Sunday, March 30, 2014

Cavalock and The Perfect Steak Formula and Other Bootleg Bounties

A Saturday evening home alone and I figured its been awhile since I posted bout something I put together in the kitchen. Straight from celebrity chef's Heston Blumenthal's at Home cookbook, this is probably the easiest thing in there. It's all about frying the perfect steak. Like I said, it's real simple and anyone can do it.

Heat your pan for like 5 minutes till it's crazy hot and smoking. Salt the best steak you can buy but make sure the steak is at room temperature first. Drizzle some olive or grapefruit oil on the sizzling pan.

Time to drop the steak in the pan and watch it sizzle. The trick is to flip the meat every 15 seconds for like two minutes if you want a medium rare steer. Well, you can follow all that or just watch Heston's video here, yah well maybe the latter. The Canadian ribeye I got earlier in the afternoon turned out nicely. The steamed brussels sprouts was another easy peasy dish. Just steam them and add a dollop of butter once they are tender to the bite, which takes about five minutes.

Yes, that's an autographed copy thanks to blogger epicurative.
Good enough for me.
Saturday evening with my essential 'friends' .

As always, the worst part of every meal is mopping up a grease-soaked kitchen. I reckon that took me three times longer than it took for me to prepare the food. Still, you can't really put a price tag to a great home-cooked meal.

Another cache of fake ...opps ... I mean, customised Lego minifigures has just reached our shores and I can't be more excited. Except for the Green Arrow figure which was an San Diego Comic Con exclusive last year, all the other three minifigures have yet to be officially made or released by Lego. So like I said in a previous post, it ain't technically a fake if there was never an original around in the first place right? Now if anyone's wondering where to find all these fake Lego ...damn it!... customised figures, you can find them at the Sunday flea market at China Square Central. I saw almost half the stalls there selling them including the fake Winter Soldier Lego.

Daddy's home! 

My TV series vs your movie?


But this is my favourite collectible to come out of this latest shipment. A reproduction of the black and white Batman statue by artist Sean Galloway. Decent packaging, same size and colour, and looking at the box, I'm assuming the original is made outta porcelain but the one I got is made outta hard plastic hence the rather economical price tag of only S$24 while the real deal is going for US80 before shipping.

Now I'm sure if you take a real close look at it, you'll notice some minor flaws. But I'm cool with it. There were also reproductions of the New 52 figures of DC Heroes' Flash and Superman by Jim Lee. I wasn't interested in those as the 'completest' part of me would be anxiously waiting for the rest of the (bootleg) Justice League to show up.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Cavalock and The Reservoir Birds

Been awhile since I posted some wildlife photos by my 80-year-old Dad. Well, the recent haze, heat wave and drought definitely didn't stop him from wandering all over the island alone. And people wonder why I'm constantly fraught with worry. Here are some he took at the reservoir a couple weeks ago. The first pix below got a pretty good score a little over 90 on his 500px page.

I'm calling these guys the Reservoir Birds cos them birds are in different colours kinda like the cast in that Tarantino movie. Geddit? Come on people! Work with me here!

Now here's something you don't see everyday! Spotted and filmed by my Dad at the Chinese Garden. A kaiju lizard that came up looking for food after the ponds have all dried up during the draught. Check out how the kaiju lizard does its version of 'ayam penyet' but with a giant frog, smashing its bloated body against the tree. Now I tried posting the videos of it swallowing the frog here but that doesn't seem to be happening, pop-up says I can't upload but doesn't say why.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Cavalock and The (Only?) Unbiased Savour Files

It's that time of the year again when the Savour food fest sets up their tents and fancy food stalls for the masses. This is the third year in a row that I have been to the fest, actually it's a new venue this year at the Marina Bay District. So I looked at a bunch of local food blogs that covered the event and every single one of them loved it! After reading them, I realised they all got in with their complimentary tickets. Now that may have or may not have influenced their write-ups but I assure you that I paid my own hard-earned S$170 worth of Savour dollars and am unbiased in this here post! Yessiree! I'm no sell-out! I'm like the CM Punk of food blogs! I say what's on my mind!

If you have been to their last two events, you'll definitely notice how the chef stalls or booths are now all packed side-by-side to each other in a smaller, almost claustrophobic area. Well, the good part of this is you get to eat through all of them in half the time but I miss the spacious layout and relaxed atmosphere. And what's up with the dimly lit supermarket? I came in to escape the haze and "gloomy" ain't the exactly the most appetising vibe to get out of a gourmet supermarket.

As expected there were some hits and misses with the menu. What really worked for me was Mikuni's Chef Moon's entire repertoire below, Kanpachi Truffle Soya, 72-hour Miso Braised Short Rib and Hokkaido Botan Ebi in Tenshin Sauce. My favs for the night.

More than a few other dishes didn't work for me but what really stood out in the worst way was this Banana Cake with Coconut Jelly of Dark Sugar and Salt dish below. Now I don't really expect a dish to look exactly like its publicity styled photo but come on, this is really a stretch for the imagination! Just how difficult is it to get your hands on one of those little melon scopes anyway?

Yummy picture


Although I didn't get a chance to attend the HBOAsia event, I heard that they were promoting the next Game of Thrones season (again!). As much as I luv the series (read the first novel over a decade ago) I think they really dropped the ball with this one and they should have promoted the HBO mini-series that everyone is talking about and that is of cos, True Detective. And I call BS if they say that no one has heard of the show yet. When you perform the same trick twice you are just telling folks that's the only good show in your line-up.

Trust me when I say your target audience has heard or even downloaded episodes already. The hype before the first screening was already almost deafening. I have been in the media industry long enough to know a missed opportunity when I see one. It would had been so easy and cool to come up with a Yellow King menu but if they thought that was too much of a spoiler, then a good ol' Southern recipe menu would have been perfect.

Since the show is set in Louisiana, there's already so much exciting food to choose from like cajun or modern creole cuisine. Anyway I thought maybe something else like this might work. Naturally the chef working on the menu would give his unique spin to the dishes.

You start with some venison fillets or a venison carpaccio cos in the first episode that's how the serial killer's victim was found, naked and wearing a pair of antlers.

Then for the main course, you could have some smoked pulled pork. If you have watched the show, you'll remember that Matthew McConaughey's character is a chronic chain smoker so what better entree than some smoked meat? I have never had a pulled pork sandwich here that I liked so it's a personal dream that'll I'll finally have one here.

For dessert, I thought maybe a classic Southern banana pudding for that little 'yellow' nod to the Yellow King.

If you know me, you'll know that I'm extremely passionate about pop culture. I'm a huge fan of movies, TV shows, books, comics, games, toys, all things sci-fi, fantasy, well, I think you get the idea. It just pains me to see something like this when I know it could have been done sooooo much better.

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Cavalock and The Whale Cake Hookup

I may not have time to dine at any new joints recently but February has been a very busy month for baking. Here's the latest eye-catching order to leave the tiny apartment kitchen. The birthday kid or rather his folks wanted an ocean-themed party with 'a whale of a cake'. Besides the vanilla buttercream cake, there were also cupcakes with a little sea-faring twist to them. And we just got word that adults and kids at the party all loved the cakes!

It's time to check out the these six fake 'customised' Lego superhero minifigures I got a couple months ago at a special super low price for only S$1.80 each. There's even the limited edition Shazam! minifigure which is a Comic-Con exclusive giveaway and the Martian Manhunter in his original costume that is yet to be released. Word on the street is there's another shipment with new minifigures coming in next week and hopefully there'll be the rumored 'customised' Lord of the Rings minifigures.