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Archive for July, 2013

Hari Raya feasting

Celebrating with the classic marble cake.

Hari Raya, or Eid, festival in Singapore and Malaysia is a boon time for those with a sweet tooth, as every home will greet guests with a selection of both Malay and western cakes and cookies.

A cake that is popular in our family is the marble cake. My aunts bake really good ones, and one could say that they are “traditionalists” or purists as they only bake the classic version of marble cake. The one that uses pure cocoa powder to create the rich brown swirl for the cake.

I suppose as I grew up with this kind of marble cake, I’m also a traditionalist at heart. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t appreciate other varieties of marble cakes.

As a kid, when we went visiting, and were served with a marble cake with red or green swirls, it was an exciting discovery for me.

It was as though it opened up a whole new world; as though a peek inside other people’s lives was offered up with each slice of the brightly swirled cake.

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Rest and support

Two essentials in life: time for a nap on some sunny afternoon, and a friend
to lean on.

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Malay food

The ketola, a type of gourd, makes a tasty soup believed to have a cooling effect.

I would describe myself as an intermediate home cook, but some of my cousins are very accomplished in their cooking skills.

When I’m in Singapore, they would invite me over and cook my favorite food. Featured here are two dishes, ketola soup and fritters made from tiny shrimps.

The ketola is a vegetable believed to have a cooling effect on the body. The English name for it is ridged luffa or ridged gourd.

When my cousin made this dish, she tweaked our grandmother’s recipe a little by adding fish balls to the soup.

The fritters are made from fresh tiny shrimps called krill, or by its Malay name, udang geragau. These shrimps have a unique crunchy texture, and are relatively harder to come across these days.

When another cousin saw them at a market, she instantly bought them. She then went home; battered them with a flour mixture, onions and green chillies, fried them, and presented me with a delectable plate.

krill

Fritters made with tiny shrimps called udang geragau.

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