Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Where to buy Foie Gras

For those of us that need to satisfy our fat cravings, you will appreciate this simple to prepare delicacy, by buying it fresh from the Butcher. The duck or goose liver comes in pre-sliced, whole, canned and pate form. 1 whole liver is about 1kg. Price ranges from $125 for FZ duck foie gras to $210 for Hudson Valley goose foie gras. It took me a while to source the gourmet butchers in Singapore that stock whole foie gras on a regular basis:

  • Swiss Butchery - 30/32 Greenwood Ave

  • The Butcher - 44 Jalan Merah Saga

  • Culina - @ParkHouse, @Bukit Timah or @Dempsey

  • Huber's Butchery - @Bukit Timah or @Tanglin

I usually satisfy my fat cravings with extra virgin olive oil (0 calories), coldwater swordfish sashimi, Chinese roasted pork belly (substitute it with Kurobuta pork) or German pork knuckles. For a treat, flash fry a slice of foie gras and serve with balsamic vinegar and cracked black pepper. Or toss the pate with pasta.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Tracks of my Tears

This song never fails to move me. I first heard it on the soundtrack of The Little Mermaid II, as sung by Peter Andre. And now sung by American Idol contestant Adam Lambert; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgvzx0Hmrpc ... a much better version. I am going to buy this guy's CD when it comes out.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Diamond Sale

It's around the time the Great Singapore Sale starts that all the local retailers have this 50% off GIA certified solitaires sale. A couple of years back, I bought a pair of half carat earrings from Lee Hwa that was the best investment I ever made in my wardrobe. It didn't cost me enough to only wear on special occasions and was good enough to never have to trade-up. It took me a year to pay off. I basically threw my financially conservative upbringing to the wind. But, diamonds tend to do that to you.

It's like an addiction, where the retailers tempt known consumers with loyalty points and 80% warehouse sales like the above. So we will part with our hard earned savings for little bits of shiny rock. It's not even a whole rock, just chips and bits of it.

Anyways, for my friends (both male and female) you will appreciate the above sale. Even in the current economic climate.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Oil Paintings

My sister-in-law started this by bringing back the above oil painting by Nguyen Minh Son from Ho Chi Minh. It's pretty big and occupies 1 wall in her home. The artist paints these giant lollipop trees in a rural setting in various bright cheery colours. So I made sure to keep an eye out for nice oil paintings on my holiday in Hanoi.

I finally got my oil paintings back from the framers. I can't begin to tell you how much trouble it has been. This "Boy with Water Buffalo" by Pham Duc Nghia was small enough for me to bring back as is, already stretched. But anything bigger had to be rolled up. Who knew stretching a canvas and framing can actually cost more than the painting itself! I should have just shipped them back.

This "Schoolgirls with flowers" by Tran Trong Thuong was too big to be shipped back and had to be rolled up into a tube. I was advised to quickly unroll it when I got back to ensure the oils don't stick to the paper. Too late, When I unrolled it, bits of brown paper were already stuck to the painting. I think the cabin pressure must have contributed to this. Thank goodness my framer was experienced enough to help me restore it as well. She also did a good job choosing the frame and style. Now it looks like a serious artwork to be hung in a gallery.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Sales Shopping Day

I took leave today to go shopping, had to take out some of that work stress on my cards. My recommendation for like-minded friends:

Start at Suntec: The IT fair with the usual offers of free printers with PCs, The Body Shop Warehouse sale (up to 70% discounts) and a Burberry Sale (also up to 70% discounts). I picked up my Burberry umbrella, notebook & pouch at half price.

Cortina Watch Sale again at the HQ in Ngee Ann City. This time with Citibank (additional 5% discount with the card). I finally got my Chopard Happy Sport at 46% discount and a 24mth 0% interest instalment plan. See pic on the right. Soo happy!

Isetan kicked off its sale today with a members only private sale. Great for household goods shopping. I got a Bialetti Cappucino maker with matching cups for $99 (75% discount).

Monday, March 9, 2009

Cooking Class

A personal favourite of mine is the Raffles Culinary Academy where Raffles Hotel Chefs take turns to teach each lesson. The experienced chefs dispense tips from their years of experience mixed into a dinner with 5 star service. Everyone has their personal favourites, from the 2 separate dollops of sweet or salty butter to the $500 salt. It's interactive dinner at it's best.

The menu:

Truffle Brioche with poached Foie Gras & braised "Granny Smith"

Roasted Turbot with steamed Bak Choy & smoked Potato "Vine Tomato Confit" (check out the size of the turbot!)

Vanilla Panna Cotta, Passion Fruit Coulis with Hazelnut ice-cream

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Car Deco

Today's class was on car decorations. Luckily, we had my dad around so we could use his car as a model. It took just 5 mins to secure all the arrangements on the car.

Thank goodness it's clean and polished, so the pictures turned out well. I like the tropical asymmetric arrangement. It's not too loud or formal. It's a Singaporean classic.

In contrast, there is the spring/summer arrangement (neon green and yellow) that made it into last month's W&T magazine. Most people would probably prefer this as it's festive and bright. You know, for an occasion like a wedding.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

I think this is an Ariane apple. It's supposed to be a good modern french variety that was introduced in 2000. Cultivated from Rome Beauty, to form a disease resistant plant with fruit that enjoy extended shelf life. (source: Orangepippin.com)