Singaporean cooking

I’ve been meaning to start the food part of my blog for sometime now, but never seem to get round to doing it. After my short but inspiring visit to the Frankfurt Book Fair though, my enthusiasm to do it has fired up again, so heres my first post!

What has my visit to the book fair to do with cooking? Well, I came back with an arm full of cookbooks of course! And obviously on Singaporean cooking, the only kind that really matters to me. With all the recipes in the books reminding me of my childhood in Singapore, and my father or his sisters cooking in the kitchen, I’m now eager to try and recreate those smells and tastes that bring me home, while still in cold foggy Ulm.

But first of all, let me give you a little introduction to Singaporeans and food, cause you can’t separate one from the other! We love eating so much, we eat 5 times a day (really!), that we often greet each other by asking “Have you eaten?” I sometimes still do that, even after 25 years away from home!

Singaporean cuisine is a mix of all the cultures that live in Singapore. Indien, Chinese, Malay, Eurasian and Peranakan, which is a mix of the Chinese and Malay cultures. And the best place to try these dishes are in places we call hawkers centres. We have over a hundred of them in Singapore! These are places which have individual stalls selling everything from fresh fruit juices to coconut jam (kaya) on toast, chilli crabs, noodle soups and fish head curries!

btfc_singapore_hawker_stalls_002Typical hawker centre. Always head for the stall with the longest queue, you won’t go wrong!

They are also the places where you often get the best, yet really affordable meals in Singapore! And with the health campaign that pushed the vendors to omit MSG from their cooking, it has become quite healthy too. Most families will buy their daily meals home from these centres, and when I go home with my family for a holiday, we take our

Breakfasts (Roti Prata-Indien bread with curry, Chwee Kueh-rice flour cakes with salted radish, Nasi Lemak-coconut rice with sambal anchovies or Bak kut teh-pork rib soup…),

Morning Snacks (curry puffs, nonya cakes or peanut pancakes…)

Lunches (chicken rice, duck noodles or laksa-shrimp curry noodles …)

Afternoon snacks (Pandan cake-coconut sponge cake, Roja-vegetable & fruit salad or Tahu Goreng-Soja bean curd cakes with peanut sauce…)

and Dinners (Hokkien Mee-seafood noodles, Fish Head curry, chilli sting ray, chilli crab, satays…)

After dinner snacks (durian, oyster omelette or almost raw cockles…)

all from these centres too!

2 of these hawker stands have even won the firsts Michelin stars awarded to this type of establishment! It is I can safely say, the cheapest Michelin star meal you can have in the world, at around 4 Euros a dish for the famous chicken noodle dish from the Hong Kong Soya Sauce noodles and rice stall! But you’ll have to start queuing at 10h for at least 2h, as they don’t take reservations!

One of the Michelin star chef Mr Chan and his stall. He prepares the dishes behind the window of his stall in a tiny space.

Travelling across the city and waiting in a queue for ages, for what they believe is the best dish in its category, is very normal in Singapore. You will see large luxury cars parked in front of these places along with simple construction workers on foot, all equal before the humble food stand. And you can see this at all times of the day… and night! One of my favourite food memories is piling into the back of an open pick up truck with my friends, at 10pm, to go off in search of the best after dinner meal snack!

So now you have been quite adequately introduced to Singapore cuisine, let me get back to the cookbooks I brought back from the fair. This first one is by a Singaporean living in London, and besides the sumptuous looking recipes, it makes for a very entertaining read too!


I have actually met one of the chefs in the supper club, Jason, who cooked for us at my cousin’s hen night in London in June. Thats him below with my cousins and friends and some of the delicious food he made for us that was truly a taste of home!

The other books I brought back belong to a series which highlights the cuisine from the different cultures in Singapore. My mother had given me one a few years back, which is still my go to book for Peranakan dishes so I was really excited to find other books in the series.


I can’t wait to start trying them out and will post pics of my efforts. I have already invited some Singaporean/Malaysian friends to come next week to try out my dishes to give me an honest opinion of them!

Before I end this rather long post, heres a pic of my breakfast this morning.


Nothing like a hot noodle soup to cure a hangover I had! Its a minced meat rice noodle soup made from a broth of roasted chicken and chestnuts. My very own invention!

Bon appetite!

Congratulations Cinthia!

I’m writing this post in the car, on my way to Frankfurt to the largest book fair in the world.  Besides my love for books, this fair is extra special. My dear friend Cinthia, who is a talented published author, is having her books featured at the fair and we’re going to celebrate this special occasion!


I made this card to congratulate her. I CASED Birgit’s card from Happy Little Stampers. I used a stencil from Stamplorations and sponged in Stampin’ Up inks, added WoW clear glittery embossing powder before heating it. The background text was also sponged through a stencil but strangely enough the embossed leafs didn’t act too much as a resist…I cut the panel with MFT’s stitched rectangle die from their Blueprint 20 set and adhered it to the teal card. The sentiment from JustRite was stamped with my Misti with Versamark and gold heat embossed on the scallop circle. I added the side strips and afew pearls with my pearl pen to finish the card.

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Heres a pic I took before I finished the card and as the light is better you can really see how it glitters! I really love my new WoW embossing powders.

I entered this card in:

Addicted to Stamps and More – Anything Goes

Freshly Made Sketches – freshly-made-sketch

Stamps and stencils – Elements of nature

With the same stencil, I made another card but this time I used embossing paste before adding WoW gold embossing powder. The text from Penny Black’s “Rejoice with Joy” set was stamped with Staz On black ink on vellum before I heat embossed it using clear Wow embossing powder.

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The vellum border was cut from a previously coloured scrap to which I added my WoW heartthrob embossing glitters and heat embossed it. Afew sequins and the card was finished.

The same stencil but 2 completely different cards. I hope you like them!

I played along with:

Creative Artists Mixed media

Christmas at Sweet Stampin – Glitter and Sparkle

Word art Wednesday – Anything Goes

Card Mania – Let it Shine

Happy Little Stampers CAS– Embossing on Vellum

Stop Domestic Violence!

Did you know that women between the ages of 15 and 44 are more likely to be injured or die as a result of domestic violence, than through rapes, muggings and car accidents combined!

I learnt that through a very brave crafter/blogger, the talented Becca Crugar of Damsel in Distress. She is trying to raise awareness to stop domestic violence, after she herself managed to get out of an abusive relationship. She started the Hop to Stop as a way to connect Domestic Violence survivors and give hope to victims. I encourage you to hop over to her blog and read her story and the beautiful way she is using her art to convey it. In this hop, she is asking us to create a card using purple, as that is the colour of National Domestic Violence Month in America, which is October. (International Domestic Violence Month is 25 November.)


I first stamped the flower from Stamplorations with Versamark, added WoW clear embossing powder, and then heat embossed it. Purple brushos powder was sprinkled on the flower, spritzed with water and touched up with my Zig clean brushes while it was still wet. The sentiment choice was a no brainer. I had to use one from Becca’s own creation for Stamplorations, called Strong Women. Those stamps have a new meaning for me now… I stamped it in black ink using my Misti and poured WoW clear glittery embossing powder over it before heating it. The photo doesn’t do it justice as they really glitter and shine!


I really love this text and all women should hear it more often, especially abused women. If you want to join in the hop, here’s the link. There are prizes to be won too!

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I also added this card to the Stamplorations Always Anything Goes challenge  STAMPlorations-anythinggoes

CAS Watercolor challenge –  I made this card CAS with this challenge in mind but completely forgot that the theme was Autumn!

I made another support card for a friend, who lost her sister recently to illness. I wanted something bright and cheery that would hopefully brighten her days a little.


I used a stencil from Dutch Doobadoo called Flower Swirl to make this print by first stamping it with Versamark, before running it through my Big Shot Plus and embossing it. I sprinkled Wow’s embossing powder over it and heat embossed to to create a resist when I coloured the card with my Zig clean brushes. The sentiment is from Stampendous Sincere Sentiments collection, which was stamped in white and heat embossed with my Wow powders again.

I really had a lot of pleasure making these cards and I hope you enjoyed looking at them too!

I entered this card in:

Cards and More – Watercolor

Uniko challenge – Rainbow

MFT Sketch challenge – mft

Glittery Xmas tree

I am on a roll! I’ve made 4 Christmas cards already, but I am still 10 cards behind for this week as I wanted to send back a bunch to my family in Singapore, through a friend who’ll be going there on…Thursday! So I’ll have to turn myself into a mini Santa workshop and start churning out more cards! But first a quick post on a very CAS mixed media card.

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I made this card by first adding a layer of acrylic paste through the Stamplorations Xmas tree stencil. I then added Wow’s beautiful Hearthrob embossing glitter on it. I heat embossed it while the paste was still wet, but I think next time I’ll wait a few hours for the paste to dry before heating it. I stamped the text from Penny Black underneath the tree instead of adding presents as I thought they went very well together.


This view shows the raised 3D effect the paste gives. The powder is really glittery so I didn’t add anything else to the card. I really love this embossing paste method and I think I’ll be using it very often for my Xmas cards!

I played along with:
Addicted to stamps – Embossing wet or dry
Christmas Card challenges – Colour inspiration. I just went with the red glitter
Just Us Girls – Use gold, rust and olive
Time Out challenge – I was inspired by the red of the flowers and the gold embossed side panels
Happy Little Stampers – My 2nd entry to their Embossing challenge

Card making process

This card took me more than a week to finish. It is also only my third attempt, I think, of creating a mixed media card. The reasons it has taken so long are:

1-I had no idea what I wanted to do with it.                                                                                          2-I had no time to think about what I wanted to do!

Making a card doesn’t come easy to me; as in, I sit down to craft and “bang” an idea comes straight into my head and I know exactly what I want to do. It is a long process that normally involves visiting many blogs to get inspiration from some really creative artists out there, or from the challenges. (Funny how I never think about opening my Pinterest page to look at all the fabulous pins I’ve pinned to give me inspiration…) Or it could be from colours I see in a shop or paintings on the wall. Unfortunately all I see at the moment are German verbs in a drab classroom and my head is filled with accusative or nominative cases…

But this Sunday I decided I was going to dedicate my whole Sunday to making cards AND finish this card I started 10 days ago!

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 I started out by sponging in the leaves from Stamplorations stencil with Stampin Up inks. I then went over it with yellow SU ink to finsh the background. I cut the panel with a die from Spellbinders radient rectangles collection and adhered it on the shiny bordeaux card. I stamped the sentiment from Technique Junkies on vellum and heat embossed with WoW gold embossing powder before cutting it with a stitched die from MFT Blueprint no 20. To make the words stand out more. I coloured the background with my Zig brushes.


The flower was cut using a Spellbinders flower die, from acrylic skins I had created using this method. I added a ribbon…because I had it on the table and my card was finally finished! This card is not my usual style but I do love the text.


I entered this card in the following challenges:

Simon Says Wednesday – Halloween inspiration board. I chose to go with the autumn colours
Uniko challenge – Autumn
Happy Little Stampers Mixed media– Nature
Stamping Sensation – Autumn

Thanks for stopping by!

1st Christmas card!

Its only October but I decided I would have to start making Christmas cards if I want to have enough to give to friends AND have enough to sell them at my first market participation! Yes, I will be testing my cards out to see if they are good enough to be sold in a small German Christmas fair this year.


This card was made using a new die I received, which is from Spellbinders. I cut it from paper I had previously painted using my also new Gelli plate. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to create really beautiful pieces to use as a background, but they work well to cut dies, I think! I added more reds and browns to the die cut but the rest I left untouched. I added the bottom design using an Efco stencil and my perfect pearls powder. The beautiful sentiment from Penny Black was stamped with Versamark and heat embossed it with this fabulous embossing powder from WoW, that I think is just perfect for Christmas!


It creates a gold and red sparkly effect that is simply beautiful! I adhered the panel onto the card before adding the die cut wreath on it to finish. I used the sketch from MFT Sketch challenge to create this card.

I’m finally able to play along in all the Christmas challenges out there!

Happy Little Stampers Christmas challenge – Embossing

Christmas Card challenge – decorations

Merry Monday Christmas challenge – Vintage/Retro. I’m not sure if my card is considered retro

Breast Cancer awareness month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. Everyone should check themselves monthly, (men too as breast cancer do strike men) and if you would like to know how to check yourselves, click here. I have been making many magnectic cards and ribbons to give to friends so they can stick it on fridges or mirrors, to remind them to check themselves. Here is one of them.


I coloured a glossy paper with my alcohol inks, before cutting the ribbon with CASual Fridays “Calling all Sistahs” Cancer awareness collection of dies and stamps, which was actually designed while the creator, Michele, was going through her treatment for breast cancer. Incredible!  I also used it to stamp the sentiments with my Misti. I added 8 little pink sparklies to join in over at CASual Friday Stamps . 8 because 1 in 8 women get diagnosed with breast cancer every year. To finish, I added magnectic strips on the back.

There are many other challenge blogs supporting Cancer awareness this month and I am joining the following:

Crafting with Dragonflies

Time out challenges

I made another card to support all those going through this horrible ordeal, especially Hilde from Crafting with Dragonflies. I wish you and everyone else struggling through this, lots of courage and strength and I am with them in spirit.


This card was made using the same die and stamps set as above. This time I coloured the ribbon and the panel with my Brushos. I masked off the lilac card (yes its actually lilac!) except for a broad strip and sprinkled Brushos powder, spritz water on it and let the magic work! I removed the mask quite soon after as I wanted the edges to be ragged like the ribbon edges. The sentiment was stamped in violet Versafine ink and the word “Girl” was also heat embossed with Wow’s clear sparkly embossing powder. Just love it! I tried to follow the sketch from CASe this sketch when I made this card and I also entered this card in the following challenges:

CASology – Support

Amusing – Think Pink/Breast cancer awareness. They are giving away free Breast Cancer Awareness stamps this month, you just pay for the shipping. Unfortunately its only for the US, so I couldn’t order mine… what is a pity.

Addicted to Stamps and More – CAS

Thanks for stopping by and make sure you CHECK yourselves!