Monday, May 31, 2010

A Waffle Story: Funambule Waffles


This would rank as one of the waffle shops with lingering queues. True Singaporean instinct kicked in; queue means something good. Most if not everyone else apart from us headed for waffles with toppings, perhaps I should have tried but honestly, soggy waffles are not quite my thing.


These were served up on a plastic plate, made for difficult eating as compared to being sandwiched between crepe paper.

I was not impressed. Too soft infact for a Belgian Waffle, this could pass off as a better alternative to QBread's instant waffles but surely not for Belgium. This looked undercooked and tasted most certainly so. Slightly sticky consistency was a major giveaway.

Once again, queues hardly mean a thing in Brussels.

Funambule Waffles

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Waffle Story: Waffle Shop near Mannekin Pis


Still going strong with the Waffle Mania, it probably reached a point every turn had a waffle stand afterall! They were not as prized and rare as initially thought. Near the main attractions of Mannekin Pis (a peeing bronze statue) lies a street dotted with waffle stands like them above.


Deeper into the lane you delve, the more varieties are up for grabs. They even have real life samples of waffles for you to practice the universal language of pointing should you not speak Belgian.


Cinnamon Sugar Waffle (2€) for a change. The lady behind the counter kneaded her own dough and did them with such gusto, I thought it could rival the fantabulous. By now, the looks of a waffle could tell if it would be magnificent. Another soft one.


I guess the queues did not work this time, perhaps all were as clueless as I was considering how touristy the area is!


Waffle Shop Near Mannekin Pis (see how randomly their waffle stands are set up, they do not even have names!)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

A Waffle Story: Gaufres Chaudes Waffle Van @ Brussels, Belgium


Waffle mania, a ailment that would hit me really hard. Food vans really have a hold over me, the same proved for this van that I spied almost immediately after dinner. This struck a lonesome figure at the end of Avenue Louise..yes, that is the distance I would travel for a lemming.


Waffle (1,50 )

I would expect a stunning one coming from a van that specialises in waffles...note: no pictures of other offerings like glace! Toasted a light brown, complete with the signature squares...the moment I sunk my teeth into it, I tasted disappointment. Just not as doughy as desired..Nowhere near the fantabulous one. Still better than the metro station first attempt.


Gaufres Chaudes Waffle Van
Ave Louise

Friday, May 28, 2010

A Waffle Story: Gelateria Italiana Pascalino Van @ Brussels, Belgium

The first disappointing waffle was too much to bear. In the most dramatic way, I was disillusioned. I even thought; I flew half a continent for the disappointing waffle. There had to be more than just that.

Before I launch into the whole walawala about what I had...some history on Belgium waffles. (Wiki oh wiki...what would I do without you?) Under the huge family of waffles, each country has a different variation of it based on type, shape of iron and recipe used. Amongst the famous waffles are American Waffles (I think A&W), Belgian Waffles, Liege Waffles and Dutch Stroopwafels.

Belgian Waffles are prepared with a yeast-leavened batter. It is generally, but not always, lighter, thicker, and crispier and has larger pockets compared to other waffle varieties. Despite their name, 'Brussels waffles' were actually invented in Ghent in 1839.


So there you have it...Waffles here I come! To set the record straight, I always wanted my waffles to be thick and dense in consistency. "With Bite" would be most apt.


Here's Brussel's equivalent of our favourite icecream van! I must be a nutcase but vans like this  had me at hello..in the most childish way ever. Sounds like a lost childhood? I really think so too. Not every van sells waffles but most sell icecream. Icecream under such freezing temperatures? You bet.


The palette tickling menu. At this juncture, I wish for the waffles to be as pictured.


Hand over the euro and get your waffle! Easy peasy.


That's one evenly browned waffle! It was hot...the way a freshly made waffle should be. A bite and there, like a shopaholic would feel laying hands on a limited edition...I was enlightened - How a real Belgian waffle should taste like.

Doughy, would be the exact word for it. Crispy from the sugared outer layer revealing a lovely doughy chewy texture within. I adore how moderately sweet this is. So there you have it, along the cobbled paths of chilly Brussels...me munching my favouritest waffle, watching the clouds roll by.

I wish I returned for seconds, I even pictured the flavour I would order! Alas, for the next few occasions that I passed by the station it was not there anymore.

So that's what luck is? Randomly fantabulous.

Gelateria Italiana Pascalino Van
Outside Louise Louiza Station

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Vitalgaufre @ Louise Louiza Station



Vitalgaufre's main sales tactic is to situate their outlet right smack outside the train station and largely bases its sales on walk ins and takeaways. We were distracted by the fragrance, honestly. Freshly baked pizzas, rows of them had me drooling on the spot. It could be the state of delirium that made me choose Italian cuisine over Belgium.


Margherita Pizza (2,50 €)

Hot off the oven, it smelt heavenly. Four types of cheeses though I cannot discern which. The crust was what I found fault with. Almost like a crusty biscuit, not even bread. 



Waffle (1,60 €)

The first brush with their waffles. I swore vowed promised myself to try anything when I first saw them. There it was, sitting innocently on top the waffle pan, ready to be reheated and served. Brushed with caramlised sugar, it was slightly burnt. One bite, two bites...I wondered quietly, is this such a great deal? Ordinary waffle that perhaps did not qualify as their famous export...I was disappointed.


Vitalgaufre
Louise Louiza Station

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Panos @ Brussels Centrale Station


After a cosy 1.5 hour ride on the Thalys from Paris to Brussels, we arrived dreary and hungry. I was particularly glad that there was plenty to choose from at the train station instead of searching! I have to clarify though that "plenty to choose from" meant sandwiches specifically. There was also a Carrefour outlet there to stock up on the daily necessities.

Panos it was for a quick bite. Panos is like Subway or Quizznos locally. The queues are neverending though brisk.

The second attempt at ordering food upon touching down. When in doubt, always point. Gesturing was probably not too great a universal langugage until now.


Croissant (0,85€)

First thing that struck me was the price. Less than HALF the price of the croissant we had at Charles De Gauille Airport. If anything, croissants are supposed to be the cheapest thing to have. This was better than CDG's, fluffier, crispier with a lovely buttery finish. So good, I can more than just one.


Chicken BBQ Sandwich (3€)

Neatly wrapped perfect for a take and go or tuck under your pits the way movies always protray.


A new flavour on the menu. The juicy chicken slices and baguette was delish but the sauce had alot of getting used to. Did not fancy their kind of BBQ Sauce - salty, sticky and sweet. Oh wait, to begin with...BBQ sauce has never been one of my favourites.


The first meal in Brussels, went without a hitch! Tummy filled, time to find our way to the hotel! On hindsight, I am so thankful we found that without much fuss too.


http://www.panos.be/index.cfm?SID=3&LG=2&L0=30&L1=60585&OBJ=60445

Panos Rail Brussel Zuid
Korte Ambachtstraat 4
9860 Oosterzele

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits @ Hongkong Airport



Well if you thought a cookie would stem the growing hunger pangs, obviously not. Walking around a foodcourt will never quell hunger but encourage it.


Buttermilk biscuits with Honey (HKD15/2 pcs)

The last attempt in Singapore got me all sold on their biscuits. Doesn't "Buttermilk" and "Honey" tease the tastebuds? There you have it, the different description got me tempted. Sigh, the dangers of relying too much on naming conventions.



A tad over toasted with burnt bits on the edges. Texture was just like that in Singapore whereas the taste was miles apart, literally. On the salty side and came across as a salty biscuit rather than sweet. Honey was just...honey. Thank God for that actually, helped to mask the salty finish. Not a fan of Hongkong's version, unfortunately.

HKD15/2 biscuits

Popeye's Chicken & Biscuits
Hongkong Airport

Monday, May 24, 2010

Millie's Cookies 2 @ Hongkong Airport


The 1.5 hour stopover at Hongkong Airport was suffice for me to find something to eat. Talk about greediness. Back at Millie's for a carb treat though I was tempted, really tempted to grab a Ben and Jerry's Cone.


HKD 15 for a Banoffee, combination of banana and toffee. Same choice as the last time round! Still as suicidal sweet and chewy as the last attempted. Millie's is one of those chewy cookies I actually like (next to Subway's!) though I'm not sure if I would give up Famous Amos over this anyday.

http://www.milliescookies.com/

Millie's Cookies
Hongkong Airport

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Meals on Cathay Pacific (SIN-PAR)

Airline food, has always been another point of interest apart from going on a holiday. Cathay Pacific has been a personal favourite airline to travel on for the longest time. Being on a long haul for the first time, I was doubly excited.

So the route would go....SIN-HKG-PAR. 17 hours was the duration of the total flight, I arrived bleary eyed with barely enough sleep but I would not complain...not when I was already in the land I have been dreaming day and night over!


Snacks



Packets of peanuts were served up almost immediately after take off. Nicely vacuumed, these were not the least bit oily, as if roasted.


Dinner


Chicken with mash and seasonal vegetables 

Blanched vegetables that were a tad soft though the chicken was not too bad. I've learnt to appreciate mash.




Fish and rice with red capsicums and kale

This was a huge tum-warmer, rice probably never tasted this good. Even the soft kailan could not refrain me from polishing this down to the last grain.

Low Fat/Low Cholesterol Meal


Dad had the option of a Low Fat Low Cholesterol Meal. Yes, they do take into careful consideration the dietary restraints but still manage to serve up an equally delish meal! No compromise on taste here.

Prepacked beancurd was surprisingly good...silken soft and moderately sweet.

HKG-PAR

I certainly was not expecting full fledged supper being offered on board after the short stopover and I was in for a treat!

Supper


Cucumber with surimi, zucchini and Italian herbs dressing

By this point, I was pretty satisfied with the food dished up..until I had the salad. Oddly put together with a dash of seasoning that obviously did not go with the salad. Cold-Salty combination. Not a favourite.

Vanilla Cake with Chocolate Cream

Phew! Vanilla cake with a touch of sugee with the melt in the mouth finish.

BreadRoll

Warm, toasty and best of all...chewy!


Pork with mushroom, capsicum and cream sauce, carrot mash

Decent attempt though the colours could be made more appetizing.



Fusili with corn zucchini sauce and parmesan cheese

This came across a tad dry, almost like a sub par effort of a novice cook.

Midnight Snack


Snacks galore to feed any hungry tum...the option of cup noodles was also available. Adore the savoury spring onion biscuits that taste so close to Pringles and Arnotts butter biscuits!


Continental Breakfast



There is nothing a sip of icecold apple juice and orange juice cannot fix.



Ham and Cheese Bread

When heated up, these were divine. Chewy bread with just the right amount of cheese and ham on top...so good, I had the appetite for three of these!

Yogurt

Nice!


Selected Pastries

These were pre-packed hence the drier than usual texture for the pastry. Liked the milky aftertaste of the  vanilla muffin though. I actually liked how breakfast on Cathay is way different from the usual boring sausage-omelette option.

I probably watched 3 movies throughout the entire flight and attempted to twist my neck in various sleeping positions but by the time I touched down Paris at a bright 630am, I was ready to take on the world.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Are you ready for the perfect 13 days of my life?


This was the main reason why I even considered getting a DSLR. Purchased under much haste but I'm glad (despite the really amateaur photography skills), I managed to freeze the best 13 days of my life in snippets.

Brussels, Amsterdam, Frankfurt and finally, Paris. Stay tuned for the posts to come...! I have been eating like no tomorrow, I've found my favouritest city...I can't find any reason to hate with two gargantuan loves; food and fashion. Yes, the bank account did suffer, perhaps as poor as a pauper(ess) now, yet with memories I would keep forever.

It could probably take longer than a month for all entries (food and whatnot) to be up...so be patient! :)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Fruitus Muesli Bars


Weighing in at 17.5grams, this is perhaps the lightest muesli bar around.  Had both the Moist Organic Apple and Oat Bar as well as Moist Organic Apricot and Oat Bar. Moist they sure are, too moist in fact. Almost like a fruitcake bar with oat...nearly like Soyjoy but with more bite. Between the two, I'm leaning towards Apricot. That being said, this is not quite your conventional muesli bar...needs some getting used to!

$1.70

Picture taken with Nikon D5000.

Fruitus Muesli Bars
Jason's Market Place

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sara Lee Strawberry Cheesecake

Sara Lee's butter pound cake was one of those successes of television advertising that left fond memories etched deeply in the mind. The familiar telly commercial goes as follows; A little girl would invite her friends over for tea to play and her mom would cut a Sara Lee butter pound cake for tea. As simple as it sounds, the happy images and whole idea of tea already appealed to me at a tender age of 4.
 


Tempted by the instant strawberry cheesecake. Looks as advertised! Would pass off as a homemade non-baked cheesecake once you remove the aluminum casing.


Unlike the cloying cheesecake, Sara Lee's  a healthier alternative to sinful cheesecake, light like yogurt! The tart base is a tad too soft though.

Still preferring the sinful cousin.

Pictures taken with Nikon D5000.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Michigan Fruit Cake


Instant fixes to seasonal cravings, these prepacked goodies are. 
Michigan's fruitcake is stuffed with raisins and cherries, as much as I wished there were alcohol pumped into them.
Dry and coarse the first slice was with a crumbly texture...it fared a weebit better a couple of days later with refrigeration.
I could forgo these instant fixes for the real stuff just once a year.

Michigan's
NTUC

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Coffeebean Party Food


I swear I don't work for Coffeebean though the constant-undying-unfailing support for it over other brands seem to suggest otherwise.

I had these Party Packs ordered in for one of those tea breaks in the office simply because catered food gets too boring and predictable. Plus, doesn't greasy fried beehoon and overfried mini springrolls turn the appetite the other way around, with the mere mention?

Deluxe Canape Sampler

“vol-au-vent” savory cheese mousse and smoked salmon topping
Mini ciabatta with salmon cheese and grapes
Mini éclair stuffed with tuna mayo
Mini tartlet with light egg mayo

Only made an attempt on the vol au vent , ciabatta and eclair. Yum, yum, yum! The generous twirl of smoked salmon was uber delicious paired with salmon cream. Grapes and salmon cheese was interestingly delish, the same chemistry cheese has with fruit.


Mini In a Puff

Homemade mushroom quiche
Chicken pie
Tuna and Sausage puffs

These were served chilled but tasted good nonetheless.

Mini Pack A Sandwich

Chicken mayo, egg mayo, roast beef and salmon in mini buns 
(foccacia, vienna, baguette and whole wheat)

Personal favourite goes to Roast Beef Mustard Mini Bun!

Mixed Berries Financier

Raspberries, mixed berries, blueberries, blackberries

Almost like butter pound cake scattered with berries.

Singapore's Delight

Pandan kaya, Coconut pineapple, Coffee Swiss roll and Prune kueh lapis

Their local delights have long tempted me but I was not confident enough to entrust the festive season's offerings into the hands of Coffee Bean.
Prune Kueh Lapis stole the thunder, literally. Matches up to the big names with a moist multi-layer lapis cake embedded generously with prunes.
Loving it!

I've found more reason to embark on this newfound hobby, collecting coffeebean points.

Coffeebean

Monday, May 17, 2010

Scones @ Epidor


Severe need of buttering up for these English tea babies from Epidor. 
On the dry side I found them.
Lathering them with preserves made it over the board sweet.
For breakfast, these could pass off as decent items since the senses are not fully awake to taste but for tea, ignore them as scones...you'd be just fine.

Photo taken with Nikon D5000.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pine Garden @ The Pines

Pine Tree Club made headlines years back after filing for bankruptcy. Years later, it's been renamed The Pines. Close to clubs like The Tanglin Club and American Club, The Pines is also a members only club but selected restaurants are open to public.

To Pine Garden for lunch!


Five Deluxe Combination
Roasted Duck, Jelly Fish, Spring Roll, Mini Octopus, Spring Chicken

Notable mentions go to springroll that was deepfried but awesomely light and the flavourful roasted duck.


Double Boiled Chicken Soup with Ginseng and Bamboo Shoot Soup

Surprisingly good, don't misjudge clear soup...ever. This was potent stuff with all the ingredients that went to boil.


Stir Fried Tiger Prawn with Oat

Unimpressed with the stale prawns and barely there oat flavouring. Lacked the crunch of a good cereal prawn.


Steamed Sea Bass with Homemade Bean Sauce

The only saving grace with a large fresh fish with such a deletable sauce. Seconds, thirds...I lost count.


Braised HK Kai Lan with Oyster Sauce

Undercooked is its name, vegetables can never go wrong but this, was a little too raw.



Braised Ee Fu Noodle with Abalone Sauce

The chopsticks dropped after the first bite. Soggy beyond comprehension, how could any chef serve this up.


Cream of Red Bean

Phew, at least dessert was passable with  whole red beans partially cooked to retain the bite. 

I've always held the horses on reviews of restaurants in clubs simply because the crowds may not justify the quality of food since club members have to patronize these restaurants anyway. Not much of a choice there. For Pine Garden, I'll have to say, once is unfortunately enough.

Pine Garden
The Pines

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Ginger Candies @ Guangzhou


A thoughtful packet of sweets all the way from Guangzhou.


Chinese candies gone modern.
Candied ginger, peanuts and malt candy rolled in shaved coconut.
Acquired taste but I adore the slight biting after taste that ginger leaves.

12 pieces gone in a flash.
Oops.