Sweets

Tough Crowd Longan Cake

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I’m always puzzled where people get their optimism from. I have this friend. She’s a walking team of cheerleaders in a single unit, comes with flowers and sunshine with balloons and all that stuff. If you feel like a worthless piece of sxxt, I’d have you call her so you can feel like a brand new piece of chocolate nougat instead. Or a cat like a tiger and a chicken like a peacock… always the brighter side of life if you know what I mean. In all honesty, I’m usually extensively annoyed by such characters whom I call the self-hypnotized with false expectations. But the exception is that I ADORE her because she seems so genuinely living, breathing and walking in her bubbling enthusiasm and positivity 24/7, that even a light-sensitive vamp-downer like me can’t seem to dampen her spirit. How does she do that? She will forever be a mystery of nature to me. But hey, this is my blog and I’m only bringing her up so I can talk about myself.

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X’mas Blend Coffee Bars

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OK I’m a repeat offender… it seems like we have barely gotten over Thanksgiving (based on numbers on the scale) and I’m AGAIN already talking about the NEXT, EVEN-BIGGER-ER holiday!  What’s wrong with me?  Am I the only one who feels sidetracked… distracted… by establishments on almost every corner in New York and even some in Beijing that I find it difficult to focus?  Because my year’s-biggest-holiday-state-of-mind is not kick-started by the official ending of Thanksgiving.  Or by the emergence of the frightening, steroid-pumped displays of lights and reindeers on neighbor’s front lawn.  Instead in my mind, the X’mas season is announced officially by no other than the worldwide Starbucks and the appearance of their exceedingly adorable X’mas cups!

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Not-a-Muffin Amaretto Financier

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“My colleagues loved those mini muffins…”
“There are NOT muffins!  They are FINANCIER with a silent R, as in FRRRENCH!!”
“I know financiers.  They’re rectangular.  That’s not financier.”
“…. don’t comment before you GOOGLE!  I’m getting Jiaozi a new daddy.”

OK, that pretty much sums up my recent mental-stability.  But in my defense if I may, a word on why I go a bit nuts when my slightly-retarded-in-the-kitchen husband (but otherwise awesome) tries to give “input” to my cooking given that another (and so many others like it) conversation took place just the other day:

“Hey, can you do something with that tomato?”
“What tomato?”
“THAT tomato that’s being sitting on the counter for days!”
“You mean… the pumpkin?”
“…. oh…”

So you see?  How can I take cooking advice from a man like that?  PS: Jiaozi is my Maltese!

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Apple++ Muffins

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Have I become unintentionally popular among neighbors?  It can’t possibly…  I never join the gathering-in-the-lobby-making-small-talks group.  I give dirty looks to kids on their bikes who, I believe, aim to kill me or at least rid me of one leg.  My french bulldog is notorious for bolting out of nowhere and mugging children’s soccer balls (ANY balls, really…), scares them off like scattering pigeons, and afterwards I return the balls with a thick coat of her extra-slimy saliva.  My maltese attacks people, period.  My youngest, adopted mutt likes to jump on people after snacking on… sh… poo.  So like I said.  It can’t possibly.

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Great Pineapple Jam

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Has anyone ever wondered why pineapples are so left out in the community of preservatives?  Neither have I.  I mean I love pineapples.  LOVE pineapples.  But it never occurred to me that it should be offered immortality in a glass jar among berries and other things.  Until a couple of years ago on a trip back to Taipei, I spotted a relatively new artisanal jam company in the most unlikely places – a bookstore.

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Red Velvet Ebelskivers

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(Chinese versions coming soon)

The logic goes that after a feeding-frenzy Malaysia binge-party, that my head and soul should be filled with just Malaysian recipes extravaganza.  And THAT IS CORRECT.  Believe me, it is.  But as sorting through and editing 1,018 pixtures while coordinating everything with the exact location on Google map has proven to be bit more time-consuming than I expected, I’m experiencing a little bit of bloggers-obsessive-anxiety-disorder as I realize that Bloggy has been starving without a new post for almost a week now (yes, I count).

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Gelato for Breakfast

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(Chinese versions coming soon)

If anyone holds secret addiction for trashy tabloid magazine, uheh… which of course I’m not talking about myself because I only read Time and Nat Geo, or Economist and… world-hunger-stuff like that with SUBSTANCE… obviously……. Then they’d known what a friend of a friend whose sister’s cousin had told me that apparently this guy Tom Cruise Whatever and his wife ex-wife Katie Something… got divorced with help from his ex-ex-wife Nicole blah blah. So I heard. Again NOT that I care, but apparently it was over some dispute in their insanely fashionable (polka-dots! Just a wild guess…) Suri’s upbringing that I SO do not know the details of, but one of which I vaguely remember being that… he lets her eats ice-cream for dinner?

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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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