Weekends are made for loosening up and enjoying some quality time with your loved ones, and I'm glad to have spent my Saturday with my lovely girlfriends. How do you spend your weekends?Read More
A super overdue food entry featuring some visuals taken during a food tasting event at Joo Bar, a Korean restaurant/bar that recently rode on the Korean-wave and opened its first outlet in heart of Bugis at Tan Quee Lan Street, Singapore.
While Joo Bar serves quality Korean food, what makes this unassuming Korean restaurant stand out from the other Korean restaurants is that they are the first and only ones in Singapore to brew their own Korean rice wine, otherwise known as Makgeoli, right in the restaurant. We were served different flavors of Makgeoli and I have to say, they were indeed very flavorful!
I think Joo Bar would be the perfect hang out place on a Friday night, where a group of friends gather around the table with a delightful spread of Korean food and rice wine. The fact that they are open all the way till 12 midnight makes it an even better choice.
Joo Bar Singapore
5 Tan Quee Lan Street
Opening hours: 5.30pm - 12am
I'm not quite sure what you guys have for lunch whenever you're home alone, but for me, I'll always opt for pasta if ingredients suffice, rather than instant noodles (which I'd admit to having quite often, sadly).
Anyway, popped by the supermarket few days back (to get some steak, recipe soon?!), got a pack of spaghetti and a jar of carbonara sauce. I honestly think its the most affordable yet healthy (than compared to instant noodles) home-cooked lunch for myself.
Served with some hot choco-caramel drink, this lunch don't take no more than 10 minutes to prepare. It's really easy and I'll share the recipe with you guys today!
Spaghetti Carbonara (serves one)
1. Spaghetti, or any kinds of pasta you'd like
2. Ready-made carbonara sauce, or any kinds of pasta sauce you'd like (I opt for Leggo's Carbonara sauce)
3. Water (one pot, for boiling of pasta)
5. Pepper (optional)
6. Additional ingredients e.g. sausage, crabmeat, ham or bacon (optional)
Instructions (Pasta) –
1. Put a pot of water over high heat and add in some salt.
2. When the water boils, add in pasta. Let it continue boiling for about 8-9 minutes, or until your pasta is soft enough for your consumption.
3. Drain cooked pasta from water and pour them onto a plate.
Instruction (Sauce) –
1. Heat up a small pan and add in a portion of your carbonara/pasta sauce. I'll usually have about 4-5 tablespoons of the sauce.
2. (Optional) Add in some ingredients for your pasta sauce.
3. Continue heating your pasta sauce over low heat for about 3 minutes.
4. Drizzle cooked pasta sauce over pasta.
5. (Optional) Add pepper to taste.
P/S: This is my first time (I suppose) sharing a recipe on my blog. I'm most definitely not the best candidate when it comes to cooking but I'm still able to handle such simple recipes that requires mainly heating up. More to come, perhaps?
Yesterday, I had the privilege to attend the Nescafé Dolce Gusto Media Luncheon with a few of the other alphas from Churp Churp. The luncheon session was held at Monochrome Fusion Bistro where the new limited edition Nescafé Dolce Gusto MINI was showcased.
There was a little dessert table at a corner of the cafe filled with all things sweet, including cupcakes and slices of cakes. I simply love the minimalistic set up! Monochrome Fusion Bistro is, well as the name suggests, a monochrome-themed cafe where everything - including the interior design, furniture, tableware and even food is in black and white. As a monochrome lover, this place easily tops my 'Favourite cafes in Singapore' list!
But of course, the star of the show was the brand new limited edition Nescafé Dolce Gusto MINI automatic coffee system! The coffee system sleek, monochromatic and minimal design is in collaboration with MINI Cooper and I really love how it would also be a really pretty piece of accessory on the coffee table!
I'm rather well aware of how the coffee system works since I have the Mini Me system at home, but comparing mine to this limited edition Nescafé Dolce Gusto MINI, the latter definitely surpasses mine in all areas, including the capacity of the water tank, as well as the availability of a capsule bin to dispose the used capsules, and let's not forget how this MINI looks so minimalistic yet classy at the same time!
I have been a fan of Nescafé Dolce Gusto ever since I got the Mini Me system, because my cup of hot/cold beverage is just 30 seconds away. Gone are the days whereby I'll have to bring my water to a boil and pour it into my cup filled with 3-in-1 coffee powder. With the Nescafé Dolce Gusto automatic coffee system, I just need to pop the capsules into it and then watch it dispense my beverage. 30 seconds, literally.
Besides, I love the fact that I have a wide array of beverages to choose from! From the different kinds of coffee that you order from cafes to just hot chocolate, iced tea or even Milo, I'm pretty much spoilt for choice. Also, speaking of cafes - one thing I absolutely love about the system is that it's able to dispense foamy hot drinks for me, just like the ones at the cafe which would probably cost you $8 a cup, while you technically pay only about $1 for a drink from your NDG coffee system.
Anyway, since it was a luncheon event, there were of course, FOOD. Here's our starters for the day from Monochrome Fusion Bistro. It's the Monochrome Caesar Salad if I'm not wrong!
And my favourite, truffle fries! I love truffle fries to death and yeah obviously I ate quite a lot of them. Cook me a lifetime of truffle fries and I'll marry you, anyone?
Another side dish I suppose! I'm not too sure what's this on the menu but it's mashed potatoes and bacon if I'm not wrong! Mashed potatoes never go wrong. We also spaghetti for our main course but I was already very full from 2 cups of beverages which we all had fun making using the new Nescafé Dolce Gusto MINI!
Nonetheless, thank you ChurpSG as well as Nescafé for the invite, and thank you Monochrome Fusion Bistro for hosting!
The brand new and limited edition Nescafé Dolce Gusto MINI automatic coffee system is now available at a promotional price of SGD$259 (u.p. SGD$289) and comes with a free 6-capsule variety pack as well as a MINI limited edition stainless steel travel mug!
For more information on the coffee system, you can visit Nescafé Dolce Gusto's website below.
My two favourite 'F' words..... you got it right! Definitely food + fashion.
Headed down to Strangers' Reunion last Tuesday evening to try out the dishes on Strangers' Reunion's newly launched seasonal menu, and at the same time to browse through Klarra's Spring Summer 2015 Collection pop-up showcase.
A little about both Strangers' Reunion and Klarra, even though both needs no introduction, really –
A popular hotspot for all the cafe-hoppers, Strangers' Reunion is a Singapore-based cafe famous for its coffee and food. Co-founded by three-time Singapore Barista Champion Ryan Kieran and Mervin Pang, the cafe offers a menu of specialty coffee as well as all-day breakfasts, a variety of sides (truffle fries!), desserts and a full dinner menu with frequent seasonal changes.
Founded by local fashion icon and influencer Beatrice Tan, Klarra is a womenswear label catering to the modern independent women stylish and timeless classics. Klarra believes in design creativity and versatility, which is why you'll find in Klarra apparels with convertible and versatile designs (cues a playsuit that can be spiced up with a matching tulle skirt here).
As mentioned above, Strangers' Reunion has launched their new seasonal menu, which features a number of unique dishes not seen in other local cafes. In addition to the common cafe-hoppers favourite Eggs Benedict, Strangers' Reunion is introducing dishes that brings a mix of unique flavours and textures to our taste buds. Having tasted 10 out of 14 items on their new seasonal menu, it is my pleasure to share more about them with you in this entry.
P/S: I apologise in advance for the quality of the photos that really do not do any justice to the food!
Strangers' Reunion – Starters
Tossed with wasabi dressing, cherry tomatoes, potato slices, pickled white onions, pea sprouts and a poached egg, the Tuna Tataki Nicoise Salad is the perfect appetiser for someone who isn't a huge fan of salads. I personally am not a fan of the salads commonly served in cafes, and would usually not touch them at all if they were presented as a side on my order.
However, I really liked how Strangers' Reunion served pea sprouts because I really love pea sprouts! Anyway, I love the flavourful tuna slices as well because honestly I haven't tasted any other tuna alike, the soft yet delectable fresh taste of fish – and this is one of my favourite dishes out of all I've tried that evening.
Here's the other starter we had, the Beetroot Salad. I would prefer the Tuna Tataki Nicoise Salad mentioned above to this salad but honestly I think it's really subjective so maybe some of you may like this better! The beetroot salad is a much healthier choice, featuring fresh garden greens, avocado, artichoke, red turnip, tomatoes and more, which makes it a refreshing starter for a meal.
Strangers' Reunion – All Day Breakfasts
I found this dish, Beetroot Corn Fritters, really unique and intriguing because it tasted somewhat different from the norm. One of the elements in this dish was the 'za'atar spiced poached pear' which I guess was what made it unique. Za'atar is a spice mixture commonly used in Arab cuisine, which was why this dish differed from the more 'western' dishes we would commonly have in cafes. The taste would be what I call 'exotic' because of the spices and how it fuses aptly with the fritters.
What made this particular dish special is definitely the hazalnut béarnaise sauce drizzled on top of the would-have-been seemingly normal eggs Benedict. This House Smoked Salmon Benedict is definitely another one of my favourites of the lot, because the smoked salmon and eggs tasted wonderful with the sauce, which is pretty unique given that other eggs Benedict usually go together with hollandaise sauce. I usually don't enjoy smoked salmon but tasted surprisingly good - the 'smoked' taste isn't too overpowering as per other smoked salmon would be like, giving it a good mix of the natural fresh salmon taste with a little bit of 'smoked' taste.
My photo definitely did not do any justice to this God-sent dish! The Freshly Shaved Prosciutto Benedict easily tops my favourites list. I think what made this dish taste so good has something to do with the prosciutto ham. Pardon my lack of knowledge in food, but unlike the circular-shaped ham in other eggs Benedict I've had, this particular dish definitely upped my eggs Benedict standards. I don't think I'll be able to accept any other eggs Benedict anytime soon.... If I were to come back to Strangers' Reunion (soon I hope), this would definitely be one of my to-order dishes. Being a picky eater, when I recommend this dish, it simply means you really have to try it to believe it!
Another dish with my favourite pea sprouts! I love the Ocean Trout on Hash. The potato hash (they resemble and taste similar to rosti) is made in-house, and that is what makes it taste different from the usual frozen hash browns used commonly as a side in other cafes. I think the crunchiness of the trout has a really nice contrast with the soft potato hash in terms of texture, allowing them compliment each other well. I also like that the taste of the potato hash isn't too salty or anything, so the crispiness and fresh seafood taste of the trout still stands out.
Words can't explain how much I love steak, so having it for breakfast would be a total dream-come-true. Uniquely served with a sunny side up, cherry tomato, green apple fritters and my favourite pea sprouts, I love steak and definitely love it better when served with a sunny side up, because who doesn't? The Breakfast Steak is a MUST-TRY if you happen to pop by Strangers' Reunion, especially since it is rather affordable at SGD$23.90.
Strangers' Reunion – Desserts
Not quite a fan of desserts here because I don't have a sweet tooth and wouldn't be able to finish the entire dish by myself, but the Chocolate Panna Cotta is one sweet treat that would make me think twice about skipping desserts. This pudding-lookalike dish tastes like thick chocolate cream, and it goes really well with all the other elements including the berry compote, walnut-infused gold dust, dark chocolate sables as well as salted caramel. If you're looking for uncommon desserts to try, this dish is also a MUST TRY at Strangers' Reunion!
What a beautiful mix of colours on this plate - the Berry Ricotta Hotcakes by Strangers' Reunion is a huge hotcake topped with berries, sunflower and pumpkin seeds as well as vanilla ice cream, and it is really soft and fluffy! If not for being too full from all the mains we had, I would definitely have had more of this hotcake dessert. Not to mention, the berries were really sweet too!
I would think that these Berry Ricotta Hotcakes are one of their most popular desserts in Strangers' Reunion, and truth be told – I've been craving it ever since I tried it that day. The serving for this dish is huge so I'd recommend sharing it with at least 2 other people, unless you've got a sweet tooth and an empty stomach!
Lastly, we had the Banana Brulee Buttermilk Waffle with Walnut Crunch – of which we took many photos of and was surprised by how the ice cream didn't budge a single bit. I loved the sweetness of the vanilla ice cream as well as the caramel banana slices which complimented the otherwise plain waffle really well! Like the hotcakes, the serving for this waffle is huge so I'd recommend sharing it with at least 2 other people, unless you've got a sweet tooth and an empty stomach!
Aside from enjoying the dishes, I also browsed through Klarra's Spring Summer 2015 collection while waiting for the desserts to be served. The Klarra Spring Summer 2015 pop-up showcase is conveniently located right in Strangers' Reunion, which I thought was a pretty good idea since you get to eat and shop at the same time. Really, how often do you get to do that in Singapore! Especially while waiting for food that might take probably 5 to 10 minutes to serve, why not take the time to browse through clothes and lust over some of the beautiful pieces by Klarra?
What I love most about the homegrown womenswear label, Klarra, is that all their apparels just represent 'clean aesthetics' – every piece by Klarra is minimal, clean, yet comes with a unique touch. Since everything is designed and made by Klarra (or collaborated with other fashion icons), their apparel are all exclusive and unavailable in the market.
Personally, I feel that Beatrice, the founder of the label Klarra, takes a lot of pride not only in the designs but also in ensuring the quality of the apparels are of top-notch standard. I love that the fabric used for Klarra's apparels are all of high quality, and doesn't feel thin or flimsy to the touch, and the workmanship put into ensuring each piece holds together the ensemble of a clean, sleek and minimal representation by Klarra.
Klarra Spring Summer Collection 2015
This has got to be the most innovative and versatile set I have seen in the Singapore fashion industry. I really liked the idea of dressing down with just a simple playsuit and jazzing it up with a tulle skirt. While some playsuits may look really 'underdressed' for certain occasions and events, I find that this particular piece, the Kendaz Playsuit and Tulle Set from Klarra has a very 'classy' element with its satin fabric and dusty pink/blue tones. It would certainly make the perfect outfit if you've got a long day of errands to run, and a dinner date in the evening. Simply dress up your outfit with a light weight tulle skirt and you can easily be the most eye-catching girl of the night.
Evident from my Instagram account, I have recently jumped onto the culottes bandwagon and boy, am I seriously addicted. I own around 3 pairs now and certainly wouldn't mind owning more. To be frank, the first piece that caught my eye following the gorgeous playsuit (mentioned above) was the Todd Tailored Culottes in the color Seafoam. I know I'm usually in a monochromatic get-up, but this hell-of-a-gorgeous shade would certainly make me a convert. Other than having the most gorgeous shade of seafoam ever, I like that this pair of culottes is so clean and structured, yet looks comfy at the same time.
If you're a fan of lace, crochet, midi and maxi skirts, you certainly wouldn't want to miss out on Klarra's Spring-Summer Collection 2015, bringing you hues of colors, both pastal and vibrant. The collection will be available to the public at Strangers' Reunion from now till 17th March 2015.
Enjoy picking out your ensembles while waiting for your dishes from Strangers' Reunion – doesn't hurt to do a little window shopping along with food.