Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Rec!pe: Creamy Crunchy Cucumber Avocado Salad

Avocados have always seem exotic to me. The pear-shaped fruit with a rough exterior and a smooth silky interior. Truth be told, I have not tried many avocado dishes except on the occasional sushi rolls, guacamole, and salsa. In fact, I see it more in beauty products than on menus.

Lately though, I've been seeing avocados (and cherries too) in the fruit aisle while avocado recipes have been popping up in the few food blogs and sites that I subscribed to. Long story short, I decided to make something that involves avocado at home. 

And voila, my first creamy crunchy cucumber avocado salad.


Perfect for summertime (and it's always more or less summer here in good ol' Penang), this salad is deliciously refreshing with the crunchy cucumber, the velvety avocado and the creamy feta cheese combined with zesty olive and lime dressing. (The recipe called for chopped mint leaves too but I didn't have any in the kitchen so I omitted them this round.)

What You Need:
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 2 ripe avocados, diced
  • Feta cheese, diced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • (1/2 cup chopped mint)
  • Pepper to taste
What To Do:
  1. Peel the cucumbers, cut them in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Cut the cucumbers into 1/2-inch pieces. 
  2. Put diced avocados into a salad bowl, drizzle with lime juice and toss gently.
  3. To make dressing, whisk together olive oil and lime juice.
  4. Add cucumber, (mint), feta cheese to the avocados. Add the dressing and gently combine. Add pepper to taste. 
  5. Let stand in the fridge for about 30 minutes for the flavors to blend. 

And now that I had had my first attempt at avocados, I do have a feeling that there will be more coming along soon...

Sunday, June 29, 2014

The Wars of Heaven

Received this book from LibraryThing's Early Reviewers - a book of short stories (and one novella) of everyday people of West Virginia during the Great Depression.

Be it a farmer, a coal miner, or a clown, each has his own story to tell and they kind of helped filled my imagination of what it must have been like there in the 1900's. Coupled with Currey's great choices of words, the stories were almost poetry-like and lyrical.

The novella, The Love of a Good Woman, was thought provoking. Is it heroic or just plain crazy to go all out to help a woman with a sick baby? Borrowing a car without permission, and taking money straight out of a bank's cash drawer in the name of a loan. All while made up with a clown-painted face...

Truly, is our society today as forgiving when it comes to peculiar individuals?

Overall well-written, easy-to-read stories.

My Rating: 


P/S: Aside to the book, I would also like to particularly note the accompanying reprint of an article that appeared in the Washington Post in 2008. This seven and a half pages of A4 papers came together along with the book and it detailed the history of the publishing company (which published this same book) and how one individual went the extra mile to do something extraordinary in founding and funding the literary press from his own salary even while he himself suffered from Trigeminal Neuralgia, the worst painful condition known to humankind. He also happened to come from a family with a dramatic history, going from "riches to rags" almost overnight. I must applaud his passion and devotion. A well-written article of a true story of an admirable individual.

Monday, May 12, 2014

What's Cooking?

The books on the shelves have been giving me dagger stares for quite sometime now. Particularly those cookbooks.

But thanks to the long weekend, I finally have extra time in hands to whip something up. Also I have been wanting to try out the few kawaii cookie bread cutters I bought oh so many, many moons ago..

So voila, here's dinner for the family tonight. Bon appétit!


Sunday, April 06, 2014

Sakura, The Penang Version



The "Sakura" flowers are in full bloom lately. Though they may not be the real Sakura from Japan but they certainly do make the drive to work a very pleasant journey.



Kudos to the landscaper who had the vision to plant rows of these trees. Your brainchild is definitely bearing  flowers now *winks.


Update: Thanks to a friend, I now know these are called Tecoma, otherwise also known as the Trumpet tree.

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

2013 Was The Year

  • of learning and a year of exposure which also made it one of my busiest year yet with late nights and a couple of weekends thrown in for good measure. As the Cantonese saying goes "zou dou mou teng thao"... [do till cannot breath]
  • I made the resolution to write more but though I was lagi [even more] least active in my blog (only 10 posts compared to my supposedly-least-active-year-2012 of 16), I'd liked to think I made up for it from that 50 odd pages of strategic cum research paper complete with diagrams, charts and what-nots that I had to churn out in a mere fortnight...also not to forget the occasional messages, speeches, and announcements I had to crack my head on...
  • I got to view Pearl of the Orient's skyline from the sea, thanks to a complimentary boat ride from my ami d'enfance ^.^
  • I had no choice but to discontinue mes cours de français, no thanks to the 9am Sat classes. With my weekdays' load, grilling Sat mornings proved too much for my brain to absorb. Still looking to pick up where I left off someday so in the meantime I'll just have to teach myself bits and pieces lest I forget.
  • I had great meetups with cousins be it the annual CNY K-session or the birthday celebrations...definitely a tradition I intend to practice for as long as possible.. Thank you, guys & gals, you are the best!
  • of the failed 2013 monthly calendrier wallpaper initiative - it only lasted till February LOL
  • of the chai latte craze..yumz!
  • I did not fly far, only KL...hmm perhaps next year? *fingers crossed
  • the cash register did quite a few ka-chings *grins
  • Jayden aka Captain Cool aka Chi Lam won the hearts of many..yes, it's Team Jayden all the way!
  • of one of the best series' seasons ever; from the heartwarming and touching episodes of HIMYM and Bones to the teary episodes of Glee (RIP Cory) to the gripping and shocking episodes of Walking Dead, Revenge, and GoT to the super funny BBT....need I say more?
  • my golden couple Ian & Nina was no more :(
  • football bid adios to the 2 most impactful individuals in my football-watching history; Becks & Sir Alex, I salute you both for all the great footballing moments you gave us. It was you who got me hooked in the first place and I will forever treasure that once in a lifetime experience; Champions League 2010. San Siro. MU vs AC Milan. [Though I openly wish that you guys were still in the game, particularly when one Moyes is not living up to what a chosen one should be..]
  • I won my first ever photography contest.
  • of good books (I managed 9), great stories and an awesome quote; "Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten" - Neil Gaiman.
  • of great movies and beautiful animes..think Gatsby, Silver Lining Playbook, Hunger Games 2, Despicable Me 2, Secret World of Arrietty, From Up On Poppy Hill, L'Illusionniste, The Music Never Stopped, This Is The End..and the list goes on.
  • of the minion fever and moi's got a few 'baboi' to show as well (but on to the Tesco's Heroes & Friends now :P)
  • of The Mouse Trap *winks
  • I danced on stage for the first time in a very long time...
  • I got a Note 10.1 for Xmas ho ho ho...
  • of the iOS7 upgrade *hooray!
2014 is a year of big plans. A year where every step counts. A year to start it right. So here's to a clear year ahead and a note to self: dragons CAN be beaten! C'est La Vie~ 

HaPpY NeW YeAr 2014!