In Watermelon Sugar

It’s been very hot in KL this few weeks and when the weather leaves you all sweaty, nothing is as nice as some ice-cold juicy watermelon.  When walking around Little Korea in Ampang on Friday, my friend Kio and I were excited to find a watermelon ice lolly. Fashioned like a watermelon slice, this ice lolly was made so realistic it even had seeds scattered all over.

watermelon-popsicle

This popsicle looked so good, it reminded me of a jumper I’ve had my eye on and keep meaning to buy. The handknitted jumped is from Dudua based in funtime Barcelona!

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A quick research also led me to quite a few fruitwear (footwear) watermelon-inspired designs. These include socks from artist/designer Baron von Fancy , and at least 3 models of trainers/sneakers that Mike Perry had customised in watermelon including Nikes and Vans. Funnily enough Vans also released the watermelon themed collection for Spring/Summer 2009, giving Van fans quite a few different cuts of the fruit to wear.

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Keep is also offering watermelon fans  plimsolls that will hopefully keep feet fresh all day.   I like the use of colour in their offering. Slightly more subtle than the crazy Vans version although I must admit I love the green soles.

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The watermelon is a striking fruit. So round and so green with such vermillion flesh, dotted with black seeds. It’s no surprise that designers find it an inspirational fruit. This morning I had some watermelon with salt for breakfast and when I am back home, I will probably be digging out my copy of Richard Brautigan’s In Watermelon Sugar to read again.

Update: Fans of Joakim can get his mp3 Watermelon Bubblicious here.

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Lots of chocolate for me to…

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Look and eat!

It’s soon to be Shrove Tuesday and many will be giving up chocolate for lent.

Not me!

Shrove Tuesday will be an excuse to have a pancake party.

This evening, I’d like to talk about chocolate and how beautiful some of the design and packaging is. I was reminded of my love for chocolate and beautifully packaged chocolate when Maria from work gave me a bar of Chocolate Organiko because she thought I’d appreciate the typography-led graphics on the packaging. She was correct. Chocolate Organiko uses clean and bold typography and it works really well. It works so well that I’ve not touched the chocolate bar for I quite like to keep this to look at for a wee while.

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I thought of another cool Spanish chocolate maker Xocoa. The first time I went to Barcelona a few years ago my sister mentioned reading about Xocoa on her flight over. She had forgotten to note down the address. We were quietly obsessing over the missed opportunity here to check out a nice chocolate shop when we stumbled upon one of the branches of Xocoa in the city on our very last day there.

In Britain, Kings Road based Rococo Chocolates have gone the opposite direction on packaging from their Spanish counterparts. So named for the decorative arts-led packaging,  my first encounter with Rococo Chocolates was in So Cocoa in Stockbridge, Edinburgh. My favourite Saturdays usually involved a walk by the canal and a stop to buy lavender or rose flavoured chocolate bars.

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The thing about chocolate is that you can more or less judge it by its packaging. Pleasure can come in the form of a tiny square of fine chocolate. And it starts from the moment you hear that clear snap from breaking a piece to savouring the taste.

Sugar Candy Kisses

In the world of multiple-course dining, people generally fall into two categories. Those preferring starters to desserts, and those preferring desserts to starters. I fall into the third category, which means if I had my way, I’d have a starter and dessert.

Main courses tend to fall short of starters, and desserts look like sweet dreams. How do you resist?

I love how pretty pudding can look. The problem with pudding is that it looks better than it tastes. But that doesn’t matter. Although it is why cakes, ice-cream and all manner of candy look great on clothes and accessories.

Electrocupcakes

Cupcakes are so popular because they look so good. I love baking ’em because I love how they are presented. Baking allows me to disguise my messy cooking in a pretty package in the form of a treat.

I remember In Barcelona, I stood in Papabubble. I was captivated by the magic-making of beautiful candy to the cools sounds of Lemon Jelly. I watched as the candymakers, these sugar-dreamweavers pulled colourful sugar into long strips, on which they built more layers of colourful sugarstrips.

And there it is: a piece of candy. Bite-sized and pretty much edible art. 

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When the candy sits in glass containers and the sun rays reach out, the shop walls are hit by a stained glass effect. They are sugar candy kissed.