Throwing in the towel (temporarily)…

How annoying that I can no longer ignore my left wrist ache!
Even though I use both hands for knitting, I am a right-hander.
Therefore, my left hand is less robust than my right and more prone to an injury…

Image

Ohhhh, I would love to carry on!
However, I have to give it a rest until I feel no twinge of pain. So frustrating…

Anyway, my prayer was answered and the weather has improved!

Image

A quiet cityscape shimmering in the late afternoon sun…

Even though it was a public holiday today, perpetually busy Hubbie had to attend yet another emergency meeting at work.
Is there any day in advertising when things go without a hitch or crisis?
In order to compensate for his partial absence from my side, he suggested that we could meet up at the office and go out for dinner.
The sunshine was too beautiful to miss by travelling on underground. So, I set off on foot.
Hmmm… London is such a lovely place to walk & explore.
I came across this groovy car on Mount Pleasant…

Image

Image

Image

I am not a classic car enthusiast. However, I loved the look of this car.
It is a vintage Chevrolet, isn’t it?
A cool motor, indeed.

Then, I noticed a pigeon with a ‘tick mark’ sauntering ahead of me…

Image

This is a definite tick (✓)!

Image

The pigeon wasn’t particularly cooperative for the photo opportunity.
It didn’t like to be papped at all…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Veggie Japanese Curry @ home

One afternoon last week, I met up my friend Junko at Barbican.
During a chat over the tea, she mentioned that she came across a Japanese style
curry paste in Waitrose nearby.
So on our way home, we visited the supermarket and bought a box each.

Image

I chopped up a handful of carrots and a medium size sweet potato.
Then, they were cooked in the steamer for 10 minutes or so. I like cooking vegetables, especially root vegetable, with a steamer. The steam enhances and intensifies the flavour, notably their natural sweetness, and helps to retain as much as nutrition possible.

While the veggies were steamed, I boiled 650ml of water, following the instruction written on the box.
Once the vegetables were done, I saved some carrots and potatoes for Mr.B.
He loves vegetable – he is more fond of peas than dog food, in fact!
The remaining vegetables were transferred to the pan with water.
As soon as the water was boiled, I turn off the hob and added the curry paste.

Image

The roux dissolved fairly quickly and thickened as I stirred the pot.

For rice, I added a cup of Nerone rice against 2 cups of short grain brown rice.
The rice was put in the cast iron pan with 5 cups of water and soaked for 2 hours.
After soaking, the rice was brought to boil quickly then shimmered with low heat for one hour.
Once the rice was ready, the aroma was divine. Nutty and sweet. A happy home smell…

Image

Voilà!

Image

With some peas on the side, my lazy weekend dinner was ready.
Even Hubbie, who was not a fan of spicy food, enjoyed the curry.
The sweetness of carrot & sweet potato must have done a trick…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Rainy Saturday

Is it customary that the August bank holiday weekend always starts with a bad weather?
Instead of a glorious climax of the summer 2013, despondency hangs in the air. It is  like watching a funeral procession of the summer, isn’t it? Is this rain a weepy send-off for the death of summer?
Oh well, let’s pray that the weather will improve as forecasters predict…

Image

This morning, Hubbie herded up me and Mr.B and nudged us towards the caf like a sheep dog.
Yeah, I hear you. You want your egg & toast!
I just rolled out of bed with my hair being messed up like a bird nest, therefore, I was not entirely presentable.

As we settled in their Formica table, a girl came and took our order.
‘Oh no, you cut your hair!’ She exclaimed. ‘I preferred your hair as it used to be’. Oh dear.
Apparently, she thought I could look as young as her with my old hair – She was in her early twenties, by the way.
Sporting an embarrassed smile, I dodged her further probing enquiry.
First of all, I am OLD and wouldn’t even dare to try looking as young as her.

*AHEM* Hubbie nervously cleared his throat.
He was apprehensive of my reaction to her comment. I reassured him that everyone was entitled to his/her opinion and I was ok with it.

We sipped our tea and watched endless ripples appearing in the paddle outside.

Then, our breakfast was brought out.

Image

As we munched on our egg & toast, the sky brightened slightly and the raindrops turned smaller.
Maybe, just maybe, the summer will glance back at us tomorrow and give a huge grin in the shape of sunshine?
Oh please, don’t end the summer like this…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Patara @ Greek Street

Prior to the August bank holiday weekend Fei & I had a Thai diner at Patara on Greek Street.
Can you believe that we won’t have any more public holiday left until Christmas? I am so sad…
While I waited for Fei in front of Costa on Old Compton Street, an alcoholic guy approached me and looked into my iPhone as I was typing away this blog entry. Eek! I turned my body away from him and he drifted away like a floating seaweed. What a weirdo.

Then once the police appeared on horseback, he vanished like a magic and was nowhere to be seen…

Image

The air was warm and the sky was getting increasingly overcast.
Ever more pronounced breeze indicated the approaching rain from the continent.
What a shame that the weather during the Notting Hill Carnival would likely to be a mixed bag, shine & rain.

I walked to Soho from Old Street – a pre-emptive power walk before an imminent feast.
Relying on my feet instead of TFL is the most dependable as well as pleasant way of travelling in London.
Plus, walking give me a time to observe & reflect. My mind runs freely as my body concentrates on putting one foot in front of the other.

Patara had been my favourite Thai restaurant for a long time.
However, the branch I’d been frequenting was their Maddox Street one.
Therefore, we decided to try their Greek Street outlet this time…

Image

A fragrant air greeted us as we entered the restaurant.
The identical smell as the Maddox Street’s. A quite distinctive yet delicate scent which puts anyone at ease instantly.
May be from those orchids displayed all around the restaurant?

After a brief wait at the bar, a waiter with a beaming smile ushered us to our table…

Image

We studied the menu and was instantaneously drawn to the picture of rock lobster pad thai. Mmmm…
After some consultation with the waiter, we decided to order 3 dishes with a portion of rice to share between us.

Here comes Kiew Wan Gai Ban – free-range chicken green curry with green basil…

Image

The curry was fairly spicy.
However, the roux was creamy without being too rich. A generous amount of bamboo shoot and chicken was in there. It was very tasty.

Yum Nua Makua Grob – grilled sirloin beef spicy salad with onion & wild rocket…

Image

I must say the dressing they used for this salad was just exquisite.
The sharpness of lime was nicely rounded with sweetness. And the beef was succulent and flavoursome.
We both were raving our praise as we noshed it away.

And then, le plat de resistance, Lobster Pad Thai…

Image

Ahhhh… Just looking at the picture, I want to go back there and order it again!
I love Pad Thai any day. But with lobster, OMG, it was amazing!
My mouth is watering like Pavlov’s dog as I write this sentence, recalling the taste…

The service we received at Patara was efficient and sincere.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable dining experience and I shall go back there in near future.

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Seed Loaf @ St.John

One late evening, Hubbie presented me a brown bag, ‘This is for you’.
He had a meeting with a retoucher at St.John Bread and Wine on Commercial Street that afternoon. And he decided to bring home some bread.

Oh yeah, I like St.John…

Image

Which one did you buy?

Image

The loaf was tightly wrapped in a waxed paper.
He said it was a seed loaf.

Image

Hmmm… It smells gorgeous!
The aroma of the loaf was amazing. It smelled buttery and sweet. I was so looking forward to eating it with dinner.

While I was rubbing my hand with glee, Hubbie sliced it and piled the pieces on the plate.
At the table, I picked up the loaf and bit into it…
What? What? What?? This is not a bread. This is a CAKE!!
I turned to Hubbie and stared at him. He also realised the error and mumbled, ‘But they said it was a loaf’. Well, next time, please ask them if it really is bread…
Astonishingly, Hubbie seemed to be not that bothered about carrying on eating the loaf with dinner. However, I forbade him to put butter on it though. After all, it was a cake, not a bread. *SIGH*
I finished my dinner without bread but ate the loaf as dessert with a cup of tea.
And it was very agreeable, indeed…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Blog at WordPress.com.