Nuts about nuts

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Day 98: Cashew Nuts

I used to hate nuts. I would literally pick out nuts of my dessert, chocolate, anything and gave it to my parents because I cannot eat it. As I grow I learnt to love peanut butter and now actual whole nuts. I love snacking on this at work. I will take a handful of cashew and snack on it just before lunch when I’m feeling a little peckish.

Cashew nuts, it is not just delicious, it is jam-packed with nutritional content too. It has a lower fat content than most other nuts and most of their fat is unsaturated fatty acids. I prefer the oven-roasted and I recently tried the one with the skin on. Not shell because apparently cashew shell is toxic. I think it taste more buttery and sweet when oven-roasted with the skin. I can go nuts snacking on this! (if you pardon the pun)

Love,
A

Bisou

Day 97: Bisou Bake Shop

I am not much of a sweet tooth kinda gal, but I do love me some cupcakes. Other than ordering from our favourite baker that is constantly busy, me and my mom often head to Bisou Bake Shop when we need to feed our cravings for cupcakes. Since yesterday was Daddy’s birthday, I bought a box of cupcake for us to enjoy. When I say us, it is just me and my mum.

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My mum’s absolute favourite has to be the red velvet. This flavour bore me now since everyone went ga-ga over it the past couple of years. Or is it because I have such high expectation for this particular cupcake flavour since I was once obsessed with the red velvet cupcake from Lola’s Cupcakes in London. Lola’s cupcakes are the best I have ever tasted. That will be in another post. Back to Bisou’s red velvet cupcake. The cupcake itself is moist, not too sweet and the red colouring was kept to a minimum so you don’t get that colouring after taste.  You get that coco powder flavour and it was good. The creme cheese icing however was a little too salty for my liking.

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I love cookies and cream anything. Especially cookies and cream ice-cream. The cookies and cream cupcake was a bit on the dry side. The chocolate flavour of the cupcake was too strong it overpowered the flavour of the icing. Icing ended up tasting so bland. The little cookie was all soggy and not good at all. I think this batch of cupcakes had a little too much oreo crumbled in it which made it really dry. This has to be my least favourite.

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CupKuih! A traditional typical malaysian flavour turned modern. This pandan cupcake with Kaya (coconut jam), palm sugar icing and a sprinkle of desiccated  coconut was amazing. This is a brilliant idea. The pandan cupcake had a full on pandan flavour. It was beautiful with the gooey centre filled with kaya. The salted palm sugar icing complimented the traditional flavour very well. The desiccated coconut enhanced the coconut flavour and made this my new favourite cupcake.

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Banoffee pie is one of my favourite dessert. When I saw Bisou’s lux range included a banoffee cupcake, I was ecstatic. The banana flavoured cupcake was soft, moist and heavy due to the banana. The cream cheese icing was a tiny bit salty but forgivable. However, I would’ve preferred it without the taste of coffee that was in it. I don’t know why they did that, but if there wasn’t any coffee taste to it, it would’ve been the best cupcake in town.

Bisou’s Cupcakes are sold at RM6 per piece. However, the cupcakes in gold cups are slightly more expensive. A couple of Ringgit more. It is definitely worth trying.

Good luck!

Love,
A

Restaurant Discovery #8: Jiran @ Wangsa Maju

Day 96: Jiran Cafe @ Wangsa Maju

Jiran means neighbour. Very appropriately named as it is right in the middle of a housing area. As such you can just imagine the parking issue you will have when dining here. We have drove past this restaurant plenty of time but never thought of  giving it a go until today.

We had a family dinner to have a little celebration for Daddy’s birthday. Jiran Cafe is a budget friendly restaurant that serves western food and a few local cuisine. The decor is outdated but I really love the pizza making area at the front of the restaurant. The lighting is too dim and everything just looks really tacky and old.

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I ordered the Chef’s Mix Grill which had a piece of chicken, a tiny piece of lamb chop and a huge piece of sausage with black pepper sauce poured all over it, a side of coleslaw, mash potatoes, corn on cob and a tiny portion of penne pasta with tomato sauce. That is a lot of different flavour and texture going on in one plate. Does it all go together? NO.  Firstly, What is the point of the pasta? There were literally just 4 pieces of penne with a table spoon of tomato sauce. The pasta was undercook and the tomato sauce was just basic tomato sauce. Coleslaw tasted exactly like the ones you get from KFC which I never particularly enjoy. Mash was decent with an original brown gravy on it and my dad loved my corn on cob. He took everyone’s corn on cob. The lamb was tiny which is understandable as lamb is expensive in Malaysia. It was well done of course being that thin and small. It was not tough and it was seasoned well. The sausage was definitely not grilled despite the dish being called mix grilled and it was cold! So obvious that they pre-cooked everything beforehand. The grilled chicken was delicious – well seasoned and THE ONLY THING ON THE PLATE THAT WAS HOT. The black pepper gravy was decent. Not too peppery like most places.

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My sister had the fish and chips. She was torn between the seafood platter and the fish and chips. When asked what the seafood platter consist of, the waiter answered fish. Confused my sister then confirm if there was any other seafood in the seafood platter. The waiter said “No, just fish”. My biggest pet peeve is when my waiter does not have a clue about the menu and the food that they serve. Anyway, when the fish and chips came, I had a bite of course. The fish was dry. The batter was overcook that it was too crunchy. Our search for the best Fish and Chips in Malaysia shall continue on.

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My parents shared between them the half roasted chicken. Their food was not warm! Although the chicken breast was still moist, it was also cold. They couldn’t even bother putting it back in the over for a couple of minutes to heat it up. Nonetheless, it goes well with the black pepper sauce. A decent roast dinner. Would have been much better if it was warm. It came with the same sides as my Mix Grilled. Yes, even with the 4 pieces of penne and tomato sauce.

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Enough moaning, lets get to the good stuff and there was only one thing that we enjoyed the most tonight. The must try food at Jiran Cafe has to be their pizzas. They are homemade, delicious, thin crust pizzas. Although the flavour options are limited, they are worth a try. Will definitely come back just for the pizzas. The base was nice and crunchy, the tomato sauce was generously spread all over the pizza and the cheese were stringy and heavenly. Our beef pepperoni pizza was gone in a split second.

The service was fast. But I honestly would rather they take some time to heat up the food than to have my food so fast on the table but cold. Do something whole heartedly I say. They can be a bit more friendlier too, and pay more attention to the customers. Yes it was a busy night, but it doesn’t hurt to just smile and not sigh when customers ask about the menu. I was not expecting much from this restaurant as the food was really cheap. You get what you pay for. But I must say, I was blown away by the pizza.

Ambiance: 4 out of 10
Food: 4 out of 10
Service: 3 out of 10
Price: $

Jiran
No 23 Jalan 3/27D
Seksyen 6 Wangsa Maju
54200 Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia.
Tel: 013-369 9436

Good luck!

Love,
A

Dried Mangoes

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Day 95: Dried Mangoes

I love snacking on dried fruits, particularly mangoes. One of my colleague gave me some dried mangoes that she got from Cebu, Philippines. Cebu apparently is the main source of dried mangoes in Philippines. Which explains why every time someone comes back from the Philippines, they will bring back a bag of dried mangoes for me. They are very sweet, soft and slightly chewy which makes them the perfect snack.

Dried fruits are better alternatives to sugary candy and other junk food. However, it is best to bare in mind to consume it in moderation. I know myself it is hard to stop when you start chewing on dried mangoes. Removing the the water from the fruits makes it less filling and so easy to overeat. Remember that tropical fruits contains more sugar than other types of fruits.

If you are ever in Cebu, Philippines, snack on their dried mangoes. It is much sweeter than other dried mangoes I have tasted. If you care to post me some, I will accept with open arms. Haha I kid.

Love,
A

Seaweed Club

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Day 94: Seaweed Club

My colleague and I tried the nourishing seaweed soup at the Seaweed Club at The Weld. I did not know what to expect as this is the first time trying it. We first thought we wouldn’t be full by the look of the portion. We ended up being stuffed. The seaweed soup had a lot more than just seaweed. It had egg, tuna flakes, and pasta in a clear fish based broth. It was decent. They had a deal where one seaweed spring rolls and a bowl of the seaweed soup or rice is RM14 and you get a free soya milk drink too. The soup was decent and the seaweed spring roll was amazing as usual.

Good luck!

Love,
A

Kuih Kochi

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Day 93: Kuih Kochi

This little dumpling wrapped in banana leaf is heavenly. It might not look like much but it is simply gorgeous to the taste buds. We often have this during tea time and my family loves it during ramadhan. Bare in mind that break fast during ramadhan is at around 7.30pm and this dumpling would’ve been sold out by 3 at our favourite stall. Seems like a lot of other people were loving it during ramadhan too.

Today for tea, my mum and I drove up to the Jalan E area in Taman Melawati to try our luck to get these bad boys. Luck was on our side and we got to taste this kuih after a while of not having it.

What is kuih kochi? It is a sweet glutinous flour dumpling covered in coconut milk wrapped in banana leaf. When you bite the glutinous dumpling, it will reveal shredded coconut covered in Palm sugar inside. The coconut milk on the outside enhanced the coconut flavour on the inside. The banana leaf leaves a beautiful aroma to the dumpling. Such simple tiny thing brings so much joy to my tummy.

Love,
A

Food Truck Discovery # 7: Burger Giler Power

Day 92: Burger Giler Power

Food trucks have been popular around Kuala Lumpur lately. I’ve spotted a couple in Taman Melawati and Ampang. When I saw the burger truck parked in front of Espressolab Taman Melawati and the long queue that was constantly there, I wanted to give it a go.

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Burger Giler Power are open only on Thursday and Saturday, so today it was a particularly long queue even though it was raining. My sister and I had to wait for 30 mins for our order to be ready. We had 3 burgers and 2 sides to share with our mother.

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The first burger was the Classic Cheese Burger (RM9.00). It was beef burger with cheddar cheese and spicy garlic aioli. What I like about this classic is that it is simple, straight to the point and well… a classic. They were not shy with their delicious sauce as it drips off the burger every time you take a bite. The patty however was overcook and dry. I guess not many dare to make a medium to rare beef burger in Malaysia unless you are in a restaurant and you particularly ask for your burger to be cooked like that. I much prefer my beef to be medium, slightly blushing pink in the middle, be it steak or burger, thats how it is best eaten in my opinion. That way you can avoid the whole tough and dry meat malarkey. Nonetheless, this burger was good. It had a nicely seasoned beef patty, delicious spicy aioli sauce which I think is the modern day mayonnaise, sharp mature cheddar, crunchy fresh lettuce in between a really soft charcoal bun.

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The burger I was most excited for was the Cajun Chicken Burger (RM9.00). They spiced up the chicken burger with Cajun spice real good. The first bite and you get that cajun kick, no mistaking it. Instead of mayonnaise, they slathered it with greek Tzatziki sauce. It made the whole burger taste very mediterranean and I loved it. The spicy cajun was calmed by the cool and creamy tzatziki which I must say lack garlic flavour. It could use with more flavour since the greek yoghurt had a strong taste. The tomato slices on the burgers were too thin that it brings nothing but sogginess to the burgers. The buns were charcoal buns too and it was soft and had a generous amount of sesame seeds on it. Overall, it was delicious. Something different.

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Lastly, we had The Chief burger (RM16.00). The most expensive burger on the menu. It was meant to be a burger kahwin (a mix of beef and chicken burger)  but our classic burger was the last beef patty and they had run out of beef burgers. So instead they made a double chicken burger. Same with all their burgers, they used the charcoal bun which is soft but could use with a bit of a fluff. It was flat as if someone had sat on it. The chicken burger had burnt marks on it and it was delicious though after a while you can taste that the chicken burger was dry. I am not sure whether the chicken burger was homemade or it was an oversized processed chicken burger. I am confident it was the latter. They served this with the aioli and cheese which made it like a classic cheese burger but with two slices of chicken burger patty. This burger was my sister’s favourite while I enjoyed the Cajun Chicken burger and my mum loved the Classic Cheese burger.

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As for sides, we ordered the crispy mushroom and the chicken broccoli salad each for RM2 with every burger you order. The crispy mushroom was decent. It was loosing its crispiness but it was nicely seasoned and deep fried. It is pretty difficult to fry mushrooms as they have a lot of liquid in them. To make it even slightly crispy is a challenge that they have passed. They are smart to use oyster mushroom as they are the ones with the least liquid.

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The chicken broccoli salad was odd. It was as if it was missing a pasta. It could make a good creamy pasta sauce with broccoli and chicken. The broccoli was I assume blanched or steamed and the chicken was cooked in the creamy sauce and they were then put together. The sauce was decent but it was just an odd salad that came in a small cup. I’m not too sure what to make of it. Edible but I wouldn’t go out of my way to go and get it.

I love the whole look of the truck. It is very American like. Sadly they are only open on Thursday and Saturday in Taman Melawati. I’m not too sure where they go on the other days of the week. I can see why there is always a queue when they are open, the burgers are delicious and they are reasonably priced.

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If you are around the area, spot the parked truck in front of Espressolab for a delicious burger after 5pm on Thursday and Saturday.

Good luck!

Love,

A