It is the time of year where we give and receive mooncakes to celebrate the mid-autumn festival. We used to play with lots of lanterns as children… ah, the good ol’ days. We did however still love our basic mooncakes and animal shapes. None of this ping bei business, please (those are usually given as gifts, but really they can’t beat the traditional crust with red bean filling).
Our selection of red bean paste mooncakes in animal shapes and traditional moon shape (top right). Nice to look at, nice to eat! These were bought from the SS2 Sunday market, except for the piggy with the ribbon… Pinkydoodles bought that one from somewhere else.
Before my gardening days (literally three months ago), I would cringe whenever a recipe called for fresh parsley or basil or any kind of fresh herb. I rarely buy fresh herbs from the supermarket because they usually come in such a generous bunch (from which I pluck a few stalks) that most of it always ends up decomposing in my fridge. There is nothing more sad than finding a wilted piece of vegetable in your refrigerator box and having to recall its former vibrance just a few weeks ago when you came across it in the market- it poised on top of a pile of its comrades; and you paying for it, bringing it home and shoving it into a cold plastic grave labeled “Controlled Humidity”. All this is making me think of the movie “Grave of the Fireflies”.
Anyway, I usually substitute any call for fresh herbs with the equivalent dehydrated form or forgo the ingredient all together.
I found a solution to the herb problem, one that’s probably already obvious to all but me until recently when I discovered the magical land of the Garden Center. Hurray for container grown herbs for 2CAD$! Now I’m glad to say that I have a nice selection of common culinary herbs in my backyard.
Ahh, the big leaf basil. King of Herbs. I use this in everything. Basil truly adds a restaurant flare to almost any amateur dish. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to let it bloom like that but dog gone I love this plant! I might name my next dog after it.
I have two types of lemon thyme: regular and veriegated. As far as flavor goes, both are identical. I guess it’s up to presentation of the dish.
I decided to create an herb urn (say it aloud! “Herb-Urn”). I potted the thyme along with mint, oregano, dwarf curry and lavender. The lavender’s sort of the odd one out. Apparently lavender with TLC can live for a good 20 years. Pretty neat.
A friend of mine bestowed upon me the first ripe tomato from her garden, an honour I won’t forget. It compelled me to want my own tomato plant, but it’s already too late into the season so I guess I’ll have to wait for next year.
Over and out. -Sugamama
A conversation with my mother led to the creation of this blog. I have always wanted to note down my mother’s recipes. Then there is my father who is a big wine buff. My sisters are also foodies and we all like experimenting in the kitchen. So, here it is. A blog to chronicle our journey through life with gastronomic overtones. The name of the blog was formulated from the fact that our origins are from a certain state in Kelantan. Yes, we are the people from the Land of the Lightning and we love our budu.