April 16th, 2009

Fruity Smiles

Unripe mangoes on a tree1) I saw a woman and her grandson trying to pick mangoes off a tree near my flat using what looked like a telescopic pruning saw (there are quite a number of mango trees here). When I got closer, I realised she was just probing the mangoes with a stick. “Not ripe yet,” she told her grandson, “let’s pick some flowers instead.” :)

2) A lady, probably in her early 60s was calling out to another lady (a stranger), probably in her late 40s, “Auntie”*. The younger lady was suitably offended and decided to ignore her and walk the other way without finding out what the older one wanted!  The older lady then turned to me, shrugged her shoulders and laughed! Was she just teasing her? ;)

3) A bag of apple chips on offer at $1.90 (originally $3.95). Semi-guiltless snacking! :D

A bag of apple chips

(*Here, it is common to address older folks, even those you aren’t related to as “Aunties” and “Uncles”. The tricky part is to determine when this could be used without offending the other party. However, a taxi driver is always an “uncle” regardless of his age! I have no idea why!)

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March 3rd, 2008

Something Fishy, Something Fruity

This week’s theme on Growing Happiness is food and today being “New Monday”, is about trying new foods.

As much as I tell people I love seafood, I’ve never really eaten much shellfish apart from small crustaceans. What’s more I’ve only eaten squid, lobster and crayfish for the first time two years ago. I’m trying to be more adventurous with seafood as I’m cutting down on meat(never been a meat fan, and then, to a certain extent, there’s this). The problem with valved shellfish is that they look disgusting and I have a strong aversion to eating anything that looks like it should be part of the special effects makeup in a B-grade monster flick.

Prawn talking

Anyway, I tried a piece of abalone recently and didn’t like it. The texture was very chewy, it had an extremely fishy smell (the fishy aftertaste lingered in my mouth till the day after) and, at about $40 a can, it was very expensive — overrated and overpriced. I also tried cockles for the first time two months ago. It was a big mistake as the cockles were not fresh, so I got the double whammy of eating something slimy and foul-tasting. The most tolerable experience I had was with scallops. They tasted a bit like firm fishcakes. I won’t mind eating them again.

Despite their popularity and abundance at weddings and events here, I have never eaten fresh oysters(though I have consumed oyster sauce in Chinese dishes numerous times). I am, however, willing to try them next time (I may have to close my eyes though).

So here’s my list of three shellfish I might try in the near future:

  1. Oyster - I’d probably try it cooked first before moving on to the raw deal
  2. Mussel - Most likely in a seafood pasta
  3. Sea Cucumber – Provided it doesn’t look like its original form

And three I’d pass, for now:

  1. Geoduck - First of all it sounds gooey (that’s how you pronounce it) secondly, would you just look at it?!
  2. Conchs &Whelks – I don’t fancy eating anything that looks like a snail
  3. Sea Urchin – Looks like a hairy fruit and I don’t mind rambutans but still…

But fruits! Oh I love fruits! I’m game for any fruit! I think I have tried 90% of the fruits on this list.

Fruits I’d like to try if I could find them in the market:

  1. Jabuticaba - looks like a large black grape
  2. Fig - fresh whole ones, I’ve only tried dried ones
  3. Peanut Butter Fruit - smells and tastes like peanut butter? Sounds yummy.
  4. Chocolate Pudding Fruit (Black Sapote) – apparently tastes like chocolate pudding. Too good to be true?
  5. Miracle Fruit – makes bitter and sour foods taste sweet

Miracle fruit healer

I’m off to the supermarket now to get my hands on a couple of new snacks to try later!

Related Links
Shellfish Wiki
Wiki List of Culinary Fruits
The Cook’s Thesaurus: Fruit
Why eating less meat could cut global warming
Rearing cattle produces more greenhouse gases than driving cars, UN report warns

Day 3

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