidating feat to barter in the 'territory' of the Indians ;)

Round the corner of Komala's Restaurant, we decide on a lone stall in "Shafina Cuisine" coffeeshop; using some simple English and finger gestures, we had our plate of Indian Rice with a huge food portion! 

Spiced Chicken, Potatoes and Lima bean masala ($5)

Fried Fish Briyani, with Cucumber Pickles and 1 Egg ($5.50)

Still the experience was a little of disappointment as we were hit by a food pricing higher than what our neighbourhood stall normally charges while the quality of food (the fried Fish especially) took a little compromising..

This ended the little mystery of dining in Little India.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Audemars Piguet, AP

Initially, i didn't agree to buy this diamonds studded Audemars Piguet watch - it was too expensive for the occasional wear and i didn't want the attentions drawn on such. But donning a similar watch to match Ric's Royal Oak on functions and dinners was a musing thought that's tempting enough to cause wavering.

Getting the green light, Ric placed order with a cash deposit week before the birthday. But dues to low stock availability, it was only month later that he got ringed up by the retailer that the watch had arrived. Sheepishly, the man tried to surprise the woman with the procurement ;)

It is an implicit beauty - finely brushed stainless steel finishes with quality certified diamonds that sparkle in minimum light conditions. On the wrist, it is formally subtle, never crudely pretentious. This is certainly one of my prized piece.

How the couple had loved to lock arms now...

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Catharanthus roseus, 日日春, 长春花

Catharanthus roseus (pink)

It was one of those moment when i dashed indoor for my cam to capture the 'first bloom' of any new additions to the garden! The young plant is frail, evident of the pale violet bloom.

But take care that it do not do well in over-fertile soil. An all season flowering shrub that loves the full sun and light watering; i believe its colors will improve when this wet monsoon passes.

This Madagascar native is from Aunt when her neighbour's self-seed into her garden ;)

Catharanthus roseus 'Bright Eyes', Catharanthus cultiver (red)

Two weeks later, i came to know a like-minded neighbour who gave me this pot of the mixed species. Pretty!?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Lunch at Killiney - i'm so missing the Ice-cream Waffle!

Ice Lemon Tea ($2.20), Barley ($2)

Back in 2008, we fell in love with Killiney's Ice-cream waffles - tough, un-melting Vanilla ice-cream to be spread thick on sweet toast waffle! But today, we got to know Killiney more than their skin-deep Kopi.

They serve cool refreshing Ice Tea that reminds us of what the KFC used to concoct, with real lemon slices! What's better? Its sweetness was just right, none overly sweet and artificial like those from machine dispensers!

Mee Siam ($4)

Curry Chicken with rice/ french loft ($6.20)

The rest of the meal went positively as i had no qualms about slurping dry the Mee Siam bowl and we both, 'fight' to soak up all the Curry juices with the warmly browned baguette! Advise you order an extra serving of bread - you would be thankful.

Ice-cream with Waffle ($6.20)
Glass Jelly with Longan ($2.80)

All of the above with Big Deal voucher at just $13.90!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

沈阳风味, Dumplings & La Mien

On a foot trail left by Albert's comment, we finally found this handmade noodles, dumplings stall at Blk 466 Crawford Lane, in the Tai Hwa Eating House.

Negative social impact cause by the huge influx of these Chinese immigrants need time to be ironed out; while we always respect those, who like these hawkers, making an honest living by taking up the long-working-hour kitchen job. 

Guotie 锅贴 ($4), Zhajiang mian 炸酱面 ($3.50)

Having our fair share of pan-fried dumpling and handmade noodles; those serve here were no-nonsense and respectably well done.

Fried Seafood Noodle, 海鲜炒面 ($3.50)

While Albert had laureled the fried seafood noodle, we both find it a tad saltish. But if you are one on heavier taste buds (and doesn't mind just 1 prawn and few fish cake slices), you should love this plate of hot fried noodle which was an exact of our local Hokkien Mee! 

Stuffed Buns, 陷饼 ($4)

Our neighbouring table of 3 had 4 servings of these stuffed buns! So we followed suit.

We ordered the ones with Chives and Pork fillings while they also have them in Chives and Egg? Interesting? Between the Guotie and Stuffed buns, Ric and i were divided ;)

Galileo Thermometer - is it working?

Galileo Thermometer, 28cm tall

I had always wanted a Galileo thermometer, fantasies by its working principle of changing liquid density according to temperature! But was clearly muffled by the cost of owning one - about $30-$60! It's quite a price to pay for a plaything and display ornaments right?

Yesterday, i saw this one laying right on top of Dad's work pile! Hehe... but is it working...? Depending on temperature, liquid glass bulbs in the thermometer should either rise or fall. Actual temperature was shown by the lowest of the upper floating glass bulbs - where 8 colorful bulbs graduated every 2 degree Celsius.

This morning, after a cold rainy night, i woke up and observed that the glass bulbs indicating 28 °C had risen to replace the 30 °C of last night! It's clever! It is working!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

"Auntie, have Special?"

Special Ice ($1.50)

It does seem embarrassing to ask, so Ric had me do the buying this time.

Nic and the wife had urged us to try this dessert that was not on the stall's normal menu (i later found it on their standard displayed board... my 'Sotong' brother).

The so-called "Special Ice" was actually a 'rojak' or 'supreme' mix of all the stall's available ingredients for their ice shavings - it does taste special as one part of the bowl has hints of Lychees, the other of Longans and yet another toss about gets you some milky icing with canned cocktail... haha..

We have had some daffy fun.

Dian Xiao Er Roasted Duck

Duck Roasted with Wild Ginseng, half duck ($24.80++)
Chinese Lettuce 麦菜 with Fermented Bean Curd ($8.30++)

While we agree that Dian Xiao Er roast duck doesn't come cheap, for every occasional indulgence we unregrettably fling off costing factor as we savor its symbolic herbal flavors infused into each well roasted duck; quite literally, we inundate our rice bowl with the duck sauce, always.. It is yummy.

And whenever Chinese Lettuce is on the menu we would surely order the green for its bitter crunch. 

Stewed Crocodile Meat with Sweet Almonds & Chuan Bei ($6.80++)

Ric developed slight coughing this morning, so i was all for the stewed crocodile meat soup brewed with 杏仁 and 川贝 that promise to moisture the lungs, drive dryness, eliminate phlegm and relieve cough.

Yes, i hear much less coughing after the meal ^*

Monday, November 7, 2011


On 3 Oct 2011.

My Ananas nanus or more commonly known as Dwarf Pineapple finally came forth with fruit after 2 years of grooming. Every morning i checked out the shoot and it seems to be raising up fast; maybe half an inch each day!

On 7 Nov 2011.

All in a month's time, dozens individual flowerets grow together to form the entire fruit. From the lowest row, purple flowerets bloom and dried up (you see blooming flowerets only at the top row now), forming the scales on the pineapple. 

Each scale on the pineapple is thus evidence of a separate flower, it's amazing. I didn't realize it was flowers until i saw visiting Hummingbird probe deeply into the purple blossoms, feeding on its nectar! 

Are now waiting for the fruit to ripen - hope to update with more photos and details.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Real Gold - Moccona or Nescafe?

Moccona Continental Gold, 250g ($12.50)
Nescafe Gold Rich Aroma Coffee, 200g ($12.70)

Set a budget of $10-14 getting some coffee for the new office; deciding to do away with 3-in-1 mix all together this time. The budget for a 200g isn't too spendthrift yeah? Compared with most 100g pack at the same price range.

Moccona is definitely reliable with its balanced flavor and subtle aroma - selected!

And even before i decided with the Nescafe, Ric forewarn, "You'll be disappointed." Nescafe branding had never got its way with him. I baffled, "But, why are many people still buying it? And Nescafe is not cheap you know, even their 3-in-1?"

We tried. We will never again buy it. It was a cup of bitter tasting coffee with faintest hint of coffee aroma to speak of. Even the cheapest dried freeze coffee we had, of NTUC Fairprice Gold Premium Arabica tasted way better than this..

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Olive Tree Restaurant

We were on a 1 day seminar at the Intercontinental Hotel Singapore, thrilled with the provision of a buffet lunch at their Olive Tree Restaurant! I almost couldn't tear myself away from the table when the clock struck 2pm for us to return to the seminar ballroom...

It's a shame no photos of the good food were taken cos my bosses were at the same table (this blogger identity was sworn to secrecy!); with any dining promotion, i shall certainly hurried back here with Ric - this trip had left some sparkling impression of the hotel and the Olive Tree.

Priced at $39.50++, the lunch buffet serves notable spread of fresh seafood (prawns, clams, mussels, clayfish; no oysters), local and international fare with roast lamb leg and juicy roast beef. Freshness of ingredients used in popular recipes made this buffet standout from the common others; good reviews you read online about here were all true.

And for once, ice-cream outperforms cake dishes up at buffets. Unalike to run-of-the-mill chocolate-strawberry-vanilla trio, they serve a grandstander of fine ice-cream that tastes of real fruits and nuts - in flavors of Pistachio, Melon, Pink Guava, Mango, Strawberry, Vanilla!

The courtyard dining hall was bright, spacious and quiet for a cozy up lunch while service at the serving counter was cheery as i recognized our celebrity chef, Chef Eric Neo who was all smiley, tossing nice tender squids for us all waiting in line at his live cooking station :)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Newton Meng Kee Prawn Noodle @ Jurong Island

Prawn Kway Teow Mee, dry ($3)

We were finally back to Oasis Sakra canteen for my hot hot Prawn Bee Hoon soup! Ric had offered to pack it when he entered the Jurong Island earlier but i refused to hear of it cos i love to have my soup hot hot hot!

Guys with heavier taste buds here often opted for the dry version which was ladled richly with fried shallot oil; it was equally bewitching! Slurp! Slurp! Slurp up!

(Entry to Singapore's Jurong Island govern by valid security passes)

Prawn Bee Hoon, soup ($3)