Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Pasta de Waraku

We were at Novena's Square 2 yesterday to get some venison for my silly girl. Decided on Pasta de Waraku for dinner. Been such a long time since we had this!

I ordered a simple aglio olio ($11.80) while SSD got tomyum seafood ($19.80). Both came with yummy salad sides. SSD said they must be laughing inside how someone stupid like me ordered plain spaghetti with chilli and garlic for 12 bucks. >.< But it was nice what! And also cos I wanted to order something else to share. We got the dory combo ($14.80). I was attracted to the criss fries. The fish was pretty normal, and SSD found a bone in his. Oops. Macha float ($7.80) was a little disappointing. Should have gotten just coke instead. Total bill = $63.79. 

Fml. =)

Sunday, January 25, 2015

How to make bone broth

I've long heard about bone broth but as it involves cooking for at least 20-24 hours, it never appealed to me. Until recently, I came across the article again and found out it was actually very nutritious and beneficial, especially for dogs like mine.

Here are some of the benefits.

01/ It's good for joints.

Bone broth contains super amazing amounts of glucosamine. It’s also packed with other joint protecting compounds like chondroitin and hyaluronic acid. These glycosaminoglycans are resistant to digestion and are absorbed in their intact form. They act like hormones, stimulating cells called fibroblasts, which lay down collagen in the joints, tendons, ligaments, and even the arteries.

02/ It helps the liver detox.

The liver is the master organ of detoxification. The dog’s liver is under a lot of stress daily as the poor dog consumes commercial foods with toxic and synthetic ingredients, and/or suffers through toxic dewormers, flea and tick preventives, drugs, antibiotics, vaccines and more.

The liver's capacity to detoxify is limited by the availability of the amino acid glycine. Bone broth has tons of that!

03/ It promotes a healthy gut.

The lining of the intestines contains millions of tiny holes that allow the passage of digested nutrients to enter the body. Stress, poor diet and bacterial overgrowth can cause more holes to open or to become bigger, allowing things to pass through that aren't meant to. Such as undigested food and toxins. The body sees these as foreign invaders and start to attack them. This is how allergies and food sensitivities develop.

Bone broth is loaded with a gooey substance that can plug up those leaky holes: gelatin!

Plug it up! This is exactly what I was hoping to achieve. *prays hard*

04/ It's great nutrition for sick dogs.

When there is plenty of gelatin in the diet, the body’s need for protein from meat sources can be reduced by as much as fifty percent! It is an excellent source of important minerals and can bolster the immune system.

It is also loaded with glycine (as mentioned above), which aids digestion by helping to regulate the synthesis of bile salts and secretion of gastric acid.

(Credit: Dogs Naturally)

So how do you make bone broth? Same as any other Chinese soup - dump all the ingredients in and boil. Lol.

Step 1. I used my mum's slow cooker so I could have it cook for at least 20 hours. She's done that before so I suppose it's safer than using the stove. Underestimated the size of the pot so I bought too many bones. Made a full pot instead of a trial run. =X

Step 2. I used lots of chicken feet, a couple of chicken bones, plus an extra black chicken neck and a pork rib which I had bought to let Popo try but freaked out in the end. Ahem. Best to use raw bones with lots of cartilage!

Step 3. I added some carrots and wolfberries. Er. Just because.

Step 4. Add vinegar. It helps to draw out the minerals from the bones. I used Braggs apple cider vinegar. No idea what's the correct amount but I added 4 tablespoons cos it looked like quite a lot of bone.

Step 5. Add water. You're supposed to add just enough to cover everything but obviously here it's barely enough. Oops.

Step 6. I turned it on High for an hour, before switching to Low for the rest of it.

You can see how the broth progresses.

Mashed up all the bones after taking the last pic and let it simmer for a few more hours. Here's the final result! (A few trays are already in the freezer, hence the quantity.)

Make sure to skim the oil off and remove all the bones! If they're soft enough I think you can blend them into a bone smoothie, but mine went in the trash. Lol. The broth all went into the freezer in batches. This pot, surprisingly, can probably last my silly girl only 1 to 1.5 months. If you add less bones and more water obviously you can make more to last longer. =)

I tasted it myself by the way. It was surprisingly bland and tasteless, despite the carrots and wolfberries. (DO NOT ADD SALT OR MSG!) Probably because chicken feet isn't really that sweet? Maybe if you use pork ribs it'll become a doggy version of bak kut teh lmao. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

KBB - Korean BBQ Buffet

Yesterday we went for Korean bbq again! At the Toa Payoh outlet. I've decided to dedicate one day every month to have my fill of meat. (I'm normally a pescetarian if you don't know.)

Bought the vouchers from Deals at $24.90 per pax (weekday dinner). Quite surprised that it's actually for bbq plus steamboat! No pictures sorry; too excited to start.

Food variety was okay. Let's see what I can remember - chicken bulgogi, beef bulgogi, beef belly slices, pork belly slices, marinated pork chops, beef ribeye slices, fish slices, prawns, sotong, hotdog, fishball. And the usual veggies, cooked food, drinks, and ice cream etc.

Very pleased with this dinner! Can't comment on the texture cos I think I overcooked mine all the time. But the marination was not too bad. Especially the chicken bulgogi. Spicy versions were really spicy though.

Tell you something funny. I have always tried to eat it the korean way - veggie wrap, kimchi, garlic, and meat. But the garlic was way too pungent for my liking. So a few days ago I googled "how to eat korean bbq", and realized that you actually have to grill the garlic as well! Lmao. I did it this time, and omg they taste so much better! Lesson learnt.

I am SO looking forward to my next meat-gorging session here again. XD

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Silly girl's day out!

First stop - off to the vets!

It's been 1.5 months since I started her on the digestive enzymes for her loose stool problem. It has more or less solved the issue, except for a few times when she ate something that didn't agree with her tummy. It's been a huge roller coaster ride and I'm still doing trial and error to see what she can and cannot take. So far I know she can't take dehydrated treats and too much egg. A few days ago I accidentally overfed too much lamb and she's had a couple of loose stools too. Sigh.

Anyway, vet checkup. I went back to Dr Ling this time and she was pretty concerned how my girl was doing. (After all, I was there 3 times for this issue previously.) Felt quite bad to switch from Dr. Christine to Dr. Ling, but she's still my favorite vet so far lol. Told her about the enzymes and unfortunately, there's no test for EPI locally. But she'll check it out for me. She also said it MAY not be EPI; could be simply a lack of enzymes. *shrugs*

Physical check was okay, except for her teeth. Guess I need to start brushing everyday now. Blood test results were normal. Weight was okay. Basically I just had to continue whatever I'm doing now. Nothing to worry about as of now. Phew!

Side note, while waiting for the blood test results, a muzzled Samoyed came in and the whole area was filled with the stench of doggy odour. Not sure if it's normal for it or there's something terribly wrong with the poor thing, but it was horrendous. I immediately stuck my face into Popo. Even without a bath for 2 weeks, she still smelt good! >.<

Then we headed to Marina Barrage! Exceptionally lots of people having picnics and flying kites. Quite a lot seemed interested in silly girl cos she's just too pretty! *haolian* XD


And the Samsung NX Mini now belongs to silly girl! Much better at taking photos of her than my phone or Olympus EP2. ^^

Can't wait for our next outing!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Testing out the Samsung NX Mini =)

So SSD had a free brand new camera that his colleague didn't want. The Samsung NX Mini in white. We tested it out against my old Olympus EP2 over dinner tonight. 

Samsung NX Mini (2014)

Olympus EP2 (2010)

Both sets were taken by me. What do you think?

To be honest, I was quite surprised at the quality of the NX Mini photos. Image was pretty sharp, colors turned out pretty good, and I liked that it has a faster shutter speed. Definitely more useful for taking my silly girl. Shall test that out tomorrow. Anyway, with it being small, light and touchscreen, and coming with wifi and NFC (which connects to my phone), I was really tempted to make SSD give it to me. I think it'll be better than my Note 3 camera.

Then I came home and drafted this post. With both sets of photos side by side, I'm kinda having second thoughts. Not gonna lie; I am slightly disappointed with Oly's colors and sharpness today. It wasn't like this last time. But then, somehow, I still think Oly's photos are nicer. To be fair, I haven't used Oly for ages. Pretty sure with more practice, I can revive Oly's past glory lmao.

Maybe I could use Oly for food photography and the NX Mini for everything else? Lol. But one thing the NX Mini wins hands down - weight. So it's going overseas with us instead of Oly. =X

Thursday, January 8, 2015

A-Roy Thai @ Funan

First post of 2015! SSD brought me for dinner today lol. He recommended A-Roy Thai. At Funan Mall. Here's what he ordered.

Crackers ($1) were simple and nice. But the dip was pretty spicy. I should have guessed what was coming. Iced Tea ($3.90) was nice too; even nicer than the one we had in Bangkok. I liked the kangkong ($10.90) most. Simple, slightly spicy, and the gravy was flavorful.

Then then then. The tomyum ($15.90). Initially I really liked it. Because it was pretty sour. A few seconds later, I didn't quite like it anymore. Cos it was super spicy! But the ingredients were generous; prawns, sotong, fish, and lots of mushrooms. The seafood otah ($18.90!)......I don't know how to describe it. SSD said it was probably one of their 招牌菜. For me, I don't think I ever wanna eat that again. LMAO. There were prawns and sotong inside too. As well as some bits of I-don't-know-what. But WAY TOO SPICY!

Total bill was $61.90. Sibei expensive I tell you. I'd certainly rather have Coffee Club instead. =(
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