Friday, October 31, 2008

Body Trappers

Very scare. I am worried that I would be trapped in my own body one day that I will no longer be able to walk, no longer be able to move as I become bigger and fatter...

Discovery Home and Health Channel just now showed "Human Stories" featuring how the world fattest man - Manuel Uribe weighing at 500 plus kg loses weight. He was bed-ridden and can only move his upper body. Weighing him had to resort to using industrial weighing machine and people had to weigh him together with the bed to know how much he weigh. A simple wish of visiting a childhood holiday destination could endanger his life as he might died from the travelling.

Featuring together with him was a women named Misty, who is also suffering from morbid obesity. Better than Manuel, she was not bed-ridden, but was getting too big to walk. A simple task of walking a few steps from the house to her car could make her breathless. Most of the time, she could only sit around and could not do much more. I see the sadness in her eyes when she said that "Driving is the only time that I feel I can move around and see the sun. Driving can supposedly get you to many places, but yet there are a lot of places which I can't go. I haven't been to the mall for years as I cannot walk for very long... "

Morbid obesity is a vicious cycle disease. You eat and get fat. When you get fat, you need to eat more to subtain the body and when you eat more, you get fatter... How is one able to lost weight like this especially if the person is bed-ridden and had very limited movement? Many unempathic people would argue that it was the obese person's fault to eat so much and get fat. However, has anyone thought ever considered that obese people's body might not function the same as a normal person would. A normal person would know the feeling of fullness and would only eating during meal times, but some obese people do not get the feeling of fullness and would have craving to continuing eating and their brain would constantly want them to eat more food.

I understand how they felt, but I could not put down in words to make people understand the dynamics. It is so easy for people to say just eat less and exercise more, it sounded right but when you are not in that position, you are not in the shoes of an obese person, you could not understand how simple things are often the hardest to achieve... Well, if not, why would there be a market to subtain the silming industry and why would they make millions of dollars per year?

Ironic isn't it? It is supposed to be evolution at work, as human adjusted to store fats in body so that they could have a better chance of survival. Now this very evolution trail has become the killer, making it mother nature's epidemic for human...

How I wish I was a catepillar, who have been stuffing myself silly, so that I could metamorphose and wake up as a butterfly... Then again not really, I will stick to walking then.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Bollywood Farm - A Trip Back to Nature !

We had a company outing sometime ago. There was a choice of either playing bowling or visit to a place of interest. I guess everyone had enough of air-conditioned comfort, thus we ditched our jacket, don in casual outfit for some outdoor advanture at Bollywood Veggies Farm. The farm has a famous owner - Ivy Singh-Lim who is well-known to be outspoken.

My first impression of her was that she looked like the female version of the Crocodile Dandee. She wore a cowboy hat, in boots with a sharp knife at her waist and all she lacked was a string of crocodile teeth to complete the look. Ivy explained that she belonged to a special race of Indian (forget what race) who was well-known for their bravery and had traditionally carry a knife with them.

Our tour started with her giving us an "opening address". She told us that her father was sort of like the Rajah for Singapore before we gained independent. I had first thought that she was boasting, but in a bearable way when she claimed that she was born with a golden spoon in her mouth and is very well-off. The moral her story was that even though she was borned into a wealth family, her father did not spoilt them which is why she is so successful now. Later, I realised that she is really rich and it was really not boasting. Read on and find out why...

Interesting handmade painted wooden signboard greeted us at the gate.
The tour guide explained that they are trying to see if grapes would grow in Singapore. To their amaze, it did but has yet to bear any fruits yet. She added that even when the fruits did appear, they would probably taste too tart for comsumption.

Bollywood Veggies Farm main crop are bananas. For the first time in my life, I learnt that there are over 1000 types of bananas in the world ! We happened to see a banana tree with banana at the entrance. One of it was ripe.

Apart from bananas, the farm also grow exotic plants which we seldom see in the city. The flowers of the plant looked special and it has a very apt name in my opinon. Can you guess what was the name?

They are Cats Whiskers ! I mean they really looked like it. So cute hor?

They also got longan tree, but too bad it was not the longan season, thus no fruits.

Can you spot the fruit ? There is a gourd hidden between the wire mesh and leaves.

Oh my god. Dogs... Big dogs. Their sheer size would make boxer looked like a puppy in comparison. They are big dane. I would have fainted if there was no fence sheltering us. Worse, they are baking at us non-stop. Well, they have to as they are guard dogs.

I don't think I ever see house like theirs in Singapore. Their house got a pond in the middle of the backyard. The whole decor looked like some Bali resort hotel. That was when I thought Ivy was not boasting when she said that she is rich, she is in fact very very very wealthy. Besides, normal people would not be able to buy land in Singapore, but they owned the land they build the house on and according to her, it was "cheap" as it was first stated to be farming land. All of us were dumb - strucked staring at her posh mansion.

Then seeing that we are not moving off despite all the barking, the dane demonstrated in body language which I believe to be "FXXX off".

Taking the heed from the dane, we move off to see more exotic plants. Then, we saw this sign under an ordinary tree. Butter Fruit it says... Staring hard at the tree, I did not see any SCS butter hanging on it. Hmmm... perhaps they melted.

Then on a near-by tree, I spotted something familar, but it was well camouflage that if you blinked, you missed it. See if you can find what it was.

Can't find? There is a star fruit! Find harder.

This should be familar. A Coffee plant. I wondered if it was Starbucks' or Coffee Bean's.

This tree with weird scientific name was actually the common bread fruit tree. Nope, Sunshine and Gardenia have not delievered to them yet, thus no sign of fruits.

There are no milk fruit on the plant too. Perhaps they were taken by AVA to run test to find out if they contained melamine.

A banana plant with flower still attached. Yup, they can grow to very huge size. Actually there are a lot of interesting facts about Bananas that we have not heard of.

The plant below with flower that looked like a lotus is actually a banana plant too. The name is lotus banana. A very beautiful plant, but deadly as well. It is poisonous, thus the fruits beared cannot be eaten. There is an easy way to tell whether a banana plant belonged to the poisonous and inedible variety. The guide explained that if the banana flower grow upwards towards the sun, they belonged poisonous variety.

Somewhat, nature had a way of teaching us about ourselves too. Like human, you can't tell one's heart by looks. One may looked beautiful, but has an ugly heart. Also, when one knows no humblenss, only wanting to please the people at the top and looked down on people they considered as lowly, they are no doubt poisonous at heart too. The cost of being unscrupulously ambitious? Well, one bear poison fruits at the end. Those who ate it will be poisoned.

Anyway, back to bananas. This is how the lotus banana fruits looked like when riped. Screamed in red to warn people that they are poisonous.

The common edible banana tree. Noticed that the flower grow in the direction of the ground. People should aspire to be the common banana tree. They should always have humbleness conscienciously, remembering their roots no matter how much they achieved in life. Only then, one can grow edible fruits to share with others.

Oh, this is how the kiam sng ti 无花果(fig in chinese) looked like? They are local variety, different from their European cousins which is bigger and sweeter.

Another variety of banana. The fruits looked smaller and we were told some birds actually like to feed on them.

Endless rows of young sweet potato plant. I also want to own a farm next time to grow my own vegetables.

The farm not only has vegetables, but there are fungus growing along side with shoots. I thought they looked cute and added decoration to the soil.

I like this photo. The green plant just seems to create an interesting contrast against the blue sky and white fluffy clouds. There is a sense of peacefulness.

We were told that Malays love the fruits from the plant and they can be found along East side of Singapore. The yellow fruits resemblence jambu and was extremely sour. We tried tasting fresh from the tree and it was horrible. I would have prefered bananas (non-poisonous and ripe ones of course).

Yup, Belinbing was the name of the tart fruit. I wonder how Malay eat them. With Chili and dark soy as with Jambu?

Ok, I am sure some of you have seen this before. It is Mr Papaya tree - a male one. They do not bear fruits, but existed to pollinate female trees. Like most of the animals well. Hahha.

Just then, I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me or that the plant was named Snake Den. We did not ask but guess it was really home of the snakes....

They also grow herbs in pots. I want to grow them too. These are Oregano.

See the white fluffy bit? It is real cotton, a cotton plant.
Just heard from news that England scientists developed Purple tomatoes which contained a lot of anti-oxidant that fights cancer. I wonder if this purple bell pepper does that too.

Finally the tour was over. I almost fainted under the sun as I wore black. Luckily, a scumptious tea awaits us at the farm's bistro -Poison Ivy. See below.
Yummy. Just to say, the ice-cold herby tea really hit the spot. It takes the heats off us immediately and was really refreshing.
My first Kueh Pie Ti. I always eat Popiah, but never tried this before. It was really good. I had a lot as no one was interested with it. Strange...

Then there was this - Fusion-style Papaya Salad, but what was unique was that it has flowers petals. I never eaten flowers petals before too. It appeared that it does not have a unique taste.

Wah, their organic banana cakes and kueh are to die for. They are really really good. I think I gorged myself that day.

They also have Roti-Prata! For special curry. See below, guess what is the main ingredient?

It was a very mild curry which tasted like chickpeas curry. However, this particular one was actually Banana Curry. It has a savoury taste and the texture is somewhat like mesh potatoes or mesh peas.

Of course, for meat lover there is all-time Singaporean favourite - Curry Chicken. Some of my colleagues thought it was not bad, but it could be further improved. I find the curry taste too mild and should be stronger.

Menu attached below for those who wish to visit the place.

Conclusion: I really enjoyed the tour, had a lot of fun and had learnt a lot . Before we left, they even gave us a goodie bag consisted of pandan plant, some dill, a small pack of tapioca chips and a local grown huge lemon-lime. Cool.

Thank you, Bollywood Veggies Farm!

For those who are interested to visit them, please visit their website for more details:

Saturday, October 25, 2008

黑豹的《Don't Break My Heart》

Another of my favourite song. I like the lyrics a lot. It reminded me of a memory. Like I firmly believed in, people should seize the opportunity when it comes, as time passes you by, things will never be the same if you only do it later. Time never waits, thus don't miss it while you can still do something.



Don't break my heart


My Baby

Don't break my heart

Friday, October 24, 2008

Now, who has never taken melamine-affected foodstuff before?

Ok, I am pretty sure all of us have taken melamine-affected foodstuff at some point of our life. I mean now Khong Guan and Julia Biscults from Malaysia are tested to contain melamine as well! My-oh-my, what else is safe to eat?

Just disappointed with Khong Guan, to think their biscults like wheat crackers are given out during tea time at major hospitals. People treated it as healthy snack. How can they contain melamine?

It is time for short-sighted food manufacture companies to wake up and treat their products properly. Don't just be zealously concerned about making profits, neglecting the quality of your products which eventually would endanger people's lives. Every of your product should be the company's proudest produce since they carry your name and reputation. When something is wrong with your product, profit would be affected at the very first moment, but what is most difficult to recover , and some might not even get it back, is your reputation and name!

Instead of being the most profitable food manufacturer, why not also be the most consciencious food manufacturers too. When high quality food products are produced, the company only stands to benefit with nothing to lose. Instead of earning that extra few bucks, why not earn some respect for a change?

Bosses, just think about it...

The Cat and I

I adopted a stray cat recently. I don't mean that I bring it home, cause my mum would probably break my leg. I feed it occasionally and we have bonded quite well. I don't remember when the feeding started, but it was probably one of those things that caught my eye.

It has a magnificant coat of pale golden coloured fur, a pair of round and big eyes (think they looked like Faye's...) and has a very curious desposition. I have seen it patroling around my block sometimes and thought it looked very beautiful. I supposed, that fateful day, it was hungry by the way it poked its nose at every corner. Unbearable to let it starve, I went home and open up a can of tuna (soaked in water kind) and feed it.

I made this clicking sound with my tongue while I was trying to attract its attention. The cat took it as my call to her and would respond to it whenever I made it. Cats are just natural pleaser. To get my attention , she would brush herself against my leg playfully, so that I would feed it or pet it. Sometimes, she would hit me with her tail. Of course, I would take a shower after all that touching and brushing.

I could remember the first time I saw her sprinting towards me when I made the call. She was not at her usual resting place and I made the sound several times trying to get her to come and get food. There was no sight of her anywhere and I almost give up, just then I heard some russling from the back and saw her spirinting towards me. It heard me and responded. No words could describe my feelings then. I felt so touched and accomplished. At that moment, I understand why people with pets are likely to be healthier mentally... I was so happy when interacting with it.

The best thing with animals is that it does not judge you , it will be there when you needed them and will respond to you sincerely. Wouldn't the world be nicer place to live in if everyone is like that?

Perhaps, I should get a pet at home to de-stress.

Thursday, October 23, 2008














Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dead goldfish get to decide America's next President too?!

This is really democratic. America is liberate enough to let goldfish decides as well on who should be the next of the United States! Not kidding, read the news below from

Dead goldfish gets voter registration material

For those who have no time - apparently, someone registered their second phone line under their pet goldfish's name. Years passed and goldfish died. Strangely, the family recently received voter registration material addressed to their dead gold fish! This incident prompted election officials to look into the matter to see whether there are any frauds involved.

This election is getting more and more interesting as days closes in. Hmmm...







Saturday, October 18, 2008

Fried Fish While It's Still Alive... (Cruel! Cruel! Cruel!)

Warning: Not for the faint hearted...

I saw this video in news years ago, but managed to find the footage from YouTube. Similar to Lobster Sashimi in Japan, but Chinese gone a step further, the chef scaled, gutted and fried fish while keeping the fish alive... Apparently, the fish will stay alive for sometime and worse the fish was subjected to excruciating pain before dying....

I can only wish that the fish had a better after life...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Gold Fish Living in Deep Fryer (Cruel!)

I really take my hat off the Japanese, to think they can come up with this idea. If you ever fry food, you would know that crumbs might break off and would sink to the bottom of the pan. When not removed, they would cloud and pollute the oil. That's why restaurants like MacDonald etc has to change their frying oil very often, almost at a daily basis.

So, the Japanese think of a solution. Yosh~! Wakaramasu~ If the crumbs are removed automatically, then the oil will stay fresher for long period of time and less often to change it. This is what they thought of:

For the benefit of those who are unable to view the video, Japanese reared goldfish under the deep fryer. How is this possible you asked? Well, water has a higher density than oil, thus oil will natually float above the water. The heater installed near the top will heat up the oil to at least 160 degrees celcius for frying.

If, that is if, the goldfish somewhat forget and swam upwards, they will be fried alive... As a goldfish owner, I condemn this act as it violates the goldfish living rights and it is a very cruel way of treating living things!

I will never eat at restaurants that uses this kind of fryer!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Making of Lychee Martini Jelly (Konnyaku)

The weather was exceptionally hot these few days. I have been craving for some ice-cold konnyaku jelly to freshen up, thus decided to make some. There is no recipe pe say for making Konnyaku or jelly, basically it needed water, jelly powder, sweetener and flavour. I decided to play around with the basic ingredients to create an adult version.

Needless to say, I love lychee, thus it would be the main flavour for my alcoholic jelly aptly named Lychee Martini Konnyaku.

You will need:

1 Packet of Konnyaku Powder - Original (unflavoured)
Sweetener - Canned Lychee Syrup instead of sugar
Vodka or any clear alcohol spirit (Depending on how strong you want to taste the alcohol)
For some fizz, soda water

Measurement of the rest of the ingredients depended greatly on your Konnyaku powder.

Explaination (needed a bit of calculation) - Let's say your brand of konnyaku powder required 1000ml of water, x grams of sugar and little amount of artificial flavouring. Instead of using them, I used canned lychee syrup to replace part of the water, sweetener and artificial flavouring. I have to note that whatever amount of liquid that I used, it should not exceed the stated amount of water.

Sweetener - Instead of sugar, I used the canned lychee syrup which is about 330 ml per can. I suggest you should use about 1 and half can of syrup for one packet of powder - 450 ml. There should be no need to add further sugar unless you prefered it to be sweeter.

I also calculated in advance that I will add one can of soda water for some fizz and it is about 330 ml. This should be added lastly to retain the fizz bubble.

The total liquid content will thus add up to 780ml. The difference will be topped with plain water to make it the total of 1000 ml.

I scooped some of the syrup and water mixture up to mix in the Konnyaku Powder. It should mix with cold solution then poured back to the rest of the solution for a more thorough mix.

Warmed the mixture up in a pot to get it boiling. Constantly stiring it to prevent burning.

When the mixture thickens and boiled, take it off heat. Added in the alcohol. This is so that the alcohol would not evaporate off in the process of boiling. The amount of alcohol to add is up to your preference, as strong as you like it to be. I am still a newbie, thus only added 4 capful and it is still relatively mild. Stir thoroughly. You can also add in colouring at this stage. If the mixture appeared to be hardening, warmed it slightly.

Quickly add in the Soda water lastly to retain the fizz.

In your desired container, add in lychee meat for decoration purposes, but also for a stronger lychee taste.

Scoped in the jelly mixture using a laddle. Try not to move it after that and wait for it to set.
You can also put them in a fanciful ice-cude moulds for individual servings (or rather shots).

One packet of jelly powder can made about this much of jelly. I used different containers and decorated differently as you can see.

Konnyaku harden quite fast. It took only like 10 to 15 mins. I unmounded two of them on a plate. Somewhat, it remained me of a human part anatomy. You know how people would give cocktail drinks with naughty names? I named these jellies "D-Cups". Haha.

Another pattern. I like how the fruits appeared to be floating around in the jelly.

Last but not least "D-cups" with the smaller shots of lychee martini jellies.