Saturday, June 30, 2012

Royal Thai Handicraft Center - Bangkok (Thailand)

The in between, between our sightseeing (Bangkok Part 2)? Stop-over in Royal Thai Handicraft Center (Ayutthaya & Bangkok Part 1). A promising start once you stand outside for admiring the craftsmanship and craftswoman-ship. Trust me, admirable skills. But these men or women at work. They can't be bothered in looking at you. Like zombies, they will just continue doing what they are doing. No action and reaction even if you try to make eye contact or you want to smile at them. I suppose we just leave them alone? Logically.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bangkok,Thailand - Through My Canon (Part 2)

 
Back to the hotel after a fulfilling tour in Ayutthaya (Ayutthaya Thailand). Quite a tiring one too. In and out of the bus and sightseeing by itself, you gotto walk your legs from one end to the other hunny bunny. Let's not also forget about the weather in Thailand. Mostly, burning sun. Even so, my enthusiasm for more of Bangkok (Bangkok Thailand Part 1) didn't dwell. I still wanted more and the more awaiting me tonight, Calypso Cabaret Show. Sandwich and a drink packed back from MBK Mall and me tucking in, in my room and by 7.00pm, off to Calypso Cabaret Show by hopping into the van. Calypso Cabaret Show. My-My! Colorful costumes, fun, fantastic, lively, raunchy, sexy, laughter, crowd pleasing, crowd teasing and polished performance by the lady boys. What a show. A show which kept my glued to my seat for an hour. Simply superb. 

Monday, June 25, 2012

Ayutthaya (Thailand) - UNESCO World Heritage Centre

Ayutthaya! Such a significant name to my ears. Ayutthaya! Bookmarked for as long as I can remember. Me like been patiently waiting to explore Ayutthaya, said as a must do if you are in Bangkok, and finally, the day arrived. As if my dream came through. Though, honestly, I really didn't plan for Ayutthaya to be included in this solo trip of mine which started in Chonburi (Chonburi & Pattaya), followed by arriving in Bangkok (Pathumwan Part 1 & Pathumwan Part 2and immediately jump starting my sightseeing (Bangkok - Through My Canon). I survived. I sure did. Albeit the hiccup before finding my way back to the hotel (Pathumwan Princess Part 3) and trust me, sleeping alone for the first time in your entire life in a new place? Aha! I made it. Thanks also to the hotel staff and travel agent staff for their kind advice on me safe keeping myself in Bangkok. 

Nandu Rasam (Crab Legs Pepper Soup)

Old habits die hard, don't you think so? Even our cooking habits embossed and embedded in us by. Who else will drill cooking in our head, but our grandmothers and mothers? Girls must learn to cook their philosophy. Yes. Trust me. If you don't start cooking as young as you are, simultaneously you don't pick up the cooking tips from them, all hell would have broken loose those days. Sometimes they themselves can be the hell monsters. Literally pushing you, no matter what, you must cook. I know. I didn't have it all easier either. Knocks on the head and being pinched. Duh! Perhaps maybe, for the better? I really don't know what to say. Regardless, this habit of whenever its a crab dish at home (Malaysian Chilli Crab & Crab Curry), it must be in tandem with the claws or legs kept for Nandu Rasam until I am still till this day doing the same and of course, no complains from my Indian other half-half. And so, the story goes as well for this another version compared to the previous (Indian Crab Soup). Indian Pepper Soup (Mor Rasam) and crab legs in one. A tweeted and modernised version because I used store bought spice powder and of course, as usual, how can our Indian soup be perfected without turmeric powder (Turmeric Tomato Soup) and for Nandu Rasam, pepper is quintessential (Mixed Vegetable Soup). Nandu Rasam (Crab Legs Pepper Soup). Go ahead slurp in or like us Indian, banjir/flooded over rice. 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Pathumwan Princess Hotel - Bangkok, Thailand (Part 3)

What and what not thereafter ( Madame Tussauds & Bangkok Part 1)? Like a Bangkok hero, me crossing the road while the sky was still slightly bright for heading back to the hotel (Pathumwan Princess Hotel Part 1) and for packing food for dinner. Wrong check-mate outrightly. Why? I didn't dare being amongst the many walking up and down. My main concern was, what if I am robbed or mugged? Silly thoughts you think so? Maybe, but seriously, I didn't want to risk my handbag. Passport and wallet? I really didn't want to take a chance. So, I started walking as fast as I could. By then, sky had turned dark, yet, Pathumwan Hotel was no where to be seen. I panicked until I could think anymore. I thought I was lost in space and my heart kept pounding louder and louder. In fact, I felt as though my heart is going to fly out. Logically then, I had to ask around. Thanks to the 3 or 4 kind Thai samaritans who pointed towards the direction of Pathumwan Hotel. God! What a relief.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Sambal Sotong Petai

When you have already made Sambal Tumis Ikan Bilis Petai, Sambal Petai Udang Kering & Sambal Bilis Petai, what should be next? Potentially, don't you think petai and sotong? A great marriage together? Petai trust me, works wondrously with sotong. Of course, it must also be in sambal? Sambal (Sambal Udang) Our Malaysian sambal. Our sambal (Belacan Fish Sambal, Nyonya Fish SambalSambal Belacan & Salted Fish Mango Sambal) we so sincerely love. Yep. You are right. Especially petai lovers, wouldn't you absolutely agree? Sambal Sotong Petai? Without a doubt, if you are asking this petai queen. So, what's the cooking style to Sambal Sotong Petai/Squid Stink beans (Sambal Sotong)? I mean, how different can it be? Pretty much the standard style right? Sambal ingredients sauteed and then alongside sotong and petai. 

Bangkok, Thailand - Through My Canon (Part 1)

The start to my sightseeing in Bangkok (Pathumwan Hotel Part 1) after lunch (Santa's Fast Food)? Travel agent arriving by 1.30pm and me being driven to the agent's office, and where, alongside the rest of the tourists, plus the tour guide, let's say, all in all, the 15 of us hopping into the bus. Bangkok! My first ever time. Goodness me! Traffic jam in Bangkok? Bad shape. Nevertheless, you just have to put your trust at the helms of the bus drivers. They have it. They have mastered it for ensuring your safety and completing your tour within the stipulated time. Our this half a day tour? To the temples. The first temple we visited. Wat Tramit Wittayaram Temple. Swarmed by hundreds and bustling busy. All walks of life tourists and locals as well due its a public holiday for ushering Thai king's birthday and year end school holiday.      

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Santa'S Fast Food - MBK Mall, Bangkok (Thailand)

Up next after booking my room (Pathumwan Hotel Part 2 & Part 1)? Heading to MBK mall for lining my stomach with some food and the moment I spotted the first eatery, I decided. I will have my lunch in Santa'S Fast Food. Why Santa'S Fast Food? Because I didn't have the guts for walking any further for spotting other eateries. Remember, I have just arrived in Bangkok an hour ago (Chonburi)? My first ever travelling on my own in my entire 45 years. As it is, I am still coming to terms I am alone in Bangkok and my confidence level still very low till the floor. Hunger by this hour, about 12.00pm was already killing me and me quickly deciding between the set meals offered in Santa's by standing in front of the counter.  

Monday, June 18, 2012

Thai Fish Noodle soup

Obviously, am I not growing stronger and stronger, tougher and tougher in the noodles department (Thai Mee Hoon Kerabu/Soup & Spicy Thai Noodles)? For a matter of fact as well, in the Thai country cooking origin (Tom Yum Prawn Fried Rice, Tom Yam Chicken & Tom Yam Fried Mee Hoon)? Fish Of course.  Do I have to say anything when I am married to a man who lives by fish and I think if he can, he will swim alongside them daily (Hong Kong Style Steamed Fish, Vietnamese Fish Soup & Chilli Lime Fish). Until no dish, mind you is spared without fish (Fish Sambar, Grilled Fish SandwichSpicy Grilled Fish). What else is new, you tell me? Nothing by far I think is new, but the newest Thai recipe? Yes, this Thai Fish Noodle Soup. Not the red kinda powering broth though. This is the subtle one. Of course, we still need chillies, as you can see, salmon my choice to fish was fried and later, after assembling noodles alongside red chillies, bean sprouts, green peas, spring onion and mint leaves, packing a worthy customary Thai tastes broth poured over. Sounds so mouthwatering right? 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Pathumwan Princess Hotel (Bangkok) - Part 2

My three days in Pathumwan Princess Hotel? Oh, before I forget to tell you, I decided to extend another day instead of returning to boredomness (Chonburi & Pattaya). Obviously, not free. Me paying another RM400.00 and the account taken up by my credit card. Pathumwan Princess Hotel. What else can you expect apart from a beautiful and well kept room? Honestly, to tell you the truth, I can't say much. I was out most of the time. Nevertheless, I did though walk within wherever I could when I had some extra time in hand. Of course, it all started on the first floor. Booking my room and like I have already told you, lobby on the ground floor. Lobby? Like any other hotel lobby, but this one? Darn stylish. Spacious and where you sit around or idle your time away by sipping into a drink or maybe, even order food and once sun goes down, light live music instead of heavy duty head banging.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Pathumwan Princess Hotel (Bangkok, Thailand) - Part 1

Goodness me! Like a hero I took a ride from my bestie's colleague to Bangkok (Chonburi & Pattaya) and this kind soul insisting on helping me out in booking a room. I in return didn't want to trouble her and after thanking her, I walked into the hotel across. Can't remember which hotel specifically because the moment I was told rooms are not available and that I have not prior book a room in any hotel, I almost shed bricks. The adorable hotel staff, I think noticed me panicking. Another kind soul who wrote down Pathumwan Hotel name on a piece of paper and telling me to show it to the taxi driver. Alright. To the main road for flagging down a cab and prior to getting down in front of the hotel and then, me standing in front of the reception counter on the first floor. Thank god. I managed to book a room for two nights (RM800). Oh-what a joy! Next of course, heading to my room I think on the 15th floor. Swipe card mind you. Dang! My safely ensured. All the way most probably and till into the lift and to my room. Only that if I have to smoke, I have come down to the smoking room on the ground floor or I can also puff, if I am not mistaken, on the 8th floor where the open air bar is. Fine. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Chonburi & Pattaya (Thailand) - My Solo Travel Trail

Lessons I picked up from my holiday to Malacca (Philea Resort & Malacca Part 2) or even from my first ever, over the sea trip (Rome & Milan)? Travelling with friends is not as sunshiny or rosy as it may seem to be or as others share on social media. Furthermore, for indication that perhaps I should start travelling alone. Solo travel? The thought of it? Quite scary and frightening initially mind you until I was in two minds. I wasn't even sure if I can do it. Then again, unless I try? Of course. But getting the green light from my other half-half? God! This Indian husband of mine who behaves as though he is the most liberal male gender in this world. Debated over and over again until he finally said yes. How did it all start for my first ever solo travel? Thanks for the encouragement from bestie who was based in Amata Golf & Country Club Chonburi for a golf tournament project.  

Monday, June 11, 2012

Malaysian Chili Crab

Malaysian my and mine again? I can't help it guys (Pandan/Screwpine Cheesecake). Seriously, what else can you expect from me. Its always been, my background, I have been cooking Malaysian dishes and each time I cook again, I can't seemingly break free from Malaysia. Basically, because our local produce is the reason. Cheaper pretty much for keeping my cost to cooking low (Malaysian Lamb Curry NoodlesMalaysian Fried Mee & Malaysian Spicy Sour Fish Soup Noodles) and we, no matter what, we generally fancy our style of food. We basically love our big, bold flavours and must I include chillies for all Malaysians? I reckon I should. No chillies, I guess, we feel we have not had a complete mouth packing meal (Chilli Aloo, Grilled Spicy Prawns, Stingray Sambal SauceSweet Chilli Chicken & Chilli Soy Fish). Chillies. Whether over-loaded or a tiny bit, but it must be chillies in some way or rather (Chilli Lime Fish, Sambal Tumis Ikan Bilis, Spicy Fried Wings & Sichuan Chilli Prawns). What about, how of much chillies are you now asking me? How much you should add for this Malaysian Chilli Crab? Up to you. As you wish for these spicy tangy Malaysian Chilli Crab (Indian Crab Soup & Crab Curry) which I bet is already tickling your taste-buds. 

Friday, June 8, 2012

Malacca (Malaysia) – Travel By Nava K (Part 2)

Day 1 was pretty much exciting and friendship sightseeing happily together (Malacca - Travel By Nava K Part 1). Day 2 on the other hand? Nonsense and really an irritating start. After breakfast (Philea Resort),  I really can't tell you what got into the couple. They arguing and refusing to budge from Philea. My-God! These are the people I chose to travel with? The things you find out about your friends once you travel with them? Anyway, I was not keen in needling neither I cared less. I completely ignored them and after enquiring from the staff of Philea what can I do, I walked for like 10 minutes before arriving at Malacca Butterfly & Reptile Sanctuary. Entrance fees and paying for my camera as well, and into Malacca Butterfly & Reptile Sanctuary where you can easily spend at least half a day if you are not rushing. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Nasi Goreng Ikan Bilis (Anchovies Fried Rice)

Don't we Malaysians love our rice? Anytime, any hour, practically for any meal and whenever we wish? Of course. Undeniably. Me too being the number one rice lover. I basically love rice to every bit. Rice is my sincerity. Cooked white rice, paired alongside side dishes, and sometimes elevated or heightened to another level spiraling level in regards to a few ingredients or generously (Nasi LemakGhee Rice & Nasi Dagang) or how about leftover cooked white rice? Effortlessly converted to fried rice (Malaysian Fried Rice, Tom Yum Fried Rice, Lamb Fried Rice, Chinese Fried Rice & Kampung Fried Rice). No. No. Not the exact previous Anchovies Long Beans Fried Rice though. Never. Never will I repeat showcase the same recipes over and over again. This Nasi Goreng Ikan Bilis notably is the other, another version to nava-k's making fried rice. Perhaps a couple of similar ingredients, has to be right? We can't do away with the customary ingredients right? I doubt. I don't think-tank we can. This Nasi Goreng Ikan Bilis (Anchovies Fried Rice)? Anchovies, mushroom, eggs, peas and spring onion. Keep this recipe on stand-by, you should, just in case it will be your turn to a lazy Sunday or any day cooking.    

Eco-Friendly Delights on Banana Leaves: Nava's Zen Culinary Harmony

I feature my culinary creations on banana leaves, courtesy of the cultivated banana trees in Nava's Zen ( Cultivating Sustainable Living...