15 Must Try Food in Singapore

~ Posted on Sunday, December 18, 2016 at 11:18 PM ~

Singapore is one of the top tourist destinations in the world. Its blend of different cultures, iconic colonial buildings, modern high-rises and street markets will is enchanting and surely will fascinate the travelers. These entire great attractions aside, this multicultural city has emerged as one of the top food destinations. One of the expressions that have been used to describe Singapore is “a foodie paradise” and this has helped enhance the city’s reputation as the place to go for those who love to eat.

The best thing is that you don’t need to go into a fancy restaurant to find these food varieties. Being that eating is Singapore’s national past time, the places to eat this food vary from high-end restaurants to hawker or street-food stalls. For as little as $3 you can get a taste of the best food that Singapore has to offer.

If you are getting ready to get on a bus to Singapore, here is a list of 15 foods that have stood the test of time that you must try:

(1) Bak Kut Teh

source: https://cinnamonsin.wordpress.com/2011/09/02/founder-bak-kut-teh-restaurant/

This is one of the most iconic dishes in Singapore. It is prepared with simmering meaty pork ribs in a liquid mixture of herbs and spices of garlic, white pepper and salt. Bak kut teh is consumed along with strong tea in the belief that this will help dissolve the grease in the soup.

(2) Hainanese chicken rice

source: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2013/08/hainanese-chicken-rice-set-recipe.html

This dish was adapted from the early Chinese immigrants who came from Hainan province in the southern parts of China. Considered one of Singapore’s national dishes, the chicken is prepared by immersing the chicken in boiling water and then then dunking it in an ice bath before slicing it. The hot water that has some of the skimmed chicken fat is used along with garlic and ginger to prepare the chicken.

(3) Hokkien Prawn Mee

source: http://www.sgfoodonfoot.com/2014/02/xiao-di-fried-prawn-noodle-serangoon.html

Not to be confused with Hokkien Char Mee, this is a mixture of rice noodles and egg noodles fried in a fragrant stock that has prawns, fried pork fat, fish cake and squid. In some cases, pork strips are added to enhance the flavour.it is served along with some lime juice and sambal chilli to give you that extra zing.

(4) Tau Huay

source: https://hazwanifyp.wordpress.com/chinese-foods/

This is a Chinese dessert made using beancurd tofu that has been sweetened with some sugar syrup. Its traditional version is soft and soaks in the syrup to be taken together. Sometimes soya bean milk or grass jelly is added as well. You can either eat it hot or cold.

(5) Biryani

This dish has a heavy Indian Muslim influence. The fried rice dish is made using long grain rice. It is flavoured using cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon and bay leaves. The biryani can be beef, chicken or fish biryani depending on the meat used.

(6) Nasi Lemak

This very versatile rice dish used to be considered as a breakfast item but people now take it for lunch or dinner too. The rice has a sweet fragrance due to the coconut cream used to steam it. There are different variations of Nasi Lemak and they offer a wide variety of ingredients such as drumsticks, fried chicken, sotong balls and luncheon meat.

(7) Roti Prata

This South-Indian bread is very popular in Singapore. It is made by frying thinly flattened dough that has been flavoured with ghee. Usually served with mutton curry or fish, roti prata never disappoints. While the classic variations were either plain or mixed with egg, menus now have eccentric variations including chocolate, cheese which has turned rotti prata into a dessert.

(8) Rojak

Rojak is a fruit and vegetable salad made by mixing dough fritters, beancurd puffs, pineapple, radish, cucumber, bean sprouts and roast peanuts with prawn paste sauce to come up with a harmoniously tasty blend. Its ingredients are a reflection of the cultural diversity that Singapore has to offer.

(9) Char kway teow

This noodle dish is very popular in Singapore. In fact Singaporeans consider it a national favourite. It is a combination of flat rice noodles and a sweet dark sauce. Stir-fried at very high temperature with fish cake, egg and Chinese sausages, the original intention was always to load the dish with fats as labourers needed a cheaper source of energy.

(10) Chai tow kway (Carrot cake)

This is a popular Singapore dish that can be found at almost every food place in the city. It differs from your typical Western carrot cake that has been made with orange carrots. Singaporean carrot cake actually has no carrots at all. It is made using rice flour and daikon radish which are fried in pork lard and eggs.

(11) Wanton Mee

This combination of wanton dumplings, some boiled vegetables, yellow egg noodles and small slices of char siu. The dish is best served in a hot broth together with shrimp wontons the texture and tangliness of the egg noodles is what makes this such a refreshing dish.

(12) Durian

This is considered as the national fruit of Singapore. While a foreigner is likely to be turned off by its strong smell, locals adore its flesh and they use it to make cakes, desserts, tarts or even shakes. Nowadays there are many newer popular strains that have an even stronger fragrance.

(13) Duck rice

The best places to find good ducks are the shops that specialize in duck rice only. The dish combines plain white rice together with roasted duck and flavoured with braised sauce. There is a different version that uses braised duck meat with yam rice with some eggs, peanuts tau pok on the side. While the two versions have different taste profiles, they are both equally yummy.

(14) Curry puffs

These are a favourite midday snack for many people in Singapore. It is simply a miniature pie that has been filled with curry. The pastry shell is baked in the semi-circular in shape. Most of the times, the fillings are chicken curry and potato. But there are other variants that can also be used such as chilly crab or tuna curry.

(15) Popiah

This fresh spring roll is very popular in Singapore. The ingredients are rolled up using a thin wheat crepe that is paper-like. Hoisin, a sweet sauce, is smeared on the laid out wheat crepe before the fillings are added. Most of the times, ingredients in a Popiah include boiled eggs, lettuce, Chinese sausage, small prawns, lettuce and filled with turnip strips and cooked carrot.

There you have it, 15 must have local delicacies in Singapore. Besides completing your trip with the abundance of top destinations, you must not forget to indulge in these delicious local treats! Then, only you can claim to have completed your Singapore trip!

Renting a Family-Friendly House in Kuala Lumpur

~ Posted on Saturday, November 12, 2016 at 12:05 PM ~

With the rising in population, accommodation has become a major problem that makes house hunting a key issue in today’s world. When searching for an apartment, there are several things to consider: place of work, amenities, location and security among other factors. For a family friendly apartment, this calls for more. The location of the house has to favor your kids since it means a lot to them as they gradually mature. Anyone looking for a house for rent in KL especially young parents with has to keep the following in mind:

Renting a Family-Friendly House in Kuala Lumpur

Learning institutions
Before moving in to a new house, do a thorough survey of the area to make sure there’re ample learning institutions such as schools and tuition centers. Usually such area will see quite a number of families with kids that will definitely make up a family-friendly neighborhood.

Security
The security of the area is crucial especially for the little ones. Several areas of the house have to be under locks to avert the trivial matter of “missing child” that pretty much can be related to child abduction. Yikes!

Windows
This should be the case in a storied building. For floor-to-ceiling window, make sure the window is locked always or ensure the opening is small enough to not being able to fit a person. For toddlers, the opening should be high enough to be out of reach. Not forgetting windows with broken handles should be repaired as soon as possible before the family moves in so as to be sure of safety.

Balconies
The porch should also be child friendly and tough enough to sustain any kind of pressure exerted on the fencing. It should also be raised to prevent any child from going over it.

The rest of the house should also have few turning points to prevent the child from knocking over hard objects, which might lead to serious injuries. Another factor to consider is the compound outside. Is the house fenced well enough to prevent stray animals and idlers from accessing your property and hurting your kids? Does the pool have proper fencing to rub away the idea of small children drowning in it?

Apartments with drive way should also include road signs within the perimeter of parking cars to avoid knocking down children playing in the hallway. The houses should always have adequate space where children can play as you watch over them from the kitchen.

Neighbors
It shouldn’t come as a surprise for parents to have
A lot of parents want their children developing a healthy relationship with other parents’ children of the same age like playing football in the hood. This way, even parents themselves get to bond making it a big happy family. A set playground for kids is an added advantage.

Sanitation
Always cross check the interior part of the apartment before giving out the cheque. A place filled with molds or other contaminants should be dealt with by either renovating the place or calling a specialist in such cases to help you out. Your family health should be your top priority

Size
The house should have a decent size that is huge enough to contain all the necessities that your family will need especially for your children upbringing. Extra spaces will always come in handy to keep things organized.

Renting a Family-Friendly House in Kuala Lumpur

These are the ultimate qualities to look for in a new house to move in with your children before making a final decision of buying it. Ultimately, you can always rely on property portal as the like of PropertyGuru to look for a house for rent in KL that will give you a good idea on whether the house is a right fit for your family!

However, if you have already settled down in a rented home and would like to keep your home safe to your children, you might find this guide handy and helpful.


Cleaning Up - Energy Efficient Hoovers

~ Posted on Wednesday, April 29, 2015 at 11:25 PM ~

If you’ve been shopping around for a vacuum cleaner you’ll probably have noticed ‘energy-efficient’ labels stuck to the body of the machine. These environmentally-friendly cleaners are designed to use less energy to do the same job as traditional models. This should result in reduced household energy bills, which always gets a thumbs-up!

Many countries have now banned the use of powerful, energy-sucking household appliances and this includes vacuums rated above 1600 watts, but are there real benefits to low-energy cleaners?

A manufacturing challenge

The introduction of eco-friendly vacuum cleaners has obliged manufacturers to find innovative ways to create a product that allows people to hoover but uses less energy to do so. As a result, they’ve actually started creating models that required only 1000 Watts and even 800 Watts to clean thoroughly and efficiently. For the consumer, this meant their machine produced the same results but used much less energy to achieve them. Ultimately, this means another household appliance has been introduced that is not only kinder to the environment but will also help to keep utility bills down.

Performance through design

Thanks to the rise in home electronics, we’re consuming more energy and this is one of the reasons why it makes sense to use low-energy products. But manufacturers know that the design of the product, not the actual energy consumption, is what makes a difference to performance. To this end, some manufacturers have gone back to the drawing board to produce quieter models that feature a higher pick-up rate than traditional cleaners. There are also models that offer turbo features for deep cleaning, including pet hairs, which are hard to pick up.

Additional features

The new cleaners do come with some excellent additional specifications, including filtration layers to remove particles from the air when cleaning. This has been designed to help people who have allergies. New, 3D dust bags are also part of this process. Charcoal filtration is available on some models too to absorb odours such as pet smells, which can become ingrained in carpets. The features available will depend on the brand of cleaner and there will be price differences depending on the technology involved.

In some countries you now have no option but to buy energy-efficient vacuum cleaners. However, low-energy cleaners make financial sense when it comes to a cost-effective household purchase that’s also kinder to our planet.

** Image by Photographing Travis, used under Creative Commons licence