Month: September 2016

Stuffed Grape Leaves (Dolma)

After we moved to Brisbane years ago, my husband planted four grapevines at our backyard. With the nice and warm weather, they grow very well. We have been watching the grapevines covered with tender buds and young leaves since the Spring comes. Soon, we will have to spray everything to prevent the harm from caterpillars who love to indulge themselves with tender grape leaves. Hence, it’s time to make the Dolma (stuffed grape leaves). I remember the first time I tried the stuffed grape leaves. “Are the leaves really eatable?” I asked with great suspicion. The answer was a very firm “Yes, of course!”. Well, my husband grew up with this food. He loves it. I think it’s something remind him of home. Gradually , I have grown my love for this food as well, especially when we can get our hands on the fresh grape leaves. This recipe is from my mother-in-law. My husband has made it many times for me. I simply love the easy way of making it and the fresh flavor from the grape leaves. Makes 30  INGREDIENTS …

Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers

We made a last-minute decision to go to the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers last Sunday. After moving to Brisbane for over four years, we finally made it to the festival at the very last day.  The weather wasn’t very good, windy and rainy. We did get a little bit of the sun occasionally. Well, it’s the Spring. I am not complaining! We always love a road trip, even it’s a very short one. We get to talk about everything, from the home renovation, dinner plan to future travel plans, which involves a lot of good laugh. It might be rainy outside, but it’s always sunny inside of the car. Toowoomba is located in the west of Brisbane, about 90 minutes drive. It is known as “the Garden city”, and it’s the biggest inland city in Australia. Some says the name is originated from the Aboriginal word of “The Swamp”. Its history can be dated back to 1827 when an English explorer discovered a rich farming land, Darling Downs. Toowoomba is considered as the commercial center of …

Black rice salad

The weather in Brisbane is getting warm. I start carving for salads. I have been loving black rice lately. So I thought I might put them together to have a nice light dish for lunch. Black rice is rich in antioxidants, high in iron and fiber. I found it’s really filling and healthy. Good for my blood sugar level too. How to cook black rice? I wash and soak the rice in the water overnight. The next morning, I cook it in my rick cooker. If you don’t have a rick cooker, you can cook 1 cup of black rice with two cups of water/stock in a deep sauce pan. Bring is to boil, reduce the heat, leave it to simmer until all the liquid is gone. Let it cool in the pot. At lunch time, I just mix it with some fresh vegetables I have in the kitchen. Quick and easy! Makes 2 INGREDIENTS 1/2 cup cooked black rice 1/2 onion – diced 30 g baby rocket 1/2 capsicum – diced 1/2 preserved lemon (optional) 5-6 …

Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution | Review

Just finished a bottle of the Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution serum from Kiehl’s few days ago. I thought it might be a good idea to share my view here. One of my skin concerns has been pigmentation on my cheeks for the past few years. I don’t have acne scars, but I have dark spots and patches on my cheek. The causes? No idea, hormonal changes, UV exposures, or probably just genetic. I do use SPF products religiously every single day.  This serum is not a new product, and it has been on the market for quite a while. I purchased mine from the airport duty-free shop in early May this year. It’s a 50 ml bottle, which lasted me about 4 months. The RRP is $70 for a 30 ml bottle in Australia.   On the package, it says this corrector has “a visible impact on a broad spectrum of dark spots, including those caused by age, UV exposure or post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation”. Kiehl’s AU website claims that 55% of women clinically had dark spot reduction in …

Savoury white sesame flatbread (Shaobing)

I am not 100% certain flatbread is the appropriate name for Shaobing because it’s not exactly flat and also has round shape. Anyway, it will do for now. It’s one of my favorite breakfast food when I was a kid. My mum made it quite often. It can be sweet or savoury, with filling or without. It has so many layers, crispy outside and soft inside. When you bite, you get a mouthful of sesame aroma. It’s a perfect afternoon snack too with some green tea. Cut it into 4 pieces and share with friends. This recipe is for savoury white sesame Shaobing (flatbread) without filling. You can use black sesame as well. Try it to make sandwiches with ham. 🙂 Makes 10 INGREDIENTS Dough: plain flour – 380g dry yeast – 3/4 teaspoon caster sugar – 15g salt – a pinch olive oil – 40 ml lukewarm water – 205g Savoury Sesame paste: tahini – 95g sesame oil – 10g salt – 1 teaspoon plain flour – 45g paprika – 1 teaspoon five spice powder …

Baked custard mooncake

With the Mid-Autumn festival (Moon festival) approaching, I set the mood to make mooncakes since last week. Last year, I didn’t make any mooncakes. Why? I can’t really remember. I could come up with some excuses, but I bet you don’t want to hear it. 😛 The Mid-Autumn festival is really a family holiday. It’s the occasion we celebrate family reunion. When I was a little girl, I remember we would have all family members gathering together for the day and have a big dinner. After dinner, my parents normally would take us out to a fire cracker show and a lantern event to do the lantern riddles. My dad always made a lantern for me for the moon festival, either the traditional type (red and round) or the rabbit shape lantern. Writing all this just brings all my childhood memories back. So much fun we had. I even won a riddle reward one year. Sharing a mooncake is a tradition in our family. My mum would always cut one mooncake into four pieces. Then, we …

Liebster Award

I have been nominated for the Liebster Award! Big thank you to Small world, smaller girl for nominating me! It means a lot and I really appreciate the love and support. It encourages me to blog more! 🙂 The Rules 1. Write a post to show your award 2. Acknowledge the blogger that nominated you 3. Give a brief story of why you started blogging 4. Give advice to your fellow bloggers 5. Nominate a few bloggers for the award 6. Leave a comment to let the nominated bloggers know about the award Why I Started Blogging: I just started to blog about two months ago.  The initial idea was to share my cooking passion. Then, I realize it’s a great place that I can write about all the things I love and make new friends all over the world. Meanwhile, I get to learn a lot from other bloggers, like culture, history, food (the most important one, haha), cities, and more, and more. Advice: Since I just started blogging, I am still learning. Things I can …

Hourglass vanish seamless foundation stick |Review

Personally, I think the most important part of makeup is the foundation. A good foundation helps to prepare your skin to have a good base for the makeup. For me, a good base means natural looking and even skin tone. Once you have established that, the rest should be easy for a everyday life, a little bit of lip gloss, a red lipstick, a full faced makeup or just some mascara. You will still look more put together, even you just run out of the door with a lip balm in your pocket. It sounds so simple, but actually not. Finding the right foundation is quite a tricky business. The color needs to match your skin tone. The texture has to suit your skin type. Coverage should be good enough. The ingredients must not irritate your skin. A good foundation will compliment your skin condition, not emphasize the fine lines, clog the skin or make you look like you have a thick layer of plaster on the face. I have very dry skin and hyper-pigmentation on …

Oven roasted Ribs

I so much love ribs. I am not a big meat eater, but I would have ribs anytime. This recipe is so simple to make, but the result is super good. The meat will be tender and tasty you wouldn’t believe. It will fall off the bone. Just be prepared. 😀   Serves 2 INGREDIENTS pork ribs – 500g Ground ginger – teaspoon Ground garlic – 1 teaspoon Green onion/shallot – 2, sliced. Oyster sauce – 1 tablespoon soy sauce – 1 tablespoon Dark soy sauce – 1 teaspoon honey – 1 teaspoon rice wine – 1 tablespoon (or you can use red wine) salt and pepper   INSTRUCTIONS Cut between the bones and separate the individual ribs. Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Make sure everything is very well mixed. Cover the bowl and leave it in the fridge to marinate for 4 hours. Before cooking. Preheat the oven to 220ºC Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil. Place the ribs in the baking dish and cover it with another piece of …