Sunday, October 25, 2020

Sabah (East Malaysia) - Nava K's Discovery (Part 3)

Day 5 in Sabah. Off for another two, facing the beach sight viewing (Sabah Part 2 & Sabah Part 1). How did it go? By this day. Hah! I somehow managed to put the Sabah jigsaw puzzle into perspective for getting a clearer picture of what is going on. Without a doubt. My smartness. Yea. Mine alright. My smartness concluded that, my so called advisers didn't do their homework about any damn thing in Sabah. Apart from wrong projections on land prices, they had almost nil knowledge about land transactions, nor any clue what soever about the business indicators in Sabah. Damnit! On the contrary, I must thank some of the good people I came in contact with. They actually making it a point in sharing their expertise unselfishly on the hidden, unspoken and nitty-gritty business insights in Sabah. Furthermore, aha, I had also done my fair share of homework before leaving home, particularly on native land purchasing and how complicated it can be. Anyway. Anyhow. As frustrated as I was. I felt like a hero for my learning curve and knowledge on how, to a certain extent, doing business in Sabah can be complicated. Done. Over. Full stop. By day 5, I knew. I must give up. Either temporary or permanently on my future vision and mission in Sabah.

Sunday, October 4, 2020

Sabah (East Malaysia) - Nava K's Discovery (Part 2)

Day 3 in Sabah (Sabah Part 1). Hello Kota Kinabalu by 6.30am. Well! Oh well, well, well! Sleeping in a hotel room. Even if its the best room in the world? Even how tired I am. Never been like the best sleep, because, the best sleep for me, has to be my humble bed at home. Furthermore. Over the last  year or so, I've developed the habit to, like some, or all of you, who believe in, early to rise, early to shine is the key to starting your day promisingly. Also, the first thing for me when I wake up. Even before brushing my teeth. Of course. After a glass of warm water. The health is wealth trend. Next will be. Has to be. Must be. The aroma and taste of a cuppa of coffee for a fabulous, positive happy morning start up. Folllowed by, least to least, one full circle and cycle of "Surya Namaskar (Yoga Sun Salutation) gratiifying gratitude to the morning sun. Therefore, this day starting off on the same note. Water, coffee culture, and me the yoga practitioner respecting the sun. Then of course shower, and out of the hotel by 9.30am, for a basic, simple and no frill breakfast. 

Friday, September 25, 2020

Burmese Masoor Dal. Burmese Dal Gravy.

Before I visited Myanmar, I was already aware of the deep-rooted history of Indians in the country. So, it was no surprise when I encountered Indians at a street bazaar in Yangon. Despite my colored hair and knee-length pants, some of them recognized me as Indian and tried to start a conversation in Tamil. I nodded and smiled but didn't engage much, being cautious since those three people were males and I was alone, with my two travel companions busy shopping elsewhere in the bazaar.

While exploring the bustling streets, I was drawn to the food stalls. Though my friends were hesitant because the street stalls were not in their best condition, I decided to try a Burmese samosa drenched in a delicious lentil curry. The flavors of that lentil curry lingered in my mind long after, inspiring me to create my own version. Here comes my version of Burmese Masoor Dal/Burmese Dal Curry.

Monday, September 21, 2020

Sabah (East Malaysia) - Nava K's Discovery (Part 1)

Finally! Me and Sabah? Yes. Indeed. Me in Sabah at the earliest date in the month of February. Finally!! Yes. Can you believe it? After Nava K being on or in this earth for the last 56 years. Before. Even before, or whilst Covid 19 was getting upbeat and ready for showing its true colors, and before this virus crushing, crumbling and tumbling on my travelling life and style. Now, what's with me tripping in, on, over, above, under and about Sabah? Aha! The big dreams of mine. The future goals of mine. Which mind you, ending up as a major massive, thundering disappointment. To tell you the truth, I was utterly shattered. I was utterly broken into pieces. Until, I felt like, each and every part of me, including my inner wings of emotional strength, were like, torn and tattered into pieces. Duh! Doomer to whatever I wanted to achieve in Sabah for my future. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Chinese Herbal Pork Soup


Are you thinking, "An Indian lady cooking Chinese Herbal Pork Soup?" Yes, she does! I'm one of those Indians who loves pork, even though my husband doesn't. He doesn't mind me cooking it for myself. What's better than a Chinese soup packed with nourishment and goodness? Chinese Herbal Pork Soup sounds fabulous, don't you agree? Plus, it's super easy to cook. I usually use pre-packed herbs from the store, and wow, there are so many choices these days. Just pick your favorite, and let's cook up some soup! I also have a recipe for Chinese Pork Old Cucumber Soup, but let's start with this one - Chinese Herbal Pork Soup.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Vegetarian Asam Pedas (Asam Pedas Sayur)


Let's clear the air before we get cooking. People love to judge at first sight - some see me as a lady of leisure, a glamour queen, and the ultimate non-cook. After I got married, every time I walked into my in-laws' gatherings and mentioned cooking, I'd get sly smiles and those nasty, scrutinizing looks as if they were checking up on my culinary skills. Oh, the expressions on their faces - priceless! Apparently, my appearance didn't fit their cooking connoisseur checklist. How should a lady who cooks look? If only I resembled them, right? Weeeeeee!!

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Ikan Goreng Asam Jawa (Tamarind Fried Fish)


Ikan Goreng Asam, literally meaning Tamarind Fried Fish, showcases the delightful tanginess of tamarind juice. While Asam Fish can be prepared in various ways, such as in a tamarind sauce, steamed, or as a curry, this recipe focuses on a traditional Malay method of marinating and frying the fish. The tangy flavor of tamarind juice is a key ingredient, giving the dish its characteristic sourness.

 

For tamarind fried fish, the process is simple: soak the fish in tamarind juice with added salt and then fry it to perfection. The accompanying cecah (dip) is equally simple yet unique, featuring kaffir lime leaves for an aromatic twist. For those who prefer visual instructions, a YouTube video is provided.

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

New Delhi - North India (Day 2)

New Delhi. Day 2 (Delhi Part 1). Winter. Last winter. Winter. This winter. This first week of December winter specifically? Winterrrrrrrr! Oh-no! One hack of a winter. Winter, as if, getting ready for showing its true colors in full force. Full force lashing most probably by the next few days. Winter! Oh my god! Oh your god! Winter literally penetrating, pricking and needling me, deep, deep into my skin and further deeper into my tiny bones. You know what? I struggled. Massively. I had a hard time putting up with winter which was clinging on to me like a lost child. Furthermore, wouldn't just leave me alone. The breeze. Especially. Blowing up, down, and aha, even in between my legs. Until? Not only my fingers and toes were frozen, even inside my "Pussy Willow" and the pussy willow of mine, trembling quivering. Oh boy!

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Malaysian Egg Curry/Kari Telur Malaysia

You might be wondering why this curry is known as Malaysian Egg Curry. When it's cooked in my kitchen by an authentic Malaysian like me, it has to be a Malaysian version. Plus, this is a recipe I put together myself, so it makes sense, right? Curries are also healthy. Did you know that? Spices contribute to healthiness, and chilies can help increase your metabolism and burn calories. Maybe that's why I can still maintain my shape and size? But remember, too much curry can increase your body heat, so drink plenty of water. The moral of cooking and eating is that too much of any kind of food can be unhealthy, so moderation is key. Shall we get to the recipe now?

Monday, May 11, 2020

New Delhi - North India (Winter Time)

Delhi. Old Delhi or New India? New. New Delhi. Two days in New Delhi, the morning after Agra (Agra & Jaipur Rajasthan). Delhi at our helms by 1.30pm, after, almost, 5 hours of road tripping. Delhi. The capital city of India, and Delhi, which was the landing right of ours as well. As in? Meaning? In other words? Delhi is where we landed on the first day, for kick starting this, North India tour of ours (Varanasi), and Delhi, yes, will be our closure too. Closure? Closure as in? Up, up in the air. Delhi sky high up. When night has fallen in Delhi. We will be flying sky high for grounding back, on the ground of our mother land or father land, Malaysia. Delhi. The city to messy massive traffic. What else, by the way, is new in other parts of India as well? Almost the same story (Chennai South India). Let alone, the honking that can literally rip your ears apart, plus, Oh-God-Oh-No. The sheer number of crowded congested human traffic in Delhi? Pretty much? Mmmm!! Welcome to the hustle and bustle, craziness of Delhi. The day in day out, life and style of Delhi.

On our itinerary? In the moment in time, upon stepping foot in Delhi? Of course. Food start up. Our first ever meal in Delhi. Basically, lunch in Delhi and lunch in Restaurant "Flavour Of Southvala" (Karol Bagh). By the travelling guide line of this tour, lunch to each our own concept, since meals are not covered. Me? Me. The, eating a bird person. Three of us to sharing. Paper Tosai and Non-Veg Thali Set. Wah! Good Food. Nice Food. Delicious food. Yummzii Food. Of course, how can not yours truly, she love, love, love and love India Made Bru Coffee.




Over. Lunch concluded. Thereafter? To Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi. Goodness me! In the Indian snaking (opphs!!) queue. Long queue mind you, and winter on this particular day? Bang! Winter wild like me, winter wild coldness practically banging all around for quivering my bones. Huhhhhhh! Cold. Anyway, from the queue to the security check. Thorough checking for ensuring that none is carrying handphone or camera, and then, into Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi.

Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi
Opened 6th November 2005
Constructed by Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS)
Inspired by HH Yogiji Maharaj (1892-1971 CE)
Created by His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj
More than 300,000,000 volunteer hours went into making the complex
Over 8,000 volunteers from across the world participated in building it
Mandir built from intricately carved sandstone and marble 
Exhibitions on Hinduism, including Bhagwan Swaminarayan's life and teachings such as prayer, compassion, and non-violence.
Open gardens, water bodies and step-well styled courtyard 
(Picture credit - akshardham.com)

Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi. Awww!! Amazing! The luxurious stunning master class piece. Damn nice. Yea. I am ranking Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi  as one of the prides of New Delhi and one which, I didn't honestly, know nuts or bolts about. Worth it. So worthy Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi. In fact, some of those in this tour commented that, Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi is as equal or even better status standing in comparison to Taj Mahal. Really? Should I agree? No. Not at all. Both Taj Mahal and Swaminarayan Akshardham New Delhi are a class to their own uniqueness. I won’t compare. I don’t think you should look at both of these and make a comparison. Just set them apart as they are please.  The end. 

End of sightseeing. In fact. The one and only, Day 1 New Delhi sightseeing. What about for the rest of the day? Late evening till whatever time you want to cap time? Shopping. Shopping in Karol Bagh. Shop, please go ahead, shop till you drop if you want in Karol Bagh. Karol Bagh! A major hype amongst tourist shopping district. Especially, our Malaysian Indians? Shopping on the whole in whichever part of India.  What about me? Did I shop or least to least, did my jaw drop? Oh please. Neh. To tell you the truth, Karol Bagh wasn’t a big deal or biggest deal for me. As it is, shopping is not at all the reason why I travel. Shopping by the way, has already long been abolished from my list. Furthermore, for someone like me who have been in and out of such shopping districts in other parts of the world? Like what? Like nothing I will die for. Having said that, in all fairness, I did my honor to seeing and exploring Karol Bagh. I mean, if you have come this far to New Delhi and you wouldn’t even want to leave your foot prints in Karol Bagh? What a shame. 


Almost an hour, in and out of a couple of boutiques, street shops and street stalls, enough. Enough of Karol Bagh. More than enough of aimlessly walking up and down. The logical choice then? To the hotel, located within a 15 minutes walking distance, But, ahhhhhhh! How frustrating. The two of us lost it. We got lost in the midst to the direction. Such a confusing matter it turned out to be. Imagine? You are in a carnival like busy street, surrounded and swarmed by hell of a lot of, mostly locals and making the matter worst, the chaotic traffic. Not to forget, the stares. Stares from of course the Delhi men, who were mind you, come to think of it, not bad looking. Yet, when they dare stare right into your eyes non-stop? Phew! Oh boy! Having no other choice, we braved ourselves in asking for the direction and. Thank god. Thank all the gods in Delhi. We made it one piece. Into the hotel and straight up to my room. Done! The end. Day 1 in Delhi.  







Thursday, April 23, 2020

Taj Mahal Agra - (North India)

And the journey. The journey of five and a half hours (More or less. Approximately). The journey from Jaipur (Jaipur The Love City & Jaipur Part 1) to Agra. The journey to, keeping my ass, staying put in my seat in the coach. Ahhhh! Ass. Ass literally. Fried up, down, under, above and inside. You know. This kind of long journeys. Especially for yours truly? Someone who can't keep her ass quiet. Hahaha!! She. Nava K. The hyper, fidgety, colors of "My Fifty Five Life" bright colors lively character, and tell me about my mouth. Mouth of mine? My big fat mouth which must battle wrestle out of me. The chatter box mouth of mine. Mmmmm!!!! Thank god. I had company. Company to a small number of liberal, happy go, lucky come ladies and guys in this tour (Varanasi Part 3). The bubbly and cheerful characters like me. We had fun. We giggling over silly jokes and of course, Nava K? The crowned glory to "Laughter Therapy Guru".

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Jaipur, Rajasthan - The Love City (North India)

Jaipur! So far, so absolutely amazing, fascinating and an absolute wonder world. To tell you the truth, Jaipur, without a doubt, had already conquered and captured my travelling, shining like diamond love essence. Even from the moment I was passing by and before getting down from the coach. Jaipur! Known as the "Pink City" obviously, for me personally, on the contrary, Jaipur is the "Love City". Why love are you asking me? Oh-Well. I somehow seemingly felt the love connection for Jaipur. Yea! Love! Love. Always the number one priority for literally everything in my life, and in whatever I do, and in Jaipur (Jaipur Part 1), my love for Jaipur, was pouring, oozing and dripping non-stop. Due to the underpinning, openly shown or hidden love at the sightseeing spots. In fact, even the North Indians (South India, Chennai) I bumped into and spoke to. By virtue of, staying at the hotels, shopping, whether at the shopping malls or streets, of course sightseeing places must be included as well, plus the tour guides (Varanasi North India). The tour guides who were directly or indirect correlated to love. Love as in the tour service they provided by not being selfish with their knowledge, bundled alongside bundles of smiles and laughter. All of these, all, lock, stock and barrel, trust me, whispered the language of love or akin the loud love bells ringing into my ears and on every note, in and out of my inner and outer senses.  

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, March 12, 2020

Jaipur, Rajasthan (North India) - Part 1

Heart sank. Yesss! Mine. Mine, mine, mine. My, my one and only fragile heart. My heart gradually sinking, as if, to the lowest and deepest, plunging into Ganges River. Or maybe. Sinking like, the fast or slow sinking of the "Titanic". Trust me. Wasn't easy. When I have to say, when I to bid bye-bye to Varanasi (Varanasi Part 3). I felt, as though,I'm leaving behind a part of me in Varanasi. Varanasi which touched my Hindu Indian sentiment so profoundly until, I wanted more of Varanasi (Varanasi Part 2). One more day, one more night and what more, furthermore of Varanasi (Varanasi Part 1). Then again. The reality was otherwise. Because? Pretty much. We have already covered, if I am not mistaken, the lock, stock and barrel of Varanasi and coming with it, the quintessential Varanasi sightseeing spots.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Varanasi - North India (Part 3)

Varanasi. Yes. Of course. Precisely. Varanasi. So far. So good. Nothing much, honestly, no much I should complain about. In fact. A promising, fulfilling start I must state. Except maybe. The setback? Hotel Silk City. Mmmm!! Like a dungeon. Furnitures, fittings and the overall set-up? As if you have checked into an ancient old, war-torn hotel. To tell you the truth. I didn't know how to react the moment I stepped in. Sadly. Not at all to my taste infinitely. Then again? When you didn't pay for a  5 star  or even 4 star hotel? Keep quiet. Don't act, or behave like a standard mudguard please. Just make do with it. Yep. I had to remind myself.  Over and over, again and again. On a better note? Bathroom. The blessings to a clean, spic and span bath and toilet area. Thank god. The only bingo. The only bonus seemingly.

South Indian Style Fish Curry

Fish curries are a delightful explosion of spices, tantalizing our taste buds with their vibrant flavors and tender fish pieces immersed i...