brioche Tag

Super rich coconut, orange and mango panettone

see you next year, my friend

In a few days, we are going to pack our bags and head to Paris then Marrakech for our holiday vacation.  I probably won’t see you much on this blog during that time, which is why I’m throwing you a fat-bomb now to sustain your optimal winter-time figure all the way untill a new year comes. What a new year if one can’t make a diet resolution to fail utterly at?

This is what I call, the Crazy Rich Asian Panettone, lubed up with 12 egg yolks, coconut milk, and an ungodly amount unsalted butter and unrefined coconut oil.  This indecent level of fat not only keeps the crumbs sinfully moist, but also provides a backdrop of coconuty aroma where it pairs beautifully with speckles of dried mango and persimmons tinged with orange zests.  It could serve as an awesome “self-enrichment” during the holiday seasons but also, as we all secretly desire, as an ill-intended gift for our frenemies whom we would like to see de-shaped on that first depressing day back to the office.  Either way, we win.

So see you next year, my friend.  You’ve been lovely.

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France Part II, and chicken w/ morels and rice pilaf

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ONE OF THE BEST DISHES I COOKED.

I AGREE.

Lourmarin is what it promises, a picturesque village in the Luberon region in Provence, and more.

No matter what kind of cynicism you bring along, or distaste for anything that seems to fit too squarely into Martha Stewart magazines, you come here, you see it, and it’s hard not to surrender, even just for a moment, under Lourmarin’s somewhat curated but irresistible, undeniable charm.  We arrived at 7 o’clock in a summer evening when this village draped with honeysuckle vines and buzzing bumble bees were casted under a slanted, pale blue light.  With just one deep breath of its brisk, floral and light beige linen atmosphere, everything felt just right.  May I even remind you that this was after 9 hours of driving from Lyon cutting through the gruesome, annual European migration to the south in the middle of August?  If it weren’t for the highlight of us stopping midway at an orchard, and me may-or-may-not having stolen a bright red apple and ran, the day would’ve all seem to be in ruin.

That ain’t pretty.  But Lourmarin made it worthwhile.

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(may or may not have stolen an apple from here…)

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gateau a la sour cream + blueberry custard

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For someone who’s technically unemployed, I don’t know if this would violate the definition of such word but actually, for the past 2 weeks, I’ve been enjoying some sort of a “holiday”.  Well… a holiday on house-arrest if you will, but nonetheless, a holiday.  Despite the… minor inconvenience that we’re currently bound to the last place on earth that we’d like to spend more time in, Jason had decided to take the longest vacation-days he’s ever taken in his entire work-life, ever, an entire 14 blissful days to spend on doing something that we’ve practically elevated to an art-from… that is to do ab-so-lute-ly… nothing.READ MORE

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rock’n potato roll

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There were many aspects in life turned unexpectedly different after moving to Beijing.  I didn’t expect that in any foreseeable lifetime, I’d accessorize a biking trip to the grocery with an industrial-grade gas-mask instead of a summer straw-hat.  I didn’t expect neither that instead of battles on sample sale weekends, I’d be fighting other choking victims online in a gas-mask-shortage-frenzy when the days get worse.  Yah I know there’s a general wisdom to be applied here somewhere… positive psychology and affirmations do-kid-yourself kinda BS or whatnot… but then comes the unexpected irony.

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As Promised – A Better Brioche

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I should’ve known.  I shouldn’t still be surprised after all these years.  OOOF COURSE!  What other secret weapons do professional bakers hold against us besides their senseless guilt towards adding a couple sticks more of butter into everything?  It turns out I too, can bake an obscenely rich, absurdly moist and stringy brioche at home if I just blindfold my conscience, steady my shaking hands, and let go of ALLLL THAT BUTTER into the mixer while shaking off the image of cellulite-on-the-beach in my head.  Steady now, Mandy.  Steady now.  The road to greatness isn’t without sacrifice…

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