Archive | February, 2013

Happy 3rd Anniversary to Slice of my Lyfe

23 Feb

The third anniversary just crept on us ( blog and me) and today I got a notification from WordPress that my blog completed 3 wonderful years.

Will come back to this space with a celebratory cake soon. At the moment I am extremely caught up with something really exciting. I shall spill the beans as soon as I am done.

 

So Happy Blog Anniversary to Slice of my Lyfe!

 

News and My Culinary Bucket list + Millionaire’s Shortbread

9 Feb

Well how do I begin..

Lots of news to share.

First things first. You may recollect I had requested all my blogger friends and readers for Facebook votes for a photo contest that Mimi (my daughter) was participating. The news is she won the title of the cutest kid in Bahrain. Mimi won a professional portfolio as the prize for winning the contest. The details of how Summer ( the professional photographer) managed to get some shots that were portfolio -worthy would be a blog post in itself. In a nutshell, I can summarize the photo shoot as:

Mimi– hates wearing girly stuff- made to wear a dress- cranky best- hell broke loose- wouldn’t pose- cried till her nose was red– a super stressed hubby and me– a super patient photographer( Summer Weeks)– asked us parents to step out– sorted the shoot and the change of clothes herself– got some photos that were portfolio worthy– phew!

Well the moral of the 58 word story is – the photos are here and I am so glad to share a few of them in this post as a thank you to all my blogger friends who took time out to vote for Mimi. We are so happy with the photos and at what a beautiful job Summer has done.

mimi_december2012_05_webresolution

mimi_december2012_04_webresolution

mimi_december2012_13_webresolution

Now for the second round of update – My recipes were featured in one of the leading Magazines in Bahrain – The Bahrain Confidential. For this I have only one person to thank – Pooja Rajpal – my beautiful friend. I have blogged about these recipes and you could take a look at them here and here.

BahCon-Anita-LRFor the third round of update. I have, inspired by Sally, decided to build a culinary bucket list for this year. This is no rocket science stuff. It includes all the culinary pursuit that I have been procrastinating endlessly. Either I am too lazy or plain scared to take it up. So to put all that unimportant fears and insecurities on the side and take up all the challenges  one by one would be my culinary goal for the year. In the bargain, I feel, this bucket list will give my blog a new and adventurous feel. Basically, anything to keep going. Otherwise, knowing me, I would keep making those old-fashioned chocolate cakes, brownies and cookies over and over again. This bucket list not only features new bakes and recipes I intend to try but also would help me push my gastronomical boundaries. Ofcourse the list is subject to change.

Why?

Because its my list. I can do what I want to with it. ( that’s just me justifying my ever-changing goals in life!!)

So here goes my Culinary Bucket list in no particular order:

Barbecue– It may sound funny but I have never got the opportunity to attend a barbecue. But I did in early January, this year and I can’t wait to share my experience of doing so with the locals here in Bahrain. So this I can safely tick off my list.

Macarons – Dread to even try. Have been procrastinating for too long. Have to tackle the bulls by its horns now.

Pavlova – Plain laziness. The only worry I have is, what would I do with all the yolks that remain once I used all the whites of the egg.

Oyster – Ernest Hemmingway called it tasting the sea. I would like to experience this myself. Hopefully, this should happen sometime in April ( why April? I won’t tell you, just yet)

Quail eggs – I have seen these delicate, patterned eggs on the supermarket shelves but using them in my recipes always made me uneasy. Hoping to put a good quail egg recipe on this blog.

Baklawa – Being in this part of the world, its shameful that I haven’t tried my hand at any dessert of the middle eastern origin. Considering how much I love Baklawa and enjoy licking off the honey laced pastry bits off my fingers, its time I try and recreate this beautiful dessert at home.

Learn how to pipe – Chocolate ganache has been my go-to cake decorating option all the time. My piping skills are absolutely dud and I need to try to do some skillful piping this year to put my piping related anxiety at rest.

Swiss roll – I failed miserably at making the yule log for Christmas. It was a defeat in every sense. The log, the rolling, the cream filling; everything. The Swiss Roll will be conquered.

KhandviThis Gujarati (Indian) delicious snack made from gram flour has given me a tough time. But again, like the Swiss Roll, I shall endeavour to tame this rogue snack.

Jalebi I have been aspiring to make Jalebis for as long as I remember. I know for sure that my hubby would be very thrilled to see this in my culinary bucketlist.

Now with that out-of-the-way, I shall  turn my attention to this delicious, wickedly sinful and indulgent shortbread called the Millionaire’s shortbread that uses more butter than you can imagine and tastes a bit like heaven.

A slice of heaven would be a perfect description.

While the other description would be – ‘ deliciously buttery, crumbly shortbread with a layer of insanely addictive fudge and topped with a shiny coat of melted chocolate. This tri-layered slice of heaven is a calorie bomb but what is life without a little indulgence here and there. During times like this when I am savouring a delicate slice of Nigella’s Shortbread, I tend to completely forget about my New Year resolutions about losing weight and such insignificant issues.

MSB4

Surprisingly, it is very easy and quick to assemble as most of Nigella’s baking treats are. Literally three short steps and its done. That trickiest part is to be patient let the darn thing set well. But I am not blessed with that virtue and cut them into slices before it had the time to meld into each other like a single unit. The result was  as you can see in the pictures, uneven slices that don’t look good in photos and the chocolate layer sliding over the fudge layer that reminded me of drifting continents.

MSB1

I console myself with the fact that food needs to taste great; never-mind it doesn’t look too good.

I packed these shortbread pieces for my daughters last day of the term party and took some to office.

MSB2

Now for the final update, that I remember at the fag end, because there is so much happening that I am losing count. My hubby and my sweet friend Gayathri participated in a Quiz contest – India Quiz 2013 on the eve of the Indian Republic Day in Bahrain and won the 2nd prize. It was a fantastic moment for us. My hubby had been an avid quizzer during his college days but I never had the chance to see him in action. This was the first time I saw him participate and do so well and finally win it. It was a moment of ultimate pride for me. Also that Gayathri was his quiz partner made it ultra special. Kudos to both of you and I am so so so so proud of you!!!

DSC_0733

DSC_0741

Now for the Recipe Card;

MSB3

Hope you all have an (nice) eventful week ahead!

Restaurant Review Project 24 – Noodle House

2 Feb

How does it feel when you finish a project? Especially the one which has been dragging for a long time. I feel a great sense of satisfaction that finally a long-dragging project has been brought to an end in a delicious manner. I am talking about my Restaurant Review Project that I started in November 2010 and the one in which I promised that I would complete reviews of 24 restaurants in 6 months! Talk about setting oneself up for failure! It is not that I didn’t eat out 24 times in those six months. As a matter of fact I must have eaten out more number of times than I can even count and also went to new restaurants. But somehow I never sat down at my plate thinking I want to review this one. Reviewing a place requires a different state of mind. It requires me to prepare beforehand with all the reviewing paraphernalia such as my camera and my little red note book in which I take many mental notes. Reviewing an eating joint or a restaurant requires planning such as how am I going to savour and enjoy my meal whilst keeping an eye on my hyperactive toddler. So you see it hasn’t been an easy ride and many times I have set out trying to review a restaurant and miserably failed to do so because either my toddler isn’t in the mood or the glaring eyes of the head server or the restaurant manager  make me queasy while I try to take the best shot of the food that I have ordered. Not all restaurants lend themselves to be ideal for reviewing. So I missed many good opportunities to review some very interesting restaurants that I have had a chance to visit. Keeping this in mind, I have decided to not stop reviewing and continue this exciting saga of tasting, experiencing and appreciating exhilarating bouquet of world cuisine that Bahrain has to offer.

For my 24th Restaurant, I have Noodle House to review. Noodle House is located in Seef Mall; one of my favourite malls in Bahrain and seems like the first of many Noodle House joints planned around Bahrain. The day Noodle House opened doors, I was very sure that this Pan Asian restaurant had to be reviewed. So finally, when the stars aligned favourably, we found ourselves at Noodle House on an unhurried weekend. We were greeted politely by the staff and were seated comfortably. For a weekend, the restaurant wasn’t crowded as we expected. The ambiance seemed none too extravagant yet modern and comfortable. We immediately felt at home. The head server introduced himself with a warm smile and guided us on how to order at Noodle House. A form was presented to us with a noodle -shaped pen and whatever we desired to order, we were to tick against the boxes in the menu. We went through the menu that seemed like any Pan Asian restaurant but I am not the one to judge instantly. I am back to being a vegetarian and it disappointing to see that there were very few vegetarian options on the menu.

NH1

I ordered for a 4 seasons mocktail which was essentially a refreshing blend of 4 fruit juices and strawberry puree. This rejuvenating start raised my hopes for the rest of the evening.

NH7

For starters we ordered vegetarian dimsums/vegetable Hacao which came very quickly to our delight. We attacked the piping hot dimsums with gusto only to find the pasty, sticky stuff constantly sticking to the roof of our mouths. Plus it was hot. So definitely quite annoying. So our hopes were dashed momentarily until our main courses arrived.

NH2

I had ordered for Wok fried Vegetables with Tofu and black bean and Brown Rice. From the very first morsel it was simply divine. I haven’t tasted better tasting wok fried veggies and tofu in the longest time. Every spoonful was a sheer delight. It was light, full of flavour and paired with brown rice, it was such a satisfying meal. Even as I type this post, I can clearly recall the taste.

NH5

My hubby had ordered a Crispy chicken in plum sauce which was fantastic too. My hubby who usually remains unimpressed and is known to leave his portions at restaurants, finished his chicken in no time.

NH4

Our friend Namit had ordered a Thai Green curry with vegetables served with jasmine rice. He too couldn’t have enough of his portion and literally wiped his plate clean. It was only after we finished every bit on our plates in record time did we realize that we were too full to even move.

NH6

In my greed, I had also ordered a salad called the Asian Chopped salad which largely remained untouched inspite of being fresh and so inviting.

NH3

Noodle House served us well and though the dimsums were disastrous, the rest of the course more than made up for it. The portions look deceptively small but are more than sufficient.

I could easily find myself stepping out on any Saturday evening and heading towards Noodle House to eat the very same thing I had ordered before. The taste stays with you and that is what makes Noodle House so special. That quality only certain restaurants have and hence remain  firm favourites with all their patrons.

Now for the verdict;

Food – 4.5/5

Service – 4/5

Ambiance 4/5

Overall – 4/5

The total bill amount came to BHD 24.200. In my opinion it is value for money spent on Noodle House food.

I am extremely thrilled to announce that Noodle House has been sliced and is officially the last of the restaurant reviews for the Restaurant Review Project (RRP). Noodle House gets a huge thumbs up from all of us and they can easily assume that they have made loyal customers out of us in just one dinner experience.

%d bloggers like this: