Happy Daddy’s Day : )

My family comprises of a daddy’s girl and mommy’s boy.  Dad and I are so close, we text each other daily.  After his triple bypass in 2008, he became more focused on healthy living.  He eats proper, nutritious food and exercises moderately; nothing too strenuous for the heart, but enough power walking to work up a sweat.  He also does weights for some nice biceps and chest muscles!

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His health scare affected me very badly and it is the reason my lifestyle shifted towards healthy living (in moderation, of course :P).  It’s been a journey since 2008, with gradual but permanent changes and improvements towards more physical activity and good, nutritious food.

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So on Father’s Day, I took Dad to Oscar’s at Conrad Centennial Hotel for a delicious breakfast.  The buffet spread was fantastic!  There was a good variety of cuisines to choose from!  We eagerly took our plates.  But just because it was a buffet didn’t mean we had to stuff ourselves silly. #haes

We would rather fill our stomach spaces with fresh food : )  Here’s mine:

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And that’s it.  My appetite isn’t large by nature, which fits my petite 5’4″ frame.  Sure, it’s tempting to eat enough food to get one’s money’s worth and I’ve seen many who do so.  However, a higher price tag doesn’t mean we need to compensate by eating copious amounts of food #fatisnotafeeling.

The premium we pay goes towards fresher, better quality ingredients, more refined cooking, better presentation and a gorgeous ambience.

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Most importantly, Dad was happy spending time bonding with his daughter.  He sent me a very touching text after and it warmed my heart.  I wish him good health and hope that he’s with me for many years to come.  When we love our family, isn’t that what we all wish for them?

Wishing you fun,

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The brand new iHotel

I promised to share part of our lives in this blog, but to date, nothing much was mentioned 😛  So it seems like we do nothing but stay home and cook 😛  Nothing can be further from the truth!  We enjoy mini getaways, particularly if there’s a long weekend when a public holiday falls on a Friday or Monday.

Work stress is part and parcel of life.  This year has been particularly stressful, as the organisation is undergoing restructuring.  My boss and I take turns to fall sick.  My man decided it was time to whisk me off to Batam to check out a spanking new hotel and for some much-needed rest and relaxation : )

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The deluxe balcony room is GORGEOUS!!!

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We hung our clothes outside to dry after washing them during our showers.  This is particularly useful because we work out after every meal to ensure minimal weight gain during our trips.  We eat A LOT when abroad, so much discipline is required with regards to exercise!

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Because the hotel is newly opened, all the equipment is also brand new! 😀  It helped make our workouts less dreary.  My man doesn’t enjoy exercising but does it to maintain his weight and physique.  Me?  I love the adrenalin rush and the clean feeling of a shower after all the sweat!

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So nope, we most certainly don’t deprive ourselves of delicious local food during our mini getaways.  We just make sure we keep in shape by balancing our sudden sharp increase in food intake with exercise.  Some may argue against the calories in, calories out theory, but for us, it works.

Wishing you fun,

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Salted egg yolk pork ribs

Some days ago, a nasty woman insulted slim figures and labelled them ‘anorexic’.  She spewed so much hatred and, since I was waiting for my man to have dinner, decided to respond with ‘Slim-bashing much?’  She turned even more vile after being called out and tried to bait me into admitting that I’m pro-ana 😛

I was giggling as I replied her posts, because her intention was only sooooo obvious, the presumptuous cow 😛  After she realised that she couldn’t manipulate me into admitting that I’m pro-ana, she gave up.  But of course!  I can’t – and refuse to – admit to what I don’t advocate!

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Ribs not sticking out?

CHECK.

Not emaciated?

CHECK.

So where is the evidence of pro-ana?  I’m still alive, I’m not hospitalised nor gravely ill, I still have the energy to exercise daily, I’m not frail.  So really, if any of these jealous and nasty loony bins try to hate or shame me into eating a burger, no thanks.  YOU can go eat too much; I’d rather stick to sensible portions, thank you. #effyourbeautystandards #haes

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What we DO love, is good food.  My man loves this so much, he insisted that I share the recipe.  So here goes.  Poke holes into the pork ribs and rub in soy sauce, sesame oil, Chinese rice wine and ground black pepper.  Leave it in the fridge overnight so that the meat soaks up as much of the marinade as possible.

Melt butter at high heat in the wok, then brown and crisp mashed garlic.  Add pork ribs and fry till slightly browned and cooked through.  Take out the ribs and garlic, leaving the grease.  Mix together on low heat stock and Chinese rice wine.  Add 1 salted egg yolk and mash it into the mixture.  Add milk and curry powder.

Once the sauce ingredients are mixed well, add the ribs, bring the mixture to the boil, turn off heat and serve immediately.

Voila!

Wishing you fun,

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Avocado and shrimp with wafu sauce

There’re far too many excuses for women not to enter the kitchen – fresh food is expensive, it’s too time-consuming, it’s tiring, yadda yadda yadda *yawn*  Yet, cooking is 1 of the most enjoyable activities in life!  There’re many ways to experiment with sauces and ingredients to zing up a classic and add variety to meals at home.  It’s also incredibly satisfying to see our loved ones eagerly await meal times and sigh with contentment after a delicious dinner.

Cooking may seem expensive, especially when there’s plenty of cheap local food available in Singapore.  We can have prawn noodles and chicken rice for lunch and pay S$3/- or S$3.50 and they’re enough to fill our stomachs.  But after eating dinner at home almost daily, we find that it’s not only cheaper but more enjoyable and comfortable.

Meats, vegetables, cheese, sauces, spices and eggs can be used for several meals.  A huge pot of stock made from boiling a couple of slices of Chinese ham and dried scallops can be frozen and used for various soups, gravies and sauces for 2 to 3 days.  The stock adds more flavour than water too!

Time-consuming?  Yes, for some dishes.  But there’re many recipes that can be found online that are fast and easy to prepare.  We benefit a lot from our home-cooked meals and enjoy them in the comfort of home as well : )  In fact, my man would rather eat light outside and save his tummy space for my food, in part because we always eat together and, in part because the dish is made with both parties’ effort : )

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The classic shrimp and avocado is given a twist with the addition of wafu sauce.  I’ve mentioned how to make wafu sauce in a previous entry, so just add it to your shrimp and avocado before serving.

Now what do we do when we cut an unripe avocado?  It’s frustrating, isn’t it?  Well, I just cook it!  I fried these unripe avocado cubes in garlic and olive oil, slowly adding a stock made by dissolving half a teaspoon of marmite in 3/4 cup of water, until they’re soft.  Season with soy sauce, mixed herbs and pepper.

This is 1 of those suppers that we enjoy together : )  A friend saw this picture and asked which restaurant served this dish.  The reply?  ‘My home’ 😛  Quite proud when I said this, actually 😛

Wishing you fun,

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Salads!

Much as we love eating together, there’re certain accommodations that need to be made.  He dislikes most veggies and prefers meat, so any veggies have to be cooked till really soft and disguised with sauces and spices 😛  I also love salads but he hates them, so most of the time, I eat them during lunch breaks with colleagues.

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The best thing about salads is, we don’t feel lethargic after eating them!  If we consume carbohydrates, we feel so sleepy that work productivity falls.  Salads help us stay mentally alert!  This is smoked salmon caeser salad with crisp turkey bacon at Beanstro at Level B1, Marina Bay Sands.  Do try the yummy minestrone soup too!

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My lunch companion, Yen Ling, also loves this smoked salmon and tangerine salad at The Green Bar, Level 1, Millenia Walk.  It’s so refreshing, perfect for a searing hot afternoon!  We reward ourselves with a nice coffee at Starbucks after our light and delicious meal : )

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Because salads are filling yet not very heavy, we still have tons of room for healthy tomato soups! : )  This was at a restaurant along Boat Quay.  Yen Ling and I got lost and wandered into the place.  No regrets, because the salad was so good!

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People who haven’t yet adopted healthy eating frequently accuse those of us who do of ‘starving’ and say that they don’t know how we could prefer salads and other healthy foods to sinful dishes.  Whilst greasy, fried food is irrevocably heavenly, I do eat those in reasonable portions.  Otherwise, when you’re so used to a clean system, too much sinful food makes you feel yucky afterwards.  And bloated too!

To each his own.  I’m just glad those who kept an open mind tried healthy eating and are now advocates of it! : )  The bonus is, they lose weight along the way and, as their confidence grows, they’re inspired to exercise and adopt healthy lifestyles!  I’m always happy to support them, because they’re shamed by their former circle of ‘friends’.  We all need help and friendship along our journey of health too : )

By the way, vanity sizing has reached Singapore and apparently I’m now a size 00.  What the heck?!

Wishing you fun,

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Have an egg cracker!

Feeling peckish?  Well, my man has a pretty high metabolism, so he feels peckish on a regular basis.  Instead of him gorging on a can of potato chips or cakes, I relish the chance to enter the kitchen and fix him a healthier and more nutritious snack.  He loves this!  And he loves me cooking for him too! : )

When we first got together, my man said, “Let’s get really fat together!”  I flatly refused; it’s great to get comfortable and eat together, but it’s even better if we stay in shape and healthy.  Going out and looking good as a couple boosts confidence and we have more fun than if we were to balloon into a couple that is no longer healthy.

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This is a giant egg chip! 😛  Ok, it’s actually an omelette but fried at high heat till crispy.  Slide onto a plate with paper towels to absorb the excess oil.  When slightly cooled and ready to serve, remove the paper towels.  These are so crunchy, fragrant and satisfying, it’s tempting to eat more than 1! 😛

But we don’t 😛 #haes

Wishing you fun,

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Rosti pizza

How this came about was, 1 night my man felt like munching on something after dinner.  So, using half a potato and some salted butter, I made him a fragrant rosti.  He liked it so much, I made it again for dinner the next night! : )  Instead of grating the potato, however, I prefer larger pieces which he helps to cut using a vegetable peeler.

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There’s something so delicious-looking about hot and crispy golden rosti!

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With the rosti pizza, when 1 side was browned, I flipped it over, added ham slices, some pasta sauce and mozzarella cheese.  Once the cheese is somewhat melted, turn off the heat and let the cheese continue to melt some more.  Slide the rosti pizza onto a plate lined with paper towels to absorb some of the oil.

Voila!

Wishing you fun,

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