Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Greetings! (Finally)

Hello! First of all, happy Lunar New Year!
Us at our new humble abode on the first morning of CNY

Sorry I took a longer break from this space for longer than expected.I needed the rest. The whole house-moving-before-lunar-new-year project took a lot out of me. Post-CNY (okay, technically it's still CNY), I'm now doing a major reshuffling of the girls' routine while taking the rest of the stuff easy.

Other than that, I'm itching to use my new kitchen. The first new recipe that I have tried out is a marinade for baked chicken wings. I short listed a few recipes from the Web and finally zero in on a particular one that has more Asian taste (think light soy sauce & five spice powder) and yet not spicy which is great for the girls. Served it up yesterday and the Husband gave them thumbs up. I shall share my modified version at the end of this post (sorry, i forgot to take pictures of them though). :)

Thought I will do a short update about the two girls' progress in the last couple of months here too.

Arielle has started walking at exactly 12 months old. These days, she zips around the house and gave us a couple of scares by attempting to climb up the stairs on her own. In addition, she has also started to talk a bit. I cannot remember exactly when she started. In the recent two months, I believe. Here's a list of her current vocabulary (I'm sure I will have left out some) and its mighty cute, hearing her talk.

Daddy (da-di)
Mommy (mama or ma-meh)
Jiejie - meaning big sister (teh-teh)
Bubbles (bubba)
Ball (bah)
Amen (a-meh)
Cat (tat)
抱抱 - meaning to carry (baobao)
Pompom - meaning to take a bath
Ah gong - meaning her paternal grandfather
Ah ma - meaning her paternal grandmother
大伯 - meaning oldest uncle (da per)
婆婆 - meaning maternal grandmother (Porpor)
Gorgor - meaning elder brother
壳壳 Kéké - meaning the name of a stuffed turtle we have (ke-ke)
Bus (bah)
Motorcycle (vroom-vroom)
Chicken (ti-kern)
Potato (ta-poh-toe)

And more...

And for Anya. She is pretty much a child now. She has started pre-nursery since the beginning of this year. She talks (on and on), she reasons (too much at times), and screams. She walks, she runs and jumps around a lot. She dances, and sings a lot these days we have lost count of the number of songs she knows how to sing. She is finally open to eating meat though still very selective and she has grew 5-8 cm in the last couple of months (I swear it happened overnight). Very soon, she will have to pay a fare for taking public transport.

Last but not least, she has become much more independent. Just earlier on, she was taking her nap when I heard her room door opened. That usually meant she is done with her nap. She announced that she needed to pee as I sprinted upstairs. And so I quickly ushered her into the bathroom.

While helping her get undressed, I remarked, "Wow, Anya is done with your nap. You slept a good one & a half hours!". To which she cried, "I don't want..! I still want to sleep..!".

I did not quite believe as I know my little girl to take little naps typically but in order not for her whining escalate into a major boohoohoo, I quickly agreed. "Okay, you want to sleep some more? Sure."

After she was done using the bathroom, I waited to see what she would do next.

"I'm going to lie down," she said and walked back into her room. She lay down on the king-size mattress on the floor (her current bed co-shared with Arielle), turned towards the entrance where I'm standing, slightly stunned and said, "close the door." With that, she reached for her favourite hankie and rolled to her side with her back facing me. "Okay, byebye." I croaked and gingerly closed the door.


Anyways, here's the recipe of the chicken marinade. It originated here and I have tweaked here and there to my own liking.

9 fresh chicken wings
3 tablespoons light soy sauce (I actually used 1/4 cup in accordance to the original recipe but I found it to be too salty and hence will reduce it to 3 tbsp hereon)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine
2 tablespoons tomato sauce
3 tablespoons honey (I increased the honey because the marinade was less sticky than I was hoping for)
2 tablespoons chilli sauce
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 tablespoon chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon white pepper powder
1/2 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder


Remove tips from chicken wings and discard. Cut wings in half at the joint. Place in a large zip-lock bag. Combine marinade in a bowl and stir to mix well. Pour into the ziplock bag, seal and shake to ensure all chickens are coated with marinade. Store for at least 2 hours or overnight, if time permits. For me, I prefer to make large quantity (in this case, 9 pieces of 3-joint wings) and freeze them up and a few ziplock bags. Then I will use two bags as a side dish for dinner/lunch, a small bag where I cut up the meat into bit-sizes to use in baked rice or wrap.

Preheat oven to 160°C. Place chicken and marinade in a greased roasting pan (i used a corning ware casserole pan which worked just as well, save the scrubbing after that). Set the oven to bake for 40 minutes. 20 minutes later, up the temperature to 180°C and turn the wings over. Another 10 minutes later, turn them back again and up the temperature further to 220°C. Serve.

Note: By upping the temperature gradually, it lowers the meat to be juicer on the inside while browned on the outside - that is my own personal take. Hope you will like it. :)

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