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!