Every Chinese New Year: Nian Gao, Please

Last week, my mum said you know Chinese New Year is coming, when the wind rushes down and about the block’s corridor. She said my late dad told her that. I look around the flat and take in the memories, timelessness, and the age of the place. I associate CNY with nian gao, and remember that I took some photos of my mother making fried nian gao last year. I think I wanted some photos for memory’s sake. 

I found them, and thought they were so precious. My mother will no doubt make them again this year, but I remember her posing for me, she smiling at the silliness of it all, and she very earnestly asking me whether I want a shot of this or that stage. 

They look so bashed up but its irresistible sweetness and the love that went into them make them the prettiest food. 

2015 / 2016

2015 left suddenly; the colder and wetter weather we associate with December did not last for more than a week. We spent December confused, and also semi-mired in the sense of doom economists, governments and terrorists cast us into. 

While it may feel like there really isn’t much to look forward to, I suppose this feeling is one you get some years. To me, 2016 seems to call for fortitude and prudence, all at once. It may be a trying year, we don’t know yet. But whatever comes, what sets us apart from despair is hope and the ability to count our blessings. Trite, but here’s to an okay 2016, and if it works out better for you, go out there and have a smashing time. 

Happy new year. 

An Epic Brunch: Catalunya

The Sunday brunch at Catalunya is generally well-reviewed, in terms of the number of reviews, and the regard people have for it. It costs a good sum to have the Sunday brunch, but it was December, there was a birthday, and if not now, then when?

To optimise your experience, you might want to read the brunch menu before you head down. In brief, some things are self-service buffet style, but you can order some extras, and in addition, there will be some awesome protein served to your table. Also, in our view, you should skip the egg in a martini glass. Everything else is great.

If you are sleepy, please be warned that things can get rowdy later.

A fish will be set on fire, and a little pig chopped up with a plate. Said plate has a surprise fate after the chopping is done. There will be loud music, and paella divvied up and served to you. There will be more loud music and clapping, before the buffet is reset and the desserts set out.

More information: Catalunya is at The Fullerton Pavilion, 82 Collyer Quay, Singapore. The building is in the middle of nowhere – park or drop at The Fullerton, bring an umbrella if it is rainy, because the building is not sheltered from the next.