Friday, January 30, 2009

Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Saw this on the AppetiteForChina site that is run by Diana Kuan, a Chinese lady with diverse exotic backgrounds in love with Chinese food from all corners of the world and its applications.

But isn't that just the coolest apple? fa cai guo, or prosperity fruit as it's called in China where they can be bought. If anyone of you go there anytime soon, please buy me some!!

I don't know about you, but this Chinese New Year, I have not had my fill of eating. Maybe is because I was busier than usual with running the showroom plus helping Kristian with the CNY cookie orders. Besides the New Year's Eve steamboat dinner I had with my family which always ends with way too much leftovers, there has been a lack of serious gluttony this year. Is healthier, I know, not to over indulge during this time of year. BUT I am quite determined to tuck into more New Year foods before chap goh me! There's still time for nien gao, homemade pineapple tarts and love letters from Penang, and maybe even mum's siam laksa : )

I thought this list should be of interest to you. Here's a rundown of what one should eat to bring more prosperity,longevity and overall well being in the new year:

a)fatt choy - in translation, means to prosper.

b)dried oysters - or hoe see meaning good tidings.

c)lotus root - my all-time favourite vegetable especially cooked in soup. It symbolises longevity.

d)water chestnuts - sweet and crunchy, these can be stir fried with snap peas and scallops in the hopes of bringing a sweet year ahead.

e)whole chicken - braised, roasted, cooked in soups, a whole chicken symbolises completeness.

f)whole fish - same as above, a whole fish served steamed, fried or in sauce symbolises togetherness and abundance.

g)nien gao - or new year cake, is a must-have for Chinese New Year. It signifies a prosperous year ahead,

h)prawns - ha in Cantonese, sounds like laughter hence it is a welcomed food element.

I am sure there's more that can be added to the list. The Chinese will be at their most creative and imaginative when it comes to food hehehehe. Would love to hear more so do add your comments.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Where is Kristian?

See if you can find him amongst the assembled boxes in the photo ; )

This pre-CNY week has been intense and stressful in some moments as we rush to fulfill orders. We're learning how to bake bigger orders instead of the smaller ones we have been getting. Call us kitchen scientists as we multiply, divide, add, break down, convert temperatures and weights, and analyse our recipes accordingly to meet demands. Tricky to say the least. Alas, cookies are baked and collected today on time even though I was half asleep this morning handing cookies over to Jenny, my dear friend and ardent Bakerellaz fan : p

We feel exhausted. Achy. Gratified. Happy. Slightly delirious from the lack of sleep. And looking forward to CNY finally.
In case you are wondering where is our menu, I am still working on laying it out in a way that is effective and aesthetically pleasing. Please bear with me and I promise to post link to menu real soon. This is what they call birthing pains. So many things to do and learn!!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Putting care back in baking & more

Go Obama! Historic day in the world today. Together let's work on being a more caring society.

I am usually known as a fashionista, not a foodie. After all, I own and run a fashion showroom in Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur. But food is my other passion especially pastries, cookies and breads.

I started baking chocolate chip cookies and banana breads in college through my early twenties living in the US. My baking skills and repertoire was pedestrian, i thought, but I knew what I liked and sought out the best breads and cookies everywhere I went. Then I laid dormant with my baking like a big brown bear for many years, only rising once in a long while to bake.

Kristian, on the other hand, has been around great cooks on the Italian side of his family most of his life in New Zealand where 'nonna's' Italian pastries and cookies were bountiful in the kitchen. This, plus his chef experience in cafes/bistros in NZ and Australia has been great influences and inspiration for his cooking and baking. And it is him, that has reawakened my passion for baking.

Living in KL, we felt there was a lack of good fresh baked goods. This has led us to bake more and more at home - Classic French onion tart, quiche lorraine, assorted dessert pies, tea cakes, cookies (of course), even pizzas and focaccia bread.

From small orders from our equally enthusiastic friends and family for X'mas, we've decided to formalise our passion and begin this blog/online bakery. There's no looking back now although we realise that we are now embracing a lot of other factors that could take the fun element out of our passion : p

Now, we are ready to take your orders so you too, can enjoy fresh baked goods.

All our products are 100% homemade in our well equipped kitchen using quality ingredients. We pride on quality and high standards in our products and only sell products that we ourselves love and approve.

We hope that you will enjoy our blog which will not only feature our menu but also related culinary adventures/misadventures and we would love to hear from like-minded people as well as happy customers.