Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Mini Cocoa Swirl Cheesecakes

  • 6 oz reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 c part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 Tbsp Splenda Granular

  • 1 lg egg
  • 1 lg egg yolk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

  • 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 6-cup muffin pan with foil or paper liners.

    2. Blend cream cheese and ricotta in food processor until well combined. Add Splenda, egg, yolk, and vanilla extract. Process until smooth.

    3. Divide 1 cup of batter among muffin cups. Add cocoa to remaining batter and combine. Drop a heaping tablespoon of cocoa batter into each muffin cup and gently fold to form a swirl.

    4. Place muffin pan in large roasting pan and fill with hot water to reach halfway up muffin pan. Bake until cakes are puffed and set, 20 minutes. Remove from water and cool at room temperature for at least 2 hours.

    Makes 6 

    Per Serving: 130 cal, 7 g pro, 7 g carb, 8 g fat, 4.5 g sat fat, 90 mg chol, 0 g fiber, 125 mg sodium

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Cooking Time: 20 minutes

    Cooling Time: 2 hours

    Compliments of  CHeers!

    Tuesday, 14 October 2008

    Epicure 2008

    Well hellooo there! It's been a while hasn't it? 1,001 apologies for being a hoe and dissapearing like the wind. I just didn't have time to handle know how it and stuff.

    Right, let's get down to the b-iz-to-tha-nez. I got an e-mail about free tickets to the 2008 Epicure Lifestyle Convention which was being held on the weekends. So I figured since I'm not doing anything I might as well make myself busy and get my lonely boo-tay there. 

    No Regrets At All.

    I learned a ton of stuff there! Here are some pictures and illustrations of what I did.

    11th October 2008

    Coffee Appreciation 
    conducted by the Hilton KL

    I don't know why but even though it looks like it's in a bit of a mess, still looks sex-ay!
    I was a barista for Starbucks way back when I still had a good pair of virgin ears. Now? Let's just say I get my daily dose of profanities and stories that'll make any pair loose. Back to coffee! As I was saying, I used to be a barista so I have my fair share of knowledge about coffee from how it should be grinded to what quality is best for which dessert to even how certain beans should be handled. 

    The ever-so-lame host, Mr. Roslan Sidek, was kind enough to provide a history lesson on the discovery of coffee followed by jokes about him being the best in the industry which unfortunately only made him laugh and the rest of us tilt our heads and brood questions marks.

    But he did make up for his lameness by giving us great coffee recipes. Check these out...

    These two recipes got 2nd and 3rd place in a nation wide coffee competition so I think it's pretty safe to say that it tastes freakin' awesome! I especially love the Heavenly Coconut.

    Here's a picture of it. It was so good that half way drinking it I realized I needed to take a picture! No those floating sprinkles ontop are not wood shavings, but coconut shavings =D

    We also had coffee design classes where we would "pull a shot" which means you press a little button and the espresso machines starts vibrating like an man doing the Bangra and *splirt*  out comes a clean shot of fresh espresso.  From there we heat up our milk by pouring a good amount into a milk frothing pitcher.  Next we...froth the milk. Yeah it sounds like we're giving the milk rabies but if done correctly it looks divine!

    Once the milk is at a near perfect froth tilt your cup at a near 45 degree angle and begin slowly pouring. Now, there is a certain way to pour to get your desired design.  I tried going for a sunrise/sunset theme, but ended creating the Apocalypse.

    After our coffee class we were given a complimentary starter pack with our very own Coffee-X coffee beans. 

    Conclusion: Practice makes perfect. 

    Stay tuned for the rest of the story!

    Wednesday, 27 August 2008

    Thursday, 17 July 2008

    Peanut Butter Cheesecake and what happened to my Donuts

    Aiks...sorry been a while since I made this cheesecake and it's also been a while since I've blogged. Having too much fun at work.

    Okay, lets get started. It's going to be close to 3 weeks now that I've been working here at Astro and I'm loving it. I'm so glad I have Sheryl by my side. She's so fun to be with! =( I'm officially a "cheesecake" at the department. What does that mean? Should I compare it to that poor misused apple pie in that movie American Pie?

    Anyways I made a Peanut Butter Cheesecake for everyone at work. Here are some pictures of its progress and the finished product.

    Here are the ingredients (by cups)

    • 1/4 cup of Butter ( I used Margerine for this...lets be a bit healthy)
    • 1/2 cup of Low Fat Semisweet Chocolate Chips
    • 1 - 1 1/2 cups of Rice Crispies (You can use the normal white ones or the chocolate
    coated ones)

    Filling: (is that what you call it..i dunno)
    • 2 cubes of Philidelphia Cream Cheese ( I used this because of its quality. Using other brands won't stain the texture or taste)
    • 3/4 cups of Peanut Butter (*drooool....)
    • 1/4 cup of Sweetened Condensed Milk
    • 2 tblspoons of Lemon Juice
    • 1 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
    • 1 cup of Whipped Cream
    • Drizzle of Chocoloate Syrup ( I used Hershey's!)
    1. In a heavy sauce pan over low heat, melt the butter and chocolate chips. Remove from heat and gently stir in rice cereal until coated. Press into the bottom and sides of a 9 inch pie plate. Chill 30 minutes.
    2. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in condensed milk and peanut butter until smooth. Stir in lemon juice and vanilla. Fold in whipped cream. Pour into prepared crust. Drizzle chocolate topping over pie and freeze for 4 hours or until firm. Keep in freezer until ready to serve, and return leftovers to the freezer as well.
    And there we go...Simple Dimple.

    Past Blogs

    Just thought I'd post up some past blogs of mine! weee...bored.

    30 January

    My Sonnet

    One will never know the meaning of love,
    Until you break old traditions and seek,
    Seek what is the very fabric of love,
    This be the definition that I speak,
    No cloaks of guilt nor promises unkept,
    A love so untainted and sweet as you,
    I dread the day I wear this cloak except,
    I see the cloak billowing against you,
    No words can describe how this taint chokes me,
    This smoke of pain suffocates me killing,
    Yet through forgivness my love forgives thee,
    I once again let my heart loose spilling,
    My Love! I sacrifice my world for thee,
    My world, my heart, my soul, and my body.
    --Ryan A. De Alwis
    ~I can't believe i found this after so many years. I didn't realise I was so gifted in writing such things. Where has my heart gone?

    27 Januaray

    "its never too late to find true love, for time ages love perfectly"
    -Ryan De Alwis


    THank you

    Thank for that wonderful night. You really made me happy and my heart for once was at peace heheh even though it was only for a few hours. Its great to have people care about you but don't forget that I will take care of you as well. Thats what friends are for and maybe more.
    Remember to be good and to all my friends out there I'll be seeing you in the near distant future and hopefullly we'll be big people by then doing great things.
    To Sze May : MUAKS!!
    To Tracy : Remember to makan tahi!! heheh no but i'll miss you so much and I"ll always remember to be good and one day give you a
    foot massage. kekek Hopefully you'll make it out of this country and be happy.
    To Alice : Wei.....have you found a nice balcony yet? COme On!! I'm leaving soon, I need to throw you out of one sooner or later right?
    heheh remember to work real hard and DON"T BE SO LAZY!! PIG!! Muaks
    To Jane : My sister!! Donkey though we share the same scold me too much! But love you still the same k?
    To myself : DO you realize that all the names here are all girls? Thats kinda weird....hmmm
    To SHTM : Well....thanks for everything really! Though I learned some valuable skills and lessons time to move on right? See you soon.
    To Sandra : God is always with you. Remember whatever task that is given upon you is either by him or by the devil. Just smile and
    accept it. Because we all know that you never leave anything unfinished.
    To Tracy 2 : I know that you are still upsy daisy about me. If you were a good girl i would reconsider but since your not then I really
    don't know what to say. You have to be honest about yourself and what you really think is best for yourself and not for
    others. Its okay to be selfish once in a while if you deserve it. You'll have a special place with me no need to worry ya?
    To Everyone
    In Malaysia : YOu guys have been great....really great. You were so friendly towards me and accepted me for who I am and it has been
    a wonderful experience for me. Thank you so much and hopefully i'll be seeing you guys soon. Bon Voyage!!
    16 January

    My Philosophy on love

    Love. Its a binding of two individuals who are willing to do their best in any situation to make their significant other just plain happy.
    With love comes many responsibilities. There are sacrifices to be made. Deadlines to be met. And most importantly struggles that are taken.
    To love someone. It takes alot of courage and determination to love someone. WHen you love someone you have this "drive" this "energy" to fulfill the wants and needs of each other. Its called passion.
    Everybody has hobbies. Painting, reading, exploring, they are all passions in life. It goes with the same in loving someone. What happens when that passion dissapears?
    Theres no point in painting anymore, theres no point in reading anymore, theres no point in exploring. No point in loving that other person. Just another book thrown into the rubbish bin that you have lost interest in. Ofcourse it is not so simple when you are together.
    It is much worse. You endure it. Everyday pretending to put on a smile. Every kiss is half committed. Every hug is half hearted. Every "I love you's" are said just as a routine and not meant honestly.
    There are ofcourse other aspects of love that make a relationship work. But what i find is that PASSION is the most important to me. It was PASSION that made me last until now. Everyday I motivated myself and was happy to do so to make things work out and believe that in the future I will get what I wanted.
    Passion to do things. Passion to make things work. Passion to make the best out of people.
    Love = 2 People + Passion X Romance
    However, when...
    Love = 2 People - Passion X Romance
    = 2 People X Romance
    = 2 the long run
    I take a look back at all those years where I tried so hard to make it right. I did get some things right in the end. But it just seems that Ryan can't make it still. He's still a little boy in the end wondering what is to become of him.

    12 January

    Why do all good things come to an end?

    I was browsing through my friendster and I found out that this girl viewed my profile. Curious, I clicked on her picture and found out many interesting things about her. She dated someone that was not of her race and color. She described the relationship as ying and yang. Sometimes it was complete bliss and heaven and yet other times it was difficult because of each others differences. They were together for 2 years and when the seperation occured it was one of the biggest shocks for her. She thought that she did everything right and that it wasn't her fault. When they both met for the last time, she asked him why they seperated, he replied in saying this : " Do you know what my favorite types of books are?" "Do you know what my favorite cake is?" "Do you know why i like the rain?"
    These questions shocked her....for being together for nearly two years, she didn't know any of those answers. He complained that he did his best to help her and make her happy...but in the end she forgot about him even though she still considered him her boyfriend. She never thought about what made him happy, what effort was made to make him smile, it all ended up being her paradise and his nightmare.
    The freedom given was taken for granted, the love given was taken for granted, and most of all the person's heart given was taken for granted. It takes two hands to clap, it takes two hands to keep warm.
    What it this is whats happening to me? Am I having this type of crisis? Sigh....

    04 October

    lovers and haters

    Everyone we meet...either if its for love or hatred,
    Are actually mirrors.
    Of something inside of us that we are not seeing.

    The happy will always see sadness around them and take pity,
    The sad will always see happiness around them and feel envy."
    -Ryan De Alwis

    13 August


    You know whats worse than having you walk on a road and accidentally step on some dog shit? Having to see a guy sweet talk a girl into forgiving him. I was sitting waiting to get picked up and i see this kancil stop to my right about 10 feet away and i see this couple in the car and they were fighting. Turns out it was most probably the guys fault, which either way will always be, and he was trying every single way to win her back on her good terms. He was holding her hand, hugging her, trying to kiss her, doing all sorts of things. I dunno but it made me feel very cheap as a guy to go so low as to do something like that. Sometimes i feel that why we guys as a species are dumb sometimes and when we're single we are so much more stable and smart. But when we fall in love, its like our brains were just taken out of our head and replaced with a wet sponge!! And further more, why is she taking all this shit? Well it turns out they got back to together and it made me realize a couple of things that I had forgotten.
    If you really love the person, then arguments or mistakes don't really matter that much. Just make sure you don't do it again or if you do make sure your really sorry about it. Remember the 3R's of a RELATIONSHIP : REGRET the mistake, take RESPONSIBLITY, and REMEDY the mistake (never let it happen again)....maybe ROSES should be added in as well.
    Its going to be a long 4 months and i just hope that I can just pull through with this. I hate worrying but I guess it keeps me on my toes most of the time. Either way we prepared for anything and anyone.
    19 July

    Truths are kinda hard to bare

    There's always a danger of loving somebody too much
    and its sad when you know its your heart you can't trust
    Theres a reason why people don't stay where they are
    Sometimes, love just aint enough.
    I would never change anything,
    I would never blame anyone,
    I don't want anyone to take the fall,
    Yes, I have caused pain,
    But i never deserted,
    Maybe I just wanted to have it all.
    Love is filled with careful who you share it with.

    Sunday, 6 January 2008

    How I came to be!

    Some of you might know my background and some of you and still wondering whether or not I really am from another planet. Well to put things straight I'll briefy explain to you my bloodline. My father is a Portuguese-Chinese born and bred in Malaysia. His ancestors were wealthy Buddhist merchants from Siam (currently known as Thailand, Burma, etc) who migrated to Kuala Lumpur and become one of the founding founders of the capital.

    My mother on the other hand is an Anglo-Indian French born in India and raised in Europe. Her ancestors were Catholic of British and Irish origin who's grandfathers fought in both World Wars I believe. My mother having been born in India learned how to speak their language as well as French and English, it being her mother tongue.

    Thus my sister and I were born being a Portuguese-Chinese-Anglo-Indian-French. It took a while to finally figure out where our roots lay and I must say it turned out to be quite an exhilirating ride.

    Below is a excerpt of part of a history of how I came to be. It's a rather interesting read and makes me feel very special and small in this world.

    Anglo Indian History -- Condensed

    The British Empire once held absolute power in over 52 countries. About two-fifths of the world. But there was only one jewel in the crown - India The first European settlers in India were the Portuguese in 1498 about 100 years before the British. The Dutch, French and the British followed. They were all here for the durati on. The inevitable happened and a new mixed race community emerged.

    Even though the British came in peacefully as merchants and traders they soon colonised the sub-continent of India. But the British needed allies to protect the jewel in the crown and so began a deliberate policy encouraging British males to marry Indian women to create the first Anglo-Indians.

    The East India Company paid 15 silver rupees for each child born to an Indian mother and a European father, as family allowance. These children were amalgamated into the growing Anglo-Indian community, forming a defensive structure for the British Raj. This was a deliberate act of self preservation by the English. This unique hybrid individual was ethnically engineered by the occupying British so much so that the Anglo-Indians were the only micro-minority community ever defined in a Constitution.

    Article-366 of the Indian Constitution states An Anglo-Indian means a person whose father or any of whose male ancestors in the male line is or was of European descent but who is domiciled within the territory of India and is or was born within such territory of parents habitually resident there-in and not established there for temporary purposes only.So you can see we were intended to be a permanent micro-minority.

    In 1830 British Parliament described the Anglo-Indian as those who have been English educated, are entirely European in their habits and feelings, dress and language. They were more "Anglo" than "Indian". Their mother-tongue was English, they were Catholic or Anglican and their customs and traditions were English. While most of them married within their own circle, many continued to marry expatriate Englishmen. Very few married Indians. Without Anglo-Indian support British rule would have collapsed.

    We ran the railways, post and telegraph, police and customs, education, export and import, shipping, tea, coffee and tobacco plantations, the coal and gold fields. We became teachers, nurses, priests and doctors. If it had any value the British made sure we ran it. And when it came to secretarial duties no one could touch our Anglo-Indian girls - the best stenographers in the world and with beauty to match. Were we favoured? Yes, the English trusted us. After all we were blood related. We worked hard. We became indispensable. We lived comfortably and were protected by the British raj. Like the British we had servants to do all our domestic work.

    The average Anglo-Indian home could afford at least three full time servants - a cook, a bearer and the indispensable nanny (ayah). Part time servants included a gardener, cleaner and laundry man (dhobi). Of course we learned to speak Hindi to be able to argue, give orders, bargain, accuse and terminate employment and throw in a dozen Hindi expletives.Imagine our horror when we were later to migrate to England, Canada and Australia and we no longer had servants to do our domestic chores.Who can remember looking at our first toilet brush and asking 'what do we do with this?'

    We had to learn to cook, clean, garden, do the laundry and take the garbage out and look after the kids.

    The tradition of making your own Christmas cake was a sacred Anglo-Indian custom. Each family had a secret cake recipe, handed down from our grandparents. About a week before Christmas the local baker was contacted. He would turn up to your home with two very large terracotta bowls that looked more like satellite dishes.

    One for the egg whites and one for mixing. Mum would dish out the ingredients. This was all mixed together under her watchful eye and distributed in to about dozen or so cake tins and labelled with your name on it. This labelling was all important. We did not want him to return that evening with someone else's cake recipe. Heaven forbid.

    Music, movies and socialising were high on the agenda. We loved a dance. Afternoon dance jam sessions were a magnet for the teenagers where we jived, jitterbugged, tango'd or just fox trotted. Many a lasting liaison was forged on the dance floor and today many of us are celebrating 40-year plus marriages. Our mums sat around gossiping and seldom took their eyes off their darling daughters.

    I know I speak from experience. I met my wife at one such event and now 44 years later I still fancy her.
    The Anglo-Indian railway and cantonment towns that sprung up around the major cities cultivated a unique social and industrial blend with a heartbeat. Their dances were legendary. At the drop of a hat the city cousins would jump on a train and travel for anything up to six hours to get to that up-country dance.

    Many of our lives revolved around the biggest and best railway system in the world. And the trains ran on time! Today the Indian Railways transports over 5 billion passengers each year employing more than 1.6 million personnel. Between 1853 and 1947 we built and managed 42 rail systems. This was a legacy we can be proud of.

    During World War 1 about 8000 Anglo-Indians fought in Mesopotamia, East Africa, and in the European theatre - three Anglo-Indians were awarded Victoria Crosses. In World War II they fought at Dunkirk and flew in the battle of Britain Guy Gibson of the Dam Busters was one such Anglo-Indian, and we were in North Africa, Malaya and the fall of Singapore. Merle Oberon and Juliet Prowse, Tony Brent, Engelbert Humperdinck, Cliff Richards are all Anglo-Indians.

    The Anglo-Indians took India to Olympic hockey glory. From 1928 India won five consecutive Olympic hockey gold medals. In fact, when India faced Australia in the semi-finals of the 1960 Olympics in Rome, it was a unique occasion. The captains who came face to face were both Anglo-Indians, Leslie Claudius and Kevin Carton.

    English education played a major role amongst the Anglo-Indians. Anglo-Indian schools numbered close to 300 and were prized. They stretched from Bangalore in the south to the cooler northern hill stations of Darjeeling in the foothills of the Himalayas. Each was modelled on the posh English Public school system. We ran them as teachers and principals and to this day these schools are coveted across the sub-continent.

    The Anglo-Indian has always faced an identity dilemma because of our mixed origins. Europeans said they were Indians with some European blood; Indians said they were Europeans with some Indian blood. The world of Anglo-India vanished on August 15th 1947, when India became the largest independent democracy in the world. The British packed and went home. Over 300,000 Anglo-Indians remained. We felt apprehensive and abandoned. So we too packed our bags and began to migrate to Australia, Britain, Canada, the U.S.A. and New Zealand.

    Many of you will remember the dreaded Income Tax Clearance document you need to leave the country and further faced the strict Indian foreign exchange regulations that allowed you only 10 pounds each. Imagine starting life in a new country with 10 quid in your pocket. Some had to leave behind their savings; others simply resorted to the risky black market loosing a 30% of your savings.

    The Anglo-Indian identity is disappearing. We have found new lives and merged into the mainstream. Our generation, sitting here tonight, who were born in India, growing up in the 40s thru to 60s, are possibly the last true Anglo-Indians. Look around you. Where is the next generation? Most of our children were born abroad and their connection to Anglo-India is very fragile. They have married Aussies, English, Canadian or other Anglo-Indians born outside India.

    They prefer to be regarded as English, Australian or Canadian. Our grandchildren will assimilate and forge a new identity based on their country of birth. Putting aside history I believe we could regard ourselves as an exotic cocktail that had its origins over 300 years ago. We have matured and become a unique aromatic spirit, generously flavoured and very stimulating. We were a force to be reckoned with.

    We were the shakers and the stirrers. Please pick up your glasses and toast your State of Origin and New Horizons.

    Monday, 31 December 2007

    Kor's Surprise/ Not really a Surprise/ He found out anyhow/ Kinda drunk/ But not really....Birthday Party

    Apparently they weren't paying attention to me....sniff
    Ahhh...finally :)
    I forgot when I did I take this...but here it is anyways...
    Good 'ol high school buddies...but one can't even remember if she met the
    other one before...weird...

    These are my friends...yes I know...they're bad to the bone. Chinese