December 25, 2012

A Potbless Christmas Celebration 2012

Why do we celebrate Christmas?
For the reason ~ Father gave his most precious Son to us ~
Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ!

We have received the greatest present of all because of His love for us. This is a season of love and there is no better way to celebrate it by being with our loved ones. With our family, with our friends, with our fellow brothers and sisters in church, all amid His presence. 
This is what makes the season meaningful!

This year, I'm blessed to be invited to a potbless celebration on Christmas eve, which is organised by my friend, Joey. Yes, you've read it correctly, potbless, not potluck. It has nothing to do with luck, but everything to do with the blessings our Lord has showered upon us.
That's why we called it potbless :)

As Christmas eve draws near, we began finalizing the event details. Alena is always the most organized person. She actively posted on our facebook event page, listing the food each of us is bringing to make sure we avoid any duplication.

So on this wonderful Christmas eve, we gathered at Joey's place, lay out our wonderful potbless spread and spent a blissful evening with friends.

Here are some of the food we had:-

Most of us are not a fan of this bird as it's usually on the dry side but somehow, a Christmas feast wouldn't seem complete without this traditional poultry. It made its appearance with courtesy of Alex.

 Curry Chicken 
Featuring my favorite part, chicken wings! I can't say no to this even though I'm having a very bad cough... oops :p

 Fried Bee Hoon
 Joey got her helper to prepare this dish for us. Not a Christmasey dish, but very very Singaporean lol. Who cares, as long as the food is good :)

Our reserved area had a barbeque pit, so we might as well make full use of it and barbeque some satay!

 Mini Hotdogs & Angry Bird Fishcakes

 BBQ Prawns

 Pasta Salad 
Doris made this delicious salad. Light and easy on the palate, we enjoyed it soooooo much!

 Country Pie 
Made by Alena, this is another star dish of the evening!

 Pork Knuckles & Honey Glazed Ham 
Thanks to Joelle who brought these over.
 Chocolate & Hazelnut Cream Logcake
A touch of festivities from PinkyPiggu

This potbless celebration is made possible because of everyone's participation! Thank you!

 Here's Joey, our gracious host.

Edwin, the helpful guy who carved the turkey and cut up the pork knuckle for us. May the knife be with him.

All the very lovely ladies

The guys

Doris' daughter, Ashlynn! She's so cute and lovable! Her favorite color is pink too! We have great taste lol.

After the feasting, we ended the potbless Christmas celebration with gift exchanges. But wait.... the evening is not over yet!

Joey and I had planned earlier to attend midnight Mass, which is also one of the reason we ended the potbless celebration a bit earlier. It was Joey's first time at a Catholic Mass and it has been quite awhile since I last attended one. We went to Church of Saint Teresa which has captivated us with her beauty during the numerous times we passed by in the day. Her white facade is just as beautiful under the cloak of night. Beautiful hymns echoed throughout the church as we entered and joined in the caroling. We ushered in Christmas at stroke of midnight with the holy sound of church bells resounding all the tidings of joy!

Happy Birthday, Jesus Christ!

Blessed and Merry Christmas to All!

For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given;
And the government shall be upon His shoulder;
His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
~ Isaiah 9:6 ~

December 20, 2012

Fun Fun Fun @ Nook D.I.Y House of Pancakes

It's pancakes making time again! 

After making Love & Stars Rainbow pancakes at PinkyPiggu's house previously (read here),
PinkyPiggu & friends are headed to Nook D.I.Y House of Pancakes this time!

Nestled in the quiet Lorong Kilat, it's a little bit off the beaten track compared to our usual coffee places at Suntec area where we usually hang out after church service on Sunday. But since Singapore is so small, there is nowhere which is not too inaccessible by public transport, and impossible to get lost with an app called Google map lol. The idea of spending a fun afternoon making and eating our pancake creations again, directed our drive.

Personalization. Customization. Can I boldly say that these two words has seeped into our daily lives to celebrate the narcissistic individualism in us? Pancakes is perhaps the latest food fad which you can customize, creating your own piece of pancake art like no other. Nook provides a fun and convenient platform for this customization concept, with its opening of the first and only D.I.Y. pancake house in Singapore. Just 4 easy steps (see above picture), and you're on your way!

A choice of 5 pancake batter flavors and an array of accompanying toppings, sides, sauces are available to help us get started with our pancake creations. A set of 2-flavored pancake batter with 3 toppings cost us S$28. We thought that 3 toppings is too little, so we ordered an additional topping which is at $2 each. Each set serves 2 pax, but we share it among the 4 of us and find the portion to be rather sufficient.

If designing does not appeal to you, ordering a ready-to-eat Rainbow or Red Velvet pancake would be your easy way out. Other than the D.I.Y. pancake sets, Nook also offers brunch items like salads, omelettes and sandwiches, just to name a few.

Here's our choice of pancake batter flavors! Dark Chocolate (brown) and Strawberry Farm (pink) in squeezer bottles. For toppings, we chose blueberries, cheddar cheese, peanut butter and chocolate sauce. Butter and maple syrup are also included in the set. The tables are customized with a griddle in the middle for us to design and flip our pancakes!

We can't wait to get started!

Love is the most wonderful thing in the world, so my first pancake is of heart-shaped sweetness. My friend was trying to make a lollipop. Though our pancakes are not very perfectly done in terms of design, it was so fun squeezing the batter out of the bottle carefully onto the hot griddle and watching our creation take shape.

Patiently waiting for the underside to be done before flipping it over.

Even the boys are having fun too! They came up with the idea of googling the images and mirrored the drawings.

Tadah!! Presenting to you

Our creations!!

Christmas is just around the corner, so here's a pancake Christmas tree for you!

Especially from PinkyPiggu with love ♥

It was an afternoon of fun fun fun! I'm reminded of my schooling days when I would doodle on my notepad to kill boredom during classes but now, the doodling takes place on a hot griddle with pancake batter, and best, I get to eat it! :D

Let your creativity flow, you can made it as pretty or weird as you want it to be, and do try your luck at their pancake art competition ;)

Have Fun!! ... and a very very very...


Nook D.I.Y House of Pancake
Address: Bukit Timah, 21 Lorong Kilat,, #01-03 S’pore 598123
Contact: +65 6466 1811
Opening Hours: Tues - Fri 12pm - 10pm / Sat 10am -10pm / Sun 10am -7pm

December 12, 2012

Salta ~ An Argentine Parrilla Experience

BFF and I were wondering where to go for dinner when my colleague passed me a booklet full of dining vouchers. As I browsed through it, the 1-for-1 main course offer from Salta Argentine Parrilla caught my attention.

"This Argentine restaurant is known for its directly-imported, free-range and grass-fed premuim beef which is natural, hormone free, lean and flavorful. With only the best meal cooked over their parrilla (wood and charcoal fired grill), a savory feast awaits you."

1-for-1 charcoal fired grilled steak? Sounds very much like a good deal worth checking out! So, here we go, to Icon Village where it is located!

The first thing about Argentina that came to my mind was World Cup and soccer, but do you know that Argentina is actually the 3rd largest beef exporter in the world (after Brazil and Australia)? Due to its rainfall and largely temperate climate, the country bears high quality pastures ideal for cattle-rearing. Salta not only brings to us this quality Argentinian beef, but also the parrilla, a 5-metre long charcoal fire grill, on which the chefs grill up chicken, lamb, and of course, the beef which we're here for.
Tomato Ciabatta (Complimentary)

Most restaurant serves a complimentary bread basket and here at Salta, it comes in form of a loaf of ciabatta which packs a distinct tomato flavor. Slightly warm, hard crusted with a soft and chewy interior, it was no surprise that we finished up the delish loaf in no time. Accompanied by a dip which tasted like tuna, we wouldn't have guessed correctly that it's actually a mixture of pork, beef and beef liver mousse if we hadn't checked with the waitress.

We were also told that this trio of parsley, white vinaigrette, chili red vinaigrette dips is designed to go along with the meat orders, but we feel that it resonate better with the ciabatta.

Provoleta (S$18+)

We were contemplating which starter to order when we decided that we can't go too wrong with something that is marked as a signature Argentine dish. Provoleta, a whole dish of melted Provolone cheese topped with oregano and chili flakes seems promising, but saltiness and heavy cheesiness of it proved to be a little too overwhelming as a prelude to the main course.

Tira de Asado 400g (S$38+)

The beef short ribs is perfectly executed! Wonderfully charcoal grilled to medium rare doneness, every piece is full of robust beefy flavor! Those of you who like to gnaw on the bones, hands up! This is the cut for you!

Bife de Chorizo 350g (S$35+)

The beef sirloin is of a substantial cut and came slightly charred at the sides. The first cut warns of an overdone steak and I was right when it reveals none of the medium rare doneness which I had requested for. Done to a medium, my jaws did not appreciate the workout which it had to go through. Though the beef sirloin is flavorful and the center part fared slightly better, the uneven cooking verdicts it to an overall disappointment.

Panqueque de Manzanas al Rum (S$12+)

A traditional Argentine dessert served with praline ice cream and rum is up next. Encompassed within the chewy crepe are thinly sliced crunchy green apples which provides a nice textural contrast. Soaked in a slightly caramelized sauce which tasted like the sweet black soya sauce, this is a dessert which my tastebud is not adverse to.

This was my first time having Argentinean food, and I would say the food is pretty decent. With no service charge, the prices are wallet friendly even without the 1-for-1 dining voucher. The restaurant is casual and suitable for group of friends wanting to catch up over a hearty meal of charcoal grilled meat.

Salta Argentine Parrilla Restaurant
Address: 12 Gopeng Street #01-56/57, ICON Village Singapore
Contact: +65 6225 8443
Opening Hour: Mon - Sat 11:30am – 2:30pm / 6:30pm – 10:30pm