Friday, March 26, 2010

Steamed Chicken with D.O.M Liquor

I'm glad to receive advise from colleagues and friends about pregnancy, child care and even recovery after labor. I realize that different cultures have different types of confinement. My Chinese friends would tell me that during the first month, I would have to really take good care of my body. Chinese confinement involves chicken, ginger, chicken, ginger and more chicken and ginger... Which I don't really mind, since I love chicken and ginger.

I was also advised to refrain from touching water, in the sense that I can only bathe once a day and maybe 3 times a week or alternate days, not everyday. Also, If I do bathe, the water must be warm... and if possible boil the water with ginger, and use that to bathe.

When it comes to food, they have herbs... and of course chicken essence to take, to help in recovery of the body after giving birth. I was told that I should also take at least a small cup of Benedictine D.O.M. I didn't know about this until my friend told me and my colleague gave me a bottle today.

I use Dom to season the chicken and add it to the soup

She also told me about this recipe which would really be good for me during the time of my recovery. I quickly looked it up in the internet and found the recipe.

It's Steamed Chicken with D.O.M Liquor.

Then add in the Dom Benedictine, about three to five spoonfuls

Here's the recipe:

(Serves 2)

- 2 large chicken thighs (I leave the skin on, but trim the excess fats around it)
- 3 tbsp DOM (D.O.M) Benedictine liquor (法国廊酒)
- 1 tbsp ginger juice (grate the ginger, take the ginger pulp and squeeze out the juice)
- 5 tbsp water/stock (I use clear chinese soup which I cooked that day)
- 1 tbsp wolfberries
- 10 red dates
- 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
- 10 shitake mushrooms, stems removed and then sliced thinly
- spring onions, sliced thinly to wispy strips (to garnish, optional)

1. Place the chicken thighs into a wide and deep plate. Line the bottom of the vessel with sliced mushrooms, reserving some to top the chicken.
2. Add in ginger juice, D.O.M, water/stock, sesame oil, wolfberries, red dates and the rest of the sliced mushrooms.
3. Cover the vessel with a lid or seal tightly with aluminium foil and cook the chicken on high heat until the water at the steamer is boiling.
4. Lower down the heat and continue to cook for about 40-50 minutes.
5. Season the soup with some salt if you like. I didn’t do that since I am using Chinese soup for the stock. Use a spoon to drizzle some soup onto the chicken. Garnish with spring onions. Serve with warm rice.

- The original recipe calls for the chicken to be double boiled. If you prefer this method, place the chicken and ingredients in the double boiler pot and filled the outer pot with water (not covering more than half of the inner pot)). After cooking, arrange the contents into a bowl/plate.
- Whether you steam or double boil, the important thing is to seal the vessel you are using so as not to lose the aroma and soup due to evaporation.
- To test if the chicken is cooked, insert a fork in the thigh area. If clear liquid (no blood) runs out, it is cooked.

Actually, even before I was pregnant, I love Herbal Chicken soups. There's something about the herbs that I love, especially the dates and the wolfberries.

This is something that I would love during my confinement... and of course spending time with my new baby boy. Just seeing him, would really help me in my recovery.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Preparing for our new bundle of joy!

I noticed that since the beginning of March, and even during the end of February, I didn't even have at least one post here in my blog.

Since I started reaching my 8th month of pregnancy, I've been so lazy. My baby's getting bigger and still very active like before. Here's a photo of the 3D scan taken last month (he's trying to cover his face with his hand... the sonographer actually tried to make him move his hand away by jiggling my tummy, but that only made him try to lift his feet up... haha...)

I wasn't really in bed the whole day, or throughout the week (even though sometimes that's what I want to do... just sleep, eat and sleep) I rather be at the office, finishing as much work before I take my maternity leave. Sometimes I also feel like having the office at home instead.

As my pregnancy passed the middle stage, I fear that I am blatantly unaware of how to take care of my baby. I spoke to my friends about this and asked them to help me and my hubby find some childcare classes that we could attend to teach us about all the important things to take care of our newborn.

Luckily, one of my friend is a nurse and has offered to help teach me when my newborn has arrived.

Basically, I'm treading on new water and having to rely on my friend, books, doctor, internet and instinct. But doing all the necessary things beforehand parents, especially the mommy, to rest instead of rushing around everywhere when the baby is born.

I mean, let's face it, we would rather spend all our time with our newfound happiness, instead of trying to frantically get everything prepared for him.

So, my hubby and I browsed through the internet to get a list of what to prepare before the actual day of delivery.

Just to share with other Moms-to-be out there, We found this list from a website. This list has been accumulated from pregnancy sites, so it should be somewhat accurate:

Hospital Stay

Tip: pack your hospital stay bag 1 month before your due date.

Nightgown/t-shirt to give birth in
Nightgown/slippers to wear after delivery
Nursing bras and pads (pads even if you're not breast feeding for leakage)
Birth plan
Wet wipes and/or a sponge
Books/magazines/personal stereo & music
Hand mirror to see your baby being born
Warm socks
Drinks & snacks
Money/phonecard and telephone numbers
Camera/Video camera, film, batteries, and tapes
Shampoo & Conditioner

Makeup (if you feel like it)
Toothpaste and toothbrush/Mouthwash
Stop Watch with second hand (to time contractions)
A picture or stuffed animal to use as a focal point when in labor
Journal or Diary
Going Home Clothes
Diaper bag with diapers, wipes, changing pad, burp cloths, and a change of clothes for baby
Car seat
Bottles and formula (if not breast feeding)
A knitted baby cap
Recieving blankets

Baby's First Months


6 cotton shirts
6 stretchsuits
6 vests/bodysuits
2 cardigans
4 pairs socks/booties
4 Bibs
Hats & mittens
4 socks or booties
2 hooded bath towels


2+ bottles (for water)
1 bottle and nipple brush
6-8 nipples and caps
Breast Feeding
Breast pads
Breast pump
Milk storage kit/bottle


6 bottles, teats & tops
Sterilizing equipment
Bottle warmer
Bottle brush


Bath tub (optional)
4 washcloths
Nail scissors/clippers
Brush & comb
Toiletries: baby bath,
shampoo, lotion, powder,
wipes, cotton wool,
ear buds, Diaper cream
Changing mat
Diaper disposal unit
Diaper sacks
Diaper pail
Disposable Diapers
(10-12 diapers a day for first month or so)
or Cloth Diapers
(can use for burping too)
Diaper liners
Rubber pants or diaper covers
Diaper pins


Car seat
Baby Carrier
Changing bag
Sun canopy/parasol


Cot or cotbed
Crib & Mattress
Crib bumper pads
Nursery thermometer
Baby monitor
For Cradle, Pram or Carrycot
3-4 fitted sheets
2-3 flat sheets
3 blankets


Activity centre
Play mat
Crib Mobile
Musical night light
High chair
Baby swing
Play pen
Changing table

We're both really excited to see our baby boy. Our friends have also helped us during the preparation.

We can't wait to welcome our new baby to our home.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Cooking at Home - Nilagang Baka (Boiled Beef & Vegetables)

Since my hubby Matth's off-day was yesterday, he decided to cook something for me. I asked him to make something soup-y. I'm not feeling well, so something with soup would really help.

After sending me to work, he stopped by the grocery to get all the ingredients.

It was really sweet of him to cook even though that day was suppose to be his rest day. I guess we both miss Filipino food so much that every time we cook at home, most of the time, it's always a Filipino dish.

But I really hope to learn how to make Malaysian or Indian dishes as well.

There are actually a different versions of making this dish. Matth prefers to add one or two Saging na saba (Saba Bananas). It makes the stew a little bit sweet, which we both love.

Here are the Ingredients he used:

  • 3lbs. Beef Chunk roast cut in 2 inch cubes
  • 2 medium onion sliced thinly
  • 1 small cabbage de-cored and cut in wedges
  • 3 medium carrots peeled and cut in 2 inch pieces
  • 4 medium potatoes peeled and quartered
  • 1 or 2 pieces cut Saba Bananas (this depends on whether you want it to be a bit sweet)
  • 8 whole peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • patis (Fish sauce) small amount for taste


In a large pot place beef and cover with water about 2 inches above the meat. Bring it to a rapid boil. Add the onions, and lower the heat to medium high. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes. Next add salt, and whole peppercorns. Cover and let it cook for 1½ hours or until beef is very tender. Add water if necessary maintaining the 2 inch water level above the meat. At this time you may add the carrots and potatoes. Cover and let them cook for an additional 15 minutes or until carrots and potatoes are tender. Add cabbage and saba bananas, cover, and let it cook for 3 more minutes. Adjust the taste by adding more salt if necessary. Serve with white rice and the fish sauce condiments. Enjoy!

Another type of dish that would be great, especially on a cool weather, would be Bulalo (Beef Bone Marrow and Vegetable soup)... It's quite similar to this, with a few different ingredients and of course, you'd use beef bone marrow.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Top Ten Largest Observation Wheels (or Ferris Wheels)

You know how sometimes people tend to come up with a list of the top ten things to do before they die... Well, this isn't really my top ten things to do list... but I certainly hope to be able to visit these top ten world's largest observation wheels/ferris wheels.

I've always loved going on Ferris wheel rides since I was small. When my Dad used to take me to carnivals, that's the first place I'd go to.

Here are the top ten Ferris wheels and Observation wheels in the world so far. Construction of these wheels seems to be of good business lately, which could also boost tourism in these areas, all the wheels on the list seem to have been constructed around the 1990s-2008 period, and have no sign of stopping their operation anytime soon.

Actually, the sixth (6th) wheel was suppose to be The Southern Star in Melbourne, Australia. After operating for only a month since it's opening in 20 December 2008, the wheel is now indefinitely out of operation, due to pending major repairs.

10. Daikanransha Ferris Wheel - Palette Town, Odaiba, Japan

Height: 115m
Diameter: 100m
Rotation Speed: 16 minutes/ revolution
Open to public: Since 1999

More Info:
The Giant Sky Wheel is Palette Town's most conspicuous attraction. With a diameter of 100 meters, this is one of the largest Ferris wheels in the world. The wheel is painted in bright red and white stripes and its cars cycle through the colors of the rainbow -- appropriate since this is part of the larger Palette Town complex. Just as impressive as the size is the wheel's beautiful night-time light performance, when it presents 120 kaleidoscopic variations on sixteen basic patterns. The Giant Sky Wheel is Tokyo's most colorful landmark.

9. Daiya (Diamond) & Hana (Flower) Ferris Wheel - Kasai Rinkai Park, Tokyo, JAPAN

Height: 117m
Diameter: 111m
No. of capsules and capacity: 68 capsules, carrying 6 passenger each
Rotation Speed: 17 minutes/ revolution
Open to public: Since 2001

More Info:
Rising to 117 meters, the "Diamond and Flowers" Ferris wheel offers spectacular views to Tokyo Disney Resort and Odaiba, beyond to the high rises of Shinjuku and Yokohama, and on a clear day you can even see Mt. Fuji. At night the wheel lights up in the brilliant patterns that give it its nickname.

8. Sky Dream Fukuoka - Fukuoka, Japan

Height: 120m
Diameter: 112m
Open to public: Since 2002

More Info:
Sky Dream Fukuoka is a Ferris wheel of 112 meters diameter and 120 meters height. This giant wheel is located near to a comparatively large Japanese mall named Evergreen Marinoa. The giant wheel of Sky Dream rules the Fukuoka harbor and also Japan’s skyline to the west. The decoration of Sky Dream at night makes it look all the more gorgeous.

7. Zhengzhou Ferris Wheel - Zhengzhou, China

Height: 120m
Open to public: Since 2003

More Info:

The most beautiful facility in the park is the Ferris wheel, claimed to be the largest in Asia in 2004. It is also the land mark of zheng zhou city. Visitors can broaden their horizon to see the beauty of whole zheng zhou city.

6. Changsa Ferris Wheel - Changsa, China

Height: 120m
Diameter: 99m
Open to public: Since 2004

More Info:

5. Tianjin Eye - Tianjin, China

Height: 120m
Diameter: 110m
No. of capsules and capacity: 48 capsules with a capacity of 8 passangers
Rotation Speed : 30 minutes / revolution
Open to public: Since April 2008

More Info:
It is claimed to be the only such wheel to have been constructed over a bridge.

4. London Eye - London, Great Britain

Height: 135m
No. of capsule and capacity: 32 capsules carrying 25 passengers
Rotation Speed: 30 minutes/ revolution
Open to public: Since 1999

More Info:
The London Eye, also known as the Millennium Wheel. At the time of building, it was the biggest in the world. The London Eye has become the most popular paid visitor attraction in the UK, visited by over 3.5 million people a year.

It was opened by British Prime Minister Tony Blair at 20:00 GMT on December 31, 1999, although it was not opened to the public until March 2000 because of technical problems. Since its opening, the Eye, operated by Merlin Entertainments but sponsored by British Airways, has become a major landmark and tourist attraction.

By July 2002, roughly 8.5 million people had ridden the Eye. It had planning permission only for five years, but at that time Lambeth Council agreed to plans to make the attraction permanent.

3. The Star of Nanchang - Nanchang, China

Height: 160m
No. of capsule and capacity: 60 capsules carrying 8 passengers
Rotation Speed: 30 minutes/ revolution
Open to public: Since May 2006

More Info:
The wheel is a full 82 feet taller than the London Eye. The ride is lit up with fluorescent red and blue lights. A full rotation of the wheel takes about 30 minutes.

2. The Singapore Flyer - Singapore, Singapore

Height: 165m
Diameter: 150m
No. of capsule and capacity: 28 capsules carrying 30 passengers
Rotation Speed: 37 minutes/ revolution
Open to public: Since April 2008

More Info:
Located in Singapore, on the southeast tip of the Marina Centre reclaimed land, it comprises a 150 m (492 ft) diameter wheel, built over a three-story terminal building which houses shops, bars and restaurants, and offers broad views of the city centre and beyond to about 45 km (28 mi), including the Indonesian islands of Batam andBintan, as well as Johor, Malaysia.

The wheel features 28 air-conditioned capsules which, like those of the London Eye, are exo-capsules attached outward of the wheel structure. These offer the advantage of a continuously unobstructed view when the capsule is at the peak, unlike the more common endo-capsule design of most wheels (e.g. Star of Nanchang).

...And the world's largest Observation Wheel/ Ferris Wheel right now... Well... It's still under construction... Which started around 2007...

1. Beijing Great Wheel - Beijing, China

Height: 208m
Diameter: 198m
No. of capsule and capacity: 48 capsules carrying 40 passenger
Rotation Speed: 20 minutes/ revolution
Open to Public: Under construction - scheduled opening this year, 2010

More Info:
China is building a 208m-high Ferris wheel — more than 50% taller than the 135m-high London Eye. The Great Beijing Wheel, which due to start spinning in time for next year's Olympic Games, is being designed by the same multinational team which developed the London wheel.

The 198m-diameter Beijing wheel will rotate three times an hour, with each of its 48 capsules carrying 40 passengers. Like the London attraction, the 2,800-tonne wheel will be turned by 32 tyres running along its rim, powered by an almost maintenance-free hydraulic power system.

Unlike the London wheel, passengers will be able to board from both sides of the Beijing attraction. They will climb aboard from platforms moving at the same speed as the turning wheel.

The company building the Beijing Wheel, the Great Wheel Corporation, is looking at around 20 similar projects around the world.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Prosperity Plant: Indoor Young Bamboo Shoots

Chinese New Year is just in a few days... (and my birthday too... :D ) So my friend and I decided to take a drive to Ikea to check out some nice new things to decorate her house and mine.

Since our dear husbands were at work, we decided to bring her kids and just shop around in Ikea (we just love Ikea). You could get furnitures, decorations, kitchen wares, etc... cheaper and you'll love their designs.

Ikea (in KL) started selling plants to decorate homes for this Chinese New Year since January.

I stumbled upon this nice young bamboo plant that you could place indoor. So I decided to grab some. I took a few straight ones and also grabbed some curly ones.

Since plants are a symbol for life and growth, Chinese believe that it is a must to decorate their homes with certain plants during the Chinese New Year. Aside from their decorative purpose, it is believed that each of them carry a special connotation that is usually synonymous with abundance of wealth, business growth, good health and fortune.

Most of the popular plants sold before Chinese New Year are lime trees, cherry blossoms, young bamboo shoots, and a lot more.

My friend actually bought some Pussy Willows... which would actually look good once it blooms fully around the Chinese New Year period.

She placed the pussy willows in a nice vase... and hang some of those small Chinese New Year deco lanterns... I mean, miniature lanterns... and folded "Ang Pows".

It was actually a nice decor to liven their home for the holidays.

As for my bamboo plant, I guess I have to tie some small red or gold ribbons to liven it up a bit too.

Actually, what I'm really looking forward for during this holiday is a time to relax at home. Even just for one or two days of not going to the office, staying at home with my hubby, baking or cooking something nice for dinner together.

I can't wait... :)

Friday, February 5, 2010

T.G.I. Friday!!! Friday Follow

Thank God It's Friday! :-) It's another week of celebration of Followers. This has been my 2nd week of Friday Follow...

Friday Follow is hosted by Rita @ One 2 Try Tami @ Hearts Make Families and Lynn @ Midday Escapades.

I would like to thank all those who visited my blog since last Friday.

I must say, I'm still getting the hang of it... I don't know whether I'm doing this right. :-)

Here's how you could join:

* * Link up your blog name and URL using the MckLinky below. Only need to add to one blog linky.
* * Follow the Friday Follow hostesses listed in the first 3 slots. We will follow you back.
* * Follow as many blogs as you like
* * Comment on the blogs telling them you're from Friday Follow
* * Follow back when you get a new follower through Friday Follow

The Blog Hop is the same at each of our three hosts blogs so you do not have to add your blog at each site. Just one - but you can follow each host blog. Here is the great part, we will follow you back.

Friday Follow Blog Hop #4
Hosted by Rita @ One 2 Try Tami @ Hearts Make Families and Lynn @ Midday Escapades . Join us every Friday as we celebrate followers! Link up your blog name and URL below to follow and be followed!
Want to be a part of this Blog Hop?

MckLinky Blog Hop

Hope you could join in this Celebration!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Cooking at Home - Sinigang na Baboy (Pork in Sour Broth)

Last week, I was really craving for something sour-ish... and since it was also raining, I decided to make some Pork in Sour Broth... which we call in Tagalog, "Sinigang na Baboy".

After work, I drove to the nearest grocery to find pork meat. I had to go to the grocery since this is considered as "Non-Halal" here... so I couldn't just buy it off a nearby store, unless I find a Chinese store.

Anyway, I'm glad I managed to get there on time before the grocery closed and got all my ingredients to make this dish.

Here are the ingredients and procedures.


  • 1 Kilo Pork (cut into chunk cubes)
  • 12 pcs Tamarind (Sampaloc) or sampaloc mixed or Mama Sita Sinigang Mix
  • 1 big Onion (diced)
  • 6 big tomatoes (quartered)
  • 2 pcs Radish (sliced)
  • 1 bundle Sitaw Stringbeans (cut into 2″ long)
  • 1 bundle Kangkong (cut into 2″ long)
  • Salt and Patis to taste
  • 6 cups water


  1. Boil Tamarind to soften or boil the mixed sampaloc. Pound and strain all juicesand set aside. If you're using Mama Sita Sinigang Mix, you may add it in while bringing the pork to boil.
  2. In a casserole, bring pork to a boil, lower fire and simmer until pork is tender.
  3. Add onions, tomatoes and Tamarind juice.
  4. Add in all the vegetables.
  5. Season with salt and Patis to taste.
  6. Serve hot.

For those who love sour soups, "Sinigang" is a nice dish to make... also it doesn't take that long to prepare. You could also prepare Sinigang with Prawn, Beef or Fish (particularly, Milkfish or in tagalog "Bangus") which are also good for Sinigang.

Hope you guys enjoy this dish.