Wednesday, April 27, 2011

And We are Six Months Old


Becoming a mother has been the most intensely difficult and challenging thing that I've ever had to cope with in my life. If my previous posts have suggested that everything is sunshine and roses, it's definitely not.

Ethan turns six months old today, and I start one year of no-pay-leave tomorrow. Becoming a stay-at-home-mother (which I have been for the past six months although on a paid salary, lucky me) has entailed far more changes than I expected.

The boss is often irrational, irascible, temperamental and demanding. You are expected to work all the time, through the night, weekends, and public holidays. You get no salary, career progression, bonuses, praise from the boss, developmental courses, water-cooler huddles or lunch breaks. Even when you feel that you have done your best, the boss may still not be happy.

And yet, this has been the most rewarding and fulfilling experience ever. I get rewarded in the laughter, giggles, smiles, kisses and hugs from my most precious Ethan. Who could ask for more?

Monday, April 25, 2011



I like OChre. It has a casually chic clean modern vibe, good service, not overly crowded, and serves up crowd-pleasing Italian favourites.

On Saturdays, OChre offers a special "eat-all-you-can" pasta and pizza promotion. We hungrily pigged-out carbo-loaded up on: seafood linguine in white wine sauce; tagliatelle with mussels and zucchini in tomato cream sauce; parma ham pizza; and salami pizza.

The pizzas were good - thin but with a good chewy bite (unlike that Skinny Pizza that I found so abominable) although we felt that the restaurant could have been more generous with the toppings. The pastas were passable but nothing special, and again, heavy on the carb portion. What I liked was the small serving sizes, allowing diners to sample a wider variety of offerings. All in, it was a very enjoyable Saturday lunch with E away from the Orchard Road crowds. I would be keen to return to try some of OChre's ala-carte and set menus!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Jewels Artisan Chocolate Part 2: Chocolates


From top left corner, clockwise:
Cornelian: Caramel ganache coated with dark chocolate topped with caramel nibs
Red Ruby: Raspberry ganache paired with dark chocolate
Grand Espresso: Espresso and chocolate ganache
Peridot: Pistachio ganache layered with praline paste coated in dark chocolate
Praline Cafe: Finely ground caramelised almond and coffee beans enrobed in dark chocolate
Volcanic Salted Caramel: Caramel infused with Black Palm Island salt
Maracaibo Gianduja: Finely ground macadamia blended with milk chocolate
French nougat: Praline paste with nougat chips and feuilletine

We bought a box of 8 handcrafted lovelies (SGD3 each) to try. These were fairly good, with silkily rich ganache filling but not quite in the wow realm. I thought they were quite pricey too, perhaps reflecting the labour-intensiveness of the hand-crafting process and the quality ingredients (we saw blocks of varlhona baking chocolate). My favourites were the Red Ruby and Peridot.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Turbanised Ethan!

Ethan has been turbanised!


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Jewels Artisan Chocolate Part 1: Macaroons

Jewel Artisan Macaroons

We popped by Jewels Artisan Chocolate after Saturday's lunch date at Ochre (more on that later) and picked up some chocolates and macaroons (SGD2 per piece). Upon finding out that owner Then Chui Foong had apprenticed with Pierre Herme, I had high hopes of delectable offerings.

From left to right: Raspberry, filled with raspberry conserve and rose almond cream; Brun, filled with hazelnut and almond praline paste; Black Island Palm Salt, filled with salted egg and almond cream.

However, I was a little disappointed - the texture of the raspberry and brun macaroons was not ideal, lacking the elusive crunch and bite and airy yet chewy texture of good macaroons. Furthermore, the rose flavour for Raspberry reminded me somewhat of shower gel, and the ratio of filling to macaroon shell in Brun was over-the-top. Black Island Palm Salt was a far better creation in terms of both macaroon shell texture and filling flavour, with a distinctive but not overly strong scent of salted egg. Very interesting local twist indeed!

Perhaps it would be a better bet to go for the chocolates here. A second post to come!

Jewels Artisan Chocolate
Orchard Central, #02-31/32

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Ethan_happy collage

No words can describe this feeling.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Handmade Ring Pillow

Ring Pillow_TT

A random post: I "made" this ring pillow for a good friend who's getting married this year.

Ring pillows are pretty expensive, costing anywhere from SGD30 to more than SGD50 but it's actually very easy, fun and cheap to assemble your own. I bought the small ready-made cushion from Daiso for all of the princely sum of SGD2, pinned a pretty ribbon and beautiful fabric flowers on (you can buy more expensive blooms or cheaper ones from Daiso), and ta-dah, ring pillow completed in all of 15 minutes! If you want something more elaborate, simply string or sew some swarovski pearls or crystals on to bling up the ring pillow.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Shin Sapporo Ramen

Shin Sapporo Miso

It seems that ramen shops have mushroomed around the island these days, so much so that it's getting hard to distinguish one bowl of ramen from the other. We had passed by Shin Sapporo Ramen several times while hopping over from Millennia Walk to Suntec City, which piqued our curiosity enough to try it out.

I had the Shin-Sapporo Miso ramen (spicy) (SGD15) while E opted for the Hakata Tonkotsu Ramen (SGD15). Mine came with the Sapporo curly noodles while E's version had the thin Hakata noodles. I much preferred mine as they had more bite and texture though the bounciness of Miharu's version was still elusive. However opinions and tastes differ from person to person, and E felt that his hakata noodles were cooked well, retaining an al dente texture. The broth was flavourful, not too salty, although not as rich (a.k.a. oily and full of gelatin!!!) as I would have liked, probably toned down to suit local palates (this reminds me of W who hates oily ramen soups). The egg was perfectly cooked with a runny yolk and soft white.

All in, a pretty good bowl of ramen but which stopped short of being spectacular or memorable. Well, ramen shops are a dime a dozen nowadays, and with such similar offerings and keen competition in the scene, one wonders whether there would be some casualties soon or whether Singaporeans' love for ramen and all things Japanese can support so many shops.

Shin Sapporo Tonkatsu

Shin Sapporo Ramen
Suntec City Mall (near the Carrefour end)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Our other pick of Restaurant Week, Boathouse, turned out unexpectedly well.

The restaurant was decorated in a style befitting the heritage status of the building, as if stepping into somebody's beautiful and cosy home. Whitewashed walls, wooden panelling, giant vases of fresh blooms, stacks of books, old photos.

A steal of a 3 course set lunch at SGD25.


Starter of grilled mackerel, sardines marinated in mustard, sweet olive tapenade, and goat cheese pudding. The slightly ripe pungency of the goat cheese pudding complemented the fish well, both being strong in aroma and flavour.


E's main of Grilled Atlantic Seabass with aubergine caviar, roasted tomatoes, and burnt onion sauce. Moist and flavourful, though I thought the skin could have been more crispy. Personally, I preferred Table 66's sous-vide take on salmon.

Boathouse_Lamb Shank

My lamb shank (braised for 36 hours) with wild mushroom polenta (SGD8 supplement) was very good. Fall-off-the bone tender, with none of the musky lamb aroma that can be offensive to some, this was a very heart warming dish that had us devouring it to the last morsel.


Dessert of salted caramel tart with expresso ice cream was the only miss in this meal. The tart crust was far too hard and had to be hacked through with a knife; I would have much preferred a crumbly buttery crust with melt-in-mouth texture. However, the salted caramel was pleasant and the expresso ice cream helped to cut some of the sweetness.
One restaurant that I would make a return trip to, if only they opened on weekends! (I hear that they will be introducing a Sunday brunch soon, but unfortunately E is not a brunch person).
The Waterboat House, 3 Fullerton Road

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Sitting Up (Sort of)

Ethan_Sitting 1

mummee, mummmee, i can sit like this....

Ethan_Sitting 2

and like this....

Ethan_Sitting 3
and i can also sit like that....

Ethan_Sitting 4
and i can.....oOOOOOPS!!!