“You are so cute.”

Beauty is false and favor is empty, but a woman that is in the awe of Lord Jehovah, she will be praised.
— the Holy Bible —

When you look at me…. what is it that you see?
When the youthful face and physique I carry fade away, will you seek beauty else where?

There are so many questions I very much would like to ask you. Somehow, it would be foolish of me to turn your face away by sounding cynical. Not especially when I too am drawn to your beautiful face and your kindness. To be sure you know no actual good of me, and I you, but nobody thinks of that when attraction pulls.
What’s more, all these are not even close to the point. Far from it.

When I look at you…. what is it that I see?

When I look past your gentle manners, I become acutely aware.
I am aware that you are not familiar with the name Jesus Christ. Neither have you heard of His life, death and resurrection. You know not what His redemptive work means to you… and to me. No, you never are exposed to His Word too.
I understand that you are not to be blamed for having not heard about my Lord Jesus. And, I don’t fault you. Neither do I want to pressure you into calling my King your King.

I treasure honestly between you and I, hiding nothing.

Pray listen
about this condition of my heart….
It beats for His Kingdom; it jumps at His promise to gloriously return; it shatters when His name is used in vain.

And about my deepest desire….
I want to spend the rest of my life in His sanctuary, praising His name, studying His Word, and worshiping with His people.
I want my eyes to seek His glory, my ears to be attentive to His wisdom, my lips proclaiming His majesty.

There is no turning back.
His Kingdom is my kingdom.
His people my people.
Where He goes, there I want to be.

His life for mine,
I want to choose to follow Him;
His life for mine,
I want to choose to be joined to Him;
His life for mine,
I want to choose to store His words in me;
His life for mine,
I want to choose to love as He has loved me;
His life for mine,
I want to choose to pursue sanctification that displays Him;
His life for mine,
I want to choose to partake in His suffering;
His life for mine,
I want to choose to not quit, trusting all the way.

He is the reason I live;
I am the reason He died.
He gave me a new heart,
When I had but a worthless stone.
He redeemed me;
While I was yet helpless and filthy.

My heart is no longer mine to give.
My life is is no longer mine to keep.
Mine is for Him,
I. Choose. Him.

HK Eats: Polo Bun / 菠蘿包


A dominant character in local bakeries across HK, pineapple bun a.k.a. polo bun 菠蘿包 is popular among the young and old across the region.

Best served warm, with its top crust still crisp, and the plain bun underneath still fluff. Best-er if served with a thick slice of butter 菠蘿油 ; and Best-est of all when served (warm or otherwise) with sweetened azuki bean 菠蘿紅豆包.

HK Eats: Grass Jelly / B仔凉粉


Grass jelly is a universally loved Chinese herbal chilled dessert across the region.

Having grown up scoping this black delight from tall glasses of syrupy drinks or cold soy milk under hot tropical sun, enjoying the refreshing jelly on a chilly day in Hong Kong is a different experience altogether. Reason being, grass jelly seems to also go well with fruits and ice cream! While single servings of this beautiful combination can be eaten in most Chinese sweets shops, to actually eat it from a jumbo sized container/bowl…. to be honest, to have anything served in a super sized bowl all the way to the brim… is pretty overwhelming.

And, yet, here we are, feeling both thrilled and intimidated. But, we know the best manner to quench that intimidation. And it is called gormandising.

The LAZIEST Teriyaki Mushroom & Pineapple Sandwich

imageHow curious! The lettuce is more expensive than the pineapple, mushroom, and 4 mini oat rolls combined. Perhaps it’s good to opt out the green and go for the other shades: teriyaki mushroom and pineapple sandwich… without the lettuce, of course.

A lazy eater as yours truly, it’s likely to take a lot of work for me to succeed at French desserts despite my open adoration for them.

It’s just easier to go with guts feelings. Besides, I don’t have measurement cups/spoons.

Recipe for the LAZIEST Teriyaki Mushroom and Pineapple Sandwich (Serves one):

Marinate the mushroom and pineapple ring in teriyaki sauce for a few hours. I left mine in the fridge overnight.
(To make teriyaki sauce, add syrup/honey, a dash of soysauce, a dash of mirin, and some Japanese cooking wine…. 2 tablespoons each. Adjust according to need.)

Grill mushroom and pineapple.

While waiting for the mushroom to cook, butter two rolls and top with slice of cheddar, add a dollop of yuzukosho for an extra kick.

Then transfer the mushroom and pineapple to bun.

Tuck it into bento box. Or, serve with your favourite salad :)

Where’s the Chicken?


These chewy savoury traditional Cantonese snacks are a delight. Amicably known as 鷄仔餅 “gai chai pheng” or its literal translation: little chicken cakes or little chicken pies, this is among my childhood favourites.

What always astounds me though, is the absence of chicken. Unlike chicken crackers, it doesn’t even boast to be “chicken flavoured”. Apparently, the first gai chai pheng was made by a creative maid servant. Hearsay, this young woman used some left over dough, added in some lard, Chinese spices, and soy sauce… popped it into a stove and voila!

But but but… where is the chicken?!
Maybe that isn’t even the core theme to the history of gai chai pheng.

Some time in the mid 1800s, a young maid servant girl invented what is to be this popular goodie…. Today, gai chai pheng is synonymous with Cantonese pastries. This creation transcended boundaries; its recipe travelled to wherever Chinese communities settle on this globe.

How it became this big, I have zero inkling.
Legend says that this young servant girl was plain lucky that the cook was out when her master’s honorable guests dropped by. As a servant, it was natural for her to quickly ensure that the guests were well taken care of: being served food and drinks. There was nothing much in the kitchen but ingredients to make her humble petit pastry. To her amazement, it was extremely well received, and later went on to be the talk of the town.

While a certain online encyclopaedia claims gai chai pheng is an accidental recipe, I believe otherwise. It sounds too far-fetched to be an accident if the guests were that deeply impressed.

According to Malcolm Gladwell, the prerequisite to great success is putting in 10,000 hours of practice into a specific task. The cakes served to the guests must have had been perfect in texture and taste… and so well-made that the soy sauce didn’t burn, instead caramelised beautifully.

With that, I think the real story behind the birth of gai chai pheng is all about one’s diligence and intelligence. Without which, there would be no gai chai pheng to begin with. Let alone passing down the recipe from generation to generation, even to its current status as the star edible-souvenir from Guangzhou.

As for the missing chicken… well, I don’t think it’s that important anymore.

In a Box

bentoMother regularly packed lunchboxes for me. Most of my schooling life and work life, I had the privilege to enjoy mom’s cooking for lunch. I would request for certain types of food the night before and would get them packed neatly in a box the next morning before leaving home.

Being mother, she reminded often about not wasting food. Despite living in another country, I can still hear her voice ring, “It’s disrespect towards those who grow the food, and disregard of those who sleep hungry.”

I don’t know hunger…. But, I know a little bit about farming.

I had the opportunities to visit animal farms and fishing farms. I also had opportunities to bend my back toiling under the sun all day in a rice field, talk to prawn farmers, and tea planters. I went to school with the child of a vegetable and rice farmer. A few months ago, I ran into a university mate who had recently started his own animal farm.

I remember talking all these different people, and dirtying my shoes and hands, and tanning under the sun…. I hold much respect for these farmers who constantly think of ways to make better quality food for us. One farmer said, “My dream is for everyone to enjoy healthy and delicious food.”

Even though I would not make any claims that I understand the hardwork that go behind the array of harvest lined in a supermarket, I can definitely imagine the sweat and appreciate the wonderful thoughts that go behind the production of food. I also appreciate the taste of love that mother poured into each lunch box she prepared, specially for me, all those years.

What’s truly lovely upon removing the tupperware’s lid are not exactly the neatly arranged mini dishes. It’s the heartbeats of farmers, and love from my mother…. which I enjoy with much gratitude.

**Image above shows what went into a shopping cart, and what came out from the stove afterwards.