I know I’ve not posted in awhile, but I’ve been thinking about reviving the blog. This is currently on repeat for me. Unfortunately for me, Alex Zhang Hungtai is no longer planning on making more music as Dirty Beaches.
With Winter approaching, darker music like this evoking favourite filmmakers like David Lynch and Wong Kar Wai is what I want to be listening to.
The weather here in KL has reached 36°C and all I can think about is ice cream. Feeling inspired after having a scoop of salted caramel ice cream in Hokkaido Ice Cream in The Garden Mall, I went in search of recipes. I was very pleased that this splendid flavour was now available in KL. I’ve only ever had salted caramel in Paris (the best is from Berthillon). I found a recipe I am keen to try. Upon finding this recipe, I was keen to explore other flavours and thought that a pandan coconut flavour would be very nice indeed. I looked it up and found this.
The perfect song for making ice cream is perhaps Battles’ new track featuring Matias Aguayo on vocals called Ice Cream. If the video reminds you of El Guincho’s Bombay, it is because the video is directed by the same folks.
Find salted caramel ice cream (sold as shio caramel) in:
Lot T-201, 3rd Floor,
The Garden Mall,
Mid Valley City,
Lingkaran Syed Putra,
I adore these minimen jewellery that Frédérique Conte has created. I stumbled upon these when I clicked on a link to Howkapow, a wonderful online design shop which sells many other lovely things including Lucy’s graphic scarves (which is how I came upon this gem). Seeing as summer is on the horizon and I am feeling it particularly more as I’m away in Kuala Lumpur where temperatures are well above 30° C, I have found the swimmers collection rather refreshing and the humour in these designs uplifting (check Nikki about to go skinny dipping!). I tried to find more information on the designer all I could find out is the little write up on the Howkapow website. Shops like Tombée du Camion do sell minimen like these. Guy and I are off to Langkawi soon and I cannot wait to be splish sploshing soon!
There are some flavours that are almost universal in their appeal. Pandan is such a flavour. Pandan’s power lies in its versatility. It is not limited to Asian dishes. I made pandan pannacotta earlier this year, to serve as dessert for my Chinese New Year meal. I made the pannacotta in a rabbit mould and this resulted in the wobbly little creature above. In the UK, pandan can be bought from most Oriental supermarkets. If you live in London, Golden Gate Cake Shop on Macclesfield Street sells pandan layer cake. My sister and I have since started obsessing over pandan macarons. Since being back in KL, I have had them twice. They are, as you can imagine, seriously delicious. These can be ordered specially from The Huckleberry Cafe. I have not seen this concoction sold anywhere else.
I find it quite strange that in a city like KL – where there must be the highest number of foodies per capita in the world and the most interesting mixtures of flavours and fusion food, I have yet to see pandan used in other European desserts. Pandan coconut meringue pie, pandan cream puffs, pandan coconut crepes…mmmm I can see so many possibilities! Someone, make ’em a reality!
Quite simply, no trip back to KL is quite complete without a stop in Chinatown or Petaling Street as it is known. I spent many years’ worth of weekdays in this area. My mum used to send us to Mandarin lessons which we took in the back of a Chinese temple every day, after our daily school lessons. The classes were held in the back of the temple, up a flight of stairs. There were 3 rooms, where the lessons were taught. Walking through the temple you will have to go through huge incense hanging from the ceiling and there were always some homeless people begging for money right at the entrance. I hated learning Mandarin, so for me the lessons were an opportunity to make the temple our playground.
On Tuesday night, Augusta and I went to Petaling Street. Our friend Bassi had requested some mirrored wayfarers, so we went to hunt some down. After walking around and finding some bargains, we stopped for a little snack at Kim Lian Kee. This little corner shop has been around since the late 20s. It has not been modernised much and remains pretty much a modest outfit. This is Malaysian street food after all! We shared a plate of Hokkien mee/meehoon. I’ve eaten here several times before, and was happy to find that the noodles were still good in this KL institution.
We were thirsty and ordered one of the best thirst quenchers ever- kalamansi lime juice with asamboi. Kalamansi limes are a special variety of limes. They are tiny, but packed with flavour, a little explosion of sweet and sour. The juice of kalamansi limes with a couple of asamboi (preserved salted plums or saladitos) = flavoursome thirst quenching drink. It’s a drink that packs a flavourful punch, satisfying almost all the different tastebuds. Palate Palette, which is one of my favourite places in KL does an alcoholic version of this drink with your choice of Vodka or Rum. It’s pretty, pretty, pretty good.
“In a place far away from anyone or anywhere, I drifted off for a moment.” Haruki Murakami, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.
Have only recently discovered Nicolas Jaar and been drifting away to his music and also his collaborations with Nikita Quasim and Soul Keita under his label Clown And Sunset. This is their compilation, Inés. I have also been losing myself in the wonderful world of Haruki Murakami. After seeing the beautifully shot Norwegian Wood, I wanted to immerse myself in some wonderful fiction and I have found the perfect book in The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.
I was away for about 10 days in São Paulo for work, where I managed to snatch a few hours to myself every day. It gave me some time and space to breathe after quite a few hectic months of intense working. It also made me long for a certain type of music. Perhaps spurred and inspired by catching a chorinho band in the fair at Benedito Calixto on the Saturday, I found myself craving quieter melodies. So I found myself listening to the echoey sounds of Arthur Russell. I found myself listening to The Cure’s Disintegration. And soon, I was also craving piano music. I was treated to some Maxence Cyrin and longed for more piano music. So I looked for some Debussy to listen to because I remembered how much I loved Debussy and found a series of beautiful animation made using the Music Animation Machine software. And it made me feel calm for I could see beautiful music and I could hear the colours too.