Monday, July 25, 2011

Samantha Brown's Asia premieres tonight on TLC (Starhub Channel 427) at 10 pm

Look! It's Samantha Brown!

How many of you have been watching her shows and always wished you could travel everywhere like her? She has one of the best job in the world! She seems to have been almost everywhere! I have been watching her different shows for years and have always wanted to travel like her and meet her!

Sometimes when I am bored channel surfing, when I see a show she's on, that's when I'll stop and watch! Her shows are one of the more entertaining and captivating on TLC/ Cable TV!

Samantha Brown

Thanks to TLC Asia and MSL Singapore, I got to meet Samantha Brown in person!

It's Samantha Brown (you know!) When I got the invite to have a lunch with Samantha, I gladly accepted the invite by MSL Singapore and  applied for a half day leave to have lunch with Sam!

The above shot was her sitting right opposite me for lunch!
I took a photo with her too, but that's on my facebook page ;-)

Samantha Brown

The 'official' event photographer took this photo above and passed it to us.

Samantha in person is exactly like how she is on TV!
She is so lively, so animated, you feel so comfortable when she's around!
We were all so captivated by her stories! She told us about places she has went to! She's a good story teller! It's not always as fun as it seems on TV. She told us all the horror stories!
(But we all still think she has the best job in the world!)

Some do you knows....
1. Do you know that Samantha Brown travels everywhere with a bottle of peanut butter?!
2. Do you know Samantha brings along with her a book on poetry on her travels?

Now what do you pack in your travels? I shall not tell you what I pack for my holidays!
Maybe one day I will!

Samantha Brown's Asia
Screen capture from the TLC Asia website.

Samantha's traveled around the world and you probably have caught most of her travel series. She has finally filmed a series on Asia! She was here and she filmed at Pulau Ubin! You got to catch that episode!

For this series, Samantha tastes the food, breathes and lives the culture and meets people in Singapore and 7 other Asian countries. (Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Japan and Bali.) Sounds interesting? You should watch it and see something different!

If you are at home tonight, turn on to TLC on Starhub Channel 427 at 10pm!
Her new series, Samantha Brown's Asia premieres tonight!

(Just in case you miss it tonight, catch the repeat of the first episode on 26 Jul (Tuesday) - 5:00AM / 9:00 AM or 30 Jul (Saturday) 3:00 PM)

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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

New Zealand Natural Premium Ice Cream

Hands up those who love ice cream!
Hands up those who love New Zealand Natural!
Hands up those who want to get some free New Zealand Natural ice cream!

I remember when I was much younger and was studying for my undergraduate studies in Melbourne, I will be having New Zealand Natural's ice cream cone every other week after church at the Melbourne Central kiosk! It was like a little treat after a whole week of boring repetitive hostel food!

Saving pocket money just for ice cream! Be it winter or summer, having the New Zealand Natural ice cream with friends was one of the happy moments! After ice cream on a Sunday afternoon it will be back to hitting the books! (Ah.. those were the days...)

Now back in Singapore, I live in the western side of Singapore and New Zealand Natural outlets in Singapore seems to be all located in Central or East side of Singapore. It has not been really convenient for me to get my fix, unless I happen to be at Paragon, HarbourFront Centre or Sentosa.

Good news! Did you know that from July 2011, New Zealand Natural factory packed 473ml tubs are now available island wide at over 50 distribution points? You can now get them at Cold Storage supermarkets all over Singapore! They retail for $12 plus depending on the branch and discounts offered.

New Zealand Natural

I like walking around supermarkets as a form of exercise to burn calories. I happen to snap this photo earlier this month when I saw the premium ice cream on sale. This was taken at Cold Storage Albert Park, now the nearest New Zealand Natural 'outlet' from my home ;-)

New Zealand Natural

Some of you know, I like to roam around this tiny island, and I happened to walk into a Cold Storage at Kallang Leisure Park last week and I see they were there too!


The good PR folks of New Zealand Natural delivered 6 tubs of their Premium Ice Cream to my house for a taste test. After dinner on a week night tlast week, I had 6 tasters tell me what they like about the ice cream they just tasted.

The tasters consists of 3 thirty plus year olds, 1 forty plus year old and 2 fifty plus year old. My younger crowd could not make it!


There were 6 flavours to taste and I was told these are the 6 most popular New Zealand Natural flavours. They are available at all Cold Storage supermarkets in Singapore.

After tasting all 6 flavours, everyone seemed to have picked their own favourite! These folks can really compare and compare it with the different brands from different countries. But I am not looking for a comparison. They are many nice ice cream brands out there.

I just want to tell me what they liked about the flavours. It would be easier to them too (and also for me!)


Let's start with Chocolate Ecstasy and Hokey Pokey.

If you are wondering what is Hokey Pokey, that's a very New Zealand flavour. If you are in New Zealand, you can get this flavour almost everywhere ice cream is sold! My sis was New Zealand around 2 years ago for 3 months of work-exchange and she said she tried so many kinds of hokey pokey there. It's basically vanilla ice cream with small bits or lumps of solid or soft toffee. 


Opening the Chocolate Ecstasy. Covers off and we all can't wait to dig in!


Chocolate Ecstasy:
- Really smooth taste in the mouth.
- Full body chocolate flavoured.
- Slight bitter aftertaste of chocolate.
- Not too sweet.

It seems this tub of ice cream finished the fastest!


Hokey Pokey:
- Smooth and creamy
- Slight oily after taste
- Milky
- Butterscotch bits was visible and nice
- Reminds of New Zealand (according to sis)


The next two flavours, Forestberry and Mango,
Forestberry is frozen yoghurt and Mango is the sorbet range.


- a taste of it and you like it's frozen yoghurt.
- fruity sourish flavour
- refreshing (esp in hot Singapore weather)
- no chemical taste
- taste healthy

It has probiotic cultures in it by the way.


- it has a bubbly taste. (you can see bubble above?)
- it melts too fast

(note: A week before, these tasters I have had been eating lots of fresh Taiwanese mango and another brand of Mango Sorbet from Europe, so everyone was comparing it to fresh mango and also the other brand. So it's a bit lop sided, they said they like fresh mangoes! They are not giving me answers for this flavour. )


The next two flavours, Classic Vanilla and Cookies & Cream.
I think these are flavours that most people like. My taste panels loved them!


Classic Vanilla:
- everyone said they could see the vanilla pods
- definitely not the artificial vanilla taste but a nice real vanilla fragrance to it.
- the smoothest texture of all the ice cream
- doesn't taste of too much milk.


Cookies and Cream:
- Not too sweet
- Chunks of cookies
- "Kiam Kiam Tee Tee" (slight sweet and salty taste)
It seems my two 50+ year old tasters loved this the best! They don't like like too sweet stuff and they said the slight salty is what they like.

It was an interesting tasting session. The tasters had different opinions. They would prefer the yoghurt to be more sour. Some hope that dark chocolates were used. So I just asked them what they liked about the ice cream.

Just in case you don't know why people love New Zealand Natural Ice Cream: 

New Zealand Natural ice cream contains only the freshest, best quality ingredients available and is made with fresh dairy cream from cows that feed on the green unpolluted pastures of New Zealand. 

How about winning yourself a tub of ice cream? The folks of New Zealand Natural will be giving away 6 tubs of each flavour.

It's very easy to win it. Here is how:

  1. "Like" the New Zealand Natural Facebook page.
  2. Post on the comment section, Which flavour of ice cream / sorbet / frozen yoghurt from New Zealand Natural do you like best from the 6 flavours above? Why do you like the flavour and do you prefer your ice cream in a cone or a cup?
  3. Post your answer on the comments here with your 'unique nickname' e.g. IScreamForNZN
  4. To ensure your privacy, email me your nickname, real name and contact number to with the subject "New Zealand Natural Contest". 
Contest end this Friday, 22 July 2011.

The best answers for each flavour will win the a tub of New Zealand Natural Premium Ice Cream. There are 6 tubs to be given away. If you are the winner, I will email you back and ask for your NRIC number. You will have to head down to New Zealand Ice Cream at Paragon to collect your ice cream with your ID.

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Monday, July 18, 2011

Paradise Dynasty @ ION Orchard

Momo and I bought some online discount coupons for the Paradise Dynasty XLB few months ago and Momo reminded me that they were expiring. We thought we better use them soon! We could only use them on a weekday so we took an afternoon leave one day last week to have lunch and then run some errands.

These coupon sites always tempt you to buy and buy! I have forgotten to use some previously and they expired!

Paradise Dynasty

The colourful Xiao Long Baos of Paradise Dynasty! Using the 'groupon voucher' it is $7.90.

Momo and another two friend had them a week ago (also using coupons! haha) and told me it was not really memorable. I find them OK, but only if you eat them a certain way! I realise I can taste the different flavours if I bite the top of the XLB and suck the juice out first. It's very subtle.

I followed the instructions on which flavour to eat first as well. If I come back again, I would go for certain flavours only. I would only go for Ginseng, Crab Roe and Szechuan. I will give the rest a miss. ;-)

Paradise Dynasty

Poached chicken in Spicy Chilli Sauce. $7.80

Both Momo and I like this dish more than the XLB! It's served really cold and it is also really spicy! We have always loved this dish and orders it at different places. The ones here are quite good!

Paradise Dynasty

We ordered a fried La Mian with black fungus to nibble as well. $10.

We like this too. It had the 'wok hei' smell and it almost reminded us of char kway teow. Momo said if only they had cockles inside, it would be perfect!

Paradise Dynasty

We also had the La Mian soup with deep fried pork ribs. $11.80
The noodles are nice, but the broth is a bit salty. We improvised by draining the noodles and mixed it with the spicy chili sauce from the chicken instead. We liked it! So spicy and so tasty!

Paradise Dynasty

The pork ribs were served on a separate plate. As the broth has been designed to be salty, they did not make the deep fried ribs so salty to go with it. Since we ate the noodles with chilli, we enjoyed munching the deep fried ribs on its own.

Yet to try the other dishes, but we liked the spicy chicken and fried la mian.

Paradise Dynasty
2 Orchard Turn
#04-12A ION Orchard
Singapore 238801

Tel: 6509 9118

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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Singapore Food Festival 2011 @ Read Bridge, Clarke Quay (15-24 July)

Have you gone down to Read Bridge at Clarke Quay? Do you know it's the 18th year of the Singapore Food Festival. Singapore Food Festival 2011 runs from 15 to 24 July 2011.

The theme for this year's festival is "Curry and Spices". It's interesting isn't it? They have partnered the Indian Restaurants Association of Singapore to bring us the theme Curry and Spices.

Many food that uses spices are on sale. Most of Singapore's best-loved curries and dishes can be tasted! There are also interesting food events held at restaurants in Little India too!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

Singapore Food Festival was officially opened by Mr S Iswaran on Saturday.

Singapore Food Festival 2011

Look, Read Bridge has again covered by a big white canopy. That makes your eating event here a rain or shine event!

Oh look, can you see a little blonde hair boy happily enjoying his food too? He's so cute!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

I noticed something different in the air when I was there. The air seems to be filled with smell of spices! The theme of this year is "Curry and Spices" and this stall clearly lives out to the theme!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

You can buy the spices you want here!
They smell really good, it's the smell that I remembered going to Indian spices shops when I was young! Mum buys her curry and spices bit by bits from the Indian traders previously. But careful, some are really pungent and sting the eye!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

I walked around before the official opening and noticed that the curry from this stall selling fish head curry was quite popular.

Singapore Food Festival 2011Singapore Food Festival 2011

I spotted at least two families eating it. Looks like the curry fish head that we locals love are equally enjoyed by these two groups of tourists!

A few of us met up at the event, (Camemberu, CalvinTimo, and a few others) and we thought we would share the food, so we can try more things. Here are some of the food we ate!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

I could not resist the gelato stall which had flavours like Chocolate Chilli, Vanilla Saffron, Sansho Pepper, Raspberry Ginger, Wasabi. It's an Italian gelato stall with a difference!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

I bought Vanilla Saffron to try!
I kind of like it! Creamy and smooth gelato. But it melts rather quickly, so waste no time!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

One very familiar seafood brands in Singapore, Jumbo's having a stall there too!
I realise they are selling the packs of ready to cook chilli crab sauce too! (I must get one of it, and pass to aunt or mum to cook for us! haha.)

Singapore Food Festival 2011

Looking at these crabs, it kinda make you salivate! They are sold in portions of 250 gm for $10.
That's $40 / kg, that's about the market rate for chilli crabs.

Singapore Food Festival 2011

How could you resist not getting the mantou to dip with the chilli crab sauce?
Mantous were $2 for 4.

Singapore Food Festival 2011

250gm was around half a crab according to the person who sold me the crabs.
So here the half a chilli crab that we shared. The sauce was spicy and yummy!

Singapore Food Festival 2011

If you walk at the end of the bridge that near to the Clarke Quay restaurant side, the whiff of Chai Tow Kueh will attract you! The Lim Hai Sheng Carrot Cake has this guy frying the carrot cake and it smell so good! I remember they were also at last year's Food Festival.

Singapore Food Festival 2011

Here's the tasty Chai Tow Kueh we shared.

Singapore Food Festival 2011

For Japanese beer lovers, Asahi is one of the main sponsors of the event and you can get your Asahis here! ;-)

Singapore Food Festival 2011

Another of the many dishes we shared. This was the Ngo Hiong.
We tried the kebabs, naans, and many more, but I will spare you the photos. Go try it yourselves!

Singapore Food Festival 2011 is not only the Festival Village that's on Read Bridge.
If you walk along Central River Promenade, there's food stalls too!

If you are interested, here are some interesting events that you can join in too!

  • SFF Culinary Adventures - Tiffin Cruise - 15-24 Jul, 4-10 pm. 45 minutes per cruise, Singapore River Cruise Liang Court Jetty ($38+)
  • SFF Culinary Adventures - Trishaw Heritage Trail @ Little India, 16, 17, 23, 24 July, 10 am to 1.30 pm, Little India, $88+
  • SFF Culinary Adventures - Spice and Canapes in the Sky - 16, 17, 23, 24 Jul, 5-7 pm, Singapore Flyer, $108+
  • Longest Table @ Little India - 23 Jul 2011, 6-10pm, Race Course Road. There are two categories of sit down buffet dinner at $80 / $100.
  • A curry-licious Experience @ Little India - 23 & 24 Jul, 6-10pm, Race Course Road, Little India, 23 July - $10 per entry, 24 July, $5 per entry.
  • Kampong Glam presents "Of Rendang Tales and Spices" - 23, 24 Jul, Kampong Glam, details at
  • National Library Board presents "Garden Walks" - 23, 24 Jul, details at
  • Jurong Bird Park presents "Asian Curry High Tea Buffet". 23, 24 Jul, 3-5 pm, Bongo Burger Restaurant Terrace, Adults $25+, Child $20+
  • Central Food Festival by the River - 1 Jul - 14 Aug, various shops at Central.
  • Restaurant Association of Singapore Presents "SFF Culinary Classes" - 16, 17, 23, 24 July, 9am - 12 pm, 2 pm - 5pm (2 sessions) at TOTTS (Bukit Timah), $88.
  • At-Sunrice presents "Spice Odyssey" - 20 July, 6 - 8 pm, At-Sunrice GlobalChef Academy. $108
It's interesting ya? I noticed there's a Curry Buffet at the Singapore Bird Park!
For more details about the events, go to

Enjoy eating!

For those who loves to view photos instead of read, here are more photos of the event that I took.

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Friday, July 15, 2011

Ga-Hock Seafood @ Upper Bukit Timah Road

This is one of the many places our family will go for dinner on weekends.
It happens to be the first the 'new wife' would be eating here with us after we got married.

It's just the usual weekend zhi-char food outdoors sitting under a tent that's below a big huge tree! Super kampung!

As usual, the food here is nice, cheap but totally un-presentable! This place is about cheap good food and not presentation. :-)

Stir Fried Veggies

The veggie dish. It's a little oily, but taste wise it's good.
Slight crunch to the veg, but ugly looking dish!

Tofu Dish

Their tofu dish was nice. Try the tofu if you are here. They deep fried the tofu which has a nice charred smell and taste, but the inside of the tofu was still very soft.

The sauce looks clear, but it's very flavourful. Great with the plain rice.

Egg Omelette with Oysters

This is the fried egg with little oysters dish. Partially covered with sweetish chilli sauce that's very addictive!

If you like your fried eggs and you like sauce, this is for you.
If you are on a diet, flee! It's sinful!

Herbal Chicken

The herbal chicken that's only available on weekends and only a few are prepared.
We managed to get it because we were there early.

Their herbal chicken was yummy. The viscosity of the soup is about right. Not too light or thick.
Lots of the herbs that gives it a messy look below, but the taste was good!

Side note:
I used to like to order herbal chicken in many places, but whenever I think of plastic at high temperature and I give it a second thought and don't order it. Since I have not had it for a long time, it is someone else who ordered it, and I missed it, just makan lah!

Salted Baked Crabs

This crab dish was the highlight of the night! We all think it's super nice! It's their Salt Baked Crabs!
If you are getting tired of black pepper or chilli crabs, try their salt baked crabs!

The shell is salty (but of course!), but the flesh of the crabs are not that salty. It had the baked fragrance to it. You  know the smell of the crab shell that has been heated at high temperature. It smells quite good!

Who can resist fresh crabs?

Salted Baked Crabs

For lovers of crab roe, (ie the wife and the many ladies at home), it's heaven!
See the bright orange colour of the roe!

Salted Baked Crabs

The shell is what the wife goes for usually! This one made her smile with the roe there.
Good thing I am not one who likes it a lot! There's no fighting for crab roe!

The crabs are about $100 for two of it. (sold by weight and market prices)
They are quite huge and we were really satisfied!

Ga-Hock Seafood
794 Upper Bukit Timah Road
Singapore 678133

Tel: 6314 5725

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

True Passion - Martin Yan : a story about Chinese Food and Wine

True Passion - MartinYan

If you like Chinese Food and also a fan of Chinese Food, a home grown TV food channel, Asian Food Channel premieres "True Passion - Martin Yan".  The show is about Martin Yan cooking and pairing it with wine.

Catch it starting Wednesday, 13 July at 8:30 PM on Starhub Singapore Channel 435.
(If you are in Malaysia, tune in on Astro Channel 703; in Thailand, Live TV Channel 65)

If you miss that, here's the schedule for this coming week:
Wednesday, July 13 - 8:30 pm
Thursday, July 14 - 04:30 am / 1:30 pm
Saturday, July 16 - 11:30 am / 6:00 pm / 9:30 pm
Sunday, July 17 - 2:00 pm
After watching the show, if  you want the recipes, you can visit this site for more information:


Press Release:

Programme Features Legendary Chef In His First Food And Wine Pairing Series

1 JUNE 2011, SINGAPORE – Singapore viewers and fans will be thrilled to know that the Asian Food Channel (AFC) will be premiering a new original production, True Passion – Martin Yan on Wednesday, 13 July at 8.30pm, StarHub Channel 435.

The exciting eight-part series includes one Chinese New Year special and features world-renowned chef, Martin Yan. Filmed in AFC’s own studio kitchen, Chef Yan cooks a range of delicious contemporary Asian dishes and pairs them with his favourite wines from Jacob’s Creek, Australia’s largest wine brand.  The series also sees Chef Yan traveling to Barossa Valley in Australia visiting Jacob’s Creek vineyards and learning about the intricate details that go into producing an internationally-acclaimed bottle of wine.

Not only a certified Master Chef but also a highly respected food consultant, cooking instructor and prolific author who has published over 30 cookbooks, Chef Yan delights audiences with his infectious personality and stunning dishes in this series which will be broadcasted regionally across eight countries to over 45 million viewers.

Even after appearing in over 3,000 cooking shows broadcasted worldwide, this AFC production is the first ever series where Chef Yan shares his knowledge of food and wine pairing with viewers. Local viewers will also be pleased to know that Chef Yan takes on some of Singapore’s favourite dishes such as Chili Crab and puts his own special touch on them!

“Chef Yan is a household name when it comes to Asian cuisine and has been an inspiration to many. We knew that filming a production with him meant that we had to come up with a new and innovative concept which we have achieved. I am thrilled that AFC is able to provide our Singaporean viewers with relevant Asian content that has such a unique twist,” said Maria Brown, Co-Founder and Managing Director of AFC.

True Passion – Martin Yan is the second cooking series to be fully filmed and produced by AFC. It follows the great success of Best Wan, which featured a mix of recipes from the East and West by Malaysian Chef Wan, along with other documentary programmes covering topics like the use of palm oil in cooking as well as those that chronicled visits by notable chefs like Chef Daniel Boulud and Chef Robert Rainford.

“With the success of Best Wan and the upcoming premiere of True Passion – Martin Yan, AFC is steadily building its portfolio of self-made programmes, producing shows in HD quality that give viewers an in-depth view into the rich culture and heritage behind popular dishes available to them today,” added Ms. Brown.

In line with the premiere, AFC will be launching a microsite dedicated to the production at The site will complement the series by offering recipes and information so that viewers can easily access details to recreate Chef Yan’s unique dishes in the comfort of their own home. In addition, an online contest where visitors can win exclusive Chef Yan prizes will also be held when the series premieres in July.

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Monday, July 11, 2011

Gastromania Feast @ Far East Square: Oni Cupcakes

This post is part of the Gastromania Feast @ Far East Square organised by Omy.Sg that quite a few bloggers and I indulged in a food marathon on 9 July 2011.

You can read more about Gastromania Feast @ Far East Square at  Visit the site too if you want to win youself a $50 voucher.

Gastromania Feast @ Far East Square Stop 8: 
Oni Cupcakes

Oni Cupcakes

Finally, it's the last stop!
We were visiting a cup cake shop!

Oni Cupcakes

Don't you think the cupcakes here looks absolutely cute?

Oni Cupcakes

This cupcake is named "Nuts About You"
It costs $4.90
Look so tempting doesn't it?

Oni Cupcakes

More photos that I took through the refrigerated display counter.

Oni Cupcakes

The small ones are so cute too, isn't it?

Oni Cupcakes

We got to sample them.
The cupcake was rather chocolatey and what made it really nice was the different flavour of the icing!

Oni Cupcakes

I gobbled it up in a mouth!
I forgot to note down the price for the mini cupcakes! From their website, I think these are $1 each.

Oni Cupcakes

This was so adorable! They have wedding cupcakes too!
Congrats Daniel and Jaslyn!

Oni Cupcakes

Want to find out more about the lady behind these cute cupcakes?
Head on to

Oni Cupcakes
26 China Street
#01-02 Far East Square
Singapore 049568

Tel 6557 0108

Gastromania Feast @ Far East Square: Stop 1, Stop 2, Stop 3, Stop 4, Stop 5, Stop 6, Stop 7, Stop 8

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