Monthly Archives: December 2011

Last post of 2011 – La Maison du Chocolat

Happy New Years in advance everyone :)

This will be my last blog post for the year 2011, and even though I’m still very much a newbie and have only blogged for about a month…I have already made so many new friends, learnt so much and really enjoy sharing all  the good, bad and ugly food I’ve had ~ Thank you for everyone who has visited (over 1000 views now!) and commented on my posts, it means so much to me :)

Because I’m obsessed about desserts, I wanted to end this year on a sweet note and hence my review of La Maison du Chocolat macarons. I got a box all to myself from Win Win (my sister) as a Christmas present and I was so excited about trying them, for starters I’m a macaron fanatic and secondly, I’ve heard Sasa (bestfriend) rave on about La Maison du Chocolat for such a long time.

Xmas pressie from Win Win

Just briefly, La Maison du Chocolat is a chocolatier created by Robert Linxe in 1955 and have since gained popularity and expanded to London, New York, Japan and most recently Hong Kong :) I’m pretty sure they’ve been in HK for more than 2 years, but somehow I only recently learned of them.

Back off Mr Bao they're all MINE!!!

Look at them, simply divine! All perfectly shaped and the best part is, Win Win got me every single flavour they had :) Love having great sisters hehe so I got to try most flavours…I wasn’t strong enough to protect MY macarons, Mr Bao successfully stole 4 macarons damn >_<

Kept this little information booklet ~

Really liked how it came with a little booklet detailing the flavours and the ingredients, particularly useful for those who are allergic to anything in particular nuts or gluten :) My favourite flavour would have to be porcelana which has a dark chocolate ganache featuring Porcelena (white cocao beans) covered in crunchy chocolate flakes! Loved the crunchy bits so much!

My review of the macarons? They were good, but quite frankly I was a tiny bit disappointed, because I was expecting these to rock my world! Unfortunately, the macaron shells were too soft and these macarons had the thickest filling I’ve ever had in a macaron! If you go back to the first picture, and look at the macaron photo on the box, you’ll see the amount of filling they put in them! Even though nothing is ever too sweet for me, desserts can be too rich even for me hahaha so it was hard for me to have more than 2 macarons in a row. To me macarons should have a crispy shell and just the right amount of filling :)

They were quite expensive too, last time I checked they were $28 HKD per macaron which is a approximately $3.6 AUD per mac. I think I prefer macarons from La Bielle Miette or Adriano Zumbo :) But considering the fact I haven’t been able to find any better macarons in HK, these aren’t bad.

So if you’re in HK and you’re craving macarons do give these a go, you might like them!

Thanks again Win Win my number one supporter!

I wish you all the very best in 2012!!! See you all in the New Year!

Love,
Daisy xox

Address: Shop 246, 2/F
Pacific Place
88 Queensway
Admiralty
Ph: 2522 2010

Ps. I’m trying their famous chocolate eclairs next time :)

Tassie’s Best Coffee – Doctor Coffee

HELP!!! I’m having SERIOUS coffee and muesli withdrawals :) I simply haven’t been able to find a place in Hong Kong that makes decent coffee or knows what Bircher Muesli is >_<  That’s why I wanted to take you guys back to Hobart and introduce you guys to the best coffee in Tasmania – Doctor Coffee that Mr Bao :) I’ve gotta give him credit because its his discovery hehe

Cute baristas ~

Doctor Coffee is located at the Salamanca Place, where they have an outdoor art and craft/flee market there every Saturday fro 8:30am to 3:30 rain or shine :) Last year I missed the Salamanca Market and went home on a Friday. So I made sure I stayed in Hobart over the weekend this time YAY!

The stalls ~

Really liked the music they played :)

The market sure wasn’t a disappointment, there was a variety of stalls ranging from those selling fresh local produces such as fruit and vegetables to the famous Tasmanian manuka honey. There were also quite a few stalls selling cakes and lollies, I bought some really nice homemade caramel fudge and some AMAZING boysenberry jam :) For fellow Melbourne bloggers I think this market is a cross between the St Kilda Esplanade market and the Caribbean Garden market in Scoresby. Definitely recommend those who’s visiting Hobart to check this market out :)

Anyhow, back to the BEST coffee in Hobart ~ Mr Bao stumbled across Dr Coffee when I was complaining about the rain and that I needed my 3pm pick-me-up mocha. Even though I had to wait in the rain for 15 minutes, it was totally worth it! Sorry I don’t have any pictures to show you, but the mocha had a PERFECT mix of coffee and cocoa, it wasn’t too sweet nor was the coffee overpowering! Best part is they added a little cinnamon which gave the mocha a twist that worked very well together!

BEST the muesli bar!

They also had the most OUTSTANDING homemade muesli bar I’ve had! I think it’s slightly over priced, $5.5 for such a small bar but I’m willing to pay $15.5 for that bar. It was SO delicious I went back the next day and bought 2 more to take home with me!!! I’m not sure if you can see it, but on the hand side next to the word ‘Doctor Coffee’, there’s a gold sticker, which says that their muesli bar has won a gold medal!

Going to try everything else next time :(

They had other goodies on display, but I was too full to try anything else….Damn! So I’ve promised myself next time I go to try everything else on their menu. I didn’t get to try their breakfast menu, but check out Ms Piggy’s post about Doctor Coffee, the breakfast looks SO scrumptious!!!

Next time you go to Tassie, don’t forget to try out their best coffee!
Ps. What are your plans for New Years? :) I wish you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Doctor Coffee on Urbanspoon

Xmas Feast – Cafe Kool Shangri la Hotel

Happy Holidays everyone :) I hope everyone had a great Christmas with family and friends~ I sure had a wonderful Xmas with Mr Bao :) where we had a massive buffet dinner on Christmas Eve then watched Breaking Dawn Part 1 (I’m a die-hard Twilight fan!)

Wanted to give you guys a review of the buffet dinner we had at the Cafe Kool restaurant at the Shangri La Kowloon hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui East ~

Nice environment but too crowded

It’s been a tradition of Mr Bao and I to have a nice buffet dinner every Christmas eve and we usually book a table 2 weeks in advance…but this year it was crazy! We called 3 weeks before Xmas yet more than 80% of the places we called were already full >_< so I admit Cafe Kool wasn’t our first choice, and the reviews weren’t great either but we decided to give it a go :) and it wasn’t too disappointing yay!

Lots to choose from ~

Being a buffet it had a wide range of dishes for us to choose from ranging from freash seafood, sashimi through to Indian and Chinese dishes :) will go through each type with you briefly ~

Range of Sashimi

Prawns, Crab and Oysters

We started with a few seafood dishes :) I particularly liked the Salmon sashimi really fresh, while Mr Bao really liked the scallops dunno why…I’m simply not a fan hehe the cooked seafood was good, but I don’t think the prawns were the best… the meat was a little powdery.

Indian dishes :)

Chinese dishes ~

We then went on to trying all the other dishes ~ I’m not a big fan of Indian food but the tandoori chicken was quite nice, the prawns were once again a disappointment >_< it didn’t seem very fresh… the Chinese dishes were alright nothing special. Mr Bao and I liked the seafood soup full of flavour ~

Mr Bao's Congee

Then out of no where Mr Bao come back to the table with a bowl of congee and some shanghai dumplings (小龍飽)hahaha I thought it was a little strange to have congee at a buffet…but Mr Bao was really impressed that you were able to put whatever ingredients you wanted so he decided to put – peanuts, salted duck eggs (鹹蛋)and fish. I thought it tasted a little bland but Mr Bao really enjoyed it so I wasn’t going to argue with him hehe

Now to the best part DESSERTS!!!

Lots to choose from!

I had such a hard time choosing what I wanted so…I got one of everything HAHAHA :)

First plate ~

Started off with a chocolate molten cake – simply divine, then the mango tiramisu on the right – not bad would have been better with an extra shot of coffee, then at the back we had the almond tart and orange chocolate truffle cake both good nothing too exciting :(

Plate 2

Then we tried all the other desserts – creme brulee, mango agar agar pudding, chocolate chestnut ball, raspberry meringue, raspberry log cake, pineapple and coconut log cake, chocolate brownie, tomato coco cup and the last but not least new york cheesecake :)

My favourite would have to be the chocolate motel cake and the new york cheesecake! It had the right flavours and texture~ YUM! While my least favourites would be the chestnut chocolate ball as you couldn’t really taste the chestnut and the tomato cup was just so wrong lol it was like having a dessert made out of that V8 vegetable drink!

Cold Rock style ice-cream!

Oh how could I forget, they also had ice-cream where you can add whatever lollies you wanted by smashing it in the ice-cream, just like how they do it at Cold Rock  :) they had four different ice-cream flavours to choose from – chocolate, vanilla, coconut and red bean. Mr Bao and I had chocolate ice-cream with gummy bears really weird and red bean ice-cream with chocolate chips…different but nice.

The buffet dinner cost $858 (HKD) plus 10% service charge per head which is about $120 (AUD) depending on the exchange rate, even though Mr Bao and I had a great time and enjoyed the food, we’ve had better buffets elsewhere, with better food and more importantly better desserts :)

Hope you all had a safe and fun Christmas!!

PS. All pictures were taken from my new camera ~ I hope they’re a lot better than before, but if anyone has any tips or hints they can give me on taking good food photos please leave me a comment! THANKS a bunch xox

First Recipe – Gingerbread Men

ONE day LEFT till it’s OFFICIALLY Christmas!!! I am so thrilled :) it’s been a bit of a wait hehe I’d like to wish everyone a very MERRY CHRISTMAS with their significant other, family and friends!!!

I wanted to share with you, my very first recipe post – “Gingerbread Men” it’s the very first time I’ve made them…I’m not really a fan of gingerbread men so I was a little worried that they wouldn’t turn out the way I wanted them to…but thanks to the Baking Addict’s wonderful recipe and Sasa’s (my bestfriend) help the cookies turned out perfectly!!

My ugly gingerbread men hahaha

Even though they look and taste perfect, I’ve gotta work on my decorating skills hahaha i didn’t seem to be able to draw the facial features properly grrrr so i ended up wrapping them up without any decorations and gave it to my family as a Xmas gift ~ they didn’t seem to mind that some were so ugly family love is so forgiving :)

Recipe: Gingerbread Men
Adapted from The Baking Addict 

Makes: Approximately 24 gingerbread men (depending on the size of the cookie cutter)

125g Unsalted Butter (softened)
110 Dark Brown Sugar
2.5 Cups Plain flour (sifted)
1 Egg yolk
1 tsb Bi-carb Soda
4 tsp Ground Ginger
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Nutmeg
270ml Golden Syrup

(Note: Baking Addicts recipe asks for 2 tsp of mixed spice, I didn’t have any at home so I just used what I had :)

  • Preheat oven to 160C/320F
  • Beat butter, sugar and egg yolk in a bowl until smooth
  • Stir in the remaining ingredients until mixed properly
  • You may need to add a little more golden syrup if the mixture is crumbly or too dry
  • Knead the dough on a floured surface and roll it out to approximately 5mm in thickness.
  • Cut shapes using cookie cutters (or templates for the gingerbread house)
  • Place on a baking tray and bake for approximately 12-15 minutes until they are brown (a little hard to tell because the doughs a brown colour)
  • Cool on a rack until cookies harden
  • Decorate the cookies anyway you want :)

Please visit the Baking Addict’s blog at http://themorethanoccasionalbaker.blogspot.com  for more recipes and baking tips! She’s my number one supporter and I’d like to say a HUGE thank you to the Baking Addict for all the encouragement!

What  do you have planned for Christmas? Family gatherings or spending time with friends? Would love to know how everyone else is celebrating this special day ~ Mr Bao and I have a tradition, where we spend Christmas eve together without any family or friends and have a nice dinner for two :D

Have a wonderful day!!

PS. I promise this is the last time you will see blurry, low quality and unprofessional photos on this blog because as an early Xmas pressie to myself, I finally got a new camera :) the Olympus EPL3 YAY!!!

Source: Olympus

Taiwan Treasures – Ai Yu (Fig) Jelly

4 more days everyone TILL it’s CHRISTMAS!!! Yay!!! Sorry for being quiet the past few days :) I went on a quick 3 day 2 night trip to Taiwan with my sister ~ Let me quickly introduce you to my sister – Win Win (She chose the name) she’s the most annoying person but is also my best friend and partner in crime :) we basically have the same hobbies and tastes! We both love desserts, macarons and cheese ~ only difference is…I like liquorice and she hates it haha

City view of Kaohsiung

Beautiful day ~

For those who aren’t familiar with Taiwan ~ It’s a small island on the Southeast of China and is shaped like a leaf. Up the top there’s Taipei, its capital city and down towards the southwest there’s Kaohsiung the second largest city in Taiwan. And that’s where we went :) I’ve been to Kaohsiung a couple of times because Win Win has frequent business trips to Taiwan and I always tag along . I have a soft spot for Taiwan, I think it’s a beautiful place where the people are always friendly and its never the same, there is always something new for me to explore!

Taiwan is also known for their food, especially street food and snacks :) and after thinking for a long time I just HAD to share with you guys, my love for the Ai Yu Jelly ()!!! The literal translation of Ai Yu Jelly is ‘Love Jade Jelly’ and the story behind it is, the jelly is named after the daughter of a Taiwanese business man who developed this recipe in the 1800s and since then has been a popular Taiwanese dessert.

Anyway, Ai Yu jelly is basically a jelly served with a lemon sugar syrup and is made from a native type of fig “climbing fig” found in Taiwan.

"Climbing Fig"

Source: Wikipedia

The fruit from the fig trees are turned inside out, where the seeds are left to dry and the seeds are then used to produce the jelly :) If would like to know more about making the Ai Yu Jelly you can visit Pure and Holy and if you understand Chinese this Youtube video is great because it shows you the whole process ~

The finish product - Ai Yu Jelly $20 TWD ($0.65 AUD)

I know some of you might be scratching your head right now :) “Why is she going crazy about this jelly? Isn’t jelly jelly?” hahaha I know it’s hard to comprehend and it’s quite hard to explain why I love this jelly so much! But I think it’s because its so refreshing with the lemon sugar syrup, it’s great for quenching anyone’s thirst and I think it’ll work great as an appetiser!

2 bowls in a row

I was SO obsessed both Win Win and I had 2 bowls in a row!!! And we went back for another 2 bowls the next day!!!

You can easily find stalls/carts selling Ai Yu Jelly at most night markets in Taiwan such as – Shilin Night Marketand the one I went to at the Liu He Night Market.

They often look something like this ~

There’s no English menus so it might be harder for those who don’t know Chinese, but either way I hope I’ve enticed you to explore Taiwan and try their famous AI YU JELLY!!!

Liu He Night Market
Liuhe Rd., Kaohsiung City.

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