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Saturday 9 February 2008

Chinese New Year Goodies. Part 1: Cakes

My sister-in-law runs a home-based bakery, so our house is never short of Chinese New Year goodies, especially cakes. This year is no exception that she baked a rich chocolate cake for us to feed the guest for the first day of Chinese New Year. She supplied us with enough variety of layered cakes to last for the whole duration of the Chinese New Year celebration too.

These are very good still-life subjects for photography with all the lines, colours and textures. Therefore, I started a project of photography during this Chinese New Year on the Chinese New Year goodies. I'll post them in a series, so please stay tuned on CK Go Places.

The extra-rich chocolate cake. Very yummy!

The traditional layered cake (kuih lapis).

Layered cake with banana essence.

Layered cake with yam flavour.

Layered cake with prunes.

Layered cake with hawberry flakes.

My sister-in-law bakes layered cakes for sale only during Chinese New Year. She's got a remarkabe number of dedicated customers who always fill up her baking slots two months before every Chinese New Year. If you wanna try your luck next year, she can be reached at Christina's Cakes (zero-one-three-8949298). She's got a list of yummy cheese cakes on her brochure during non-festive seasons too which are made to order.

Friday 8 February 2008

The Chinese New Year Eve Dinner

The Chinese New Year (CNY) eve dinner is probably the most important dinner of all for the whole year as all the family members come together to have a reunion dinner. There's no exception for our family this year that my brother and sister-in-law who work in Singapore brought my nephew back to Kuching for the CNY reunion.

We had our CNY eve dinner at a renowned restaurant in Kuching in which we had to make the booking 3 months ahead. It was a very satisfying dinner with all the finest ingredients in Chinese cuisine.

We were about to enter the restaurant.

My three little niece and nephews.

The 'yu sang' that is a must have item during CNY.

The shark-fin soup with chicken and crab meat.

The suckling pig with extra crispy skin.

Steamed white pomphret.

Japanese clam and fish mole garnished in broccoli.

Double-flavoured prawns in teriyaki sauce and butter sauce.

Baby abalones in broccoli.

Sweet glutinous rice.

Wednesday 6 February 2008

Happy Chinese New Year

Today is the 30th day of the 12th month for the year of the pig, which is the new year eve for the year of the rat tomorrow. CK Go Places would like to wish all Chinese and those who celebrate Chinese New Year around the world a very happy and prosperous year ahead.

These animated pictures are courtesy of MillanNet.

Wordless Wednesday – Grasshoppers

Tuesday 5 February 2008

Skyscraping Feat

'Land in Hong Kong is as expensive as gold', that's what I was told many times by the people living in Hong Kong. I guess it is due to the limited flat land at the coastal area where the inner part of the island is mountainous. Therefore, all the buildings have to be built upward rather than sprawling across the land. It is really a concrete jungle, but that's literally incorrect, as remarkable number of buildings are made of steel.

Driving under the shadows of the giants.

Light does break through the gaps once in a while.

The 'polished' buildings.

Not so identical twins.

Bridging the gap.

This way to the sky.

Side by side.

We are all brothers and sisters.

Monday 4 February 2008

The Giant Fritters

Whenever I watched the Hong Kong Cantonese series on tv, I would come across families having congee with Chinese crullers or dough fritters (油條) for breakfast. The dough fritters in the tv series looked so yummy, and when I was in Hong Kong, I couldn't afford to miss that! The shop that I went to is at No. 82, Stanley Street, Central, which is within walking distance from the Central MTR station. The shop has no signboard in English, so the direct translation would be Wai Kee Congee Shop (威记粥店). It is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

Wai Kee Congee Shop (威记粥店) has no fancy setup.

Everybody was busy manning their own section in the open kitchen.

The giant fritters in the making.

The extra crispy dough fritters.

After seeing those yummy food in the making, I couldn't resist but ordered everything! There were not many choices on the menu, just various types of congee, dough fritters, and choeng fan (steamed rice-sheet rolls), but everything was nice.

How could I miss the dough fritters in my order?

A closed look at a dough fritter suggests that it is extremely crispy.

Just look at the size of the dough fritter, don't criticize my size please!

The dough fritters wrapped around with steamed rice sheets (炸两, ja loeng) were very yummy too.

The steamed rice-sheet rolls with barbecued pork as fillings (叉烧肠粉, cha siew choeng fan).

The dough fritters went really well with this congee with lean meat and century eggs (皮蛋瘦肉粥).

That was really a very satisfying breakfast. I really miss Hong Kong!

Sunday 3 February 2008

Toys R' Not Enough

While I was in Hong Kong, I visited the largest exhibition I have attended ever! These are the Hong Kong Toys and Games Fair and the Hong Kong International Stationery Fair. Unfortunately, photography was not allowed in the exhibitions. Otherwise, I would have shot loads of pictures to share with you here. There were many interesting stuff at the fairs that only a child could think of, and yes, I mean a child! Adults do not know what a child want for toys most of the time.

Even the gateway was erected to a child's liking.

It says: "Cool tool", and the tools on display were really cool. All are desktop-size workshop tools, e.g., lathe machine, milling machine, etc.

The fairs occupied the whole Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

On the last day of exhibition when it was nearing the closing time, all the exhibitors were busy with packing their exhibits and I realised that was my opportunity to be a snipper! Everybody was too busy to stop me from shooting except for the one booth exhibiting something so-called 4-D models. What I understand from mathematics about 4-D is a moving object, or 3-D animation, i.e., the three physical dimensions and the extra dimension is time. However, this 4-D model is just 3-D figurines with cut-outs showing the internal skeletons and organs of animals. The models were quite unique and built of high-quality materials.

These were miniaturised buggies. There were real ones on display too, for the big boys.

With the Speed Racer movie in the making, the toy makers are riding on the wave too.

This was my favourite booth. I love those miniaturised cars with fine details.

I wish I could bring some home, but they were display items, not for sale.

So, I took home only some pictures of them.

I have always been fascinated by the construction machinery models.

But I hate tailing one on the road.

I'm also a fan of heavy armor machines.

This one has got to be the ultimate heavy armor machine.

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