Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Goodbye 2008......

Today is the last day of 2008. Many memories were made, some are memorable, some I wish I could wipe out from my mind forever. Friends I have made many.....some friendships are made to last, some I wonder why I formed the friendship in the first place, and some ended abruptly for reasons I wish I knew why. Questions left unanswered and answers sometimes came to me even when I did not want to know them.

As I reflect on the journey I went through from the beginning of 2008 till now, I realized how much I have changed and grown. I am once again no longer the same person I was in 2007. I keep on changing and changing and evolving year after year. The learning process I went through has changed me and has made me improve myself in so many aspects of my life. I began to wonder what else I will have to go through in the coming new year that will somehow change me. I know I have a lot more to improve in my personal life and career. All of which I hope will be for the better.

There were a lot of things that happened in my life this year that I wish I did not happened. They were so bad and traumatic that I wish it could have been prevented. But Allah knows best, and as a servant of Allah, I just let it be, just move on, and keep on moving forward.

If I could sum up what 2008 meant to me, I would say that it was full of extraordinary experiences. Bad or good it does not matter, they were extraordinary to me nonetheless. It was a time when I learned more about what love can do to people, the goodness that it brings are endless. What desires can do to people, how it can sometimes bring out their true colors that they have been hiding all this time. How ugly it can be, can really surprise us.

I have done a lot of things I never thought would be possible before. I have managed to overcome certain fears, let go certain desires, became a lot more calmer when faced with difficult times, communicate more, understand more about people, discovered new talents in me and learned new things.

One thing for sure, I realized this year is that, life is so short......time just passes by so quickly. I did what I had to do, did as much as I could, whenever I could, so that at the end of the day, I wouldn't have any regrets. If I had any, it would not have been many....too few to mention.

Goodbye 2008.............I'm leaving all the bitterness and sadness behind and taking all the goodness with me to 2009.
Goodbye 2008......SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Air kelapa pandan

This is the kelapa pandan tree or the pandan coconut tree at my Mom's house....it's really big and high.....it's so delicious beyond words....I love drinking the coconut water! So refreshing! But can't take too much of it otherwise I'll get sick! hehehe......too much of anything will make us sick anyways hehehe....

My aunt brought the coconuts back to KL in her car......she took some for herself, gave some to my uncle.....and I got two......the one on the left is still young and soft to open up with a sharp knife, but the one on the right is already a little old and has a hard shell. It was kinda tough to open it up to get the coconut water since I don't have the proper equipment to do so.

My aunt taught me to use the knife to slice off the top soft layer of the coconut first before hitting the shell with a pestle......that's how I managed to get the coconut water out of the coconut! :P

Then I proceed to hit it some more to get the soft white flesh inside it.....but since this one is a bit old, the flesh has harden a bit.....but still it tasted really nice :)
Air kelapa pandanSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monday, December 29, 2008

Buah jambu air

These are the fruit stalls at Bukit Gantang's RNR......every time I go back to Alor Setar, the bus would stop by this place for a short break after a few hours on the road. We would stop by here to pray, go to the loo and also have our lunch here too. They have all the facilities here for everyone to use. It's just so nice here.....I love stopping by this place especially for the fruits sold here. It seems much more fresh than the fruits found elsewhere. Tastier too! I love visiting this place just to buy those fresh jambu air.... :)




This must be my most favorite fruit this year and will forever be my favorite fruit of all time! It's just so delicious...juicy...not too sweet and not sour either. It's just nice....so full of fiber and so refreshing!
Buah jambu airSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sweet green bean porridge

I would like to share with everyone the process of making a sweet green bean porridge or bubur kacang hijau. This is how my Mom makes it......so delicious! I remember when I was young I used to grow these green beans at home.....it was so funny because when it was time to harvest them, I was only able to collect so little of the beans from the plants....it wasn't enough to make anything out of it......I would have to grow at least a 50 of these plant to be able to make this sweet porridge hehehe! Oh well.....I had fun though growing them....it was a good experience.....an experience I will never forget!



First you soak the green beans in water for a few hours to soften them.


This is called Sago.....one of the important ingredient of this sweet porridge.....soak this too for a few hours


Then you select which beans to throw away, the ones that did not soften during the soaking period and are still hard as it will break your teeth if you eat it! hahaha! :D


Then you boil it in water with some pandan leaves to make it fragrant.


Bring it to a boil


This is called gula melaka/palm sugar....it is a type of sugar that is made from the coconut palm tree....very sweet and fragrant too.


Smash palm sugar with a pestle and take just a few pieces of it to boil....


Let it boil in water with some pandan leaves....


Once the palm sugar has dissolved.....pour it into the pot of boiled green beans.

Let it boil slowly for awhile until the green beans are tender......test some to make sure it is thoroughly cooked....


Once you are sure that the green beans are thoroughly cooked, you can add in the sago....stir it occasionally and let it bring to a boil until the color of the sago turns clear/transparent...


Then you can add the coconut milk in it.....stir it in occasionally and add a pinch of salt and wait for it to boil....


And it's done!!! Ready to eat!

Yummy!!!!!!

Sweet green bean porridgeSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Buncit passed away.....

So sad to find out from my aunt today that her fish, Buncit passed away....... :( I called it Chubby Barby.....I also wrote about it on my blog recently.....never thought that it would die so soon....

Not really sure why it suddenly died....maybe because of loneliness.....
Buncit passed away.....SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Friday, December 26, 2008

Atan's Nasi Lemak

My Mom and her ex- student :) That's Atan.....well, that's what my Mom calls him hehehe......I don't know what his full name is! I forgot to ask! LOL! He is so shy.....but was kind enough to let me take his picture for my blog hehehe...... :D Such a good sport!

This is his small nasi lemak stall that he operates at Arca Restaurant......his stall is always a hit with the customers.....You got to be there early in order to get his nasi lemak, because it always sells fast!

This is the Nasi lemak that Atan makes.....The rice is served with sambal sotong (chili squid), hard boiled egg, papadom, sliced cucumber and some fried anchovies and peanuts.

The same nasi lemak with papadom, chicken sambal, sliced cucumbers and one fried egg.

This is so nice! I love it! Another yummy food at Arca Restaurant.....It's called Chakoi....crispy on the outside and soft on the inside....eaten with a savory and sweet kaya pandan sauce. Yum-O!

This is Capati! Served with dhall.....I love eating this too! :)

This is called Apom.....it's so crispy and sweet!

All this delicious food are found at Restaurant Arca.....formerly known as Restaurant Pak Tuan....it is situated along Jalan Sultanah, formerly known as Jalan Day hehehe.....it's quite near my Mom's house....so we love to go there and have breakfast whenever I go back to Alor Setar. The food there is quite cheap especially Atan's nasi lemak.....this is because he never fails to give his former teacher special discounts every time we eat his nasi lemak.....sometimes the price he charged us is ridiculously cheap!!! My Mom just couldn't accept it because it's not good for his business if he keeps doing that! heheheh! But he always insists!! Such a good boy with a good heart!
Atan's Nasi LemakSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Laksa Teluk Kechai

This is the famous Laksa Teluk Kechai! The best laksa in town! :D Worth driving all the way from KL to Kedah to have a taste of this delicious laksa.

They also sell ABC or Ais Batu Campur.....but we didn't buy it this time around.....it is also said to be delicious! Will do so the next time we drive back to Kedah ehehhehe! :)


This is the rice noodles/laksa that we bought from that place...got hard boiled eggs, toppings for the laksa and the kuah laksa (clear gravy that has a mix of sardine fish, bunga kantan, onions and lemon grass to give it a very distinctive laksa fragrance), yummy!!!

Must cut up all these ingredients first before we can eat the laksa......these are the toppings for the laksa!


OK!!! The laksa is ready to be served!! What's so special about the laksa Teluk Kechai is that it has the "daun putat"(chopped up leaves of putat hehehe) and coconut sambal (chilie coconut). Those two ingredients adds the "kick"!


This is what we call "Pulut Sambal"....glutinous rice with savory topping. It's our dessert after eating the laksa hehehe.....we bought it at the same place....it seems that this pulut sambal is one of Tun Mahathir's favorite!! I think I know why....because it's so super delicious! That's why!! :D
Laksa Teluk KechaiSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Fish curry and Fried tempeh

This is fermented soy beans or tempe which I love love love so much!!!! Best eaten when it's fried! Check out the link here for some infos on tempe.....http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tempeh

This is a special fish curry that my Mom made......the fish is called "Ikan Angsa". The flesh is so soft and delicious! The shape of the fish looks similar to a Pomfret (ikan bawal) but slightly bigger I think! This fish is not always available at the market.....sometimes if we are lucky, we could buy one to bring home to cook.....but most of the time it is not easily available and it's quite pricy too. So it's not something that we could eat daily....especially since it's so pricy......we only get to eat it on special occasions and depending on availablilty. I was lucky when I went back to Alor Setar this time, I got the chance to eat this fish dish.....who knows when else I'll ever get the chance to eat this again......


Of course fish curry is best eaten with plain white rice with fried papadom and tempeh...yummy!!! :) I could eat more than 2 plates of rice with all this yummy food around hehehe!!
Fish curry and Fried tempehSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

More henna painting


These are some photos of the before and after I did the henna painting on my aunt's hand. This time around I used the henna paste in cone form. It is much more easier to handle and decorate on the hands......I simply love using it. :)
More henna paintingSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend