Tuesday, June 19, 2018

June Bag Patterns Sale

Hello friends,

In my family, there are many June babies. My 3rd sister, my younger brother, my SIL, my cousin, hubs and of course me. Etsy is also a June baby. Well, we can't call Etsy a baby anymore. She's now 13 and constantly asking for money! From July, my Etsy teen is asking telling me to up her "commission" from 3.5% to 5% every time she "speaks" to me. On top of that, I may have to pay her a monthly fee to have the privilege of continuing to live with her. I think I raised her wrong.


In honour of all June babies, my Etsy shop is having a 25% discount off all my digital bag patterns. No coupon required as discount is automatically applied. Sale ends 25th June 2018 (Singapore time). 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

$20 Million Selfie

So you guys heard about the historic Trump-Kim summit which took place today in Singapore? Dunno? Don't care? Well, it happened.

In the lead up to the summit, our prime minister revealed that Singapore was footing the bill for hosting the summit. The total cost which covers security, communication, food etc including the North Koreans' hotel stay came to a staggering $20 million (plus minus). Thankfully the Americans are paying for their own lodging. Whew!

When I first learnt about the $20 million, I was like wtf! But in the end, someone has to shoulder the cost and like what our prime minister has said, it's in our profound interest for regional peace. Plus we get our country in the history book. Woo hoo!

Hubs meanwhile was busy racking his brain for ideas on how to help the North Koreans raise money for their accommodation. "Inspired" by two Trump-Kim impersonators who flew into Singapore to cash in on the summit - charging $15 for selfies, hubs came up with a brilliant idea - how about the real Kim take selfies and charge I dunno, maybe more than $15? You can read his column here if you want.

I think Kim must have read hubs' idea because this happened.

$20 million selfie
Our foreign minister Vivian (left) took Kim out for some night fun and took this selfie. I don't know if you know this but photo taking of Kim is not allowed. At least that's what hubs learnt when he went to North Korea. So I'm assuming this selfie which Kim gamely posed for is some kind of payment?

To commemorate the historic summit hubs has got a Kim haircut. The last time he cut his hair, also Kim style was in 2016 in North Korea.

This is how much his hair grew over two years. It's been a nightmare. Sometimes he doesn't shampoo his hair...

I'm so glad the summit happened because for over two years hubs has been saying he'll never cut his hair again since his last haircut was so special. Thank you Kim for swinging by. Thanks to you, I no longer have to comb his hair.

p.s. Hubs is charging $10 for selfies with him

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Sweet Potato Buns

I don't know if you know this about me. I LOVE sweet potatoes. Especially Japanese sweet potatoes. The ones sold at Isetan are from Japan and expensive.  Well, once in a while when the cooked ones are available, I buy one as a present to myself. But I hate to pay so much money for sweet potatoes so if I'm at Orchard and I remember, I buy the uncooked Japanese sweet potatoes from Don Don Donki.

I also love to eat bread. Sweet potato + bread = 2 things I love to eat. Mind blown. Except it's hard to find good sweet potato bread at local bakeries. Believe me I've hunted and tried a few not so good ones. 

So I decided to make my own. Not that I'm such a skilled baker. When it comes to enriched bread, it's very obvious when bread isn't good. With plain sandwich bread, the mind is very forgiving. I mean, it's called plain bread.

I googled and looked at many sweet potato bread recipes. Finally I thought this blogger's recipe was something I could reproduce in my kitchen. The recipe I followed was Japanese Purple Sweet Potato pull-apart buns from her book Low Sugar Cakes and Bakes.

I used sweet potatoes from Vietnam because they were cheap but the flesh was yellow and not purple at all. After I had added mashed sweet potatoes to the dough, the dough became very tough. I think I added a bit of water but the toughness stayed. Still I went through with the whole proofing process. The dough did expand but not as much as what I expected based on my experience.

When I took the buns out of the oven, they were super heavy. I had a bad feeling the buns would not taste good. And I was right. They tasted ok, if you're not picky. But for me, when it comes to enriched bread and remember you're eating all that extra calories, I'm super picky. I tried to eat one but I could only eat half. The taste, the texture, it was just so-so. I was very disappointed. In the end, I threw away the buns.

I was still determined to get my sweet potatoes buns. Remember my old pal Alex Goh? Once upon a time I was crushing so hard on Alex Goh's Magic Bread. I still bake his sweet bun now and then! I was pretty sure he has a sweet potato bread recipe somewhere and I found it in his book Baking Code. His recipe requires an overnight sponge. I used the same Japanese sweet potato from Vietnam and this time, apart from the mashed sweet potato, I made extra (but not mashed) so I could put some pieces inside the buns.

While the buns were baking in the oven, I already knew I had a winner. They smelt fantastic!

 I didn't have enough extra pieces of sweet potatoes, so some of the buns were plain buns.

Demmit! The ones with the sweet potatoes inside were super good. The crumb was soft and fluffy. When you eat it, you don't feel full right away. And you want another one. I'm definitely making these buns again once I get hold of some Japanese sweet potatoes from Don Don Donki. If you don't have Baking Code, a blogger kindly copied the entire recipe and put on her blog.
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