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LIFESTYLE Moodboard

Mood Board | I Catini

After a long day of work, we will be heading to the bathroom for a relaxing bath. The bathtub or shower is important. However, we always forget the importance of the washbasin too. I believe having a clean and warming bathroom is compulsory for every home.

Recently, I discovered this collection I Catini by Cielo, the purity of contemporary as the interpretation of memory. I really love how it came in different size and shape, where it can accommodate different people and houses. They also come will my favorite pink and blue pastel color, matching them with a marble base is just unimaginable. The suit it with their round and oval black framed mirror which is so classy.

Therefore, never I can imagine a washbasin can be such amazing. The collection features a clear design using high-quality materials. It is an expressive overall concept that is well developed.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Sakura Mochi

Sakura Mochi

Wagashi are Japanese sweets with fascinating flavors and designs, intended to embody the four seasons. My favorite will the sakura mochi, especially during the spring. Sakura and pink are both my favorites, not only during the spring season. As it is hard to find Sakura during the summer, thus I am only able to enjoy it during the spring.

Sakura Mochi has a nice balance of the taste between the salty pickled leaves and sweet red bean paste. The texture of the chewy sweet glutinous rice with sweet Anko filling is simply delectable. Mix in the aroma of cherry blossom and the experience is simply amazing!  Make some green tea and enjoy the mochi with it.  Happy Saturday!

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories

Chrysanthemum Tea

This is less of a recipe and more of a post about some of the health benefits of Chinese chrysanthemum tea. I’m no expert or in any way technically qualified to give health advice, but I was once a very very grumpy chrysanthemum tea drinker and have since become a pretty strong and zen believer in its abilities to ward off various ailments!

My mom says you should drink chrysanthemum tea if you are feeling stressed out or experiencing anxiety. If you have a headache or a migraine, it is good to clam you down. Moreover, when you want help with digestion after a heavy meal it will be a good choice.

In this recipe, we used Tai Ju Hua for this Calming Chrysanthemum Tea. If it’s hard for you to look for them by name, try to look for closed or half-opened flower buds when purchasing your tea, as fully opened flowers (while pretty) have already lost much of the flavors and effectiveness! This kind of  Chrysanthemum is suitable when you just want to dip them in the hot water for a quick drink instead of boiling them.

In terms of the taste? Well. When people see me drinking chrysanthemum tea and ask me what it tastes like, suffice it to say that it tastes just how you think it would taste: like dried flowers. Adding a bit of sugar or honey can improve the taste if you prefer!

But I find the flavor to be incredibly pleasant when eating strongly flavored Chinese dishes with lots of spice, and it takes on a richer herbal flavor the longer it steeps. It can also have a more subtle flavor the more times you refill the teapot with hot water. Serve it with ice in the summer, and it will have you feeling cool and calm in no time.

Plus, with so many different kinds of chrysanthemum teas, feel free to experiment! We hope you give chrysanthemum tea a try! It may just be nature’s elixir for whatever problem you’ve currently got.

Ingredients |

  • 0.2 ounces (about 5 grams) dried chrysanthemum tea
  • 3 cups water, and more hot water until the tea completely loses flavor

Method |

Place your tea in a teabag or tea strainer of your choice. Due to the nature of this tea, the petals can really get in the way of your drinking experience, so best to tie up the tea in a tea bag or cheesecloth, grab a tea strainer, or use a teapot with a built-in strainer.

Boil 3 cups of water, and pour over the tea. Let steep for 3 – 5 minutes.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

TRAVEL

36 hours in Batam | Indonesia

What would be the perfect getaway if you get the choice? There were short trips, staycation and the list go on. For me, it would be isolated from the crowds. Many know that both of us are thrift spender so we love to eat at home, create things and travel far distance instead of having many short trips.

The last two months have been real difficulties at home and with works. We overcome the pain of losing our grandma and also the completion of the deadlines. Therefore, we decided to go on for a 2 Days 1 Night trip to Batam, Indonesia. It only takes you a 45 mins ferry ride to travel from Singapore to Batam.

What is better when you could do it over the weekend or simply just a day trip. We want to stay overnight so that it wouldn’t be in a hurry. Here we are to share our 36 hours in Batam.

We took on the ferry ride at 9:50 am, the ferry had a delay, therefore, we reached Batam at around 10:00 am (Indonesia is 1 hour behind Singapore). The whole trip was amazing except the experience of taking transportation in Batam. Unless you drive otherwise the only transportation is Taxi as Grab or Uber are illegal in the city. Thus, taking Uber or Grab is definitely much cheaper than Taxi, at least 50%. Still, after our only experience, we decided not to put our lives at risk.

In Batam, we pretty much eat, shop, sleep and massage while everything is so cheap and valuable. Although it wasn’t as exclusive as Bintan and Bali we still enjoyed the laid-back trip.

We only spent $320 in total for accommodation, transportation, meals, and shopping. You can’t believe how much we enjoyed the trip, Joe was sharing that a short trip is much memorable than a month long Europe trip. Maybe there were too many things to recall where we human memories have too little capacity to keep all.

A&W is always my childhood favourite, and we have it there!

“delicious cheap seafood that never burns your pocket”

xoxo, Angela.

Moodboard

Mood Board | Arcadia

 

This is one of Angela favourite colours, she always loves the hue of green family. She says peace will be found in her, she always feels calm and peaceful in the fresh colors. Indeed, I love green as well especially Arcadia.

You may think of Arcadia as another mint colour but you are wrong. Arcadia is less pastel and more elegant than mint or teal. It gives your room a more classic and refreshing look. A fresh coat of paint can go a long way. However, slightly more neutral core elements of furniture lend themselves well. Such as to changing out the accents (pillows, rugs, lamps) more frequently so you don’t break the bank.

Designing should be a fun and stress-free project that takes the whole space into consideration and builds from the floor to the ceiling. Don’t let yourself get bogged down by one element, but instead open your eyes to how that element can relate to the bigger picture.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

 

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Taiyaki

Taiyaki

Happy June! It’s already half of 2018 and I am kind of feeling sad as I been feeling unaccomplished recently. Thus in order to cheer me up the only way is eating all the delicious food. One of my favorites is Japanese food, thus this month I am going to paint my favorite Japanese food.

Like fish? Like ice-cream? Ever wondered what would happen if you combined the two? No, we’re not talking about fish-flavored ice-cream. We’re talking about Taiyaki ice-cream cones! They’re o-FISH-ally awesome!

Taiyaki is one of Japan’s most beloved cakes. The cake is made using waffle or pancake batter. And it is fills with my favorite sweet red bean paste. With The tail hides a surprise filling of either red bean or custard. I’m gonna catch a fish for myself now!

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Seafood Cioppino

After the visit in Melbourne, I fall in love with the seafood there, especially the Mussel Pot there. Even though we do not have an abundance of fresh seafood and produce compare to Melbourne, we still decided to make our own version. It was amazing to be able to enjoy a melting pot of food! I’m so excited to share this healthy seafood cioppino recipe with you. There wasn’t a drop left in our bowls! If you are a seafood lover, this one is for you friend.

It’s all about the base! I’m talking about adding just the right combination of vegetables to build the stew flavor potential to it’s maximum. Garlic, onions, bell pepper, serrano chili peppers for heat, thyme and bay leaf add aromatics and earthy flavors to the broth. Some white wine and lemon juice add acidity to brighten the flavors of the stew.

It’s time to choose your main ingredients, the seafood. You can use any fresh catch of the day you like! I chose a green mussel, clam and conch trio because they all have unique tastes and textures. Each cook fairly quickly so keep an eye on the time to prevent overcooking is crucial.

Moist heat cooking, specifically steam in addition to the hot broth temperatures help to cook each piece of seafood. When you cover the pot, the water reaches it’s boiling point and eventually builds up enough energy to create steam to cook the ingredients quickly. Make sure to discard any unopened mussels. It indicates the mussel was not fresh.

A little small tips for you to store the seafood that you purchased. After you purchase live mussels from the market, you want to keep them fresh until ready to serve. Store them loose in a bowl or unsealed container. Cover the bowl of mussels with a damp paper towel or cloth. They can be kept for a few days and still smell like salt water from the ocean. When you’re ready to cook, make sure to drain any water that collects at the bottom of the bowl.

If you like an extra crunch, you can heat your baguette in the oven for 5 minutes beforehand. I found a nice crusty sourdough baguette from the market. Little did it know that I would soon be transformed into toasted edible spoons to soak up all of the broth!

When a dish is made with love, it shows! You’ll be delighted and surprised to see how easy it is to prepare an elegant gourmet meal made right at home. If you’re having family and friends over for a wholesome supper, this Seafood Cioppino needs to be on the menu. Cheers!

Ingredients |

  • 1 cup yellow onion 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic, (about 8 cloves)
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 serrano chili pepper seeded and minced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 cup tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 whole tomato, quarter
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp thyme, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf dried
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 pound mussels, clam, and conch
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Method |

In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat until hot. Add the onion and garlic, and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the bell pepper and minced serrano chili peppers. Cook for another 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes and cook 3 minutes. Add the wine, stock, water, lemon juice, thyme, bay leaf, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer on medium-low heat for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the bay leaf.

Clean and remove the beard of the mussels and clam. Discard any seafood that has broken shells or do not close when tapped. Heat the cioppino soup over medium heat. Insert the seafood, evenly spread across the pan. Turn heat to medium-high, cover and cook another 3 to 5 minutes, until the seafood is open. Discard any mussels that do not open.

Taste soup and season with more salt and pepper as needed. When ready to serve, ladle soup into serving bowls, add seafood, and garnish with chopped parsley and more thyme.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Mood Board | Rattan

Lately, I’m sick with Angela taking all about crocheting and knitting. Her obsession with natural and rattan bags are beyond your imagination! Therefore when we have this conversation about bringing it to the home. I realised that it’s not as crazy as I thought it would be. It’s back to natural routine and simple but fancy as well.

There’s something wonderfully organic about rattan that makes it the perfect material for that outdoors indoors look. Beautifully pliable yet supremely durable, rattan is experiencing something of a renaissance in the interior design world right now.

Riding on the same in vogue wave are synthetic fibres such as rope and weave. This means that it is equally versatile and long-lasting.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

Healthy Breakfast RECIPES

Banana Muffin

Lately, my craving for Banana Muffin increased. Especially when I discovered that my darling bakery no longer selling any of my favorites. If you found any amazing Banana Muffin, do share with me as I didn’t find any good ones around.

Thus, for those who yearn for Banana Muffin like us, you would enjoy this muffin recipe! We have tried tons of time, failed and finally come out with the ideal equation for the recipe. These Banana Crumb Muffins are loaded with banana flavor that’s only heightened by the addition of a sweet and cinnamon-y crumb topping. They’re perfect for breakfast, a mid-morning snack, or in my case – last night’s dinner.

I love bananas; however, as soon as the slightest brown speck appears, they’re dead to me.

Needless to say, I end up with quite a few inedible bananas on my counter. And although brown bananas make me twitch a little, I just can’t throw them away. So instead, I do what any responsible banana eater should do – I make banana desserts!

A hearty loaf of banana bread is an excellent way to use up a pile of leftover bananas, but sometimes you want a lighter option. These tender banana muffins are crowned with a delightfully crunchy cinnamon crumb topping that lends to their addictive nature. Let’s us get started!

Ingredients |

  • 3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup Walnuts (optional)

For the Topping:

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter

Method |

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously grease a muffin tin. Combine the first nine ingredients in a large bowl and mix until well blended. Lay your muffin sheet and spoon batter into muffin tins about 3/4 full.

In a small bowl mix the flour and brown sugar for the topping. Cut in butter with two knives until uniform.  Spoon topping over muffins and press lightly into batter. Bake for 22-24 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the muffin comes out clean and topping is golden.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Angela.

Moodboard

Mood Board | Chili Oil

Do you like spicy reds? Maybe a burgundy or maroon colour with an exotic vibe? Then, you might want to take a look at Pantone Chili Oil. It’s one of Pantone’s chosen colours for Spring 2018. I’m already cooking up great ideas for working this earthy red into my own interior design projects. This colour has a knack for looking sophisticated yet casual all at the same time. Which makes me love it even more!

A sliding barn door and a mounted trophy may be trendy right now, but these wall colours are as classic as they come. With the door open, the peek-a-boo red wall functions almost as a large-scale piece of art.

We love matching Chili Oil with Coconut White, Coconut White the classic mainstay of a white adds flavourful definition to the room with Chili Oil. Even just an addition of a throw over or an armchair it brings up the texture of your room.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Kiwi

When I first see kiwi, I ask my mom why is this fruit so hairy? On the outer, it sometimes looks like a hairy monkey when I cut it open I am surprised with this green color fruit. I guess my mom is bad to choose kiwi, whenever I have them it is sour thus I hated it so much when I’m young.

During a trip to a kiwi farm, I tasted my very first sweet kiwi. And I discover it is the only fruit that contains vitamin E. Not only does it contain vitamin E, but a serving contains more than your daily requirement of vitamin C.  Kiwi also contains potassium, so if you don’t like bananas you give kiwi a try instead.  The kiwi contains actinidain, which is a protein-dissolving enzyme like the bromelain in pineapple.  If you’ve had a heavy meal containing meat, you might accompany or follow that meal with kiwi to help your body digest all of that protein.

xoxo, Joe

RECIPES

Tuna Salad Sushi Bowl

I’m a huge fan of salad – it’s the most simple and yet possible complicated taste of food on the planet. At least I feel that way.

A mixture of greens occasionally matches with choices of fish or meat it tastes amazing. By combining sauce, it became magical to your taste buds. This week, we would like to introduce one of the kinds that are healthy but also an addictive salad. With making your sushi into a salad could be satisfied, don’t you agree?

Despite its pretentious name, this Tuna Salad Sushi Bowl has a lot to offer. It’s loaded with a variety of highly nutritious ingredients you should eat, at least once in a while, and it’s delicious enough to make the whole scenario pleasant and enjoyable.

‘You might get this variety of diet in an eatery these days. Hence spending 15bucks per bowl why not make yourself, easy. A complete flavour from a bowl. It’s really good to kick-start a healthy lifestyle.’

Ingredient |

  • 1 cup cooked Mixed Quinoa
  • 1 cup of broccoli
  • 250g of canned tuna in oil
  • mixed vegetables (we used carrot, cucumber, and zucchini)
  • 1/2 purple cabbage
  • bean sprouts
  • mayonnaise for drizzle

Methods |

While mixed the cooked quinoa and shaved broccoli in a bowl and leave it aside to cool. Simply, serve the quinoa mixture in a bowl and then top with filling (we top it with carrot, zucchini, bean sprouts, cabbage and canned tuna). Lastly, drizzle your favourite sauce and enjoy it.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Angela.

TRAVEL

Natural History Museum | London

When we talk about London, one of their highlights would be their museums.  Most of them are free entry and it is the place you want to visit if you are on a budget constraint. You don’t have to spend a lot to visit London.

For an art and architect lover like me, other than the St Pual Cathedral, Natural History Museum is on the top of my bucket list. Until now, I remember how astonished I was when I saw it in person. With a closer look, it’s not just beautiful but magnificent. I do not understand why a 137 years old building could be so elegant and distinct. For a visitor who spent 2 weeks in London, I have wasted almost whole afternoon there but with no regret. National History Museum was so large that you need at least 5 hours to finish it. It located along the Exhibition Road surrounded with a lot of museums and concert hall. Is a place that I would want to spend my whole day with. Wistfully, my soul, have forgotten herself within the golden-lit structure. I didn’t really explore the area but I can’t wait to go back and this around will be the first place to visit!

It was crowded even on a weekday so I highly suggest you to spend at least whole morning museum (I was sick so I went slightly in the noon) while the rest of the rest day in the area – Kensington and Chelsea.

Even though I barely hang out elsewhere that day but it was the day I ever had. I ended my day with a lovely meal at Convert Garden. After that went to the infamous, The Lion King Musical show. What’s better than that?

it’s hard to describe in words. the building is magical, while the sunbeams on the building and you will see the dynamic impression from the structure. 

Polpo
6 Maiden Ln, London, WC2E7NA, UK
www.polpo.co.uk

Lyceum Theatre, London
21 Wellington St, London WC2E 7RQ, UK
Purchase The Lion King ticket online, you might grab cheap, well seating in advance.

xoxo, Angela.

Moodboard

Mood Board | Rocking Chair

Remember when I was a child when we are still staying with our grandmother. In our house, we have this rocking chair. Our grandmother loves to sit and rock on it while watching television. When grandmother was not on it, it was never empty, everyone would always race who gets to sit in it first. These memories warm my heart and I always dream, that when I will have my home, I will own one of these chairs in my living room.

All of these chairs feature a comfortable seat, a wooden or metal frame and plain fabrics that harmonise nicely with contemporary and modern environments. Perfect for story time or snooze time, these rocking chairs have a fresh, modern designthat works well in any living space. This type of seating can be used as a comfortable and cozy spot for nursing, napping, reading, knitting, watching TV, or cuddling with your newborn. Take a look at our choices and have a wonderful Monday!

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

 

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Durian

Durian

Durian who is also known as the king of fruits, it usually could be only found in the tropical country. It is one of my favorite fruits that I can’t enjoy them at home as Angela hates them. If you are good at choosing them (whereas I am not good at it) you will taste the heaven. It was one of the fruits I like to enjoy with my grandmother.

You could smell the durian from afar, and for most people it the smell sinks. When I first eat them when I’m young I couldn’t take the smell. But after a few tries I fall in love with it. After enjoying the durian I was taught to drink water with the shell. It will get rid of the smell in my mouth and the heartiness. Didn’t know who my grandmother learn it from but it always been a habit for me now.

xoxo, Joe

Healthy Breakfast

Classic Chickpea Hummus with Peri Peri Sauce

I believe I have declared my love for Hummus – days I question why I only appreciate such a taste just now. This week we would like to share this Classic Chickpea Hummus with Peri Peri Sauce recipe we came out with.

It’s the improvisation of the Homemade Hummus we shared last May. Even Joe love this recipe as we added our favourite spicy sauce to it and it simply adds the favour of the Hummus. Many have eaten Nando – the Roasted Chicken franchise! Even though I’m not a chicken person but unquestionably I’m in love with the sauces!

And yes, we have it garnish with Blue Cornflower. Upon, travelling at the Borough Market, London during March, I got back quite a few dried flowers and herbs. I thought it would be interesting for food preparation or new recipes. It just perfects the hummus. Blue Cornflower is pretty trending these days. They are the absolute ingredient for natural food dye. They have a slightly sweet to spicy, clove-like flavour. this added on flavour for the Hummus.

Ingredients |

  • 2 cups drained well-cooked or canned chickpeas, liquid reserved
  • 1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus oil for drizzling
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled, or to taste
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp ground paprika, or to taste
  • 1 tsp of peri peri sauce
  • dried flora leaves for garnish

Method |

Put everything except the flora leaves in a food processor and begin to process; add the chickpea liquid or water as needed to allow the machine to produce a smooth puree.

Taste and adjust the seasoning (I often find I like to add much more lemon juice). Serve, drizzled with the olive oil and drizzle with more peri peri sauce and some dried flora.

Share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Angela.

Festivals TRAVEL

Mother’s Day X Tulipmania 2018


Just last week, we have pre-celebration with our Mother before Mother’s Day. We went to Garden By the Bay, Tulipmania for a date! Since our Mom reloves love plantation and gardening lots… To cheer her up we thought it will be a treat!

While there are so different ways to call our mother(s) and I have at least 5 different versions! “Mom”, “Mummy”, “Mother” and some in Chinese, Japanese and even dialect … My mom is my spirit animal. Always tell me that I could be whoever I want to be and will always do her proud. She could be over-protective but she also wants me to get out of my comfort zone. Despite we have the differences like many other mother-daughters, we live, think and behave almost the same way. We argued but deeply I love her the most.

Mom, thank you for being such an amazing mom and superwoman in my life! Raising problematic children like my sister and me with lots of opinion in daily-days life! You handled us well! You showed me ways to fight and survive in the cruel world as you know that it hurts you badly. Thanks for the years of caring and loving the brat like me! I love you, mom!

Here are my promises to you, mom; for your love of cactus, I will bring you to Arizona desert. For your love of tulip, I will bring you to Holland soon!

Honestly, while I was taking the photo this guy just walked to my mom and stood beside her that closely. I thought they are having a conversation but truly, they didn’t.

 

I especially love this Winnie the Pooh and Piglet statue. The moment is beautiful.

Despite the Tulipmania event was over but there is a Singapore Garden Festival coming up. For those who are coming to Singapore, you can get your ticket online.

xoxo, Angela

Moodboard

Mood Board | Ice Cream

Who doesn’t love ice cream? When I go to the ice cream store the colorful ice cream just brighten up my day.

Ice Cream colors are going to be a huge trend in both interiors and fashion this year. However, there’s no reason to wait until spring, start investing in key pieces now and get ahead of the crowd. Choosing your favorite flavor of ice cream can be a bit like choosing your favorite paint color.

So why only choose one when you can have them all, in a perfect palette of ice cream colors. You can even mix up paint colors to suit your tastes and match accessories by using in-store color matching technology. Introduce these pretty colors on a single wall or multiple if you feel brave, and accessorize with pastel-hued vases, dining chairs, and tableware.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Watermelon

Watermelon

Watermelon is one of my fruits during the humid weather. As they are juicy and easy to eat. Other than eating them just as fruit, I also love to make them into juicy. Watermelon is also the first fruit that I painted as the color is just so beautiful.

Life is like eating a watermelon, you know you’re going to get some seeds; just spit them out and take another bite.

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Mother’s Day Breakfast in Picnic Basket

An ultimate guideline to pack an outdoor (it works well for the indoor as well) breakfast for your mom on the Mother’s day. Instead of making Mom wait until dinnertime to enjoy a meal made just for her, treat her to a special morning treat of breakfast in bed. Deliciously easy to make in a hurry, pancakes are a no-fuss dish that both grownups and little ones crave. Moreover, they can be as simply or elegantly prepared as you like.

You may compare the taste and texture of boxed mixes with the light, fluffy from-scratch pancakes. (that’s what I used to think) When I pass-by Don Don Donki the other day, the pancake mixer that I picked up is unimaginable. It is light and fluffy just like the store made. Not to say boxed mixes may indeed be convenient on hectic weekdays and tasty at the same time.

We decided to match the pancake with some whipped cream, strawberry jam, and strawberry. As strawberry is always our mother favourite fruit, at the same time it is the season of strawberry. Why not!

However, when it comes to whipped cream I loved to have them freshly made then get them in the store. As it is always too sweet for us, don’t worry you can prepare them the night before too. Our mom ended up drizzle over her favourite honey to this pancake. Customize to your mom likely, you could even add an egg or bacon over.

Don’t forget a cup of tea or coffee (but tea is always the better choice). If you are heading out to prepare a thermo-flask some warm tea – as for us we prepare hibiscus tea. If you are serving your mom in bed, assemble them in a basket or a tray and you are good to go.

Ingredients |

  • 200g of JN hot cake mix
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 150ml of water
  • 100g of heavy cream
  • 20g of sugar
  • strawberry
  • strawberry jam (option)

Method |

Mix the pancake mix, egg yolk and water well in a bowl. Heat up the pan and drizzle oil on it. Using a measuring cup, pour the mixture into the pan ensuring each pancake is around the same amount.

To prepare the whipped cream, combine the heavy cream and sugar in a bowl. Using a hand whisking machine, whisk it to the high peak.

Now serve the pancake with the whipped cream, strawberry jam and halved strawberry.

We are glad that mom really adores what we did, and we believed that your mom will love it too. Share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

TRAVEL

St Paul Cathedral | London

Every country I been to, I definitely would visit the local churches and train stations. I love places like these – sites I could squat for long hours and find myself in place. Therefore, how could I ever miss visiting this amazing historical architect – St Paul Cathedral.

Since the day I reached London, this is one of the places I can’t wait to spend time in. Despite some hiccups and I couldn’t finish the whole tour for the whole structure but I was able to complete the 1056 steps up and down to the top of the dome. While you start with a spacious geometric staircase that resembles the one in Harry Potter movies. It starts to get harder, narrower when you reach upon the whispering dome. It could be the most exhausting stair steps I ever attempt, in fact, I got scared when I reaching the last portion of the steps.

There is no way to return back to the ground without reaching the top as it is a one-way exit. If you intend to try, suggest you prepare a bottle of water and wear something comfortable. For those who are afraid of height, just stop at the whispering dome and it is fine! Between the whole building is so fascinating for you to explore.

“If you do not want to regert, always plan in advance to any attraction.”

For those who want to plan your visit to St Paul Cathedral, do book your ticket online in advance as it is very popular locations for visitors. Besides, it will be cheaper by 2 – 4 Pounds if you’re to purchase online.

St Paul’s Cathedral, St Paul’s Churchyard, London, EC4M 8AD

There are many guides on that day itself, therefore, I couldn’t take many images with my DSLR. Pardon for the low-quality images from my phone as it doesn’t do any justice to the actual building. Times like this, it’s a loss when you carry such a big gadget around. 

St Paul Cathedral faces directly opposite Tate Museum.
You can trace your view along the street to the millennium bridge.

Many would say that the entrance fees are expensive but it wasn’t. It is a donation for the Cathedral and you could enjoy a year-long of entry. For the tourist like us surely it doesn’t make sense but a donation for the historical building. It’s a small amount of contribution. The next time I travel I would still pay and visit again. Feel free to drop us a text and we hope we will answer your questions for any enquire and recommendation. Have a great week ahead!

xoxo, Angela.

LIFESTYLE Moodboard

Mood Board | Hammock

I would say that I stress up lately. Usually, I don’t admit it but the thing has built up over the months or maybe years. I wished that I could stay motivated whenever I’m at home. Especially, since I work from home, I want to stay relax whenever I could. Hence, not to be worried about the space and works when I don’t have to.

Therefore lately, both Joe and I were discussing ways to revamp the home for a fresh look. That comes with a suggestion whether to have Hammock at home. For busy souls like us, it’s great to have something that could loosen up and infuse merry spirit in the home. What’s better than a hammock right? It is a great way to replace the soft bed and it brings joy to the room.

It’s definitely a great idea for anyone if they have an empty space without things area. As you are hanging the hammock in the air, you will never use up any floor space. Which won’t make your room messy at all. It always good to take a step back to chill out after all the burning out at work and the general rise in stress levels. Isn’t it?

xoxo, Angela

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

RECIPES

Nacho Pie

Yeah (I think I feel like I’m winning a football match)! It is my favorite occasion of the month – guess what it is Cinco De Mayo day! Unlike last year we didn’t organize a gathering but instead baked a Nachos Pie for a mini Movie Party! Nachos is one of those universal foods that everyone loves, whether health conscious or not!

You can be as generous as you want – or not – with the corn chips. With a dish like this, 6 or so corn chips per serving seem to go a long way and that is a LOT less than the 30 or so I’d ordinarily scoff down for Nachos! It’s also surprising how far this recipe goes. We used to think it was just for 4 – but really, it serves 6 quite generously. Or even 8 for ordinary people.

We filled out the beef filling with mixed beans but you can substitute with any type of beans you want. Or you could even cut down the amount of beef in this even further and add other vegetables – corn, diced zucchini and bell peppers (capsicum) would be fabulous in this!

You will find the filling very saucy. The reason is that the extra sauce is used to top the final layer. The alternative is to make the filling and a separate sauce, but to us, that’s just too much effort for midweek! So we make it all in one pan then use a slotted spoon to scoop out meat for the layers without too much sauce, then pour the sauce over the final layer.

SO TASTY!We could eat this every night. We just adore Mexican food (real and Tex-Mex!).

We specially made a Pico de Gallo for this recipe and the juiciness it amazing. Simply, combine ingredients in a bowl. Toss and adjust salt/pepper to taste.
Ingredients |
  • 1/2 avocado, diced
  • 1 large tomato, deseeded and diced
  • 1/4 Spanish (red) onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp lime juice (fresh or bottled)
  • 3 tbsp fresh coriander leaves
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil

Using avocado here give the nacho a buttery texture, making it less dry which means allow you to eat more of them. Remember to deseed the tomato here as you don’t want the Pico de Gallo to be too wet.

Ingredients |

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 white onion, diced 
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 400 g ground mince beef (use lean!)
  • 28 g packet Taco Seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 700 g tomato pureed canned tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 400 g canned mixed beans, drained
  • 3 – 4 soft tortillas (flour or corn) – for layering
  • 1 cup grated cheese (I used mozzarella, but any melting cheese is fine)
  • 70 g corn chips
  • Sour cream to serve

Method |

Preheat the over to 350F/180C. Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the garlic and onion, and cook until translucent. Then, cook them by adding in the beef, breaking up into pieces, until browned. Lastly, with Taco Seasoning and pepper about halfway through browning the beef. Add the tomato passata, water, and beans. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until thickened but still very saucy. Remove from heat.

Lay a tortilla in a pie dish (24 cm / 9-inch diameter). Use a slotted spoon to top with just under 1/2 the meat. Try to avoid using too much sauce so sort of “shake” each spoonful to drain out the sauce. Top with another tortilla + torn/cut pieces of another tortilla to cover completely. Adding the remaining meat, again avoiding the sauce. Lastly, with remaining tortillas, then pour over all the sauce (and any residual meat).
Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. If you’re worried about overspill, place it on a baking tray. Remove from the oven, cover with corn chips then scatter with cheese. Bake until the chips are a bit golden and the cheese is melted – 10 to 15 minutes. Serve, topped with Pico De Gallo and Sour Cream on the side if using.

Share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Angela

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Avocado

Avocado

Time flies and it’s already May. If you’ve been here a while, you’ll know that my earlier watercolor paintings were a lot of experimenting with style and techniques. Although I can paint extremely realistic paintings to really loose ones, I enjoy the latter.

I have painted fast food, flower, donut and, traditional kueh for the past month. And this month I was thinking to paint something I have almost every day. Which are fruits!

________

Tomorrow is Cinco de Mayo and one of the ingredients that are commonly used in their dishes is avocado. I am not a fan of avocado compared to Angela but I would say that do taste good. I especially love them when they are made for Guacamole, sometimes I like to put them in my salad and toast.

xoxo, Joe

LIFESTYLE

Yeah, Fiesta! : Cinco de Mayo Ideas

It’s almost Cinco de Mayo! Thus, today’s we will be having a #throwback post and it is the Cinco de Mayo Edition, with all the Cinco de Mayo Ideas! Cinco de Mayo is only days away. Last year we have our very first official Cinco de Mayo celebration, time really does pass fast.

one/ DIY Taco Party

Fiestas aren’t just for Cinco de Mayo! A south-of-the-border party theme is a great choice any time you want to kick back with a pitcher of margaritas and good amigos. Snag our ideas for decorations, cocktails, appetizers, main courses, and desserts.

two/ La Fiesta Flower in Can

Flowers would be the most beautiful table centerpiece you would ever have. They’re elegant while it can be fun at the same time. During the period of spring, blossoms will be part of our everyday life. It’s something you won’t want to miss seeing in your house, especially you are hosting a party.

three/ Homemade Classic Guacamole

Do not underestimate the green little devil! Avocado could make all kind of dishes and drinks. While we would love to share one of our favorite – the guacamole dip. It’s a must to serve along with the wheat chips when we having a movie night every Friday!

four/ Welcome Message with Waterpaint card menu

Cinco de Mayo is all about the fun and bright colors. Thus we also set out a colorful tables set for our guest! Start by making an invitation card for the guests to your Cinco de Mayo bash with these festive cards – a flower wealth water painting card.

With the same flower water paint, we did a menu to highlight the different dishes that we have made for the party. Leave us some comment if you want the template for this printable.

five/ Mango Salsa Beef Taco

This is by far one of my favorite Taco recipes. The combination of mango salsa and beef Taco is just extraordinary. We bet this mango salsa would be fantastic on fish tacos or just about any fresh, Mexican-themed dish, really. We can confirm that it goes well with chips, guacamole, and black bean tacos.

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe.

TRAVEL

Brixton | London

The first time I’ve come across Brixton was through a crime scene mentioned from Sherlock, the same title BBC drama. Following by, a group of lovely residences that lived in London. As well as my lovely friend, Laura who stayed there mentioned it was a place to stay in. A lively, multicultural area with a down-to-earth vibe – you can see from their architecture.

While Brixton is located the south of London, it’s accessible by train and buses promptly. It is a lovely neighbourhood easily to reach out to. We travel down to Brixton on a Monday afternoon, we were welcomed with the red bricks and heavy crowds from the neighbour. We head off to the Brixton Village but sadly nothing was open on a Monday I supposed. It’s pretty fun to see how the area behaves differently from Hampstead.

The weather was so cold that we need to hide in this lovely cafe – Parissi with a friendly owner that baked everything with his crews. Also not to forget to mention Pop Brixton, I would say it is like the Art Box at Bangkok. They have great food and spaces in containers even though with limited space. Highly recommend visiting this area apart from the usual tourist locations.

Parissi, lovely cafe located at Brixton
76 Atlantic Rd, Brixton, London SW9 8PX, UK

Feel free to drop us a text and we hope we will answer your questions for any enquire and recommendation. Have a great week ahead!

xoxo, Angela.

Moodboard

Mood board | Geometrical

Geometrical was one of the biggest trends last year, however, it was mainly on cushions and rugs. This year it’s all about tiles, wallpaper, and art. The Bright Oversized Geometric Wall easily hits the sweet spot with its vibrant colors and sharp angles. This wallpaper mural shows off large geometric cuts that carry vivid colors, projecting a relaxed yet modern-looking image right in your living room, hallway, or study area.

This geometrical wall is easy to recreate as you only need tape and paint for it. Using you are able to create that straight light and shape that you want. These geometrical walls give your house a bit more 4 dimensional compared to those single colored wall. You should give them a try!

xoxo, Joe

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Pulut Inti

Pulut Inti

It is hard to determine the origin of this dessert. Many of the kueh native to the Malay culture have been adopted and improvised by the Nyonyas. In this particular dessert, the Malays usually leave the steamed glutinous white rice. The Nyonyas like to streak the glutinous rice blue with blue pea flower a natural food dye.

Pulut Inti is can be hardly found in Singapore compare to the rest of the kueh and desserts that I last painted. However, the first time I tasted it in a Nyonyas restaurant I fall in love with it. Especially the coconut, it bring a sweet taste to the glutinous white rice.

I love painting the wrapped banana leaves, however I make a little mistake from painting more of the coconut than the rice. Well who doesn’t more of it as I taste soooo good!

xoxo, Joe

RECIPES

Roasted Chicken Quesadilla with Spinach Tortilla

Mexican food is such a great guilty pleasure. After all, it’s very often deep fried and loaded with cheese—and when you visit a hole-in-the-wall restaurant (the best kind). It’s likely also swimming in oil, butter, or lard. To save us all a few calories, we came up with this roasted chicken quesadilla recipe.

One of my favorite things to do is wrap up leftover chicken in tortillas and cook them it in different ways with different spices. Tortillas cook very fast and are also great for taking to work or eating as a snack.

We love using flour tortillas for a ton of things. We always have a few bags in my freezer so we will never run out of them. We get all different sizes for tacos, fajita, burritos and what not but never actually end up using the right size for the food we’re making. We usually switch it up a bit in order to make smaller or bigger servings.

Thus we ended up making our very own homemade spinach tortilla after awhile. It save more freezer space and at the same time, we get to enjoy fresh tortilla. Using it for this dish, making it tastier and healthier. The spinach tortilla that we made add a little flavor to the quesadilla than the usual store tortilla.

These quesadillas can also be made on an outdoor grill. Just cook over high heat directly on the grates until the cheese is melted and the bottoms start to brown, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. You’ll need to make guacamole and salsa before you begin.

Ingredients |

  • 2 tbsp. cooking oil
  • 300g chicken breast
  • 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • cilantro for garnish
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 8 small or 4 large flour spinach tortillas
  • 1 tbsp. butter (or spray butter)

Method |

In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook chicken breast until browned and shred using two forks. Add seasoning. Add pepper and onion. Cook until softened. Add lime juice and cilantro; stir.

Lay out half of the tortillas, top the tortillas with half of the cheese. Add the chicken and vegetable mixture and then top with remaining cheese. Place remaining tortillas on top and spray or brush the tops with a light coating of butter

Fried for 10 minutes, carefully flipping after 5 minutes and lightly coating the other side with butter. Serve topped with cilantro garnish and sour cream, if desired.

Share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

TRAVEL

Brighton | East Sussex

Continued from the previous post – Day trip to Seven Sisters Cliff. We took an express bus from Eastbourne down all the way to Brighton. The trip was about an hour but the scenery just covers it all. The express bus has lesser stops compared to the usual bus routine, it worth spending 4 pounds for the trip.

The morning was bright and shinning, we left our host at about 10 am. I would say the weather is unpredictable in the UK as you never bet against the sudden change of temperature. It was cold the moment we reached Brighton despite we were welcome on a sunny morning.  Thus, the town simply warms us up shortly with great food, lovely pebble beach and beautiful streets and store.

As it’s Winter, many stores at Brighton pier were closed therefore it is sad that we couldn’t enjoy any bits of it. Thus, I promised myself to visit again during another summer, it’s must be pleasant! I do really love Brighton – it might be a gloomy day when I arrived but everything just put in order when we spent our day there. Looking forward to going back with Joe as she definitely will love it!


“It might be the first time I came across with a pebble beach – simply love it!

“Actually, I don’t know what this for in the middle of the sea?”

 

“Let’s fill this town with artists”, and truly. 

The reason I like enjoying walking street in the UK – everything is beautiful.

Not just Notting Hill, British love pretty doors.

More stories to come, stay tuned for more London trip post! Feel free to drop us a text and we hope we will answer your questions for any enquire and recommendation. Have a great week ahead!

xoxo, Angela.

Moodboard

Mood board | Fringe

Fringing, it’s here for this season and you’ll see it on cushions, wall hangings, throws, rugs, and accessories.This fun new trend is not so mainstream yet but it’s on its way make no mistake. Interiors always follow in the footsteps of fashion, where fringing is a huge deal for 2018. This is the trend if you want to be ahead of the crowds. This trend will add a wonderful handmade quality to each room.

The fringe mirror will help to spice up your entryway, bedroom, or hallway with a bold statement piece that’s sure to mesmerize and beautify. The blush pink fringe is the perfect pop of color, and the sleek shape has “chic” written all over it. The fringe mirror is easy and fun to customize on what is already in your home now.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Tu Tu Kueh

Tu Tu Kueh

Seem like I have a lot of nonya delights that I like. Most of them are my favorite since I was a child. I love the Tu Tu Kueh when everything is handmade. The grated coconut filling is roasted with Gula Melaka. While the peanuts are pounded by hand before a dash of sugar is added. Even the pandan leaves are cut by hand.

Best consumed fresh from the steamer, the perfect tutu will inundate your nose with three scents – that from the rice, filling and pandan leaf – while the crunchy insides contrasting against the slightly sweetened soft shell is satisfying.

xoxo, Joe

RECIPES

Spinach Tortilla

It officially springs now here in Singapore, it has been pretty sunny the last couple of days. Moreover, spring means that we get to enjoy a lot of variety of vegetables. Last weekend we went there and I got a lot of fresh produce including spinach. I love spinach and I am sure you guys already know that. In fact, I was just thinking that I have shared quite a variety of spinach recipes from spinach based curries to dips to Mexican recipes and much more! Yeah, I clearly love my greens.

So with the spinach, this time I made spinach tortilla. The tortilla is very similar to Indian roti. We make roti with whole wheat flour only whereas tortilla is usually made with all purpose flour but of course can be whole wheat or corn too.

Making tortilla at home is really simple if you keep practicing it. I mean it was very easy for me because even though I don’t make tortilla every day I do make my roti and paratha almost frequently and they are basically the same. So if you are used to rolling the dough, this is super easy. Just try to roll the dough as thin as possible, makes it so much easier to roll the tortilla when you use it for burrito or wraps.

You could easily make your favorite wraps, quesadillas if your tortillas are ready by your side. I always follow this quick recipe hack. I keep tortillas ready well in advance so that whenever my kid wishes for a tasty breakfast, I can surprise him. Just like me, in order to make this recipe healthier, you could add spinach to your tortilla.

You need to simply add the puree of spinach to the usual ingredients of tortilla nothing else. The entire recipe remains the same.

A little small tips for you to make every tortilla the small size. Roll the dough to make an approximate circle. Then use a lid and push it hard on the dough circle to make a circular indentation. Take out the excess dough from the sides and voila! Your round same sized tortilla is ready.

Ingredients |

  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin powder, optional
  • pinch of cayenne pepper, optional
  • 3.5 oz spinach
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, and more to brush the tortilla
  • water, as needed for the dough

Method |

Bring water to boil in a pan. Once the water starts simmering, add fresh spinach leaves. Cook for 2 minutes till the spinach just starts to wilt. Remove pan from heat, drain the spinach and wash under cold water. Puree to a fine paste using your food processor. I added 2-3 tablespoons of water while pureeing the spinach. Set aside.

In a large bowl, add flour, salt, baking powder and cumin and cayenne pepper (if using). Now add oil to the flour mix and rub it into the flour using your fingers. Add the pureed spinach to the flour and mix.

Add water little by little to knead to a soft and smooth dough. If the dough feels too sticky, apply some oil on your hands, you may also add more oil to the dough. If the dough feels too dry, add more water. Basically, by the end of it, you should have a smooth and soft dough. Cover the dough and let it rest for 15-20 minutes.

Once the dough has rested, divide it into 6 equal parts. Meanwhile, put a pan on medium-high heat. Using a rolling pin, roll each ball into a circle of 8-10 inches. Try to roll as thin as possible. Use dry flour while rolling it if the dough is sticking to your rolling pin. Transfer the rolled spinach tortilla onto the heated pan. Cook for 2 minutes on each side or till you see these brown spots. Remove from pan and brush the tortilla with oil. Repeat with the remaining dough balls.

Share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

TRAVEL

Seven Sisters Cliff Photo Journal | East Sussex

I would say, times flies. It has been a month since my solo-trip to London. Before the trip to London, the only things that I’ve research were both Doven White Cliff and Seven Sister Cliff. While comparing which to visit I have decided to go with Seven Sister Cliff at Sussex. My friend and I planned a 2 days 1 night trip to Eastbourne down to Brighton.

Since my friend and I don’t drive, we took a morning train ride from London to Brighton and from Brighton to Eastbourne. The day was delayed by the train transit at Brighton, we reach to our host at later noon. She shared with us the course of seven sister cliff, although it is slightly different from what I have researched. After 10 minutes of walk, we come to the end of the road from where we stay, at the coast. We grab lunch package from a local mini-mart owned by an old couple. The store is really popular with locals.

The hiking begins thus it comes to an endless walk from the bottom of the hills to the top… After an hour or so, we finally saw some student and realised that we are on the right track toward the Beachy Head. That’s correct! Instead, we begin from Seven Sisters Country Park we walk the other round.

The wind was extra strong at the top of the hill but the lovely scenic view was just stunning. The only bad side of the hiking was the bright sun as it was really bad for any photographing. It’s exhausting also it’s really satisfying, however, I can’t complete it with my buddy for the trip!

If you go by hiking, I really recommend you to go really in the morning and pack a lot of food with you. As from Beachy Head to Birling Gap we spent 4.5 hours. Therefore if you want to finish the whole trail toward Cuckmere Haven and  Seven Sisters Country Park, I believed you need at least 8 hours or more. For those who could drive, I highly suggest you go with that as you can visit more viewpoint and see all the scenic view within a day!

“All the journey made mistakes; just like life and we discover other happiness”. 

That’s the thing about a road trip, you will crave for more and hoping that it never ends. I can’t wait to go back again and to see the best view of Seven Sisters Cliff. Feel free to drop us a text and we hope we will answer your questions for any enquire and recommendation. Have a great week ahead!

xoxo, Angela

Moodboard

Mood Board | Tatami

So much could be said about Japanese design and their aesthetic. Japanese sense of style is much loved and copied the world over, often fused with other elements and styles. But nobody quite knows how to do Japanese design like the Japanese. Funny that, innit?

The approach is about finding beauty in the simple, natural, authentic and imperfect. The aesthetic is pared down to the barest essence, which creates pure and uncluttered outcomes. To create a space which is harmonized and balanced without any visual clutter (that isn’t actually boring!) is not easy to do.

Using tatami flooring for room helps to create a warm and safe environment, especially for the kids. Not that you know tatami help to keep dust away, isn’t what that’s everyone need. With these little details, it also helps to add some culture element to your house. Bringing bits of stories of you to the environment around you.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

Moodboard

The Moon’s Insight | Fortune Cake

Fortune Cake

Growing up in a native Cantonese home, both my grandmother and mother make lots of yummy Cantonese food. It is Chinese people’s custom to using this Fortune Cake for prayer during an important festival for our ancestors and god. After the prayer, we loved to reheat this beautiful blossoming steamed cake and enjoy them.

The cake is steamed and when properly made, the top should split open into a “smile”. Although it’s not a real smile since it is supposed to split into four sections.  Fa has a meaning of prosperity/ fortune, hence the name prosperity cake and the reason why it is eaten during Chinese New Year to bring luck.

xoxo, Joe

RECIPES Weekend Brunch

Spicy Kale Chip

The first time I made kale chips I remember thinking, “Should they taste burnt like this??” The easy answer is no. I’ve come to find a nice balance between crispiness and chewiness without any burnt edges. Yes, this is very serious business, this kale chip business. When baked properly, they really do make the perfect base for a satisfying chip alternative.

Techniques you’ll be well on your way to kale chip bliss. Or maybe you already are, in which case, feel free to skip ahead to my All-Dressed Baked Kale Chip recipe below and get crunching!

Ok, here are my top tips for baking the perfect kale chips. No dehydrator required.

Remove the stems and tear leaves into large pieces. The first time I’ve a Kale, I didn’t know the steam is hard and woody. I’m sure you won’t be a fan of chewing through woody baked kale stems. You can remove the stems very quickly by grabbing the base of the stem with one hand and pushing outwards along the stem to slide off the leaves. Works like a charm!

Wash and thoroughly dry the leaves before beginning. If the leaves aren’t properly dried, the water can “steam” the kale chips while baking leading to soggy chips! We used cloth and hair drier to dry them but if you have a salad spinner you can use them too.

After drying it’s time you season them. “Massage” the seasoning into the leaves to ensure all the nooks and crannies are coated. Adding oil in the seasoning also helps the spices stick to the leaves.

For the seasoning other then the usual oil we make a spicy nut spread. With the walnut and sunflower seed it just upgrade the flavor of the kale chips.

I used to dump all the kale into a very thick layer on the baking sheet and hope for the best, but doing this tends to lead to soggy, unevenly baked kale chips. I’ve learned to be a bit more patient and spread them out into a thinner layer on each baking sheet. Be sure to rotate the baking sheet half-way through baking. There’s no real need to flip the chips unless you have the patience for it.

The key of crispy kale chips is baking them in low temperature like baking meringue. Basically you would like to dry them making sure it does not scorch it into smithereens! This will vary based on your oven, but it’s a good starting off point!

Like meringue, we’ve found that waiting just 3 minutes allows the kale chips to crisp up even more once they are out of the oven. Just like baked cookies or roasted chickpeas, kale chips really firm up even more when cooled. Those 3 minutes will feel like hours though. We won’t lie.

Ingredients |

  • 200g of walnut
  • 150g of sunflower seed
  • 80g of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of sweet paprika
  • approx. 1/2 bunch kale leaves
  • salt and pepper to seasoning
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

Method |

Preheat oven to 150C. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove leaves from the stems of the kale and roughly tear it up into large pieces. Compost the stems (or freeze for smoothies). Wash and spin the leaves until thoroughly dry.

In a blender, blend the rest of the ingredients till mesh. Add kale leaves into a large bowl. Massage in the seasoning until all the nooks and crannies are coated in them.

Spread out the kale onto the prepared baking sheet into a single layer, being sure not to overcrowd the kale. Bake for 10 minutes, rotate the pan, and bake for another 12-15 minutes more until the kale begins to firm up. The kale will look shrunken, but this is normal. I bake for 25 mins. total in my oven.

Cool the kale on the sheet for 3 minutes before digging in! This really makes all the difference! Enjoy immediately as they lose their crispiness with time. Repeat this process for the other half of the bunch.

Grab the kale and start baking them now. Share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

TRAVEL

Penang Photo Journal

I have been dividing my time between catching with works and recouping my energy these days. Therefore, I will stop posting “A Paint Portrait” for awhile till I have more time for it. In the meantime, I hope that my travel stories will make up for that!

As a city girl sometimes you’ll crave for a non-city life but definitely not for long. A short trip from Singapore to Penang, Malaysia might answer your request. Penang is located north-west of Malaysia. They are infamous for their tasty food and culture. Spending a long weekend (roughly 4 days 3 nights ) there is really satisfying. Nothing fancy but you could simply eat all day, walk all day and to be part of their Peranakan culture.

As I remember it was warm summer than, surely I brought along my camera but I took fewer shots. Thus somehow I’m still able to put it as a post to feed your eyes.

 


xoxo, Angela.

Moodboard

Strawberry Gin Smash

What could be finer than this summery Strawberry Gin Smash? This wonderful recipe comes from my favorite the Kitchn with its brilliant ideas. According to to the Kitchn a ‘smash’ is a ‘thing’. It is a cocktail involving herbs, sugar, fruit, and booze – which ones seem to be up to you. This pretty drink speaks for itself, with it’s the super tasty mixture of lime, sugar, strawberries, and gin, and a fashionable mint sprig garnish.

Try my Smash recipe as your Friday Cocktail, or feel free to fashion your own creations.

The Strawberry Gin Smash ingredients are very simple, you can get them anyway at your home. Grab some strawberry and you are good to go. We used the leftover to make some Strawberry Cakes.

Like the julep smashes have come to include all sorts of fruit, and this one showcases sweet, ripe red strawberries. You can choose your spirit — rum, brandy, whiskey, and gin (my favorite!) all work. Add lemon, lime juice, or bitters to muddle with your sugar, or skip the sugar and top with a spritz. Basil and lemon balm, as well as the traditional mint, have made their way into smashes, too.

Ingredients |

  • 3 Strawberry, sliced
  • 2 tbsp of Gin
  • 250 ml of Tonic Water
  • 1 tbsp of caster sugar
  • Juice from a quarter lime wedge
  • Sprig of fresh mint to garnish

Method |

Take a big tumbler and add the teaspoon of sugar. Squeeze the quarter of lime onto the sugar and give it a stir. Slice 2 of the strawberries and add them to the sugar and lime. Give them a slight muddle with a teaspoon then add a handful of ice. Pour on the gin, top up with tonic water, stir then garnish with a sprig of fresh mint. Guzzle this refreshing drink at your leisure.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

The Moon’s Insight | Ang Ku Kueh

Ang Ku Kueh

Hello April! It has been a tough week for my family. Our beloved grandma passed away last week – it is such a heartbreaking news for us. There is a lot of reflection and guilty. However, I ended up choosing to think of the goods. Therefore, I remember how much my grandma loves to eat all the traditional delights. This month I decided to paint the delights my grandma loves.

Ang Ku Kueh, aka red tortoise cakes! They are shaped to look like tortoise shells. A popular local snack in Singapore, it is also one of me and my grandma favorite traditional delights since young.

I remember my mom will always get me a box of Ang Ku Kueh after my visit to the Chinese clinic. As the medicine is always too bitter for me, the Ang Ku Kueh is the best treats for me. The sweet mung bean filling and soft chewy skin melt in my mouth. However one of my favorite flavors will be the yam filling. Both I and my grandma loves yam a lot, it is one of our go to ingredients for desserts.

I feel like having one of the Ang Ku Kueh now, but I know it breaks my heart knowing my grandma will not be eating it with me now. I miss you, grandma!

xoxo, Joe

TRAVEL

Thailand Travel Journal | Bangkok


When life gives you a lemon you return them with lots of happiness as revenge. Just embrace the little things of life before regretting about it! While what’s more than taking a short trip singing and laughing with a lovely friend together.

Well, I didn’t go to Bangkok lately but I was thinking to share this set of photographs taken out from my hard disk. There are so many interesting photographs just hiding without knowing.

The trip was dated back in late 2016 which I know it’s overdue for a super long period. Having this trip is my second time to Bangkok and it’s much interesting compared to my first trip there. I got to go to different cafe hopping and embracing their street and art life. Unlike the tourist impression, Bangkok is pretty actively trendy with their arts, food and youth culture. You will discover new thing each day on the street and their food in a cheaper manner. I hope you enjoy taking on a visual journey with me.

 

xoxo, Angela.

Credit | All shots used are taken by us.

Moodboard

Mood Board | Little Bit

Every little bit of details will change the mood of a room, in any part of your house. Adding little fun factor to the wood, marble or metal surface simply will spark up some glow to the environment.

When you think of a palette of wood and white, a sleek environment might come to mind, or even a modern sunroom. But this neutral and serene pairing can also be a winning combination for the bedroom as well. White adds a clean, calm feeling to a room, while the warm tones and organic textures of wood create depth and visual interest, particularly against a white backdrop.

Therefore to speak for yourself, made your room with your voice. Find and decorate with your favourite pieces of artwork, choose interesting fabric for your cushion or even pick up a little pot of plant on a weekend market. All little things that you choose and the display tell a story – your story.

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

xoxo, Angela

Healthy Breakfast

Rainbow Quinoa Sushi Rolls with Wasabi Mayo

Happy Good Friday, how is the planning of Easter Day doing? It’s has been a busy week this year thus we didn’t do much to celebrate Easter Day. This holiday we make a Rainbow Quinoa Sushi Rolls to treat our stomach.

This sushi is similar to the one we have previously, Tuna Broccoli and Quinoa Sushi but it contains more vegetables that it. It tastes more simple and refreshing than the Tuna Broccoli and Quinoa Sushi.

It’s simple, elegant and delicious. Quinoa adds a faint crunch that rice doesn’t, and the nutty flavor really makes the other ingredients sing. I chose tuna because it’s the easiest sushi grade fish for me to find, but this would also be delicious with salmon, yellowtail, shrimp or even grilled chicken.

To cut that perfect slice of sushi, start by placing uncut nori rolls in the refrigerator for 5 – 10 minutes before cutting. Use a wet knife to cut for clean and even cut sushi. Remember to clean your knife every once or twice you slice the sushi.

Ingredients |

  • 1 cup cooked Mixed Quinoa
  • 3 Nori Sheets
  • 1 carrot, zucchini
  • 1/2 purple cabbage
  • 250g of canned tuna in oil
  • bean sprouts

Method|

Slice the carrot, zucchini, and cabbage into thin slices. Prepare fillings and set aside.

Line one end of the nori sheet with quinoa and broccoli mixture then top with filling (we top it with carrot, zucchini, bean sprouts, cabbage and canned tuna) all the way across one edge. Gently fold filling end over on itself and continue rolling to form a tight cylinder.

Gently cut through the roll with the sharp knife using very little weight and a back and forward motion. Cut into bite-size pieces (approximately 6 pieces per roll). Leave in the fridge for 5-10 minutes before serving (sushi holds better when chilled).

Serve as is or with soya sauce and wasabi for a dipping sauce.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

The Moon’s Insight | Galaxy Donuts

The Galaxy is so big that things happen is a snap second, sometimes you can’t even realize it after it is over. Moreover, people always will seek the ends of the galaxy to avoid that which they need most. This galaxy teaches me one thing, too precious every second of life.

The galaxy is always too big for us to discover. The only way is to spend every second that I could to learn them. But first, let’s have a donut as you will need that extra energy to go through.

“Never apologize for burning too brightly or collapsing into yourself every night. That is how galaxies are made.”
― Tyler Kent White

xoxo, Joe

Craft LIFESTYLE

Simple and Sweet Pom Pom Flower for Easter’s Day

Easter is almost upon us and I love seeing all of the adorable Easter decors; the bunnies, chicks, and carrots are all just too cute! I spent a few minutes this weekend making some adorable Easter pom pom chicks! With the leftover pom pom I make them into the simple and sweet pom pom flower pot.

For those, we don’t have kids at home but want to joy in the fun of Easter day? This is the best craft for you. Moreover, for the flower lover, you can actually brighten up your apartment with flowers without actually using flowers.

I googled around and found a number of tutorials, including several that use the cardboard donut method, which can be found herehere, and here. Unfortunately, I’m impatient and not particularly coordinated, so cardboard donuts were flying everywhere. My favorite method is found in the pom pom tutorial at Bella Dia.

This method makes slightly more yarn scraps, but you can recycle the scraps by using them as stuffing for craft projects, or you can put them in a small fabric pouch and add a few drops of lavender, rose, or another type of essential oil to make a drawer sachet.

After making the pom pom glue them onto a stick and now you will have your pom pom flower. We leave them in this jar we got from Ikea, isn’t it beautiful?

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

SISTOLOGY

We’re Two!

Yesterday marks the second year since we launched Le Plain Canvas.

Surprisingly, we’ve found that writing for it has often been the high point of our week.

Do you have a favorite post? I have many. Indeed, I probably like all of them, but sometimes one or another holds special meaning. One of the best is indeed all the travel post since that’s the best activities I ever like.

Sometimes we re-read old blog posts. They’ve helped us track the trajectory of our second year, and we love looking at the pictures and reading the comments.We sometimes wonder what prompted us to delve into a particular theme, often reminiscing about the spark—a conversation with a staff member, a painting at an exhibition—that led to a specific post.

As we mention in our during our first-year anniversary that we are two individuals and leading a different lifestyle. However, this year we improve the way we communicate and become more organized. Although there are times there is still disagreement but we believe it will only get better.

To celebrate our blog the second anniversary we baked a cake and have a little mini celebration within us. This earl grey cake is both of our favorite (comment down below if you would love to have the recipe). We have a bite of cake and some tea and share our views on what we want to do with the website.

You have been there for us, nurtured us, and fed our soul in more ways than you will ever know. For that, we are eternally grateful.

xoxo, The Sisters (Angela and Joe)

Moodboard

The Moon’s Insight | Bagelnut

Bagelnut

There are the different type of donut, not only in term of flavor but also the shape. The popular one is usually the round one with a hole in the middle. However, recently I came across this that looks like a bagel.

Usually, I’m not a fan of eating one as it’s too tough for me. Thus when I have a chance to have one “bagel” I never want to lose my chance of trying it. Would you rather reach for a bagel or a doughnut in the morning? Hard decision, right? Both are delicious in unique and equally life-changing ways.

xoxo, Joe

RECIPES Weekend Brunch

Tuna Broccoli and Quinoa Sushi

Store-bought sushi is one of those “easy to grab” lunches that most think of as a “healthy” option. But did you know sushi rice contains sugar? Most sushi fillings also contain some kind of food allergens such as gluten and soy (found in soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, deep fried crumbing), dairy (found in Japanese mayonnaise) and preservatives and sugar (found in marinades).

Why not make your own quinoa sushi that is full of fresh and unprocessed ingredients for a simple, nourishing lunch. These sushi rolls are a great lunch for at home or to take in a packed lunch. Kids love these sushi rolls too. In this recipe, we substitute starchy white rice for high protein quinoa and blended broccoli but you can also make these rolls simply just with protein and vegetables.

There are a lot benefit for these sushi roll, let’s start with just three simple one;

  • Quinoa Sushi contains healthy protein, slow-release carbohydrates and fiber providing you with a satisfying and filling lunch or snack. Quinoa is a high protein, gluten-free alternative to rice that provides a healthy source of slow release carbohydrates.
  • Nori (edible seaweed) is rich in iodine needed for a healthy thyroid function. Nori is also a source of the minerals calcium, iron and magnesium.
  • Choosing quality protein options such as cooked fish or canned salmon, tuna or cooked chicken adds extra protein and nutritional content to your rolls. We choose canned tuna in oil.

Instead of quinoa, you can use ‘cauliflower/broccoli rice’. To make cauliflower/broccoli rice simply grate cauliflower/broccoli florets and steam or pan fry until just tender. However, instead of choosing just one we combine both together – the broccoli and quinoa.

It’s simple, elegant and delicious. Quinoa adds a faint crunch that rice doesn’t, and the nutty flavor really makes the other ingredients sing. I chose tuna because it’s the easiest sushi grade fish for me to find, but this would also be delicious with salmon, yellowtail, shrimp or even grilled chicken.

To cut that perfect slice of sushi, start by placing uncut nori rolls in the refrigerator for 5 – 10 minutes before cutting. Use a wet knife to cut for clean and even cut sushi. Remember to clean your knife every once or twice you slice the sushi.

Ingredients |

  • 1 cup cooked Mixed Quinoa
  • 3 Nori Sheets
  • 1 cup of broccoli
  • 1 cucumber
  • 250g of canned tuna in oil
  • kale

Method |

Prepare fillings and set aside. We slice the cucumber and soak in hot water for a minute and dried the kale leaves. Place nori sheets on a flat surface and run wet fingers along the edge.

Line one end of the nori sheet with quinoa and broccoli mixture then top with filling (we top it with cucumber, kale, and canned tuna) all the way across one edge. Gently fold filling end over on itself and continue rolling to form a tight cylinder.

Gently cut through the roll with the sharp knife using very little weight and a back and forward motion. Cut into bite-size pieces (approximately 6 pieces per roll). Leave in the fridge for 5-10 minutes before serving (sushi holds better when chilled).

Serve as is or with soya sauce and wasabi for a dipping sauce.

Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Week 29 | Project 52

Title: Zachary
Instagram’s account: –

Don’t you think he is adorable, maybe I haven’t painted the cuteness of him yet? My family and friends] said that I’ve already smitten by him since all the time when I spoke of him my eye spark!

I’m not that good with children despite my love for kids. But believed me that there is something about him that I really enjoy all the time spent. With him, I realised that happiness is actually found in simple things, such as spending time with my nephew around the room space is more than enough. His laughter just make me forgot all the trouble and stress in life! Do you have anyone around you just simply bring you some laughter?

xoxo, Angela
Illustration | Angela Leong

Moodboard

Mood Board | Wooden X Marble

We’re someone who’s not generally into using a lot of bright colors to decorate our home. And one of the main things we grapple with is how to use muted shades without my rooms looking bland. To add interest to a largely neutral home is to embrace the beauty of different materials. Which brings us on to our current obsession: marble and wood!

The combination of these two materials makes the kitchen looks very warm and inviting to me. Moreover, the wooden cabinets go very well with the black handles and the marble countertop and splash guard. We like the combination of open shelving and top cabinets against the wall as well. It makes for ample storage possibilities, but also an area to display your nicest things (like the lamp, plant and pretty cups in this case).

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Melonut

Melonut

Watermelon is one of my favorite fruit other than banana. There is time I wondering what does it feel like when combining fruit and donut together.

Heck, they don’t even have to taste like watermelons (although they could if you’re into that sort of thing). You could make them cotton candy if you wanted (in which case you’d get extra awesome foodie points for REALLY messing with people).

Now I can’t wait to make my painting a reality. What do you think?

xoxo, Joe

Drink RECIPES

Watermelon Soda

During the summer we have some leftover Summer Tea Melonade. Thus we decided to make the most simple drink we ever have for the hot weather. You will not only love it but it’s also a great conversation starter.  Trust me, people will have a million questions for you. In fact, it can be a bit overwhelming sometimes.

It will be a nice drink when you want something refreshing for the spring. You can use soda water or sparkling water for this drink. For me, my favorite is ice cream soda as adding cubes of “ices” I just simply create a new drink. For those, who don’t love gases in there drink you can add them to your water, do spice up the bland drink.

Ingredients |

  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of white tea
  • 3 tablespoons  of fresh lemon juice
  • 4 cups frozen watermelon cubes
  • spring of mint, for serving
  • can of soda water

Method |

Bring 1 cup water to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from heat and add sugar; stir until dissolved. Add tea bags and steep 4 minutes.

After the 4 minutes, remove the tea bags and press gently to release liquid. Let cool completely before refrigerating until cold. Blend mixture with lemon juice and watermelon cubes until smooth. Pour the mixture into the ice makers, freeze it to ice. Serve the watermelon cube with soda water.

Grab a water melon and mix the drink, share with us do you like it. Take a photo of your version, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see you trying out our recipe!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Week 28 | Project 52

Title: You are Star!

It has been 4 weeks since I pen down on my Wacom. I’m really bad at keeping track on my schedule these days. February we were busy with all the preparation for Chinese New Year and celebration. As it is really huge for our family tradition with all family and friends gathering together.

While right after the festive season, I was so busy and catching up on all works and ongoing project. I even have to refuse a few projects that I’m keen to work on. I won’t said all is done now but I’m going to get some break this couple of week for a trip. It’s uncertain but exciting I guessed especially I’m going to my dream city London!

Sorry for the being side-track all the time, this week this portrait is dedicated to all of our readers. Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world. Quoted by Harriet Tubman

You are Star, Superstar yourself!

LIFESTYLE Moodboard

Mood Board | Nerd Chair

We have been searching that perfect chair for our working desk for too long. And this time we came across this Nerd Chair by David Geckeler. With seamless integration of the back and seat rendered in wood, the Nerd Chair is both comfortable and aesthetically pleasing. With its unique classic Scandinavian feel condensed into a design.

Have you noticed the lovely shades of rich green floating? That green hue will be the perfect color for our working desk. What do you think?

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

 

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Sweet Berry Donut

Sweet Berry

It’s the second week of March, which is time for my second donut – Sprinkles Berry. Since I’m in the spirit of adventure lately, I decided to try a little doodle. I did a quick pencil contour sketch and then dove right in with watercolor. My sweet tooth immediately made me think of donuts and little else so this was pretty much inevitable. Seriously, I can’t think of much else and I’m wondering if the donut shop nearby is still open.

As a kid, I liked a bit of frosting or sprinkles, but as an adult, I’m rather enamored with the simplicity of this variety. However, it always good to have some of this yummy sprinkles. It’s still full of too many calories to count, but it’s so incredibly worth it!

But, I’ll show some restraint, like I did for today’s sketch. Just a few colors and quick washes to get the idea across. A rather appropriate approach to something that is just an illustration of a dream.

xoxo, Joe

Healthy Breakfast RECIPES

Roasted Nuts with Raspberry Jam Waffle

Ah, waffles! Crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside – a delicious, sweet breakfast! Waffles are definitely more of an American thing (and a Belgian thing, I guess!) That’s not to say us don’t enjoy a good waffle you just don’t see them as much here.

I’m not really a big breakfast person in general, I love breakfast foods I just tend to eat them later in the day (I know, I know I should eat breakfast every day but I don’t)

Previously we made Banana Toast with Macadamia butter and chia seed along with this waffles. As there are times we prefer sweet food in the morning when we will be having a long day. These waffles are just what we needed. The waffles are usually a little tangy but the jam sweetens it up, and the raspberry jam can be interchanged with any sweet fruit jam or preserves.

Ingredients |

  • 2 slices waffles
  • 1 tablespoon natural raspberry jam
  • ½ tablespoon chopped pistachio
  • maple syrup (optional)

Method |

Toast waffles spread ½ tablespoon raspberry jam on each slice. Top with chopped pistachio nuts. Drizzle maple syrup on it. Enjoy!

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

 

Moodboard

Mood Board | Chinoiserie Chic

When it comes to Chinoiserie Home, Navy Blue and White always comes to my mind first. Using a fondness for Chinese and Peranakan motifs, and an art collection, you can create an understated look that did not feel too maximalist or cluttered.

With wooden floors help bring the rich hues of the furniture and accessories together. A plush curved sofa, clad in blue velvet, is the highlight of the living room. Moreover, with sparkling glass chandeliers added a bold, contemporary touch to the Oriental-style painting and cabinets in the kitchen area.

You might think of chinoiserie as heavy and garnish, but it can be refreshing and even light too. Such frames your plates collation to the wall as an “exhibition”. It can be an enjoyment.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Almond Basil Pesto for anything, everything

We all know how easy a pesto paste could be made. If you don’t, just simply follow our method. We shared Fresh Herb Pistachio Pesto Paste before however if you preferred something even with high level of health benefit. You got to try this – Almond Basil Pesto! You eat it with anything and everything you like. It tastes way better than the guacamole!

Actually, people around us asked what do we usually eat! Especially me, I’m quite concerned with food I eat therefore I always will search for food that brings health benefit to us. We love almonds! It contains lots of healthy fats, fiber, protein, magnesium and vitamin E. You could name everything you search from the internet that is good. Almond oil and milk have been the trend these days. While the health benefits of almonds include lower blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol levels and etc. They can also reduce hunger and promote weight loss. That’s the reason why we been indulging and even have it in our pesto!

Ingredients |

  • 2 cups of green vegetables (we used basil leaves and baby spinach)
  • 2 clove(s) garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup Almonds
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
  • 1/2 cup Olive oil
  • season with salt and pepper

Method |

Toast the almond in a small pan over low heat with no oil and butter – stir and shake the pan until the almond is fragrant and toasty. In a food processor, combine all the ingredients for the almond pesto and pulse until mostly smooth.

Share with us if you like the taste of it! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Angela.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Choco-mint Donut

Choco-mint Donut

Hello folks, it’s a new month – March which means we are going to have a new theme for #themooninsight. This month I will be painting different kinds of donuts. There’s a saying “You can’t buy happiness but you can buy donuts. And that’s kind of the same thing.”

I am not a fan of chocolate mint but if it’s on the donut it will be a dream come true. We have these weapons of mass destruction on every street corner, and they’re called donuts, cheeseburgers, French fries, potato chips, junk food. Our kids are living on a junk food diet.

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Mood Board | Kids in Style

It is no surprise that children spend a lot of time in their bedroom. Used for sleeping, playing and working, it follows that their space should be a reflection of their little personalities.

When it comes to children’s decor, my eye is always drawn to white, airy rooms with playful details to add warmth and color. There’s space to let him play unrestricted, with stylish storage boxes to tidy away any clutter afterward.  To find a balance and you can do this by adding more soft tones. Moreover, textures such as wooden accents, a fun wallpaper or contrasting prints.

Stylish, practical, fun, cozy and comfortable. Our selection of children’s bedroom decorating ideas will keep the kids happy from toddler to teen and all ages in-between. Time to release your inner child.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

RECIPES Weekend Brunch

Roasted Mushroom Panini

After having the Panini at Animal Orchestra and making our very own version of Champagne Ham & Cheese Panini we have fallen in love with it. During the month of spring with all the rain and wind, all we need is some comfort food. Thus we decided to recreate the Panini again and this time in mushroom flavor.

This time we made our version of Walnut Basil Pesto as we believed the best food comes from fresh ingredients. You must be thinking we waste time making them when you can buy it. I can promise you it is different!

With the homemade pesto, this panini tastes nuttier than the previous one we made. We are loving this much as even bites you will taste the juicy mushroom and chunky nut at the same time. Having it with the caramelized onion, mushroom, and Swiss melt it was heaven! Moreover, this would be a great lunch option or a delicious dinner with a soup on the side! Omg, yes!

 

With much experience in making them, we don’t make our mistake like last time. Moreover, we discovered more tips for it.

  • When using the toaster oven, and you are worried about cheese oozing out onto your toaster oven’s heating element (the burnt cheese smells horrible), then place on a baking sheet. Toast for 3 minutes, then flip over and toast 1 minute more. You can also make this on a panini grill.
  • Advance preparation: You can assemble this sandwich and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for up to a day. Toast when ready.

Ingredients |

  • ½ pound mushrooms (white or cremini), sliced
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  •  Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 slices whole-grain bread (3 ounces)
  • 1 garlic clove, cut in half (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons minced chives
  •  Handful of arugula
  • ¾ ounce grated Gruyère cheese (3 tablespoons)

Method |

  1. Preheat oven to 200 C. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Toss mushrooms with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and thyme leaves and spread in an even layer on the baking sheet. Place in oven and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring halfway through, or until mushrooms are bubbling and moist. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper.
  2. If desired, rub one side of each slice of bread with the cut clove of garlic.
  3. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the cheese over 1 of the slices (on the side you rubbed with garlic). Top with half the mushrooms (use the other half for another sandwich or another recipe). Sprinkle chives over the mushrooms and top with a handful of arugula and remaining cheese. Top with remaining slice of bread (garlic-rubbed side down) and press down firmly. Drizzle remaining olive oil over top slice.
  4. Glazed it with olive oil, grilled it on the pan with a pot press down firmly on top. Grilled it for 3 minutes and flip and do the same on the other side.

Hope you try some of these bad boys! Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Sun Flower

Sun Flower

It’s been a while since I spend times with my friends. Years pass and every one of us has grown up, we have our jobs and family. Which means we have lesser time for each other.

There are times I felt that growing up is never easy. I always hold on to things that were. You wonder what’s to come. However, I think we knew it was time to let go of what had been, and look ahead to what would be. Other days. New days. Days to come. The thing is, we didn’t have to hate each other for getting older. We just had to forgive ourselves for growing up.

However, I always know that no matter how old I am my friends will be there for me and I will.

“True friends are like bright sunflowers that never fade away, even over distance and time.” – Marie Williams Johnstone

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Mood Board | Blossom Red

In the month of February, it’s a month of romance, passion, family and loved. It’s a month for Valentine’s Day and Lunar New Year. And to use a color to describe this festival, it’s red.

The red family goes hand-in-hand with dramatic settings to set the perfect stage to stun your guests and stop them dead in their tracks. Adding an accent color of red, magenta, and royal purple, brings a sense of play into a room and allows for enriching bland decor with a pop of bold intrigue.

Not to mention a vibrant accent wall brings in a sense of modern flair by adding a major focal point. Add some red element for the house create a warm and welcoming entrance. It stylish entrances shout hospitality, happiness and positive. We are certainly a fan.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

Festivals TRAVEL

Chinatown Night Market Photo Journal

Before the Lunar New Year, we all anticipate for the festival to arrive. Just like the Thanksgiving and the Christmas, there is a long preparation before-hand. However, unlike the western, on the eve there are still a lot of people working to earn the last bit before going home. As many business-men will self-declare themselves for a long 15 days holiday to have an annual rest after a long year of work.

While Singapore, Chinatown it has the longest history of having night markets during the festive season. Many would only head down to enjoy the lively vibes a couple week before the Lunar New Year. While some would also head down to Chinatown for the countdown on the Lunar New Year eve as well. Therefore, many Chinese(s) only feel like the year started only after the Lunar New Year.

This year, both Joe and I decide to go to the night market to do the last minute shopping on the Lunar New Year eve. As every year we will join the crowds for some cheap bargain as you would be unable to believe how cheap it can be. We simply stuck in between the human traffic and couldn’t take more photographs.

red and orange lighted up the streets 

the street flooded with shoppers

everyone is selling at half price or lower to get home for the reunion dinner

xoxo, Angela.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Cherry Blossom

Cherry Blossom

So every year we have two new years, one during the first day of the year and one during the first day of the Chinese calendar. This year is very different than usual, usually, on the first day, it will be near to empty around my house (as people are busy visiting). However, this year it’s still very crowded on the streets.

Since I wasn’t visiting, so I end up practicing baking at home. Please stay tuned for more amazing recipes.

Anyway, it’s always nice to have some holiday. Wishing year one great health and a Happy Lunar New Year!

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Totoro Pineapple Tart

Over the past few weeks has been super insane, we are busy with preparing for Lunar New Year! It’s so significantly important for the Chineses, just like Christmas for the Caucasian. We have been doing a lot of shopping, cooking, and preparation. This year both Joe and I decided to make some goodies to give away – pineapple tarts.

Totoro is an Instagram character that people love too put on their food. Because of its distinct color and shape, it is always easy to make them into food. There Totoro Pineapple Tarts takes longer to make then the usually ones as  there is lots of details to take note of, however the final product is worth it.

Pineapple tarts are basically a cookie with a pineapple filling, in a buttery and crumbly pastry. They are mostly referred as pineapple tarts in Malaysia and Singapore.

The filling is from fresh and juicy pineapple, which is cooked and reduced to a golden-color pineapple jam filling. No words can describe just how awesome they taste, and I can’t think of any, any, cookies that would top this. Simple as that!

We have always wanted to make pineapple tart for the new year, however, we always didn’t have the chance to. With lots of try and error, these time will finally, successfully make them.  To make them start by making the pineapple filling ahead to let it cool.

Ingredients |

  • 2 whole pineapples (8 lbs / 3 1/2 kg) or 5 lbs (2 1/2 kg) pineapple flesh
  • 1/2 tablespoon cloves, optional
  • 1 – 1 1/2 cups (250 – 300 g) sugar, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Method |

Cut the stalk off the pineapple and follow the skin. Make sure all divits are removed. Slice the pineapple flesh into pieces and blend in a blender until they become the puree. Add the pineapple puree and cloves to a non-stick pot and cook on medium heat, constantly stirring to avoid burning.

When the pineapple is almost dry, add the sugar and lemon juice, stir to combine well. Lower the heat to simmer and continue to stir until the pineapple filling turns golden in color and becomes very sticky. Transfer the pineapple filling out, remove the cloves and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 3 sticks butter (350 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 1/2 oz (100 g) sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 18 oz (500 g) all-purpose flour or plain flour’
  • black and white food coloring

Method |

Cream the butter and condensed milk until light and fluffy. Add in the egg yolk one at a time, and beat until well combined. Mix in the flour slowly to form the pastry dough. The dough is ready when it no longer sticks to your hands. Take 1/5 of the dough and colored it with white coloring, and the remaining using a bit of black coloring.

Divide the pineapple filling and dough into 100 portions. Roll them both into balls. To wrap, use your palms to roll each dough and then flatten it.

Add a pineapple ball in the middle and fold the edges of the dough up to cover the filling. Finish it off by rolling it into a round ball. Shape it into an avocado shape, add in the details of the tummy and ears.

Place the pineapple cookie on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Using the back of a paring knife, cut the inverted “V” shape on the cookie. Repeat the same until all ingredients are used up.

Bake in a preheated oven at 330F (165C) for about 20-22 minutes or until they turn golden brown. Transfer them out and cool on a wire crack before storing in an airtight container.

Hope you try some of these bad boys! Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Angela.

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 27 | Project 52

Title: Heart

I don’t paint people every day, sometimes I do paint randomly. Mixing brushes and colours and it could be where your creatives begin. That’s what I believed in as an artist and a creative.

We are sending this hear to everyone, today wasn’t a day just for lovers but everyone we want to appreciate they love for. There goes, “be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books – especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance every day.’ John Wooden

Happy Valentines everyone!

xoxo, Angela
Illustration | Angela Leong

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Conversation Hearts Cookies

We figured Valentine’s Day would be the perfect opportunity to get wordy on some heart-shaped cookies, so these Conversation Heart Sugar Cookies were born! We went a little hog wild making up phrases or putting our favorite lyrics on them. 

For the basic sugar cookie recipe, you’ll need one that makes for a firm cookie that won’t spread at all as it bakes. This recipe held up like a champ! Start with that to create your plain dough.

Once your dough is made, separate it into as many sections as you’d like different colors of cookie. We separated into three sections. Color each different section of cookie with some food coloring. We colored each part differently with these drop amounts:

  • bright pink = 6 drops mauve
  • yellow = 4 drops yellow
  • tael = 4 drops tael

Drop the coloring onto the ball of dough that you’re working with and knead it until the coloring is evenly spread. Do this with all colors. Once the colors are mixed, lightly flatten each dough ball and wrap it in its own individual plastic wrap. Chill all dough for at least 1 hour; we let ours chill overnight.

Once the dough is chilled, remove it from the refrigerator about 5 minutes before you plan on rolling it out to soften a bit. Prep your baking pans with a bit of nonstick spray and set your oven to 350. Flour your surface and rolling pin generously.

Roll one color of dough out to about 1/4″ thick. Cut out your cookie shapes and place them on the baking sheet. (We strongly recommend putting them on the baking sheet before stamping the letters into them!)

Then go to town with your cookie imprinting set and make them say whatever you want! This would actually be a super fun thing to do at a Valentine’s (or Galentine’s!) party. You could do it with kids, too — set up the cookies and let them stamp words to their hearts’ content. Stamp out all of your messages and place the cookies in the oven to bake!

The recipe calls for 8-12 minutes in the oven but we baked ours for about 6 minutes. Just keep a close eye on them, as they’re pretty delicate and will burn easily.

Ingredients|

  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • Zest of 2 lemons, divided
  • 2 tbsp of lavender buds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp of baking powder
  • 1 egg yolk

Method |

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. In a large mixing bowl, mix the lavender and lemon zest in the granulated sugar. Leave it for 20 minutes for it to infuse.

Start by mixing the flour, baking powder, and salt evenly in a food processor. Then add in the soft butter, beat the mixture it until looks like a coarse sand before adding in the sugar mix. Lastly, add egg yolk and vanilla extract, mix it until the dough comes together. Wrap using a clear wrap and leave it in the fridge for at least 2 hours.

When it is done, on a lightly floured surface roll out shortbread until 1/4-inch thick. Cut out shapes and transfer to a baking sheet.Imprint the text of yours on the cookies. Bake for 8-10 minutes.

Hope you try some of these bad boys! Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Mood Board | Fairy Lights

There is a madness trend out there all about fairy lights. Moreover, fairy lights are no longer reserved for outside barbecues or the Christmas tree. Take inspiration from these beautiful Pinterest post and use them to make your bedrooms look completely magical.

Whether you call them rice lights, fairy lights or string lights, it would be rare for you to find a home without these. You could just string these along with a wall or you could dress them up a little for a more mature look. A little string of them, it can blink up your room when you didn’t want to use the main light or lamp.

Sometimes, the intensity of fairy lights can be a little too bright. One way of handling this would be with a dimmer switch. Another way to soften the brightness of fairy lights is to hang it behind a sheer curtain. Use this to define an accent wall or to create a headboard a part of your bedroom décor.

Do you love this fairy light?

xoxo, Angela

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Happy Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine’s Day

People honor their love for one another by spending time together and sending flowers. The ritual of expressing love and affection goes far beyond the courtly love of Chaucer’s time. He may have been the first person to link the Catholic Saint Valentine with romance, but today Valentine’s Day is a time to show appreciation for family and friends as well.

Since my grade school days, I’ve likely passed around candy hearts with Valentine’s Day messages. Now that I am older and muValentine’s card list is smaller, thus I have more time to fully express myself.

Other than sending the message on to the things people love to receive is the flower, especially roses. There are lots of meaning when it comes to the color and number of roses you give. When it comes to loves red color is the one you go for. Guys out there be careful of what you buy. However, for me, the best flower are those that are still in the soil.

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Meringues Kisses

We absolutely love meringues. They are so light, airy, melt in your mouth but crunchy at the same time. The texture of these cookies is amazing. Since Valentine’s Day is approaching, we thought it would be the perfect time to make mini peach stripe Meringue Kisses.

We don’t really buy into the idea of Valentine’s day and we’re not keen on the idea of forced romance. When it comes to that kind of thing, we prefer a little more spontaneity. However, we do enjoy playing with food coloring and given that at this time of year it is practically mandatory to dye everything peach we might as well make the most of it!

They may sound and look fancy but they are incredibly easy and take less than 15 minutes to make using just a few ingredients. Also, the homemade version of this cookie is so much better than the store-bought kind. You will be so happy you tried them and your family will love you!

Ingredients |

  • 4 egg whites at room temperature
  • ⅛ tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup superfine sugar (baker’s sugar found at your market in a carton)
  • peach food coloring

Method |

Bake the sugar on a baking paper on 180C till the side of the sugar turn browning.

Heat the oven to 100C. Beat the egg whites using an electric whisk or stand mixer in a large, spotlessly clean bowl until soft peaks form. Add the sugar gradually, a tablespoon at a time, whisking well after each addition, until all the sugar has been added. Continue to whisk the meringue for a few minutes more until it is very thick and glossy and forms stiff peaks when you lift the whisk out of the bowl.

Fit a piping bag with a large plain or star nozzle. Turn the bag inside-out, either over a jug or vase. Use a (clean!) artists paintbrush to paint stripes of the gel coloring down the inside of the bag.

Fill the bag with the meringue and twist the top closed. Use a little meringue mix to stick the greaseproof paper to the baking trays (this makes it easier to pipe) and pipe small ‘kisses’, slightly spaced apart on the trays, I like to do a couple of different sizes.

Bake for about 45 minutes, but be aware that they could take up to two hours depending on your oven (mine took 1 hour for teeny ones and two for larger ones). They are ready when they can be lifted off the paper in one piece – if the bottom comes away they aren’t ready yet.

Take them out of the oven and let them sit for a couple of minutes before trying to lift them off the paper, they should have become firm and peel off the paper in one piece, if they aren’t ready yet put them back in the oven for another 15 minutes then check again.

Cool and store in an airtight container.

How are you planning to celebrate Valentine Day? Whatever you do, ensure that you try my recipe or one of the many recipes down below! Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 26 | Project 52

Title: Dear the perfect pair
Instagram’s account: @caroko

Another week of disaster – tons of works and coming festivals have been overloading my shoulder weight. Therefore, I haven’t been able to work on any paintings lately. Hence, this week I would like to share a commercial portrait that I did a while back. One of the pieces that I feel so much love in it.

This lovely couple that I know – they are the most lovable pair ever. To be inspired to paint this portrait, the lady share with me tons of stories to celebrate their joy. I’m so fortunate to present this to their anniversary, to be part of their joy.

The one thing I always learned from the people who engage me to paint for them, they taught me, “There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved.”

I hope everyone like today painting! Stay tuned for the weekly portrait!
Happy Thursday!

xoxo, Angela

Illustration | Angela Leong

Beauty Craft

Handmade Terrazzo Soap

Do you ever hear a song that you just can’t stop listening to? So much it becomes obsessive to the point you block your own social settings in Spotify so no one can see just how many times you’ve played it today… I’m feeling this way about terrazzo. I’m working on a few projects that use this patterning at the moment but I’m holding them back so I don’t look totally obsessed and you don’t get unbelievably bored by it all!

I’ve always been drawn to a random pattern. The control freak in me loves that you have a certain amount of control over creating this. You can choose the colors and concentration of the pieces but you just never know exactly how it’s going to come out.

It gives you the feeling you have been instrumental in the pattern creation, but without any of the responsibility. You can’t criticise yourself for putting anything in the ‘wrong place’ or do it again just with that piece moved slightly to the left. It is what it is. That lets us appreciate the look as a whole rather than as individual elements.

Maybe this is the reason I’m so drawn to it. Instead of scrutinizing and finding fault it’s about accepting what’s there and seeing how it’s uniqueness is its beauty. (Are we getting way too deep for a DIY post about soap?) Either way, these soaps are a cute addition to my bathroom and I hope you love them as much as I do!

You can spray these with alcohol spray to finish and then wrap them as gifts or pop them into your own soap dish (that’s what I’ll be doing!) I love these colors but I might make a black and white version too.

Last week we have shared with you Coconut cake with mango puree for Valentine’s Day. However, if you and your friends are not fans of food why not try this Handmade Terrazzo Soap?

Materials |

  • Melt and Pour Soap
  • Concentrated Food Colouring
  • Alcohol spray

Method |

Add small drops of food coloring and a carbon capsule (to make black) into individual plastic cups. Melt the soap and let it cool for a couple of minutes, then pour it into the cups (about halfway full) and mix. Leave these to set in the fridge for an hour or two.

Chop up the set soap into rough uneven sections. I’ve added some clear soap as well to add areas that are more translucent within the finished soaps. You can spray these blocks with alcohol spray to stop the color seeping later.

Melt the white soap (and add any essential oils you like) then take a handful of soap blocks and add them to the mailing tube. Cover these with the white soap. Repeat this step until you run out of either soap bits or the white soap (or you reach the top of the tube!) Leave this to set in the fridge for at least 4 hours. The mold should be cool when the soap is set.

Dry off the soap and using a knife cut the tube into slices.

What colors do you think would look amazing as a terrazzo soap? Let me know in the comments below and I might make them! Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Mood Board | Split in Two

It’s always fun to play around with colors, everyone love colors, don’t we? If you are staying small spaces like we do, having limited space it hard to play with hues as it might make the space smaller or even cluttered. So, what if we split them into two – horizontally, vertically or even diagonally?

The two-toned walls have always been the trend for many years. The horizontal lines just bring two colors to one place. The blue-and-white wall in is one of my favorites. It divides the room like wainscoting, but without having to paint all those tricky little ridges.

However, there are lesses inspiration for painting them vertically and diagonally. When I found them out it amazed me even more. By having a white ceiling and have it paint colored based it help your room look brighter on your eye level thus allow your room having a classic look of an English house. While having a half of your bedroom painted with a darker hue allows your room to create a new dimension.

And for lovers who love bright and bold hues, but worried that putting a vibrant color across all four walls, from floor to ceiling might be too much? Try taking the intense shade just halfway up the wall! Pair it with a gentle neutral up top – think white or light grey – to soften the saturation.

Would you like to try to split in two now?

xoxo, Angela

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

Festivals

Light to Night Festival Photo Journal

Photogrammetry is part of our life, we decided to share our everyday life journal irregularly. To document our travel journal, be it locally and overseas. For the past two weeks, the town is buzzing with the House of Mirrors. We have been to the one last year at Melbourne, it was astonishing experiences, with little crowds and no time limits. Therefore, we weren’t sure if we would like to rejoin the crowds in Singapore.

On the last day of the festival, we decided we should at least get out during the evening to join the breeze before the festival end. We have been contradicting due to the continues rain the past couple of week.

We’re glad that we went, we didn’t get to explore all the highlights of the festival but it was a nice night out for all the works we been through the weeks. We stroll along the Singapore River and the Civic District, it filled with beautiful lighting.

buildings are beautifully lighted up with graphics and digitized photo

the white, the blue and the red dot lights

my pick by Joe, she captured the most feminine part of me. 

she is my ideal subject, she doesn’t see her beauty yet.

changes of lights on the iconic building just make the night more beautiful  

 

wander around the iconic building, ignore the surround to experience the atmosphere. 

xoxo, Angela.

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Coconut Cake with Mango Puree

Happy February! This is our Valentine showstopper! A light and creamy coconut cheesecake, with a tart mango center and a crunchy roasted nutty base. It is the perfect cake to bring to the table this festive season. It can be made well in advance and stored in the freezer. When ready to serve, just defrost and decorate.

To those who don’t have any valentine dates, grab some time and make this for your family and friends. We are sure that they will enjoy this in the festivals season.

Coconut Cake with Mango Puree is a creamy no-bake cheesecake that you’ll fall in love with! Made with only natural sweeteners, this cheesecake is both great for you and incredibly delicious!

We didn’t want to just create a regular cheesecake and we want to make one that everyone in our house like so Coconut Cake with Mango Puree it was! This stemmed from the fact that based on the number of mangoes I’ve eaten in the past two weeks, I’ve in fact turned into a mango. Also, I love coconut so much and used a lot of it in this recipe!

I know what you’re thinking…so, how does it taste?!

I will admit that I was super skeptical about this vegan coconut cheesecake and I’m happy to say this was AMAZING! I mean really, I love cream cheese cheesecakes, but if I found out tomorrow I could only eat vegan cheesecakes I would be pretty happy with my life. This had all the right things about cheesecake – the slight tartness, the sweet delicious parts and best of all a rich and creamy base with a thick crust. I loved this cheesecake, and the coconut flavor + the mango topping just took it over the top for me!

The ingredients are so simple, and the cheese substitute is cashews soaked in water which create such an amazing texture when blended! I get fresh mangoes but if you can’t, you can always thaw frozen mangoes.I genuinely see why people make no-bake cheesecakes now! They are so easy to make and without all the unnecessary fuss. I would just let you know to be wary of the melting factor, which honestly happened after an hour and a half of sitting out *effects of a food blogger on crutches!!* and once I put this back into the freezer it was perfectly fine again.

Oh yes, another small tip: a small Springform is really enough here. The cheesecake is incredibly rich. Just think, basically we eat pureed nuts here. With coconut. And more nuts, a little coconut oil, and a few dates. All super healthy but equipped with an enormous energy density.

Ingredients |

For the crust

  • 1/2 cup of shredded coconut, oats and soaked date each
  • 1 1/2 cup soaked almonds

For the filling

  • 1 1/2 cups soaked cashews
  • 1/2 cup of coconut milk, coconut cream, coconut oil and lime juice each
  • 4 tbsp coconut sugar

For the mango swirl

  • 1 ripe mango
  • 1 tbsp lime juice

Method |

To prepare the base, drain the soaked dates and almonds. Blend them in a food processor until they form a sticky dough. Then add the oats and shredded coconut and blend again until everything comes together. Press the dough onto the bottom of 4 6″ spring pan.

Now puree the mango with 1 tbsp lime juice. Save for later.

Place all the ingredients continuing in a blender and puree until the filling is very smooth and creamy. You might need to add some coconut milk or lime juice. Pour the filling over the crust. Now pour the pure mango on top and use a fork to create swirls.

Place the cake in the freezer and let it sit for at least 4 hours.

How are you planning to celebrate Valentine Day? Whatever you do, ensure that you try my recipe or one of the many recipes down below! Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Orchid

Orchid

It’s been a month since the new year, which means it’s time for a new theme for The Moon’s Insight. Since spring is around the corner, I decided to paint flowers for this month. As we all know spring is the season of flower. For the first week of February, I decided to paint one dedicated to my country – Singapore. Which is our national flower – Orchid.

Do you have an orchid (or a few) growing on your windowsill? They’re easier to grow than you might think. The flowers of an orchid like this one, a phalaenopsis, stay on the plant for months, providing a burst of color (and joy) for your home. However, it is very hard for us to grow it thus why not paint one.

This time I have uses less water for the paint thus the painting looks more powdery. It seems like I use color pencil for the painting but it is water paint. What do you think?

xoxo, Joe

 

Moodboard

Mood Board | Pop Retro

Having a thought to change your room from black and white to colours? When you can’t decide what colours to use, you might want to give your room a taste of pops!

If you love bright colours and retro styling, these room suit you a lot. It’s part aspiration and part inspiration. As big and bold as these rooms are, there are some pretty do-able ideas in here. Where you can spice up your room a little bit with some simple moves.

With portrait or illustration in the mixture of retro colours will bring the fun yet homey feel to the room. Splash some colour into your home with this energetic and fun retro arts. Imagine what a fun and lively atmosphere this wallpaper design would bring to kid’s playrooms and retro interiors. It’s perfect for pop-art lovers and adds heaps of personality to your home.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 25 | Project 52

Title: Dear Teru
Instagram’s account: @terumenclova

This week has been a disaster – not quite any relaxing week. I have meetings back-to-back, continues to work with hiccups with my keyboard. Apple products are always good, they have great helpdesk as well. Thus, they are way too popular that I need to the lineup to get into the queue. For my work, I decided to get myself a cheap keyboard to work first and indeed it save big time as I don’t have to waste time on working on the long cut. I miss the shortcut keys that I have memories. However, I wouldn’t say all is bad, at least I got a couple of catch up(s) with friends I felt that it is amazing!

Well, enough of me! This week I would like to dedicate this painting to lovely Teru. A travel blogger and freelance photographer from Prague, CZ. A lovely lady who I admire and falling in love with her charms, she is always with such a lovely personalities that are why she raise up quickly in the Instagram community. For those who are interested in her travelling, check it out her blog at http://terusguide.com/ and I believed that you will like her like I do.

I hope everyone like today painting! Stay tuned for the weekly portrait!
Happy Saturday!

xoxo, Angela

Illustration | Angela Leong

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Roasted Carrot Hummus

It’s been far too long since I shared a hummus recipe. We love hummus so much that we keep on making new flavors. However, we’ve been neglecting to come up with anything new. Fortunately, we’re making up for lost time with one of the best hummus recipes we’ve made (or eaten) in a while. We made it on Sunday, and nearly all of it is gone.

The star of this hummus recipe is, of course, roasted carrots. Roasted carrots are one of my favorite things so it almost feels wrong to throw them into a food processor and blend them into hummus. But, having made an enormous tray of them over the weekend, we figured we could spare a few.

And we’re so glad that we did. As the subtle flavor and color that they add to this hummus recipe are truly special.You can make this hummus in a food processor. If you’d prefer to use raw carrots to cooked that’s fine. Shred them finely if you use your food processor for this; the food processor can certainly handle raw carrots, even if they’re not so finely shredded! And you’ll want to reduce the amount to 2 or 3 carrots since roasted carrots shrink a little.One of the ingredients we added spiced up the hummus and it is rose harissa. I am pretty sure you all know about harissa. Rose Harissa is the next sriracha sauce. By that, I mean the chili sauce you’re going to want to splatter on all your foods. Just a little bit of it in the hummus, it covers up the rawness of the carrots.

We usually don’t include too many herbs and spices in the sauce so we can add it to any meal without having a conflict of taste. But Rose Harrissa is one of them that we loved to have in our food.

Ingredients |

  • 4 large carrots, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Sea salt or kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1½ – 2 cups chickpeas, cooked
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • 1 tsp of rose harissa
  • 1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil and sunflower seed, for drizzling (optional)

Method |

Preheat the oven to 400F. Toss the carrots with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place them on a baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes, or until tender and browning along the edges.

Place the chickpeas in a food processor or Vitamix along with the carrots, olive oil, salt and pepper, tahini, rose harissa, garlic, and lemon juice. Pulse a few times to break it all down. Turn the motor on and drizzle in ½-2/3 cup water slowly, stopping often to scrape the container down. Use your judgment on how much water to add; I used the ⅔ cup, but less might be sufficient to obtain a creamy texture.

When the hummus is perfectly smooth, transfer it to a serving dish and drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil over it. Serve.

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Pizza

Pizza

Happy Sat… Thursday. I thought it is a weekend when I woke up, since usually during the weekend I have the best sleep. (And I dream about pizza) This few day I have been focusing on my new activity – weaving. This activity is relaxing and calming when I do it. However, I will need to get back to painting soon since I am out of paint for you guys.

These stressful days just makes me crave for pizza. The warm, enticing scents were floating down, basil and oregano and tomato. It made Wes long for something, something he couldn’t place. It is like a happy childhood, a home.

Do you love pizza?

xoxo, Joe

Moodboard

Mood Board | Little Blue Boy

Pressman describes it as being both cool and fresh yet vibrant. It has verve. This blue offers a kind of lyrical escape. It’s an oasis for your eyes – luxurious and vivid. A visual delight that transports you beyond the banal. It speaks of the wide open firmament and summer and sun-lit sea.

Pretty glorious.

Think of the 60-30-10 model. You want to split your color scheme across this ratio with accents coming in at just 10%. This hue works really well to pique your palate – it’s super racy and adds spice. This particular hue works in well with greys and mustard to chartreuse tones. Look for inspiration and pair it with crisp white for fresh style. For high contrast, work in tandem with crimson red.

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | French Fries

French Fries

While the world keeps getting bigger and filled with more options and new and better things. It’s always the common things in life that capture my heart. Not the latest new gourmet food but those ridiculously ordinary things that have stood the test of time.

They are the things that I knew as a child and the things that still give me comfort as an adult whenever I see them. Like french fries, or that favorite pair of sneakers.When it comes to the stuff of my life, I like to keep things as simple as possible. That’s the real magic.

Sure, today, I have too much stuff and I really should get rid of some of it. But each time I pick up an object my mind floods back to the memories that it contains. I do eventually say goodbye to these little things, as I’ve no intention of becoming a hoarder, but it’s a slow process. It’s difficult to decide if a memory is worth keeping. How will I know if I’ll really miss it until it’s already gone? How about you?

xoxo, Joe

Healthy Breakfast RECIPES

Banana Toast with Macadamia Butter and Chia Seed

This could be our favorite breakfast these days, it contains all our favorite bits of it. Now, all you listening is our munching sound, “yum yum yum”… while eating the toast. It’s a simple to go breakfast! Simply toast your bread, slices your bananas and spread it with butter. However, we decided to go with macadamia butter as it’s a healthier choice – it comes with nutty textures.

While we decide to go with thicker bread slices as it gives you a better taste with all the filling on top. Lastly sprinkles with chia seeds and lots of honey before you head out to work.

Simple isn’t it?

We bought this macadamia butter at Queen Victoria Market that we visited last October. Before I see this kind of butter, I only know there is the normal butter and peanut butter. It amazed me when I saw it, thus we decided to get it.

Why do we love macadamia? Not only because we love nuts in general! Macadamia is full of high-quality fats, low in polyunsaturated fats, and low in carbs. Besides, its flavor is unbeatable. Le’s us get started.

Ingredients |

  • 2 slices sprouted whole grain (or gluten-free bread)
  • 1 tablespoon natural macadamia butter
  • ½ banana, sliced
  • ½ tablespoon chia seeds

Method |

Toast bread, spread ½ tablespoon macadamia butter on each slice. Top with banana slices. Sprinkle chia seeds on toast. Enjoy!

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Angela

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 24 | Project 52

Title: Dear Yvonne
Instagram’s account: @ yv8ne

If you noticed, I have been struggling to post the portrait every Wednesday now and then. Essentially I have been pre-occupied with works beginning of each week. Therefore, I believed that I might be posting on Thursday for a period of time. 

Back a while back, I’ve painted lots of amazing individuals and friends yet I couldn’t believe that I have left out a friend like her that played a big part in my life.

I met her 5 years back and I couldn’t be believed she converted me by inspired me “be free” with my life. She is a free soul, I admired her all the time, despite the difference we might have. She taught me to positive and happy despite the challenge fall onto me. It’s always hard to say but when you actually practice it with a friend like her, life seems happier and easier to pass by each day,

xoxo, Angela

Illustration | Angela Leong

Moodboard

Mood Board | The Every Girl

Almost every woman would love to receive flowers – especially on Valentine’s Day! People generally appreciate the warm feeling that comes with the surprise of flowers. However, sometimes you don’t need to plug them to brighten up your day.

While winter is leaving and we welcome spring and one of the essential are – Flora. You can now start putting up your sweet and beautiful flower curtain or those stunning flower wall decals. It simply turns your room into a little sweet dreamy spring room or those elegance living areas. With little changes, who says a temporary decoration can’t feel like home!

For those girls who love to travel, get some flora sneaker and get your journey going on. I can’t wait to get mine for the spring. Happy Monday!

xoxo, Joe

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Burgers

 

Burgers

Hello folks, it’s a new year and a new start to me. Therefore, as you can see there is a new format for The Moon’s Insight. It has been 2 years since I do water painting, somehow I still feel I am still not good at it even with all the practices I had done. While looking through what I have painted, it seems like I had already lost focus.

Therefore, I decided to challenge myself to do something different. Rather than painting what I like (which is mostly flowers) this time every month there will be a theme for each month. For example, this month the topic will be fast food, thus I will paint something related to it. For this week I painted a burger.

To me, the burger is a causal food where I can eat it at any time and any places. It is also a food that I and Angela love to recreate. We have already recreated burgers like Black Bean Burgers and Homemade Patties with Mozzarella, Peach, and Spinach.

Anyway, it’s has been raining for 4 days straight in Singapore and I simply hate it. However, it is a good weather to have a burger. I also have been thinking to make this painting into wallpaper, what do you think?

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Fresh Herb Pistachio Pesto Paste

People asking if we buy the on shelve ingredients, sometimes we do but we prefer to make on our own. We decided to share the different type of the pesto we created. You don’t have to stick with a standard recipe, play with the difference and you taste differently. Just a little toss with the ingredients, you are thus able to create a different flavor.

Making your own pesto you could enjoy it with your senses. The smell of fresh herb and the refining taste of the nuts, garlic, and the olive oil. That’s the reason why we love creating our own pesto – it is easy and simply required your 15 minutes.

Just prepare the ingredients and blend into pesto paste, you could even adjusting your own richness of the flavors and the texture of it. Nevertheless, this kind of sensation only could be made by hands, a jar of pesto you purchase on shelves will never give you the fresh taste of it.

Moreover, having a jar of pesto in your fridge is always a life saver for those busy weeknights. As, all you have to do is cook up some pasta, slather on that pesto and sprinkle with some Parmesan. Done and done. We enjoyed the raw texture that pistachio brings into, therefore, it matches so well with our favorite dishes – Mushroom Pasta with homemade herb pesto sauce. If you ever missed our past recipe just simply check it now!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of Pistachio
  • 1 1/2 cups of greens (spinach, basil, and parsley)
  • 3/4 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • juice of a lemon
  • A pinch of salt and pepper to taste.

Method |

Toast the pistachios in a small pan over low heat with no oil and butter – stir and shake the pan until the pistachio are fragrant and toasty. In a food processor, combine all the ingredients for the pistachio pesto and pulse until mostly smooth.

Share with us if you like the taste of it! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Angela

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 23 | Project 52

Title: Dear Andrea
Instagram’s account: @inbusinessandlife

That’s already the second week of a new year – time passes quickly isn’t it? Before you realized it will be the end of January. Do you feel slightly depressing due to the pilling of old and new works? I do actually, I couldn’t adjust myself yet and I feel like it’s like nothing have changed yet. Maybe because of the gloomy weather – as it has been raining every day since new year eve.

This week I would like to dedicate this portrait to Andrea, despite a terrible day, looking her Instagram and Youtube page, the cheerful smile from her simply just motivate me to pull through everyday life.

She is inspiring individual especially lately I gain the courage to go on the bare face because of her influences. I could never dare to go out without a makeup to meet a friend. And I did it twice starting this year. It something impossible to me so I’m so proud to do that as it really is healthy for our skin to breathe.

So for those who are not convincing with a bare face, Andrea is very persuasive with it, highly suggest you check on her page.

xoxo, Angela

Illustration | Angela Leong

Moodboard

Mood Board | Ultra Violet

Pantone will always surprise you with surprises, they have expertise that set the trend with the colors. It’s never my guess that after a year of greenery, 2018 will be Ultra Violet! It’s a very bold choice, unlike the greenery that you could apply any and everywhere. I still like the vision that they display, it could be a year full of unicorn, bubbles, skyline, and fantasy.

Thus, the mood board we put together, they can play it beautifully as well. As a designer, we always tell ourselves not to be fearful of the choice of colors but embrace them and enlarge the usage of it.

The usage of the Ultra Violet can be extremely striking or conventional. You can see the contrast they portray in interior and daily living. For those who are looking for a centerpiece, you could consider Ultra Violet instead of pink, orange or green shade. It definitely brings your room a different style for a brand new year!

xoxo, Angela

Credit | All shots used on the mood board via our Pinterest boards.

 

Healthy Breakfast RECIPES

Creamy Mushrooms with Dill

Mushroom is our beloved choice at meals, it’s easy to cook and we can consume at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It has lots of nutrients that we require every day. I simply don’t get why people hate it! Well, I can’t blame them as I hate apple and jackfruit my whole life.

We like to use any kind of Mushroom, but the plain, everyday White Button Mushrooms are my favorite. Now, depending on the size of the Mushrooms we use, we might leave smaller ones whole, cut larger ones in half or even quarters.

We always serve this Mushroom dish as an appetizer, but it will work equally well as a side dish. However, the Creamy Mushrooms with Dill is not a dish that likes standing as with most Cream based dishes. As soon as it is done, we serve the Mushrooms immediately.

But getting back to the Creamy Mushrooms with Dill recipe – I make the main dish, whether it is a salad or a cooked meal, first. Depending on whether the meal can sit a while (whilst we enjoy the Mushrooms as an appetizer), or can cook on its own with me not needing to run to the pots every 5 minutes, I make the Mushrooms last.

Tips from the sister;

  • To make this vegetarian, use vegetable stock instead. Conversely, we sometimes add sauteed chicken, beef, or veal to the dish to make it a bit more hearty.
  • Do remember though, that Mushrooms shrink quite a bit whilst cooking and you want them to turn out just the right size to be eaten.
  • A must pan-seared the mushroom till golden brown before leaving it to stew with the cream and stock. As we mention it above it is not good to leave a cream based dish out for too long, thus it is important to COOK IT LAST!!
  • You can also serve Creamy Mushrooms with Dill with a slice or two of Garlic toast and you are in heaven!

Ingredients |

  • 1/3 cup chicken stock

Method |

Heat a large skillet over medium; swirl in 1 tablespoon oil. Add shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender and browned in places, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

Return skillet to medium-high. Swirl in 1 tablespoon each oil and butter. Add one-third of mushrooms, season with salt and pepper, and spread in a single layer. Cook, undisturbed, until beginning to brown on bottoms, about 3 minutes. Stir and continue cooking until tender and browned, about 2 minutes more. Transfer to plate with shallots.

Cook remaining mushrooms in remaining oil and butter in two more batches. Return cooked mushrooms and shallots with any accumulated juices to skillet. Stir in vinegar, then stock and cream, and simmer until thickened slightly about 2 minutes. Stir in dill, season with salt and pepper, and serve.

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Angela

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 22 | Project 52

Title: Dear Jordan
Instagram’s account: jordanfoy_

It’s always a pleasure to be able to exchange with different creatives around the world. It has been a privilege and thanks to Instagram and various social media platform, it is much easier as compared to the ancient time.

This week I would like to dedicate this portrait to Jordon, @jordanfoy_, he is Director of Marketing at Mombo Labs, creators of Steller and Article. He is such an inspiring individual, I enjoyed his day-to-day photography featured on both Steller and his Instagram page. It’s beautiful to see the moments of capture. As it’s not set-up or stage. – purely beautiful stories like how Steller works!

That’s why we love steller a lot, we are able to stay connect and share proper stories. For those who don’t know about Steller yet, it time for you to know it now! You will love it like we do.

That’s fast, already 3rd day of the new year, happy mid-week!

xoxo, Angela

Illustration | Angela Leong

SISTOLOGY

No. 4 | Our Resolution for 2018

We notice plans never work out all the time without we strive to achieve our best self. Every year we have a set of commitments to remind ourselves to become a better one. Nevertheless, we have achieved quite a few but fail some. Have you achieved your promise in 2017 yet?

Still, it’s time to bid goodbye and a new set of resolution. Therefore, we sat down and make a list together for #LePlainCanvas, we hope that you could follow our journey to witness our promises till the new year-end. We also hope those who don’t have any resolution yet, get your pen and jot down what you want. Hopefully, you will find something common to what you like to do what we share with you some ideas!

So here we begin our list of ten for 2018…

one / Embrace ourselves.
(if we don’t who does?)

two / Learn how to enjoy and work happily.
(in term of having a good balance between work and blogging)

three / Visit new places and meet some new friends.
(to go list is somewhere we never been before!)

four / Be adventurous to try new things.

five / Learn a new skill.

six / Compliment yourself more.
(everyone should do that!)

seven / Sleep early and rest well.
(if we don’t pamper ourselves, nobody cares about it)

eight / Eat Healthy and Exercise more.
(again, health is everything)

nine / Constantly stay updates and connect with our readers.

(you are our inspiration, thus we would always love to hear more from you)

ten / Be appreciative of what we got and say thank you to people around us.

We all don’t want to overestimate ourselves, and we always know that time to time we will have new aims and goals. Thus this year we only set 10 resolutions. And what is yours, share with us and we love to have a discussion with you!

xoxo, Angela, and Joe.

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Season’s Greetings

Season’s Greetings

Just less than 2 days left until the end of 2017, which means today will be the last post for Le Plain Canvas and #themooninsight.

Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days. Looking back to all the painting in 2017 I have done, I still feel that I am kind of lost of what I like and want to paint. Everything just feels so overwhelming, therefore in the new year, one of my resolutions will be to focus.

Sometimes it is good to know and try lots of new things, however, there is a time that I will feel that I have not do anything. “If you want to be happy, do not dwell on the past, do not worry about the future, focus on living fully in the present.”

Goodbye 2017

xoxo, Joe

 

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Grilled Roots with Figs Flavored Butter

We love butter and use it in our cooking and will make no excuses for loving the real deal. When wesauté vegetables, which is almost every single night. I combine olive oil with butter because our palette can really taste the difference that a bit of butter makes! Today I’m sharing one of my favorite ways to flavor your store-bought butter if you want to add some kick to it. And how you can use this butter on the food.

If you’ve never tried making compound butter, it’s so easy. Use these butters as spreads too with a loaf of crusty French bread or a piece of toast.Start with unsalted butter that you leave out of the fridge until it’s softened to room temperature, although not melted. After the different trials, we discovered that our favorite butter comes in those sweet half wrapped sticks, which are perfect for small batches!

The best way for us to just mix our butter the old fashioned way with a fork, but you can use a whisk or blender if preferred. We sort of dislike to call this a “recipe” because compound butter takes literally no time. Moreover, only a few ingredients to prepare. You can add as little or as much of each ingredient as you like.We have some dried figs, parsley and whole grain mustard around and pretty much always have these in my fridge. Mince up a few your herbs and add to your butter, little by little. That’s how I do it as an instinctual cook. Once you are satisfied with the flavor, add a very small amount of sea salt to taste.

To store your flavor butter you can dollop it on to some wax paper and roll it, shaping as you would a jelly roll. Twist the ends to seal and there you have it!

Just a little recap of the rules of making these flavor butter;

  • Use room temperature butter only
  • Finely chop or grind ingredients
  • Mix the flavored butter in a bowl
  • Scrape mixture onto parchment paper
  • Roll into a log and twist the ends
  • Refrigerate until ready to use

We refrigerate it for at least 2 hours before it’s ready to use.

Flavored butter can be used in a variety of ways, depending on the flavor of the butter. We like to make both sweet and savory. We think any flavor butter is good on a piece of bread but you can also use them on vegetables to add a lovely flavor.

Ingredients |

  • 500g of mixed roots vegetables
  • 2 tbsp of flavored butter
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method |

Lay your vegetables on the parchment paper, spread the butter evenly on the vegetables and season it with salt and paper to taste. Grilled it on the pan till soft and tender or in the oven for 25 minutes at 180 C.

Get creative and tie the ends with pretty ribbon, put a label on them and bring them as hostess gifts to that Thanksgiving dinner. If you try them or have some other ideas, let me know what you think!

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

A Paint Portrait Project 52

Week 21 | Project 52

Title: Dear Carol
Instagram’s account: whimsicarol

How was the holiday season so far? Hopefully, everyone did enjoy your Christmas! I’m ashamed of myself for the two weeks long of hiatus from #APaintPortrait. While I’m trying to cope with the assignment before the holiday season, therefore, everything seems messed up. Although it is still being quite messy at work I just couldn’t take any of it as an excuse.

This week I would like to dedicate this portrait to Carol, @whimsicarol, sweetie from Texan. She is always sweet and great with her brush and camera. I enjoy spending time with her Instagram feed as it just cheers my day with great images and story!

As a creative, It is always interesting to know someone through their story as it will inspire me in any and every way. Stay tuned for another portrait of Carol and her super cute puppy in upcoming 2018!

xoxo, Angela

Illustration | Angela Leong

DESIGN The Moon's Insight

The Moon’s Insight | Merry Merry Christmas

Merry Merry Christmas

Ho Ho Ho ~~ Merry Christmas!

Yes, our long awaiting day is here 25 December the Christmas. The spirit of Christmas is the spirit of love and of generosity and of goodness. It illuminates the picture window of the soul, and we look out upon the world’s busy life and become more interested in people than in things.

Like last year I painted in the globe for the Christmas. Spending some time to paint during Christmas is a really hard time. With all the gathering and preparation of gift, I just couldn’t find any time to paint. Thus it teaches me a lesson to paint them early.

So for this Christmas, I wish for health and love to this world. Have a Merry Christmas!

xoxo, Joe

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Coconut Matcha Pines

Merry Christmas Eve, we are all prepared for our celebration tomorrow. We have a great month celebrating Christmas and preparing all the craft and food. We have also tried several amazing recipes that are brand new to us, and we can’t wait to share it with you soon.

Today we are going to make a small Swedish cake Coconut Matcha Pines. A fun fact for you they are actually called Kokostoppar. They are usually plain in flavor but since it is Christmas we decided to spice up a bit with Green Tea.

This little cake is perfectly frothy, not too “green” in taste, slightly sweet. It should also leave you completely satisfied. It is also something that you can make a snack for your friends and family.

Coconuts are excellent for making sugar-free as coconut has a naturally sweet taste. If you want a little bit sweeter, you can mix in some tablespoons coconut, honey or other natural sweets. But you definitely do not need 200g sugar as usual desiccated coconut usually contain.

If you’re not familiar with matcha, it’s basically very pure powdered green tea leaves. It’s exceptionally high in antioxidants and metabolism boosting compounds. It also has a very particular taste that I love.

We want to be boosting our metabolisms as this is the rate at which our: body uses energy, which supports weight loss.

This is a very simple recipe, however, we did face a little challenging when we are trying to mold the pines shape. Thus after trying serval method using hand and tools. We ended up making our own cone mold, using a piece of paper. Surprisingly it works amazingly well.

However, make sure you press the mixture into the mold firmly we have our’s failed cause of the mistake. Nevertheless, we are sure you will fall in love with the process of making it.

Ingredients |

  • 200 grams desiccated coconut
  • 50g melted unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons matcha powder
  • lime juice
  • 100g of caster sugar
  • 2 large eggs

Method |

Preheat the oven to 175 ° C. Melt the butter (let it cool) and mix all the ingredients. Form small peaks and bake baking paper for 10-15 minutes, depending on the oven.

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe

 

Our Table Stories

A Scandinavian-Styled Christmas dinner for this Christmas

Ho Ho Ho! I’m trying to imitating the Santa, but sorry I failed. I don’t act or behave like him but I love to give gifts like he does! The good and bad children list and etc… Well, at home we just like the elves, busy preparing for the holiday. Every Christmas is the most joyful holiday I could ask for. People are busy at least a month ahead and getting gifts for their loved ones. And the meals are what friends and family looking for!

This Christmas we are not going to go for the grand but a white and simple Scandinavian styled, not only the setting but also the food choice. We didn’t plan for something big but something simple and sweet within the family.

Let’s start with the main, we wanted a simple yet colorful centerpiece, thus we make a crown roast – Garlic Rosemary Chicken Cranberries. There is nothing better and easier than this simple one-pan baked chicken. All the comfort with little work.

And that’s what we have in today’s easy garlic rosemary chicken except with an added festive twist using cranberries! The clincher is that they all cook in the oven, leaving your stove top free for making your sides.

All of these one-skillet recipes can cook on the stove while the main dish is roasting, which means no jockeying for space and time in the oven. Each one spotlights a single ingredient dressed up in flavors that complement any protein, whether it’s your traditional turkey or ham or one of our entrees.

We decided to have two sides for this dinner, Pan-Seared Mushrooms with Cream and Dill goes especially well with chicken and Grilled Roots with homemade butter. This is the first time we made our first flavored butter using whole-grain mustard and fig.

Your goal is to welcome guests with nibbles and drinks, not fill them up or get them too lubricated before the main event. One or two showstopping cheese and colorful crudités with a three-ingredient dip are plenty (Take a look at our mini morning cheese palette.) Serve it alone with this Earl Grey Punch, it is beautiful at the same time it tastes refreshing.

Nothing signals that a party’s over like the host starting the dishes. It’s like the lights coming on at the end of a school dance. Stack everything in the sink and soak it in hot water and soap and relax. You can put away food after everyone leaves, too.

May the spirit of the Christmas fill your home with peace, joy, and love. HoHoHo!

xoxo, Angela.

Our Table Stories RECIPES

Lemon Peach Pie for a traditional Christmas

We decided to start another week on the right foot… with dessert. During a recent trip to our local wet market, I was drawn to all of these gorgeous peaches. I read somewhere that you shouldn’t even look at a peach before July. As their season typically ends in September.

So, although people may consider peaches to be more of a winter thing, I can confidently say that they are also a fall thing.

After buying several peaches, I immediately knew that I wanted to make pies. I haven’t made one yet this month and one of my favorite things about every season is pie. I really love combining fresh fruits with herbs and pies or galettes are a good opportunity to do that.

For this recipe, I wanted to combine the peaches with lemon and thyme. The flavors are magical together and because it tastes so good, it’s hard to believe that it’s so easy to make.

My favorite part of this pie recipe (besides how it tastes) is the anticipation of it. Since you can sit back and let the oven do most of the work, you get to really enjoy the smells as they fill the room. The aromas of pies baking always bring me so much happiness – even a Monday can’t take from me.

This peach and lemon pie showcase these peaches perfectly, with a deep dish form so as to stuff as many peaches into a single pie as we could… naturally. We’ve also been itching to use the leaves off my finally-flourishing thyme plant and the touch of thyme lends an incredibly bright and fresh streak to the sweet cooked peaches inside the pie.

The crust itself also has a bit of almond flavor thrown in, for an amazing scent fresh out of the oven, and of course, we couldn’t resist finishing off the thick lattice with an extremely generous sprinkling of turbinado sugar for a crunchy, candy-like top.

We can’t resist having a mini competition on seeing who did a better pie.

Joe vs Angela. which do you prefer?

Ingredients |

  • 4-5 large peaches, pitted, peeled and cut into thick slices
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • Optional: We used pre-made pie crusts (2 per box), but I highly recommend making your own for a fresh flavor.

Method |

Preheat oven to 180 C. Roll out one roll of the pie crust and line the bottom of a deep pie dish. Refrigerate.

Toss peaches with sugar, lemon zest, and juice, thyme, and flour. Transfer into the pie pan on top of the bottom crust. Roll out the other half of the pie crust. Make the top pie crust of your choice. (Note: We made a lattice crust.) Sprinkle with sugar.

Place a baking sheet on a lower rack beneath the pie pan to catch any juices that might boil over. Note: If you skip this step and the juice boils over, you will have to clean your oven to avoid filling your kitchen with smoke. Bake for 50 minutes to an hour or until the crust is golden and the juices are bubbling. Let cool for about 15 minutes before serving.

Share with us your version! Take a photo of yours, send us an email, tag us on Instagramtweet us, anything. We love to see yours!

xoxo, Joe