Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Junior's Cheesecake!

 More cheesecake from Junior's Cheesecake! My brother ordered the first cheesecake for Mother's Day, and he ordered another surprise for Father's Day.  

It came in boxed a little differently than the first order, but just as secure.  The cheesecake was boxed in a large styrofoam box.  The Junior's Cheesecake cardboard box was sealed and the cake itself was sealed inside a plastic wrap. This time was the 8" Summer Fruit Cheesecake Cobbler Sampler.  They are both just as good but this one is definitely for fruit lovers.  
The top layer is cinnamon crumbles. The only problem I would have to say is that we have to store the cake in the freezer instead of the fridge because the cake would fall apart especially with the cinnamon crumbles and the fruit inside.  It is still really good although my parents and other older Asians may find it too sweet.  Asian bakeries usually lighten a bit on the sweets.  

On other news, I had a pretty busy week last week.  I've finally upgraded to fios, and so uploading my photos won't be so much of a hassle.  I also went to a dermatologist to remove the moles on my face.  I currently have a bunch of stitches and burnt spots from the laser.  I wouldn't be able to write any reviews on beauty products until everything is clear.  I will also be starting my new job in a few weeks, which means I will probably only be able to update on the weekends.  

Friday, June 15, 2012

Hainanese Chicken Recipe

Just taking a break from my iodine diet, my mom made some Hainanese chicken at home for the first time.  It also happens to be Malaysian Restaurant Week here!  It was pretty good and I decided that I would share the recipe. It's quite easy actually.  I love to eat Hainanese chicken and its my favorite dish at Malaysian restaurants. 


  • Chicken thigh meat (dark meat, its more tender than breast meat)
  • cilantro
  • kirby cucumbers or just regular cucumbers
  • chopped scallion
  • chopped ginger
  • chopped garlic
  • dried anise herb (they look like stars, you don't eat them, they are just for giving flavor)
  • chinese oyster sauce
  • sesame oil (original or with added hot oil)
  • salt
  • soy sauce
  • clean ice water
Making the chicken:

1. Boil your chicken thigh meat in water for 10 minutes. Some people use chicken broth but you can just use water to keep it clean and healthier.
2.  Place cooked chicken into clean ice water to cool down the chicken and allow the meat and skin to be more tender.
3. Chicken is ready!

Making the sauce:

1.  Place your cilantro, chopped scallion, chopped ginger, chopped garlic, dried anise herb, salt, soy sauce, oyster sauce and sesame oil into a bowl and mix.
2.  Sautee everything in a pan for a bit to get the flavor going.

Layer your chopped cucumbers onto the bottom of a plate, layer your chicken and pour your sauce over it.  And enjoy!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

C+M Whitening Collagen Firming Gel Mask

I was a little excited to try this face mask because I thought I had grabbed a good deal on a gel mask at $2.70 for a box of two sheets.  After tearing open the packaging, I realized that it wasn't a gel mask but just a regular paper cloth mask with gel essence.  The "gel" only represents the gel type of essence and not the mask itself.  So, my main dissatisfaction of this mask is the result of this misnomer.  I guess at $1.35 a sheet, I wouldn't be getting a gel textured mask anytime soon.

I can't find any information from their company other than the description of their brand on sasa.com.  I have always found sasa.com descriptions to be very suspicious with lesser known brands.  In their description it notes that they are "a famous French personal and skin care brand with wide range of whitening, suncare, anti allergy, moisturizing, deodorant and ance treatment products."  On the box it is noted that it is made in Korea, while the written form of language used is English and Chinese.  So, which is it? You are a French company made of Chinese workers with a market in Asia that decides to produce your products in Korea because the labor and shipping is cheaper? Is that what it is?

I haven't tried any of their other products but I am a little tempted mainly because they are so inexpensive and after testing this mask, it's actually not bad.  I have a feeling that this may be a drugstore brand because many of their products are only a few dollars.  Though, I probably wouldn't spend over $10.00 on a single item on this brand.

Putting aside the bummed fact that it isn't a true gel mask, I can tell you that the cloth mask was well drenched in gel essence.  Unlike some other gel type of cloth masks, I found that it wasn't drippy and not as sticky.  The cloth mask is thin like the Sillk Whitia Pearl line.  The cloth mask fits my face well but I think it may be small for wide faces.  The one good thing about the mask cutting is that left the eyes for you to cover.  I think that the gel type essence complements the cloth mask.  You don't get much excess essence but I think it is enough for the face and neck. I think it transfers and absorbs into my skin quite well.  I could use the mask longer than their suggested usage time. 

After I use the mask, I massage the rest of the excess essence from the package and go to bed.  It's not a wash off mask and I don't feel that I need to apply any face cream over it.  I find the result good.  It is hydrating like any other face mask right after use.  I don't think its that convincing in whitening, however.  I don't find that I get that whitening glow that I do with other brands.  The following day, my skin still does look hydrated, soft and refined.  

The Good

  • Not too expensive at $2.70 for a box of 2 sheets
  • thin mask, gel type essence, not really sticky
  • hydrating, soft and refined result
The Bad
  • Not a gel texture mask, only a gel type essence with paper cloth
  • Doesn't give that whitening glow
  • not wholly impressive
The Skinny

I was overall just quite bummed by the fact that I didn't get a deal with a gel textured mask.  It is only a gel type essence with cloth mask.  I do find it hydrating and a bit refining, though I wasn't incredibly impressed because I don't think it gave me that whitening glow that I had at least expected.  And just terribly bummed that its not a gel textured mask.  However, they are moisturizing and I would grab a box or two of these if I ever find them on stock again. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

My Iodine Diet part 1

Last week, I had my regular check up with my doctor.  All is well except that my (TSH) Thyroid-stimulating hormone was tested way out of range.  In adults, the standard reference range according to the guidelines issued here is between 0.40-4.50 mIU/L (depending on your lab and location).  My test reported out of range at 9.69 H (high), which indicates hypothyoidism, an underactive thyroid.  I'm actually a little surprised because I do seem to eat a lot of fish.  My mom would steam fresh tilapia fish and salmons at least once a week.

My doctor didn't want to put me on medication right away but told me that I needed to eat more seafood, seaweed and iodized salt.  I am deficient in iodine and the primary foods that are sufficient in providing that supplement is seafood and seaweed.  I have two months to boost back to normal for my blood test in August.  I have decided that I would document my "iodine diet" and share with you all my seafood eating frenzy of the upcoming months! Right after I found out the news, I went to eat sushi with my mom.  Hah, I guess one good thing is that now I have an excuse to eat more sushi!

Yesterday, we went out to our local Han Ah Reum Supermarket to stock up on some roasted seasoned seaweed.  I've always enjoyed eating seaweed since I was little.  However, I do admit, I have been eating them less and less these recent years mainly because my mom would say that I finished the pack so quickly.  Now my mom is telling me that I need to start eating them regularly again.  That's fine with me because they are pretty good.  I also picked up a small dish of prepared calamari in korean hot sauce.

For supper the last three evenings, I had steamed butter fish with sauteed ginger, scallion and soy sauce the first night, and baked salmon with fish sauce and garlic the second and third night.  

My mom would also occasionally make a cold dish of laver with vinegar and garlic, more often in the warmer months.  I'll also be enjoying more of this dish! 

For dinner tonight, we had a change, mussels, the one type of seafood we almost have never made at home, and very rarely even have when eating out. My mom decided she would prepare them the same way clams are prepared at the chinese restaurants in the US: stir-fried with chinese fermented black beans (douchi).  I personally really like douchi in certain foods especially with the pork ribs dim sum!

So what you will need for the chinese fermented black bean mussels:

  • mussels
  • chinese fermented black beans (douchi)
  • chopped garlic
  • chopped ginger
  • two teaspoons butter
  • soy sauce
  • salt and pepper
  • chopped scallion (not shown here, but optional)
  • wine (I didn't have it at home, but I have to say it would taste even better with wine)

First melt your two teaspoons of butter, add in the chinese fermented black beans,
chopped garlic and chopped ginger.

Throw in your mussles and begin to stir-fry.  

Add some soy sauce and a little water if it is getting too dry.
Add in your desired amount of salt and pepper and put the lid over.

And this is the result of our stir-fried chinese fermented black bean mussels for my iodine diet tonight.  I have to say it was pretty good, though my mom said she over cooked it a bit.  I couldn't tell.  Although it was good, I can definitely tell that it would have tasted even more fantastic if there was some wine in it. That's on our shopping list. 


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