Papa’s birthday cake – Matcha cake improved!

For my dad’s birthday, I decided to give this matcha recipe from allrecipes one more try. I decided to do the matcha cake again for the following reasons.

  1. I still had green tea powder left
  2. We were going to a Japanese restaurant (Rakuzen@Tampines) for his birthday dinner and a matcha cake would be in line with the cuisine
  3. I wasn’t totally satisfied with the one I did for Nami’s birthday. I felt that the green tea flavour was not strong enough and it was much too sweet for my liking. So this time, I drastically reduced the sugar and increased the amount of green tea powder.

The result: Yumz!!  I enjoyed the cake a lot, which I was surprised, cos I seldom enjoy cake so much. I have more of a savoury rather than sweet tooth. I also like eating it as a loaf cake without any icing.

Here is the revised recipe which is certainly a keeper and one which I will use again! The method remains the same.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 teaspoons green tea powder (up from the original 4)
  • 3/4 cup white sugar (down from original 1 1/4 cup)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup plain yoghurt

For the icing, I also adjusted the amounts slightly as I did not need so much since I would not be doing a layered cake.  I also wanted it less sweet with a stronger green tea flavour.

  • 1 teaspoon vanila extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2-3 teaspoon green tea powder
  • 1 table spoon butter
  • 2 ounce cream cheese
  • 1 teaspoon milk
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Daniel always joins the cake cutting and candle blowing even when it is not his birthday!

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Zixuan (Pris’ bf) also shares the same birthday as my dad!

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Rare big family shot!

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Quick Batam Getaway 15-16 Dec 2013

We did a quick one night Batam Getaway with Aunty Linda and family when they were in Singapore this December. Though it was short, it was definitely a good and relaxing trip and a refreshing time with family.

I realised that this is actually probably my fifth trip to Batam! Through the years, have been to Batam for school trips, planning retreat, church camp etc. My last most recent trip was just 2 years ago. It was one of Daniel’s first overseas trip. One of the things I like best about Batam is that it is an hour behind Singapore. But somehow, though it is just an hour, the pace seems much slower and that fast paced Singapore. It is a good place to just chill and slow down. I remember the last time I was there 2 years back, my watch actually stopped working. And amazingly, the moment I got back to Singapore, it started ticking away again. And during that trip, I actually felt as if I stopped noticing the time and simply just relax. No rushing to beat the clock and to complete tasks!

Thus was looking forward to this trip after a hectic week – post renovation cleaning and preparation for Yuping’s wedding the week before. All in, it was a good trip. Love our hotel – Harris Batam Centre. It was contemporary with vibrant colours. And it was just 5 minutes walk from the shopping area too. We had some great food too. Love the Indonesian meals we had. We also had a seafood dinner. I have had seafood at Batam at the same place (Golden Prawn) numerous times but what was so special about this time was that we chose our ‘live seafood’ that we wanted for dinner. That was fun!

For activities, as it was only one day, we didn’t do much other than just R&R. Wanted to do a massage but somehow, the timing was not right. As always, bringing the boy on a holiday meant that it was difficult to get any kind of shopping done. So we didn’t shop much too. I just got the main thing I came to Batam to buy and that was it. Wacoal undergarments are really a good buy in Batam and it is a must buy whenever I come since I discovered that the last time I came 2 years back.

Another highlight was the one hour or so I spent with Daniel and Adora at the arcade while Daddy went for spa. The arcade in Batam costs so much less. Paid for about five sing dollars worth of credits and had about slightly more than an hour of entertainment. Can never get that in Singapore arcades! What I also like about the Batam arcades is that the games are much simpler and fun …… although some might say backward. But I actually prefer these than some of the complex machines back in Singapore. In Singapore, I don’t really like walking into arcades as it is super noisy and has a scary atmosphere (for lack of a better description!).

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Daniel turns 3

Daniel turned 3 this week. How time flies! Looking through snapshots of him over the last 3 years really brought back fond memories. How quickly kids grow up! Really need to cherish every moment of their growing years and create many wonderful memories.

We decided not to have a party since he does not have many friends and a party would just be for the adults. Maybe next time when he has more friends to invite. Nonetheless, we had a great time celebrating with family and friends which made it a very memorable occasion. We are thankful to be able to celebrate with our family and close friends and we were much blessed by their prayers and gifts. Daniel sure enjoyed himself …..being able to sing the birthday song and blow candles a few times with different groups and he enjoyed his many new toys.

Highlights of his birthday this year:

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Playing with the game Shane and Anne gave him …..love his expressions!

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Fish!!

Prawning and Longkang fishing at Big Splash

My mother-in-law would be away for holiday for a week, so thought to spend some time with her last weekend. We went prawning at Big Splash. Managed to find a good deal on deal.com.sg. Our prawning was unfortunately, not very fruitful. Caught only 3 prawns with 2 rods after an hour 😦 Our worst prawning catch ever. This is probably because this is the first time we used live worms and were not very skillful with it. It was really disgusting to hook up and they slip off the hook easily. Felt like a lot of time was spent attaching the worm. And the only prawn I caught was using the chicken bait when I finally gave up on the worms.

After that we spent some time playing frisbee at the beach and had lunch at Sushi Tei …… have been craving for it the last few weeks but did not have the opportunity to go. Then we proceeded for longkang fishing. Daniel managed to catch about 20 over fishes …..some with our help. And guess what ….. ended up getting a proper fish tank for them the next day cos they couldn’t seem to survive in the small tank. We have new pets ….. just like that! This is the nicest fish tank I have ever had with landscaping too!

Hope I will have more success at fish rearing this time. Have kept fish on and off ….but find it difficult …. they are so sensitive and die easily.

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My sister graduated from bible school

19th September 2013 – Priscilla Seow’s SOL graduation

I have attended the School of Leadership(SOL) – Tung Ling Bible college graduation ceremony a few times. But this one was different. Priscilla was graduating from bible school! I felt almost as excited as I would be if I were graduating. I usually cry during the graduation service! But this time I cried both before in anticipation and after when I thought how proud I am of my younger sister. First one in the family to go to bible school! Am really so proud of her. And she got a distinction too! And of course our family turned up in full force to support her and share in her joy. Graduating from bible school must certainly be one of the most significant moments and milestone in one’s life and I am glad to be able to witness this occasion and pray with her at the end of the service.

Ivan, Adora and I got her a Pandora bracelet for a graduation gift. Wanted to get her a bible charm to commemorate this special occasion but it was out of stock so had to settle for a pretty star charm.

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Planning for Hong Kong Trip Sept 2013

Have been trying to plan the Hong Kong Trip amidst our busy schedule the last few weeks. And it’s finally more or less done! Did not have a detailed hour by hour schedule like the one we did for the Australia trip last year.

These are some of the things we hope to cover and food we hope to eat 🙂

Day 1 (6 Sept, Friday)

  • Flight depart SIN 8am

  • Arrive HK 1200

  • Check in City View hotel (Yau Ma Tei MTR)

  • Daniel Nap Time

  • Dinner

  • Avenue of stars (Tsim Tsa Tsui)

  • Symphony of lights

  • Tsim Tsa Tsui Promenade

  • Shopping at Tsim Tsa Tsui

Day 2 (7 Sept, Sat)

  • Ocean Park (Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong Island)

  • Temple Street Night Market (Temple street)

Day 3 (8 Sept, Sun)

  • Flower market (Flower Market Road)

  • Goldfish market (Tung Choi Street)

  • Ladies Street (Tung Choi Street)

  • Sneaker Street (Fa Yuen Street)

  • Daniel afternoon nap (2-4pm)

  • Electronics and stuff (Apliu Street – Sham Shui Po)

  • The Peak

  • Mdm Tussuads (The Peak)

Day 4 (9 Sept, Mon)

  • Disneyland

Day 5 (10 Sept, Tues)

  • MTR to Sheung Wan

  • Dried Seafood Street (Sheung Wan, Hong Kong Island)

  • Central Mid Levels Escalator (Central, Hong Long Island)

  • Toy Street (Wan Chai)

  • Jardine’s Market (Causeway Bay)

  • Causeway Bay Shopping mall

    • Sogo – mid range

    • WTC more – mid range

    • Times Square – international brands

    • Fashion Walk – international brands

    • Island Beverly Centre – Korean and Jap fashion

Day 6 (11 Sept, Wed)

  • Check out of hotel

  • City gate factory outlets

Food to check out:

1. YUEN KEE RESTAURANT

27-33 Kimberley Road

Shop 6-10, G/F Wing Lee Building

Tsim Sha Tsui

Tel: +852 21919339

To try: Fried beef horfun (big portions)

2. Milk Tea at Lan Fong Yuen

Lan Fong Yuen. Shop 2, Gage Street, +852 2544 3895 and LG Chung King Mansion, 36-44 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, 2316 2311. Meals around £3 a head. Open 10am-11pm

3. 星座冰室 Star Cafe (Noodles/茶餐厅)

Shop No. 36, Champagne Court, 16-20 Kimberley Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

尖沙咀金巴利道16-20號香檳大廈地庫36號舖

2724 4408

Mon.-Sat.: 08:00-21:30

4) One Dim Sum

MONGKOK: Shop 1 & 2, G/F, Kenwood Mansion, 15 Playing Field Road, Prince Edward

星期一至五:11:00-00:00; 星期六、日:10:00-00:00

Tel: 2789 2280

5) 富記粥品 Fuk Kee Congee

MONGKOK: 104-106 Fa Yuen Street, Mong Kok

旺角花園街104-106號

2385 1230

Mon.-Sun. 07:30-23:30

 6) 金華冰廳 Kam Wah Cafe

MONGKOK: 47 Bute Street, Prince Edward, Hong Kong

2392 6830

Mon.-Sun.:06:30-12:00

 6) 溏苑 Tong Yuen Food & Dessert

MONGKOK: Shop 1, G/F, Paradise Square, 3 Kwong Wa Street, Mong Kok

旺角廣華街3號百利達廣場地下1號舖

Sun.-Thu. 12:00-00:00; Fri., Sat, Holiday Eve: 12:00-01:00

2171 4913

 7) SHAM SHUI PO: Wai Kee Noodle House – Liver noodles

62/67 Fuk Ying Street

 8) Luk Lam Desserts

77-79 Un Chau Street

 8) Kung Ho Dou Ban Cheong – Yong Tau Foo/ Tau Huey

118 Pei Ho Street

 9) Kee Tsui cake shop

Traditional Pastries and Biscuits

10) Hang Heung Cake Shop

Lao Po Bing

Mongkok

Address: G/F, 579 Nathan Road, Mong Kok

地址: 旺角彌敦道579號地下1號舖c

Tel/電話: +852 2394 7668

Opening Hours: 10am – 9:50pm

11) Yung Kee – Roast Meats

Address: 32-40 Wellington Street, Central, Hong Kong

2522 1624

12) LAW FU KEE CONGEE AND NOODLE SPECIALIST 羅富記粥麵專家

140 Des Voeux Road Central, Hong Kong. Tel: +852 2541 3080

144 Queen’s Road Central, Hong Kong. Tel: +852 2543 3881

G/F, 50 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central, Hong Kong. Tel: +852 2850 6756

Open daily 8am to 8pm

13) 添好運點心專門店 Tim Ho Wan, the Dim-Sum Specialists

Shop 12A, Hong Kong Station (Podium Level 1, IFC Mall) , Central

中環香港站12A鋪(IFC地庫一層)

2332 3078

Mon to Sun: 09:00 – 21:00

 14) 勝香園 Sing Heung Yuen(Da pai Dang – Street Food)

2 Mei Lun Street, Central

中環美輪街2號排檔

Mon-Sat: 08:00-17:30; Sun: Closed

2544 8368

 15) 九記牛腩 Kau Kee Restaurant (Noodles/Beef Brisket)

G/F, 21 Gough Street, Central

中環歌賦街21號地下

Mon – Sat 12:30-22:30

2850 5967

 16) 泰昌餅家 Tai Cheong Bakery – Egg Tarts

G/F, 35 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central

中環擺花街35號地下

2544 3475

Mon.-Sun. 07:30-21:00

Sat morning splash

Decided to bring Daniel for a swim at my parents’ place on Sat morning since it has been a while since he went swimming.  Was quite a last minute, impromptu decision. Weather was good and Daniel was well. Swimming very much depends on weather and state of health!!

Ivan dropped me at my parents place before going for worship rehearsal. I was pleasantly surprised to find that everyone was at home that morning. Everyone was just having a slow start this lazy Sat morning.

Daniel was initially hesitant about going into the water as he had not swam for such a long time. When he first went in, he was clinging to me. After 5 min, he progressed to just holding my hand. And after 15 min, he was comfortable enough to let go and swim around on his float by himself. Daniel sure enjoyed his swim!

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