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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Night Noodle Markets and Art & About 2014


Just when I thought we'd skip this year's Night Noodle Markets, the Hubby suddenly surprised me on Friday afternoon by meeting up with me in the city after work. The plan was I'd do a bit of errands in the city and we'd just meet up at a train station near his workplace. But instead, he called and he was already in the city and suggested to check out the Night Noodle Markets.

We were there for only a while but we enjoyed the festive vibe of the event starting with this giant Maneki-neko (Japanese for "beckoning cat"). It's huge but it's one of the cutest thing ever.
Red lanterns have replaced last year's colourful ones but these looked pretty too. 
To make up for lack of colour, they have an area where pretty parasols were suspended in air.
The highlight of our dinner was finding a Filipino stall in this year's Night Noodle Markets. 

The Hoy Pinoy team from Melbourne grills delicious Pork Belly and Chicken BBQs for Sydneysiders. They were a bit hit to everyone even if their stall were towards the back end of the park. The smell alone was inviting. I was so proud to see many people appreciating and loving Filipino BBQ.
Pork Belly BBQ. Two skewers = $10.00. Rice = $3.00
We were lucky to have arrived at 5pm on the first day of Night Noodle Market. I immediately ordered our BBQs to avoid lining up. At 5:20pm, there was a long queue for BBQs already. 

The Husband and I shared a skewer each and it was filling enough as we ate it with rice and a noodle dish. The flavour was very Pinoy--there's no other way to describe it. It is very much similar to the BBQ marinade we were used to back home. Balanced flavours of sweet and salty.  If there's one thing they need to improve on, I think it would be for the pork meat to tender as it was a tough and chewy.
The noodle dish we chose that evening was Pad Thai from Thai Time. Huge serving of noodles with a generous nutty taste. I just wished it had more chicken or seafood in it. 
For dessert, we grabbed Egg Tarts, Mango and Taro Pancakes from St. Honore Cake Shop. These are all delightful. The Egg Tarts had a crunchy base and creamy filling. The pancakes had real Mango and Taro inside them. And even if they're filled with cream, they weren't too sweet.


After our filling dinner, we had a bit of a walk in Hyde Park. It's Spring time and the flowers in Hyde Park are in full bloom.
We passed by the Australian Life Exhibition, a take on Australian life shown in large-scale photographs.
The Australian Life Exhibition has ended as of this writing but the Night Noodle Markets is still on-going until 26th October.

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Wednesday, October 8, 2014

A Sunset And A Cuppa

Last week, the Husband worked from home and these were waiting for me when I arrived...
Delicious coffee and a sunset that made me felt like the Universe was giving me a warm hug. 

Some days are sweeter than sweet. :)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Husband's Birthday Celebration

The Husband turned 35 two weeks ago and I made sure he's had a fun September. He's not fond of making a fuss about his birthday but I made a bit of effort in making his month festive by doing little things here and there. I like seeing his face lit up whenever I surprise him with the things he love and enjoy.
Chris' 35th
Picnic at the park with our closest friends. Hosted a picnic party for our group of friends to celebrate September birthdays and milestones. There's nothing more fun than being surrounded by loved ones. Thankful to our friends for making this get-together a success. 
Staycation in Sydney. Travel is always something we both enjoy. Our Japan adventure in February was his advanced birthday gift (he wanted to experience Japan's winter season, hence, we needed to travel earlier this year).  On the week of his birthday, we took three days off work and explored a few places in Sydney. It was also our way to relax before we face the last few months of the year. 
On the way to the city, we stopped by Newtown and had brunch at Brewtown Newtown because C wanted to have his Brewnut (croissant donut)
Chocolate Crumble Brewnut
We attended mass after our brunch and walked towards Westfiield and looked around the shops. Once we got tired and hungry, we had our fill of ramen at Ippudo. Eating noodles is part of birthday traditions in our family because it signifies long life so ramen it was for late lunch.
After lunch, we checked-in at Amora Jamison Hotel, our home for two nights. We had a bit of a nap before dinner at Yayoi Japanese Teishoku Restaurant. It was a delightful experience. Hubby and I both had flavourful Wagyu beef dishes (his came in a burger and mine came in beef strips) and delicious dessert (Matcha Ice Cream and Sweet Red Bean Soup with little Mochi Cakes).
Back at the hotel, I presented Hubby his birthday cake for that night, a Baumkuchen Cake by Royce. This was quite different from the usual Baumkuchens because the edge was covered in Royce chocolate.
For our second day in city, we went to The Grounds of Alexandria in the morning. It was a pretty place with gardens, shops that sell food and plants and restaurants where you can have good food and coffee. In the afternoon, we explored Paddington where we looked at shops, took photographs of buildings and had coffee at book shop & cafe called "Ampersand". From Paddington, we walked towards the main city area (we did lots of walking and we loved it). Our last activity that night was a massage at I Am Siam, a Thai massage place in Regent Place
Our last day in the city was spent sleeping in, having a late breakfast of Mexican food, hanging out at the Apple store to see the newly-launched iPhones and having great coffee at Gumption Cafe.
A few more things that I did to make the Husband feel special: getting him a little Chocolate Mud Cake, cooking Japchae for the first time (I pulled it off and enjoyed making it so I shall now cook it often) and buying a little pressie that came in a white box *wink wink*. 
Japchae
And lastly, I presented him with one last Baumkuchen Cake, also from Japan but it's a different brand (was written in Japanese so I don't know the name). I served it with Maple syrup and coffee on Sunday. 
The Husband's birthday will not be as happy without our family and friends celebrating with us. So to all who remembered and gave thoughtful gifts, thank you very much! You made Chris very happy on his day. 


Monday, September 29, 2014

Cordillera Blend on International Coffee Day

It's International Coffee Day so I shared this photo I took from The Grounds of Alexandria in my FB and instagram.
It's such a cute coffee quote, no? I love quotes of coffee. A coffee blog I follow once shared a couple of coffee quotes...check "10 Coffee Quotes To Help You Through Monday" if you have time. From now on, I think I will take photographs of coffee quotes I see and make it part of my several photograph collections.

We often have Nespresso coffee at home because it's just easier to prepare. So the coffee beans/grounds I buy or ones gifted to me, I bring them to work and that's where I enjoy them. My current brew at work is one brought by my Mom from the Philippines.
Cordillera Blend
Kape Maria's Cordillera Blend has a sweet and light taste. It's made from Arabica Beans from the Cordillera region of the Philippines. You can get this coffee at Human Nature shops and thru their website.