Friday, October 24, 2014

Recipe : Fusilli with Mushroom Pesto Cream Sauce (Vegetarian)

Singapore celebrated Deepavali / Diwali last Wednesday so we had a full day off from work! Since the non-working holiday was right in the middle of the week and I badly needed to catch up on sleep as we came from a quick weekend trip, Paul and I agreed to just spend the entire day at home with our friend O. The night before that, I told the boys that I'll cook pasta for lunch. It has been a while since I've cooked this dish and I'm glad that finally, I found the time to do so. Cooking can really be so therapeutic.

frannywanny recipe 1
Some of you may have remembered that I've prepared a similar pasta dish 5 years ago. This time though, I made use of wholemeal fusilli noodles and made use of a different type of pesto sauce too. What I noticed is that wholemeal noodles have a more dry texture and it has a rather grainy bite. It's not too bad though but it sure needs some getting used to. Well, I'm really so careful now with the carbs that I eat every since I vow to go with a low GI diet.

Here's an easy pasta dish that you can try at home too:

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Spilling the (Coffee) Beans : Whale & Cloud, Niven Road

Who doesn't love to hear a good secret? I'm pretty sure we all do. 

Not so long ago, word has been going around about this "secret" coffee shop here in the Lion City. You see, the 3rd wave / artisan coffee trend is booming here with at least one coffee shop opening every week. There are just a lot right now that I was so happy when fellow food blogger Daniel came up with a comprehensive list of all the new cafes in Singapore for 2014. Daniel is one of the few food bloggers whom I diligently follow to know about the new restaurants in the city. He writes in such an objective and really organized manner that makes the OC in me really happy. 

Anyway, so Daniel and a couple of bloggers began talking about a secret coffee shop called Whale & Cloud and that opens only on Saturday. In fact, it's not open on all Saturdays too! All these talks got me really curious and after asking more details about it, Paul and I decided to spend one Saturday afternoon to try it out ourselves.

whale and cloud 8
The address says 48¾ Niven Road. Have I just been transported to Harry Potter's world or what?! Finding it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. What we weren't expecting though was the growing queue outside the coffee shop. Since it's located within a quite, hidden alley, this means having to stand outside without any shade, no air-conditioning, no seats and definitely no guarantee as to how long you'll have to wait. I'd normally start whining at this point but I wanted to check Whale & Cloud so badly that I quietly waited along with the others. Well, I would sway my legs from time to time while eyeing the open canal beside me with a bit of paranoid dengue fear.

Finally, after 30 minutes of waiting, the magical blue door opened and the two customers left. Hooray! This means there's now room for the 1st 2 in the line. We were the 4th couple in the line but more customers followed the 1st couple who left. I guess they were batch 1 and we were part of batch 2. 

Monday, October 20, 2014's 7th Anniversary : A Recap

More than a month ago, this blog celebrated its 7th year of existence. We all know that wouldn't be what it is now without its readers and that means YOU! Every single one of you. So, to celebrate this milestone, I had not one, not two but THREE fun giveaways for my readers both in the Philippines and in Singapore.

We now come to the end of the anniversary celebration and while I have already announced the lucky winners of the 1st two contest, I'd like to do a quick recap here.

Congratulations to the following readers:

1) 7th Anniversary Giveaway #1 : for Philippines readers 
- Abegail Madera
- Lorenzo Te
- Susan Sia

2) Hee Kee DessertsGiveaway : for Singapore readers
- Leila Chua
- Shawn Toh

3) Morganfield's Rib Party : for Singapore readers
- Tay Yong Chuen
- Li Siu Ching

Friday, October 17, 2014

Say hello to Hotel Jen, Singapore

Welcome to the new JENeration!

hotel jen 9
I just love attending house parties. It's where you can just relax, enjoy the yummy food, mingle with new friends and catch up with the old ones too. I also love hosting small, intimate parties where I would have my closest friends over for dinner and some after dinner drinks or dessert. To be honest, I really get the thrill out of creating the menu and going over the logistics and planning more than anything. :)

hotel jen 17
Recently, Paul and I attended one of the coolest house parties that we've ever been to here in the Lion City. It's when Jen opened her doors and welcomed us with open arms. Who's Jen, you're probably wondering. Well, she's a professional hotelier who loves life, travel and the adventure of discovering new places. Sounds like someone whom I'll surely get along with, don't you think? Jen is just like you and me. Someone who's always on the go yet we always make sure that we're connected through technology. We are multi-taskers, filling our calenders to the brim yet we know when it's time to just sit back, relax and enjoy the finer things in life.

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I'm liking Jen a lot and I'm glad that she's here to stay. This is because the Shangri-la Hotels and Resorts group recently rebranded Traders Hotel Singapore to the very hip and modern Hotel Jen. That's right, starting November 2014, the hotel will undergo a series of renovations where the room will be turned into something that's perfect for all the Jens in the world. Modern, interchangeable furniture pieces and an interactive TV with multi-device capability to make every stay so efficient and hassle-free.

To welcome the new change, we were treated to a delicious lunch at Cafe Biz. Let's take a tour around, shall we:

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Sushi Burrito at 100AM, Tanjong Pagar

When in comes to workday lunch, I normally would go for something fast, easy-to-eat yet still delicious. Often times, I'd just prepare my own lunch and bring it to work. This is the only way I make sure that I eat healthy. My usual lunch staples would be an assortment of salad mixes which consists of whatever I find in our fridge that morning or a grilled cheese sandwich. Sometimes, I'd bring pasta to work only when I was able to cook some the night before. However, there are just weeks wherein either I'm too lazy to prepare something or I just want to eat something else. Luckily, my office neighborhood (a.k.a. my workhood) is filled with a LOT of food places so the choices are pretty much endless.

sushi burrito 1
Recently, Paul and I discovered a restaurant called Sushi Burrito in 100AM. It was after our gym visit in the same mall where we decided to check this place out. Funny that I've been seeing this restaurant for months since we moved to this side of town yet I never really got around to trying Sushi Burrito myself. This is a cool concept, if you ask me. We all love wraps and sushi right? Putting them together gives you the best of both worlds (literally and figuratively).

sushi burrito 2
Coincidentally, our Entertainer App has a special 1-for-1 promotion where we can get two Half Sized Sushi Burritos for the price of one. I then got the Rising Sun (S$6.90) while Paul went for the Crabby Crunch (S$6.90). The Rising Sun is a high California Maki Roll with fresh salmon sashimi, crab meat, lettuce, avocado, onions, carrots, cabbage (lots of it) and fukushin zuke. It was really good and I enjoyed it! More so when I added a bit of wasabi and soy sauce similar to how I would do it with a sushi roll too.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Food Spotting : Cow Cheesecake from Farm Designs

My hubby Paul is such a foodie. Yes, a genuinely, certified foodie. This is definitely one reason why we believe we're a match made in (foodie) heaven. In fact, I'm starting to believe that he's a biggest food lover than I am. For one, he just loves watching cooking shows on YouTube and on TV and would remember every single detail of the dishes being demonstrated. If he likes it so much, he'd even try cooking it making me his happy food taster. I guess this is his Campampangan side showing.

farm design 2
During one of our weekend shopping trips to Takashimaya Department Store where we ended up walking around the basement level, he instantly stopped at one of those kiosks selling cheesecakes. I initially thought nothing of it until it seemed like there was no sign of him leaving that kiosk anytime soon. He excitedly told me that he knows about that cheesecake as he saw it on TV and quickly went to buy a slice. Woah! Normally, it was me who would go and immediately splurge on food while it would take him a couple of minutes to decide especially if it's on the pricey side. This just got to be a special slice of cheesecake for him to act on impulse.

I know Paul loves sweets but it's rare to see him so excited over...a cheesecake. I later found out that this is no ordinary cheesecake. It's called the Cow Cheesecake (S$6.70) from Farm Designs and what makes it so special is that it's made of Jersey milk from Hokkaido, Japan. It's rich in butterfat making it so creamy. This milk was taken directly from the cows of Farm Designs which I was told was of top quality.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Saveur @ Purvis Street, Singapore

I'm pretty sure everyone knows that feeling that one would get when you discover something and it turns out way better than you expected it to be. As a foodie, these are those moments when you try a new restaurant and it turns out to be really good. I personally get that natural high when I get to take friends out for a good meal and even more when we can really say that it was worth every penny too. After all, I am a believer that good food doesn't have to be over-the-top expensive too.

saveur 1
So, when my long time friends J and C came to the Lion City to celebrate their 1st wedding anniversary, I researched hard to ensure that we're taking them to a place that is perfectly suited for such a wonderful occasion. I've been hearing about Savuer from fellow food-loving friends telling me that this is a restaurant worth trying. A quick browse at their online menu and I felt that this could be the one.

saveur 2
Luckily J and C easily found the restaurant despite the fact that it wasn't inside a mall and neither was it that accessible to the MRT too. The restaurant is located in a quiet street next to the National Library and is a few blocks away from the Bugis district.

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