Friday, June 14, 2024

Vegetarian Nyonya Recipes: Contrasting Flavors

Once upon a time, cooking Nyonya Cuisine (NYONYA CUISINE: REDISCOVERING HERITAGE) meant pounding ingredients in a mortar. Today, it's all about convenience with food processors and blenders. But there's still one old-timer, Ms. Nava, pounding away now and then. While some women prefer showroom kitchens, she cooks in shorts, bringing Nyonya vegetarian recipes to life with flair! Unlike those reliant on helpers or fancy kitchen setups or cook for seeking validation and praising from others for occasions, Ms. Nava stays true to tradition, cooking for her family. She after using her Nyonya cooking knowledge, blends the old with the new, converting classic Nyonya dishes into delightful vegetarian versions, proving that culinary excellence knows no bounds.

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Mindful Eating: The Wise Path to Better Health

We've discussed how what we eat affects our health (THE FOOD TRUTH), even leading to obesity. But staying healthy isn't just about eating salads all day. Enter mindful eating - a method that's more than just chewing. It's about using our brainpower to think about what we eat and make practical and reasonable choices. But what exactly is mindful (MINDFULNESS: NAVIGATING THE MODERN WORLD) eating? Let's find out.

Mastering Meal Planning

Planning your meals is the foundation of mindful eating. It involves making decisions about what to eat ahead of time, rather than spontaneously. Whether you plan a day or a week in advance, having a meal plan helps you be aware of what, where, and when you eat. This practice also kickstarts your grocery planning, ensuring you have the right ingredients.

Oslo Norway: Discovering Heritage Through Sightseeing

Even though we rushed to catch our overnight cruise to Oslo, Norway (COPENHAGEN PART 2 & COPENHAGEN PART 1), we ended up arriving even earlier than expected. Was there anything special about cruising to Oslo? Not really. After a quick half-hour stroll around the ship, I felt like I had seen it all. If gambling is your thing, the casino is there for you, but cruising just isn't my cup of tea. Dinner on board, however, was a delight, with a wide variety of options for those who love to indulge. After dinner, I retreated to my cabin, took a refreshing shower, and gazed out at the dark, mysterious sea before calling it a night.

The next morning greeted us with another fantastic buffet breakfast as the ship sailed on. When we finally docked in Oslo, our adventure began with a visit to the historic Akerhus Fortress. Perched on a hill in the heart of Oslo, Akershus Fortress is surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty. This impressive stone structure, dating back to 1290, was originally built to protect the city. Once a formidable prison, it has since evolved into a venue for official events and functions.

Monday, June 10, 2024

Mutton Medley: Culinary Creations

Welcome back to my mutton recipes (SAVOURING MUTTON). If you’ve tried my dishes before, you’ve probably noticed my love for certain ingredients (INDIAN DESSERTS) that make them special (MUTTON MARVELS).


Potatoes are a staple in almost all my mutton recipes. They add heartiness and soak up the flavors, making every bite delightful. Soft and tender, they become little pockets of curried goodness. If you prefer your mutton dishes without potatoes, that’s okay. But if you enjoy the comfort they bring, you’re in for a treat.


Tip: You can pre-simmer or boil the potatoes before adding them to the dish for added convenience.

Copenhagen's Crown Jewels: Denmark's Frederiksborg and Kronborg Castles

After a hearty hotel breakfast (COPENHAGEN PART 1), we were eager to start exploring Copenhagen. Our first stop? Frederiksborg Castle (Danish: Frederiksborg Slot), an iconic landmark in Denmark. Perched gracefully on three islands amidst a serene lake and vibrant gardens, the sight was breathtaking. It's the largest Renaissance complex in the Nordic region, boasting both grandeur and charm.

As I wandered the expansive grounds, the garden pathways, majestic trees filtering sunlight, and colourful flowers swaying gently in the breeze captivated me. Despite the crisp air, there was a peaceful aura as I made my way towards the castle. Upon reaching its vantage point, the view was nothing short of awe-inspiring.

Saturday, June 8, 2024

Tom Yam Temptation: A Taste of Thailand

Life without Tom Yam feels like a story missing its climax - a culinary journey left unfinished. Visualise the lively Thai flavors awakening your taste buds as you savor a hot spoonful of Tom Yam soup. My love for Tom Yam knows no bounds; during my adventures in Thailand (KRABI/PHUKET), I couldn't resist its tempting allure (BANGKOK). Though not every bowl was perfect; some packed a spicy punch that left me reaching for tissues. But those truly delicious ones - each sip brings the comforting and satisfying taste of authentic Thai flavors, warming both the mouth and the soul.

Let's Bring Tom Yam Home 
Now, I am going to share with all you foodies how we can make Tom Yam in our homes.

Fear No Yoga: Overcoming Doubts, Welcoming Wellness

While we can't provide an exact figure, it's evident that a significant number of individuals harbor a fear of yoga. Our inbox is inundated with inquiries echoing this sentiment, with many expressing genuine terror at the mere thought of setting foot on a yoga mat. This fear becomes a formidable barrier, hindering them from embracing yoga practice - a challenge we face head-on. We dedicate considerable time to reassure them, emphasizing that there's nothing to fear. Despite our earnest efforts, however, many remain hesitant (CORPORATE YOGA).

Here's a compelling insight into why people fear yoga, drawn directly from the inquiries we've handled.

Thursday, June 6, 2024

Copenhagen, Denmark: Iconic Sights and Beyond

Heading on a nine-day journey through Denmark and Norway, I found myself among a few familiar faces and the rest strangers, all part of a meticulously planned tour. After months of saving and planning, I landed at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (FREMANTLE & LAKE LUGANO), gearing up for flights to Amsterdam and eventually Copenhagen Airport, Kastrup.

Touching down in Denmark, our first stop was Slotsholmen, nestled right in the heart of Copenhagen. We kicked off with lunch at a nearby Chinese restaurant. Though I didn't catch the name amidst the excitement, the delicious dishes set the stage for our dining experience. As the lone Indian among twenty-nine Chinese travelers, I relished the flavors of the ten mouthwatering dishes, shared with ten people at each table.

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

The Food Truth: Why People Are Unhealthy These Days

In today's fast-paced world, being unhealthy almost seems like the norm. It's not just a small fraction of the population anymore; it's becoming increasingly common, like a graph that just won't stop climbing. Out of every 10 people, a staggering 6 are grappling with some form of health issue (WEIGHT LOSS ROADBLOCKS). And this isn't confined to one place; it's a global phenomenon.

In the past, it was mainly the older generation who dealt with health troubles. But now, even young kids as young as 5 are facing health challenges. Even young adults in their 20s are not immune. You don't have to take my word for it; just look around when you're at medical centers (CHALLENGES IN HEALTHCARE WELLNESS) or government hospitals. The evidence is right there.

Exploring Krabi and Phuket: Thailand's Coastal Gems

Humans are funny creatures indeed. Despite the increasing number of women traveling solo for various reasons (BANGKOK SOLO TRIP) like business, work-related trips, or simply holidays, people still seem puzzled and ask the same old question - why am I traveling alone? When this question comes from Asians, I can understand their curiosity, as it might be uncommon to see an Indian woman of my age, in my late 50s, traveling solo. 

However, it's quite alarming when I receive the same inquiry from Westerners, especially considering the thousands of Western women venturing out alone. What could be behind this universal curiosity about solo female travelers? It's a question that leaves me intrigued. While pondering over this, let me share my solo adventure, a short and sassy trip to Krabi and Phuket, which are considered paradises for Westerners.

Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Fried Noodles Ecstasy: Recipes for Every Taste

Hey Home Chefs! Ready to whip up some amazing fried noodles? I've got you covered with both vegetarian and non-vegetarian recipes. But before we dive into cooking, let's talk about some handy tips and different types of noodle dishes. That's what I'm here for – to share delicious recipes with you all.

And here's a little reminder about honesty. If you share these tasty dishes with others, why not mention they came from Ms. Nava? It's also all about sincerity and being genuine. Even if you use my recipes for your catering business, being honest will bring you peace of mind and help you avoid sleepless nights over small fibs. So, let's cook up something great together and keep it real!

Pulau Ketam: A Serene Escape into Island Living

After our tea break (PULAU KETAM PART 1), we were eager to discover more of Pulau Ketam. As we strolled, we noticed the police station and faintly saw the schools. In this village, people mainly get around by cycling, with occasional motorbikes on the narrow lanes, which serve as the main roads.


Our walk took us to the other side of the village, where we visited three temples. The first temple was slightly further from the jetty, and the second was officiated by the late Tan Sri Manickavasagam. While at the third temple, we chose to skip seeing the snake in the cage. We also couldn't overlook the captivating murals adorning the walls. Naturally, we couldn't resist snapping photos to immortalize our visit.

Saturday, June 1, 2024

Pada Salted Fish Pickle: Authentic Eurasian Taste Sensations

Can you still recall my recipe for Portuguese Vegetable Pickle? You might be wondering why I’m bringing it up. Well, this recipe for Pada Salted Fish Pickle comes from the same person who shared the Vegetable Pickle recipe. She told me it’s a Eurasian/Portuguese recipe, and I believe her since she’s Eurasian. Pada Salted Fish Pickle is truly delicious, especially if you love salted fish and the spicy kick from green chilies like I do.

Now, before we get to the recipe, here’s what you should know:


Quantities are flexible, especially for the salted fish and green chilies.

Adjust them to your liking.

Malay Chicken Recipes: Tempting Varieties to Try

Did you know I absolutely love Malay food (MALAY DESSERTS). Yep, it's my go-to. You'll often catch me at the Malay stalls digging into their dishes or bringing some home (PUCUK UBI MASAK LEMAK & MASAK TEMPEH). My Malay pals joke that I'm more Malay than them when it comes to food! I've tried it all - Petai, Jering, Tempoyak, you name it (PETAI RECIPES). And I grow those raw salad fixings in my fitness Zen, Nava’s Zen. I've cooked up various Malay dishes over the years, learning from my Malay friends. Not to copy, but to understand the flavors better.

I'm all about spicing up my Malay dishes, finding new twists to add in. Malay food, you know, it's all about those bold Asian flavors - spicy, sour, salty, sometimes a bit bitter. Oh, and a quick tip: chicken cooks fast, so watch it carefully to avoid it getting tough. These recipes I'm sharing aren't your usual ones, they're my own take. Simple, straightforward, and tasty. People who've tried them love how easy they are to follow and how delicious they turn out. So, ready to dive into these tempting Malay chicken recipes? You'll love them too, I'm sure (NASI GORENG & NASI KERABU).

Friday, May 31, 2024

Pulau Ketam: Timeless Charm Awaits

Pulau Ketam, or Crab Island, is a name that carries an air of charm. This island, nestled at the mouth of the Klang River near Port Klang, just downstream from Kuala Lumpur, has enchanted others, while it remained a mysterious enigma to me. Friends and fellow travelers rave about it, insisting it's a place you simply must experience. They talk about it with such fondness, always eager to return. My curiosity was piqued. Getting my husband to join in, we invited another husband-and-wife team, much older, to join us. They too were ready to discover what was in store in Pulau Ketam.

Bread Flower/Kesidang Plant: An Enchanting Beauty for the Senses

Nature is truly captivating. It fills our lives with joy and peace. But nature also needs our help. As climate change makes the weather hotter and more unpredictable, we depend more on air conditioners, even for our babies. Yet, people miss the benefits of urban gardening. It can cool our homes and naturally relieve stress (Bay Leaves Healing Therapy). Urban gardening helps the environment and fills the air with the soothing scent of flowers, offering a peaceful escape from the stress that harms us.

Enter Ms. Nava, the founder of Nava's Zen, a true enthusiast of urban gardening. Today, she introduces us to the enchanting bread flower, also known as Kesidang, Kerak Nasi, Tikar Seladang, or Vallaris Glabra (Ylang Ylang). These white, star-shaped blossoms have a scent that evokes pandan leaves or the aroma of cooked fragrant jasmine rice. Whenever they bloom, Ms. Nava takes a moment to stand in Nava's Zen and inhale their delightful fragrance. It's her natural way to calm her senses and enjoy a bit of tranquility (Rangoon Creeper).

Vegetarian Nyonya Recipes: Contrasting Flavors

Once upon a time, cooking Nyonya Cuisine ( NYONYA CUISINE: REDISCOVERING HERITAGE ) meant pounding ingredients in a mortar . Today, it's...