January 20, 2012 § 10 Comments
Last Saturday, I was able to meet up with four former study abroad classmates from HKU + two other girls.
Cathy, originally from mainland China, is back in HK doing her Masters. Kathy, who graduated from Cornell, is working in Shanghai. Christian and Danny are both from Australia. Winnie, a friend of Danny’s, grew up in Hong Kong but now lives in Australia. The photographer was Yi, Danny’s cousin, who teaches at Hong Kong Baptist University (and apparently studied at Yale?? I only heard fractions of that conversation). Everyone except Cathy and Yi were only in HK on vacation and departed with the weekend.
Fun fact: Christian and Danny showed up wearing the exact same cardigan (unplanned). Which they had bought together at H&M (allegedly). From the back, they looked exactly the same that day (can you tell?). I mean, I thought it was pretty bad whenever LC and I happened to wear similar colors to church, but we never took it to their level! That’s true destiny ♥
We had lunch at some hole-in-the-wall place in Wan Chai known for their barbecue pork, which was indeed delicious.
September 27, 2011 § Leave a comment
I have no ambitions of becoming a kitchen/cooking blogger, but sometimes it’s fun to take pictures when I’m using colorful ingredients, which is exactly what I did on Thursday.
When I woke up that morning, I just felt the urge to cook. I believe this was a first since coming home from school [and not including ramen]. I remembered that we had some Thai red curry paste in the fridge — perfect, I love making curry! I grabbed my ingredients and started chopping.
Then I hit a snag. Something I realized in the month that my parents were on vacation is that our house only has one can opener, and it’s a super-old super-manual one. I’m not sure if this is what my parents use regularly or if it just shows how infrequently we eat canned food, but this time my brother wasn’t home for me to force him to help me [muahaha], so I persevered on my own.
The water chestnuts almost gave me a blister [the can is so WIDE], but I got it open eventually. The coconut milk was a different story. No matter how much I struggled or which end I pried, the can opener just couldn’t get a good enough grip on the rim. My potatoes were already boiling and I wasn’t about to make curry with no coconut milk…
So I turned off the stove, got my car keys and went to Wal-Mart. Yay shopping! I’m never sure of where they keep the kitchen appliances, so I always mistakenly look around the food section before having to walk across the entire store to the housewares department. There were so many options! I chose a sturdy Better Homes & Gardens one with a rubberized grip. My cashier in the express lane was an Asian kid named Lance! Omg! That’s one of my favorite boys’ names and I’ve never met an Asian person with that name! It’s trivial, but it put a smile on my face.
When I got home and started working on the can of coconut milk, I discovered that my new can opener also seemed helpless against it. It just wouldn’t position correctly enough to make a puncture. What the heck?! All that effort was to be waylaid by a demented tin can?? With much struggling, I finally got it to work. Some things simply aren’t appreciated enough…like modern can openers.
After that little snafu, I tossed in my ingredients and served up a hot bowl of curry! When my mom and brother came home later, I realized that neither of them likes curry :( All mine, I guess.
July 6, 2011 § 1 Comment
For Fourth of July, I suddenly had the inclination to bake. This is something I do rather rarely, but I inexplicably wanted to make a marbled rainbow cake to bring to an evening BBQ. After a bit of inspiration, I decided to go with cupcakes. This is my first time really attempting making-food blogging, and I learned that it’s time-consuming to stop at every step to wipe my fingers clean and snap a photo or two.
Here’s the end result:
Rather patriotic, don’t you think? Alas, it’s hard to find ideal lighting in our kitchen due to lack of sunlight…
The process started with mixing food coloring into the cake batter. I must’ve used at least 10 bowls with separate chopsticks, spoons and knives for each!
I also made a small batch of non-patriotic rainbow cupcakes, but because there were so few of them, I didn’t dissect one to photograph its insides.
I simply spooned the differently colored batters into the cupcake liners to form layers. It would’ve been easier to swirl & marble the layers if I was baking a cake, but the comparatively small cupcakes were too goopy and I was low on time, so I just left them as they were.
They looked so pretty and perfect after coming out of the oven!
I also mixed food coloring into vanilla frosting. If I had more time, I would’ve added sprinkles and I would’ve arranged the cupcakes into an American flag design…maybe next time!
The blue batter turned out greener than I expected, but otherwise, the cupcakes turned out to be fantastic :)
October 13, 2009 § 1 Comment
I sat down at the circular table for dinner on the second night of Fall Conference ’09, delighted to see that every placemat had a generous piece of chocolate cake — my favorite food [Beijing roast duck comes in at a close second]. While giving my baked potato to PN, I noticed a vacant seat at the table, which meant an extra piece of cake. After looking around to check that nobody else was eying it, I asked PN to hand it to me.
Later, it became apparent that one of the people at our table did not have a piece of cake, so I conceded my extra one to her, though not without playful jeers from our fellow male diners. [I don’t care if they judge; I will stay faithful to my gustatory love!]
SL, who sat to my left, kindly offered me his own piece of cake, claiming that he did not really enjoy sweet foods. I gladly accepted it, finishing both pieces and sitting in bloated satisfaction. I’m not exactly sure in how the subsequent events happened, but suddenly, a piece of cake arrived from across the table, followed by three more.
“Eat all of them!” JG urged.
“Yeah, JG and I have money on it!” JP yelled.
“You want me to eat a total of six pieces of cake?!” I responded incredulously.
The guys at the table goaded me while the women looked on in mild amusement. Full as I was, I could’ve done it — my stomach stretches to enormous proportions when I consume sugary foods — but I adamantly refused. The reason I gave was that I didn’t want to throw up my entire dinner, but in actuality I didn’t want to appear cheap. Sacrificing my dignity for a mere $15? Just the notion of it is embarrassing.
However, I couldn’t shake the thought that if I were a guy, I totally would have accepted the challenge.
Competitive eating is mostly a men’s world. At other camps and buffets that I’ve been to, only guys would attempt to out-eat each other in some ridiculous manner. The activity is rather barbaric to me; even though I am against gender stereotypes and all that, I am still at time subject to wanting to fit into the dainty mold into which women are supposed to conform. A guy would get lauded for finishing a huge amount of food, but I can’t imagine myself receiving the same level of accolades from my peers — especially the female ones. I’ve simply never seen it happen.