Singapore

Microwave brownies and accidental buffets

Monday was another late dinner (which seems to be a thing here), so we're never alone at our 8 and 9pm meals. I thought about the vermicelli bowl from Mrs Pho, where we went the first week, and that sounded like a great idea. It was a little less crowded this time, so we weren't tucked into a tiny corner and no one had to apologize to Jess for how small the space was.

Halfway through dinner I remembered that it was Pi Day and I wanted a pie... Jess pretend to humor me by allowing me to walk the "long" way back in an attempt to look for pie, but we did not find any. We did however find a strange little Malaysian (?) shop (coffee/grocery) that was filled with durian and durian flavored things. That's a smell. The two employees watched us as we wandered obviously confused through the three aisles.

Alas no pie... so I decided to just come home and bake my $7 box of brownies. With my unrefrigerated eggs. That I mixed in a glass salad bowl with a tiny scraper spatula. And then baked in my microwave/oven/grill. In a metal pan smaller than the smallest dimensions given on the bake time instructions panel. Yet it took even longer than the instructed time, and they still came out fairly fudgey in the middle... but good enough for me.

Tuesday I met Jess at Suntec and we decided on A-one Claypot for lunch. I picked out a few things on the menu that sounded good beforehand, but still had trouble when we got there because I wanted a bunch of different things. We didn't try any of the porridges, which I guess is the main thing, but the table next to us did and it smelled amazing.

Our receipt was almost completely Chinese, so we sat for a bit translating with an app on Jess' phone and his limited knowledge of some of the characters. Then the food came! First we were snacking on boiled peanuts, which made me nervous to look at, but they were good! I've never had a boiled nut... I didn't realize they get that soft. But yum. I had scallops, shrimp and asparagus in a spicy chili sauce, and Jess had claypot rice with chicken in gong bao sauce... not sure what that is, but it was spicy. (Jess just had a brilliant thought as I was typing this and asked if Gong Bao is Kung Pao. Turns out... yes, it is) We also ordered these carbonated drinks that tasted a little bit like otter pops. Jess wasn't too keen on them, but I could go for another one right now. Mine was strawberry elderflower, his was kiwi apple.

After lunch we walked across to the outdoor/sports/toys section of Giant (yes, the grocery store like at home). It's broken into four distinct stores (one of which being completely separate, the rest are linked). The one I just said, a home goods and clothing basics sort of store, a grocery store, and a bakery. They were having a $4.50 book sale, and I couldn't turn down any of these for that price.

I swung by the grocery section on my way out to scope out some possible ingredients for a homemade taco dinner. Gathered prices on items and decided to contemplate over whether or not we would use burrito seasoning, since there wasn't taco seasoning, and other items were questionable. I grabbed some cereal and bread and headed home. Oh yea... and I grabbed a Winter Melon Fresh Milk on my way out... I was corrected that it was fresh milk and not milk tea. I'm assuming the difference is that there was mostly milk in it with just a little tea, unlike the milk teas which are mostly tea with a little milk..? Either way... I like it.

While waiting for Jess to get off work I did what I do best... researched nearby restaurants. We decided on a couple halfway between us that we would walk past and check out their menus. One option being Porn's Sexy Thai Food (yes, that link is safe to click) because obviously the funny names have been drawing us in.

We met up and noticed an interesting looking place next to Porn's (where two employees were standing outside yelling "sexy thai food!"), so we decided to check out their menu first. It looked intriguing! A bunch of skewered foods that you can order by the piece, and seemingly reasonably priced. So we opted for this place instead (they also drew us in with the 2 for $9 happy hour beer special). I ordered the best Heineken I've ever had (I still feel like maybe their tap was labeled wrong, because it did not taste like Heineken) and Jess had his new favorite, Tiger (bleck!).

We sat and flipped through and stared at the menu for a while because we couldn't figure out how we were supposed to order. Since you could order by single skewers, it seemed like a chore to try to remember, or to flip through the menu while reciting your order to the waiter. When he finally came over to start our order he gave us a weird look when Jess asked how we order. His response was "...are you having the buffet?" (pronounced 'boo-fay'). Turns out... buffet! Anything on the menu, except the "premium selections" (which was a handful of items we weren't very interested in anyway), for $29.95 per person. WELL... yes. We did it. I even added it up in the end to make sure we came out ahead. We ordered (and ate) $84.20 worth of food. We also had 4 sets of 2 for $9 happy hour beers (half pints!).

We ordered in small batches and he would bring out a receipt for each small order. By the end we had 6 orders. Unfortunately our final receipt didn't list everything we ate either, I don't think it even includes half of it. The food was great...we had the most hearty edamame ever (moist and cold, unlike what we tend to get at home which usually seems kind of dry and extremely salty), and a pretty tasty Japanese garden salad to start. Then the skewers... beef satay, pork belly, chicken wings, thai sausages... and you could choose from 4 different seasonings for each skewer. So many options. And dessert was included... the choice of coconut creme brulee or cheesecake. I would not go back strictly for either of the desserts. Jess' cheesecake legitimately tasted like cheese...like a powdery fake cheddar flavor. My creme brulee tasted...store bought? But the non-dessert foods.... yum. Jess is already going back tomorrow for a work dinner (rats! I'll be missing out... but I think I'll go have that amazing salad from Going Om again).

We swung my the downstairs 7eleven so I could grab a couple more Tiger Radlers. Oh man... they are only 2% alcohol... but it tastes like mimosa and I love it. Before heading back up our elevator I snagged a piece of candy out of the bowl at the front desk. I had been eyeing them up, but I never took one because foreign candy. They taste like Laffy Taffy! I've now had every flavor... strawberry, guava and apple. Yep... I might take one every time now.

Those are the flowers that greet us at the bottom of our elevator every day. ...my hair got stuck in it once.

I tricked Jess into watching Gotham, even though he wanted to play video games. Let's just take a moment to appreciate how great that last episode of Gotham was!

Today Jess headed to work and I watched the season finale of Pretty Little Liars with Nicole (via Google Hangouts, after Ruby left) and it was also so good! Then I headed out to meet Jess for a late lunch. He wasn't going to question why I was so late, and I told on myself that I lost track of time while talking to Nicole about the finale. I met him in the mall... in front of the Kung Fu Panda display, where they happened to be doing...............whatever this is.

We decided to check out the first floor graffiti food court. We'll need to go at least two more times, since there are two more places I want to try. Turns out we either need to have a really early or really late lunch to have a chance of actually getting a seat. It was 1:30 when we ordered our food and there was still only one table available.

I got a "sloppy chili dog" and Jess had a pastrami sandwich, both of which were very good. They came with a side of our choice a cookie. None of the food stalls have drinks (unless it's something like a milkshake), so you have to order all drinks at a stall in the middle of the food court. I had passionfruit mint tea and Jess had blackberry lime tea. Also good! I'll never get over the lack of ready tea we have at home after this!!

Now let's talk about these chocolate chip cookies. I'm glad Jess offered his to me before we even got them. SO GOOD. Crunchy and rich, but not too rich, and actually sweet enough for me. I will need several more. I ate them too quickly to have even thought about taking a picture.

The food court itself is really cool, each of the stalls are individually decorated, and there is graffiti on all the walls. I'll need to take more pictures sometime when there are less people. If that ever happens.

The picture above is some sort of stuck on images, but there are spray painted ninja turtles and various other characters. They also have these crates all over the ceiling with lights in them. And there is a Cajun Seafood Truck that is actually a food truck.

After lunch I went back to Giant, this time with a cooler bag so I could actually purchase meat! I got all the taco fixin's, including shredded cheese that was on sale 2 for $11.80, what a deal! And loose minced beef that has to be scooped and bagged by the butcher. So... the butcher's case has two big tubs of loose ground beef, and pre-packaged chicken breasts, and I think a small selection of steaks. While the cooler cases that you can pick through yourself have large pieces of meat, whole fish, things like intestines, and I don't even know what else because I'm too concerned to look. Also... I decided last week that the only meat we're cooking in this kitchen is ground beef.

Anyway... made my purchases then trekked back home and waited for Jess. Cooked up the meat and it's really nice ground beef, this is the second time we've had it. It's super red and tender, easy to chop up really fine the way I like it. Even the burrito mix was good and close enough to taco seasoning. I almost forgot about my beans and corn. Delmonte corn was fine, but the black beans were very confusing. They smelled and tasted almost olive-y. Turns out they are preserved, and extremely salty. Those did not make it onto our food. Time to check the sour cream. I opened the package and it was completely dry on top.  I dug a spoon through about an inch of crust before hitting any sort of moist inner layer. It smelled extremely sour, like yogurt, and had a really fine gritty texture. That also did not make it onto our food. 

Otherwise the tacos (on top of crushed Doritos... Jess calls them Dunmire tacos) were delicious.

Oh yea... and Jess brought home Indian sweets. He tricked me into trying one by calling it "sweets." Turns out... Indian sweets are not among my favorite things.