Saturday, March 21, 2020

Kari Kambing Malaysia (Malaysian Mutton Curry)


In an Indian household, a meal without a mutton dish feels incomplete. Let's avoid the health debate; it tends to spark lengthy discussions or heated arguments. Mutton is a must for us at least twice a month, especially for my Indian husband, who avoids chicken and pork. So, I've cooked various mutton dishes, mostly in spicy gravy or masala. That's what Indian taste buds crave. And during social gatherings, spicy mutton is a hit across all races.

 

There are various ways to prepare spicy or masala mutton, from making the spice paste from scratch. But for this Malaysian version, Kari Kambing Malaysia (Malaysian Mutton Curry), we'll use store-bought spice powders, embracing the convenience of ready-made options in our fast-paced lives, where cooking time is limited. I usually stock up on spice powders, storing them in the fridge to prevent molding and mustiness.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Cape Town: The Magical Moments

Our journey from the hotel to Nederburg Wines was quite a trek (CAPE TOWN THE NATURE STUNNER). As one of Stellenbosch's oldest vineyards, we received a warm welcome from the staff and were guided through the grape processing and wine conversion process. Honestly, I wasn't the most attentive listener - more interested in sampling the wines! I took cautious sips, avoiding a rush to my head. Truth be told, I couldn't distinguish between the different wine flavors and varieties. Some guests seemed like experts, while others, like me, quietly enjoyed the experience.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Cape Town: The Nature Stunner

Honestly, I had no clue whatsoever what to expect in Cape Town (CAPE TOWN: THE TRAVEL STEALER). Aside from glancing at the itinerary before I left home, I didn’t read up on the city. As always, I preferred to discover places organically (COLOMBO DISCOVERY & KANDY MOMENTS). In Cape Town, I was swept away by the wonders of this part of South Africa, starting with a morning drive from the hotel to the high slopes of the mountains. The adventure had me standing rather than seated, gripping the bars of the coach as it maneuvered through the mountains. Swinging left and right with each turn, I was captivated by the jaw-dropping views of Cape Town's waters and the stunning scenery that unfolded before me (AGRA: TAJ MAHAL & VARANASI SACRED GANGES).

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Cape Town: The Travel Stealer

When my travel buddies asked, "Hey Nava, want to join us for a trip to South Africa? It's 10 days, 7 nights. Are you in?" I didn't hesitate (SEOUL: JOURNEY THROUGH MY EYES & JEJU THROUGH MY LENS). After checking my bank balance, which thankfully cooperated, I eagerly accepted the invitation. Our journey took us from KLIA, with a layover at Singapore Changi Airport, before finally landing at Cape Town International Airport in the morning. The long flight, coupled with the transit in Singapore, made for quite a journey (OSAKA SUNSETS & KYOTO ONSEN BARENESS).

Our first order of business was lunch at Ocean Basket in Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, a renowned seafood spot introduced to us by our knowledgeable guide, who has been based in South Africa for over a decade. The restaurant's chic blue-themed decor set a perfect ambiance. We tucked in a satisfying set lunch featuring soup, salad, a seafood platter, dessert, and drinks. The portions were so generous that even sharing was a challenge, leaving us regretting any waste.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Seoul, Korea: A Journey Through My Eyes

On the second last day in Korea, which was spent in Seoul (GANDWON-DO & JEJU THROUGH MY LENS) e skipped the usual hotel buffet breakfast and were taken to an eatery instead. Remember, I told you how it's difficult to figure out the names of eateries in Korea, as the signboards are all in Korean? By the time we walked in, it seemed it was almost the end of breakfast. The tables were a mess, created by previous tour groups who had already eaten and left. It felt like we were helping ourselves to the remnants of the dishes, and the staff seemed uninterested in serving us. Nevertheless, we helped ourselves to pumpkin porridge and spinach porridge, along with Kimchi soup and side dishes. Despite the initial chaos, it was a pleasant meal.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Gangwon-do, South Korea: From Mount Sorak to Pyeongchang

Mount Sorak, or Seoraksan, located in the northeastern part of South Korea, marked the start of our adventure-filled day (NAMI ISLAND & JEJU THROUGH MY LENS). This majestic mountain, part of the Taebaek range within Seoraksan National Park, spans the provinces of Gangwon-do, including Sokcho, Inje, and Yangyang. Renowned for its rugged peaks, dense forests, and stunning waterfalls, the park offered us a serene and picturesque setting.

Our group, moving like one happy family, enjoyed fun moments as we walked through the park, passing by towering red pine trees. Our first stop was the Bronze Jwabul Statue, also known as the Tongil Daebul, erected in 1997. Standing 14.6 meters tall, this statue symbolizes the hope for the reunification of North and South Korea and represents the moment of the Buddha's enlightenment. Nearby, we visited Sinheungsa Temple, one of Korea's oldest Zen Buddhist temples, dating back to the 7th century. Joining in the prayers for a few minutes, I felt a profound sense of calm and zen spirituality (KYOTO ZENFUL SIGHTS & VARANASI SACRED GANGES).

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Nami Island & Petite France: A Korean-French Experience

Leaving Jeju Island behind (JEJU THROUGH MY LENS), we were off to Nami Island, located 63km northeast of Seoul. After breakfast and packing our bags, we headed to the airport and arrived in Seoul just in time for lunch. Seeing Korean steamboat yet again almost did me in - was it always steamboat or hotplate on these tours? I wondered. Fortunately, Korean side dishes and rice saved the day with their flavors.

Within the hour, we journeyed to Nami Island. This scenic oasis in the heart of South Korea's Bukhan River is celebrated for its natural beauty and cultural charm. Shaped like a half-moon after the construction of the Cheongpyeong Dam, Nami Island captivates visitors with its tree-lined pathways, lush landscapes, and serene lakeside views.

A Taste of Burma: Masoor Dal and More Lentil Delights

Lentils and dal are essential staples in my kitchen, celebrated globally ( PERTH CULINARY EXPERIENCES ) for their versatility and nutritiona...