Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Taste Of Japan with Kimio Nonaga (Iron Chef!)

I am still really stoked that i got to meet the a chef from then famous Japanese cooking showdown series, "Iron Chef" which i watched as a kid and last week the 3rd generation Iron Chef himself  was down in KL to share with us his skilled expertise in preparing Japanese dishes with a Malaysian twist to it! Have to thank Tomoko-san from GreenCrate and a mutual friend whom i met during the Chiba seminar earlier this year, Amir. Really, thank you so much for having me over to witness this rare, personal & upclose opportunity with Nonaga-san :)

Nonaga-san is really friendly & skilled!

So what did i learn from the Iron chef himself? Many things that my mind is kinda boggled on where to start actually lol, i arrived slight late as i came from work & had trouble finding the place (i know in Japanese culture being tardy is unacceptable) so you can imagine how embarrass i was to even walk into the seminar halfway :(
But overall despite the rush & mishaps that happened on my side along the way, i am glad i came for this because i also gained some new friends from various publications too!

Better stop going off topic, my blogpost today is supposed to be focused on food lol, guess it tends to be a habit to go off topic at some point. How many of you guys have actually heard of these two sea creatures that happens to be the staple ingredient in Japanese cuisines - Amberjacks & Scallops  
And these guys ain't your average small seafood found in your wet market because from the size of it's enough to feed up to 15 people in one sitting (which actually did during the seminar), somehow everything that grows in Japan tends to be larger than our common agriculture goods lol. Makes me very curious about this!
Remembered when i first encountered a large daikon in Tsukiji market during my first trip to Japan? It feels like it all over again XD

Say hello to Yellowtail Amberjack, he's huge and definitely not just a display!
Did i mention that he is tasty too? *yums*

This seminar was specially organized the ministry of agriculture, forestry and fisheries (MAFF) and they only visited 2 locations this year which was Vietnam and Malaysia, imagine our own country was on the list for this when it could have been easily elsewhere! So thank you MAFF for selecting Malaysia to host Nonaga-san for these amazing 2 days.

When it comes to Japanese culinary, one easily knows the amount of years one must master a certain skill before even holding the title as a "chef", just like tea making as well. It's a life long journey of learning even when you are already a sensei (master teacher).
Nonaga-san demonstrated how to properly utilized the entire Amberjack fish with minimal wastage during the seminar as wasting food is strongly against in Japanese culture, plus with a premium fish like that who wouldn't want to get their value's worth no? ;-)
It was really mesmerizing to see how the whole slicing procedure is done skillfully with various Japanese knives, for those who have seen this perform live in sushi stores or festivals would be familiar with this scene.

Was trying to keep my jaw from hanging most of the time because everything was done so quickly and clean, i remember the last time i cut a fish it was a bloody mess that i wouldn't want to repeat ever again *shudders*, some things are just left to the professionals some times or my mom XD
Nonaga-san explaining the types of knives used and angles to slice the yellowtail amberjack starting from the tip.
Only certain parts of the fish can be used as sashimi (to be eaten raw) and the rest has to be cooked, that explains why sashimi is very expensive because not the entire fish can be eaten raw.


Did you know you could actually eat the konbu like that lol?
I always thought it's meant to boil soup with since it's super tough to chew, had to chew like 10-15 times before i could even swallow. Dashi is one of the most important ingredients in Japanese dishes at it provides the flavor for every food served.

Truth be told i am actually allergic to seafood (particularly shellfish) but i had no problem eating the scallop because it was so fresh! If all seafood was this fresh i don't think i'll have a problem enjoying them again, i used to love seafood alot till i turned 12 and developed an allergy towards it (nuuuu!), kinda a family genetic thing because my older sister is also allergic to seafood.
But thank goodness i can still enjoy fish which i love very much compared to meats like chicken, pork & beef!


Whole platter using parts of the Amberjack Nonaga-san freshly cut and scallop which all of us had a taste, it was worth skipping my lunch for this!

Menu:
Japanese Amberjack & potato stew
Udon with scallop in water spinach (kangkung) soup base
Fried amberjack in a maki roll
Seasoned Amberjack flakes sushi (reminds me of tuna texture) 

Japanese "nyonya" pongteh, for those familair with the traditional Noyoya dish called pongteh would find this flavorful tasting stew similar . But instead of pork & chicken, the meat is replaced with amberjack chunks which has the right kind of texture (not brittle from the shimmering) that compliments the vegetables that it's cooked with. Really need to try to make this at home because it does very much reminds me of my late grandfather's cooking :) 


Also gonna share with you guys the recipe so you can try cooking it at home, make sure to share with me your masterpiece by hashtaging #ArisaChow on Instagram or Facebook ;)

Ingredients :
  • Japanese Amberjacks (3 fishes/ 300-500g)
  • Potatoes (3 potatoes/ 500-550g)
  • Carrot (half)
  • Large Onion  (1pc)
  • Snow Peas or Kidney Beans (4 pea pods- to your liking)
  • Dashi (Japanese soup stock) - available in most Japanese section in the market (600g) 
  • Soy sauce (60g)
  • Sugar (30g)
Recipe :
  1.  Onion- peel divide into 2 & cut along the fibers, vegetables & fish are chopped into bite size
  2. Cleaning tip for fish: Pour boiled water over cubed fish & immediately soak in cold water, this removes the smell, remaining scales & blood.
  3. Put water & condiments in frying pan, add Japanese amberjacks & vegetables, drop a lid with paper towel, and boil for 20 minutes with medium flame.
  4. When "dashi" is boiled enough, turn of the flame & leave at normal temperature for 2-6 hours, for the "dashi" to soak into the ingredients.
  5. Before serving, heat up under medium flame till boil & serve on a plate with snow peas or kidney beans to your liking.

Settings on my camera was wrong so it looks kinda yellowish but i tried toning down the yellow hues, apologies if the color looks weird.

 Even got to taste some sake, not much an alcohol person these days after i quit drinking but it's always nice to enjoy a cup of sake once in awhile :D
Yes, in case you guys didn't know i used to be a heavy drinker during my younger days lol, wild and crazy.

So now that you guys get the idea that how versatile this amberjack fish is, would you consider getting one to try at home too because i know i would once i get a fridge! Now the main question is where to get the fish & scallop right? I did see frozen ones in the super market but however they do sell fresh ones during Japanese fairs in Isetan, KLCC which i will update on my social media platforms if i do see one around :)





XOXO,

Monday, May 23, 2016

Okashi World now Online!

Sakura season has already passed and sadly i didn’t get to see nor touch it *sobs* but my friends were super “kind” enough to spam my timeline with all their photos lol =.=
I really have such “good friends”.
Don’t worry, you aren’t the only one crying here in Malaysia, complaining about the heat and all, i’m with you too lol! Let’s not allow it to dampen our spirits and love for Japan, while those who are lucky to catch it this year, good for you but who knows our turn my come soon someday right? For now i’ll settle snacking on Japanese snacks to cure my Japan-sickness (a.k.a. home-sickness) since there is just so many thing going on in my life that’s left hanging and making it so much stressful, so stress eating its is lel. *Die fat me*. Plus summer is already around the corner but i am too busy to be bothered with “bikini body” this year lol, probably next year la.

Oh well, instead of having to trouble all my “dear” friends who are currently in Japan enjoying themselves to bring home some snacks and souvenirs, i too can get them here in Malaysia myself at Okashi world as they offer the latest products with the most variety and at the most competitive pricing!

So anywhere else in Malaysia, if you would like to compete Japanese food & snack prices, Okashi world still offers the best based on their claims and my keen observations since i’m constantly on a hunt for Japanese stuff (food, fashion, or others). I can proudly swear by their claims :) Shop at ease people! You are getting exactly what you are paying for even after conversion rates, barely any difference from buying in Japan and getting it here directly. Except the other has a travel baggage weight limit but the other doesn’t because it could be just next door your home or office :-P

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“Bringing Japan’s well-loved snacks to you”
Don’t miss out their Grand Opening Promo! Buy 2 bags of KitKat for only RM15.

Great to know how Okashi World is expanding their operations covering almost every mall we know in Klang Valley and they are not slowing down, who knows they might open more branches in Penang or even in Johor as they recently opened a branch in my hometown, Melaka! But if you are in other states that doesn’t have a store at the moment, do not fret as their newly launched website (www.smiley144.com) is going to make your life so much easier.
For those who are also escaping the heat or heavy rain or traffic like me, can also use this website as an alternate purchase method as it conveniently delivers to your doorstep without much hassle since it’s FREE SHIPPING for purchases above RM100 (easy to hit trust me lol) but for orders below RM100 there is a shipping fee of RM8 (WM) & RM12 (EM) charged (varies on area & weight).

I remember how often i used to visit the Paradigm & Evolve branch that the store keepers there remembers me so well, as the heat increases which lowers my urge to even step outside aside from constantly being occupied with other work, right now i barely visit them anymore to get my snack fix, but that’s all gonna change now since i can get them sent to me :D

How to use their website?

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After signing up, you can easily manage your account, newsletters and such.
Any orders made can be checked through this page as well, highly recommended to subscribe to their newsletter as they will have weekly promotions you wouldn’t want to missed specially for their website.


FREE SHIPPING is available with purchases above RM100, orders below that, will be charged RM8 (WM) & RM12 (EM) for courier fees using GDEX. As mentioned above, if you are from other states or parts of town that’s not easily accessible to Okashi World yet, try out this option!
No more hassle for bulk orders (dragging back to the car), finding parking or even going out under the hot sun! Just sit back and relax, let them come to you :D

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For payment methods, so far for now they have online banking method & paypal.
More methods coming soon next month

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While you are busy exploring or like they say ‘navigating’ around, make sure to give their official Facebook page a like to the latest in-store promotional updates!

XOXO,

Monday, May 16, 2016

Hair Care & Styling Tips with Philips Kerashine

Who here is constantly bleaching or coloring their hair, let's have a show of hands! Because i know i am one of them and i have quite a number of friends who are equally as crazy as i am when it comes to going all out with hair colors. Thank goodness that modern society today is much more accepting to our ways compared to a few years back but that doesn't mean we don't get teased or weird stares from people around us from time to time, so it's always nice to put up a great show whenever we are parading around.
I am sure there's a population of girls who can't leave the house without styling their hair, just like some can't step out without make up as it is a daily routine or habit some of you might call it. But styling one's hair with heated tools so often also has a downside to it, might cause frizziness if the heat isn't regulated properly, damaged hair condition and overall just dry and dead looking weeds instead of your precious luscious looking locks despite using all kinds of hair care serums or hair protection sprays before curling or straightening. These are some of the long term effects caused by constant styling, so usually it's not recommended to expose your hair to these 'harsh' conditions.


My daily battle (routine)

Many do not even realized that using your average hair dryer alone daily can also damage your hair, so try not to use the highest settings too long, and make sure to use it at a recommended safe distance instead of putting it too close. I remembered that's how i first got my hair singed once lol and ever since i avoided using a hair dryer unless it's really urgent to get my hair dry, but other than that i'll naturally let it air dry on it's own or sit in front of the fan and manually dry it with a towel. Somwehow glad it's easier to manage with my shoulder length hair compared when i had butt long hair back in my high school days lol washing & drying hair was literally a real pain in the butt.


Watch my video to check out on how to style your hair in less than 5 minutes (you can skip my front talking and jump to 3.08


Ever since i started bleaching and dyeing my hair unconventional colors, i did constantly feel obliged to look my very best whenever i go out (except to work la lol no one cares in the office, it's all about comfort BABEHH) so it's definitely a must for me to style my hair & don a layer of make up (usually light ones at least). Used to feel that doing all these is like a chore because i need to get up EXTRA an hour earlier to do my hair now and you guys know how much i love my sleep more than anything else now, even with cosplay i would pick sleep over it anytime lol.
But i am glad in a way it has also taught me not to be lazy haha, like the famous term:- 


"There are no ugly girls, just lazy ones"

But i am not here to guilt trip any of you la please lol, just a reminder that we should dress for ourselves and be comfortable with it, if dolling up feels weird on you then don't do it. It's all about embracing your own unique style without the pressure of others like how when i first thought that dolling up daily is such a chore, but eventually it has grew into me that it feels empty when i do not do it lol. Some might get used to a new routine in a shorter period of time, but some may not.
Finding the right tools for your needs is one of the most important factor really, a good product or tool will help you complete the job in a lesser time without much hassle however a not so good product will just make things more tedious than it already is.

That's why i would like to share about my new favorite styling tools from Philips! A well known trusted brand worldwide and of course famous among local households too because i remember growing up in my parents house who also had a few philips stuff hanging around like their Iron and TV. 
Before i proceed further better put a disclaimer first! 
This review is based on my unbiased opinion about their new (not so new la lol) Kerashine series which was given for me to test out and i found it really suitable for my needs especially with my current lifestyle!

What is the Kerashine Series About?


It's hair styling tools that is made from Keratin infused Ceramic to protect the hair when it comes in contact with heat. As you noticed most styling tools are just ceramic plated but it doesn't come with any other hair care benefits unlike the Kerashine series.

With this tool, it helps people to manage dry & frizzy hair leaving it with smooth and more manageable locks in less than 5 minutes. Frizzy hair can come in many forms, some are born with natural frizziness from dry hair or curls and some are caused by constant chemical treatments like mine but overall without the bleaching and coloring my hair is naturally wavy and messy so that's one of the reasons why i do not keep my hair long anymore lol (also because of our hot weather la).



Zero effort required to use these tools really!

Aside from just taming your mane this product is designed to treat your hair at the same time, where else can you find products like this that can do 2-in-1 (manage & treatment)?
This is the first time I've heard of such product really, from my experience heated tools is always associated as the cause of "damaged hair" but time to change that misconception.

Just because the Kerashine series uses Ionic care which is emitted through the products, that doesn't mean you need to neglect putting on hair serums before using their tools, it is recommended to continue using protection serums before using any kind of heated tools on your hair for protection sake. So don't be lazy!
After styling of course you can set it with some spray/ gel for it to hold throughout the whole day.


Is it same like going for Hair treatments in salons?

NO. 
Those are a different kind of treatment, in fact salons specialized on intensive hair care treatments unlike the Kerashine series which is used for home care maintenance purposes.



Among their 3 Kerashine tools, i personally like their heated styling brush as it works prefect to create natural waves or just to even straightening it effortlessly Make sure to check out my video above to see ways on how you can use this brush.
Personally i feel this is something worth investing in for every kind of hair condition, whether it's a virgin hair or like mine if you used styling tools (or even just the hair dryer) on a daily basis. It's always good to take precautions than to regret later when things go south.
The prices for the Kerashine Hairdryer & Heated styling brush isn't too steep either, you can purchase online on www.blipmy.com (psst! There is an ongoing sale on the site)

Hope you find this post useful especially if you are looking for a cost & time efficient method to care & style your hair at the same time.
Share this post and don't forget to subscribe to my blog for more posts like these :)




XOXO,

Friday, May 13, 2016

"Find The One Again" with New Glam Triumph

Celebrating another amazing milestone with the all NEW Glam Triumph Malaysia, whom recently revamped their Mid Valley Boutique alongside with the new release of their official logo that can be now seen at all Triumph Boutiques worldwide. As you guys know how i first got converted into a loyal Triumph customer after participating in their first largest bra fitting campaign called "Find The One" where they managed to fit over over 26k women throughout Malaysia with the perfect bra!

That campaign was a huge success indeed, it also drove awareness to all the ladies out there who unintentionally wore ill fitted bras throughout their entire lives. 


Triumph never ceased to amaze me with their musical animation promotional video that constantly reminds me of Disney's in a way lol. Watch this video & trust me you'll enjoy it!


So i am glad to share the good news that Triumph Malaysia not only revamped their logo & boutique but also launched their new campaign called "Find The One Again".
For those who needs professional guidance on finding the right bra, allow the experts in Triumph boutiques assists you to find "THE ONE" ;)
If you have missed the previous opportunity to participate, here is your 2nd chance to do so!



Here is an interesting fact about Triumph that might interest you guys, it's the one and only European lingerie maker that tailors specifically to the needs of Asian body structure and preferences, known as the world's leading lingerie brand that emphasizes on providing customers with only the best quality and variety of lingerie, not to mention they have such fashionable tastes too!


This simple yet elaborated white piece definitely stood out thanks to the perfect coordination

So it's no surprise when one says "Once you've tried Triumph, You'll always wear Triumph", because i can solely vouch for that now lol, not only they constantly tempt me with their beautiful color pantone choices every season, the designs are something every girl would proudly boast of having it in their closets. It is known that lingerie is always the MOST highly prized possession in a women's wardrobe, especially each well crafted piece from Triumph anyone in a right mind would save their bras first during a fire outbreak XD
Can't conquer the world without a good support!

That's what i did last week during the relaunch of Triumph's Mid Valley Boutique, planning my "to buy" list this season after feasting my eyes on all the pieces modeled by gorgeous models lol, Triumph really knows how to spoil a girl and there is no such thing as too much lingerie! So guys if you think we are doing this for you, please wake up and stop thinking too highly about yourselves lol, in fact we are doing this because we love ourselves & it's an essential (or confidence booster).
My favorite collection would be from their Essence series, it's also under Triumph just of a different line hence the name.

So found any piece that has caught your eyes yet? I would highly recommend their Maximizer series for extra "ommph", if you get what i mean ;-)


Essence by Triumph is considered to be an exclusive and luxurious series (couture collection), as some of the pieces has swarovski embedded into the lingerie trimmings & design. Definitely saving up to get myself a set from this collection :-P
I am a B75 & a small butt, so if any of you guys planning to secretly get me my dream set from Essence you know which size to get lol, i should be stabbed for being so shameless sometimes lol.


Comes with memory cushion that not only gives you an extra boost but also fits comfortably according to your shape, lightweight with good breathable system too. This is one of their best selling series, so better get them before they are all gone!

Thank you Triumph Malaysia for inviting me over to witness this prestigious moment, also gives me more reason not to procrastinate on getting a new set on inner-wears (been meaning to get them, just lazy). Shall continue supporting & believing in Triumph for providing my 'assets' with such amazing care & support throughout the past 1 year and many more to come. 
So girls, if you are planning to go for your annual lingerie restock it's best to do so now as in conjunction of their "Find The One Again" campaign, get fitted to stand a chance to win RM1000 worth of Triumph products. Walk in your nearest Triumph Boutique today to find out more!

For latest updates don't forget to like www.facebook.com/triumphMY


So happy with my latest haul! :)





XOXO,





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