New Discoveries for 2016

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Happy new year!

The first week of 2016 has been so laid back and relaxing, which gave me some Me Time to explore whatever I feel like to. I’m gonna share some of my new discoveries for 2016. Probably you would like them too. You never know 😛

SNOW has been my new favourite app (Android version click here ). It’s basically a Korean version of snapchat. But with a whole lot more of selfie lenses to choose from. I realised snapchat has started to charge users for the use of certain selfie lenses, while SNOW is completely free and it does allow people to download the videos or pictures you created (so you can send it to friends on other platforms). See an example of the selfie lenses below:

👀 new blog post. Link in bio.

A post shared by ⠀⠀阿凡.YI (@chocolatelva) on

My new favourite Youtuber has to be Cara Wu!!! I started following her initially on Instagram randomly. Cara is based in Taiwan and that makeup skill she’s got is heavenly amazing! This girl is soooooo talented! I’m so thrilled she started her own Youtube channel!! Yey!!! I couldn’t believe she is a self taught makeup artist! Only if I could teach myself that well. ^^ I literally started to put makeup step by step just by following her tutorials. I never used to buy nude lipsticks until I saw how she used them. And since then I’ve been obsessed with nude and matte lipsticks.

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And the new fav food place is Urban Angle Edinburgh. My friends and I tried to get some brunch in Urban Angle a few weeks ago, but the place was packed and we had to wait for an hour to get a table. So we gave up and didn’t got in the first time. Then, it was the Christmas brunch date with my colleagues that finally got me some taste of Urban Angel. 😀 I have to say the French toast is to die for! I will have to go back and try some more food for definite.

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Wish everyone a wonderful new year ahead! Wherever you are and whoever you are, don’t stop chase after your dreams. 🙂

Till next time!

xx

Yi.

 

 

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おでん Oden in town

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It was a regular Thursday evening when me and my friend, Kiki, tried  to search for a light meal before we start our dance class at night. Usually we were Yelp kinda girl: do the search on Yelp –> read the reviews –> decide to go there or not. But Yelp could never predict how busy a restaurant is and that day was a busy day for our original restaurant plan. Leaving the original destination behind us because it was so packed, we wandered around, just by a few steps, we found Koyama. It’s a Japanese restaurant near McEwan hall, where Edinburgh University’s main campus lies.

While usually I will go for a whole bunch of sushi,  Kiki is not a fan of raw fish and cold dish. Keep searching on the menu…. All of a sudden we saw oden on the menu! yey! now there is something we both like. According to Google: Oden is a Japanese winter dish consisting of several ingredients such as boiled eggs, daikon, konjac, and processed fishcakes stewed in a light, soy-flavoured dashi broth. Ingredients vary according to region and between each household. It’s perfect for winter time when it’s freaking cold outside. One portion of oden from Koyama filled us both up and it tasted amazing. Would definitely go back for it.

Here is a typical recipe for homemade Oden from Japan Centre, this is a little different than the one we had, but it will definitely be good to know the traditional way of cooking oden:

odenIngredients:

1 daikon japanese radish (approx. 10cm long)
1 pack chikuwa fish cakes
1 pack abura age fried tofu
1/2 pack mochi
1 pack konnyaku
1 sheet konbu seaweed
4 eggs, boiled & peeled
4-6 tbsp soy sauce
4-6 tbsp mirin
1 pack gobo maki burdock root fish cakes
1 pack karashi mustard

How To Prepare

  1. The first step is to prepare your ingredients by cutting up the daikon and chikuwa into bite-sized pieces. Next cut the mochi and abura age tofu in half, width-wise across the middle. Poke a little hole in the abura age to make a pocket and pop the mochi inside. Push a toothpick through both sides of the open end and back again, to keep it together while cooking.
  2. Next cut the konnyaku into triangles and boil them in a separate pan for a few minutes. While you are doing this, get a whole piece of konbu seaweed and let it soak in enough water (approximately 1 litre) to completely cover it for about 20 minutes.
  3. Next, add the soaked konbu seaweed and water we soaked it in to your large stewing pot and slowly bring it to the boil (remove from the heat just before the water actually boils). Now pour 4-6 tablespoons each of soy sauce and mirin before adding the daikon radish and konnyaku to the pot, allow it to simmer over a low heat for approximately an hour.
  4. Once you have done this, add the chikuwa, gobou-maki and eggs to the pot and continue to let it simmer for another 40 minutes. Then add your kinchaku abura age wrapped mochi and simmer for a further 20 minutes.
  5. Now that your oden is ready, place the large serving pot in the middle of the table and let everyone serve themselves by taking a few ingredients (including the konbu which you may want to slice up while still in the pot) and some soup in a small bowl. Oden is typically served with Japanese mustard called karashi, so add a small amount of karashi to each bite of oden and enjoy this delicious meal. Continue reading “おでん Oden in town”

It’s Time For Chocolate!

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Greetings from Brussels!!

As a chocoholic, Brussels has been on my “MUST TRAVEL” list for a long time. So I abandoned Yi and decided to do a chocolate discovery trip alone last week (coz Yi has been busy with her work in Edinburgh XD)

Brussels is well known for its chocolate and waffles (and beer of course). During my two days trip, I came across lots of chocolate shops and even a museum of cocoa and chocolate where you can learn all the things about cocoa. Also, a handsome guy will show you how they make Belgian chocolate in their workshop, that’s definitely a bonus. Do not forget to have a taste in the end! Yum!

There are so many world famous chocolate makers in Brussels, like Godiva, Neuhaus, Pierre Marcolini, Galler, Leonidas…… Brussels is absolutely a chocolate paradise!

Personally, I do recommend  Leonidas, a local-loved brand. Their chocolates are not that costly and still have comparable heavenly taste! Their shops are so easy to find as they are everywhere in Brussels LOL.

Forget about your figure and weight-gain! NEVER say No to chocolates in Brussels! Coz chocolate can never get cheaper and better elsewhere!

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我拋棄了Yi同學獨自來布魯塞爾happy啦~(她留守愛丁堡認真工作^_^)

作為一個巧克力狂魔 (誰不愛巧克力呢?!),當然不能錯過布魯塞爾!比利時巧克力世界聞名,當然還有華夫餅和啤酒,在街道上處處可見各大巧克力店,找個巧克力店比找wc還容易-_-#

我先去了巧克力博物館 (可見比利時人民對巧克力的熱愛!),在裡面可以了解很多可可豆和巧克力的歷史,還有小帥哥親自示範比利時巧克力是如何製成的,結束時別忘記品嚐喔!

比利時有名的巧克力牌子有很多,比如Godiva, Neuhaus, Pierre Marcolini, Galler, Leonidas等等,我個人比較推薦Leonidas,價格非常親民,口味也並不輸另幾個昂貴的品牌。Leonidas的店在布魯塞爾街頭隨處可見很好找喔!

到了布魯塞爾就不要擔心體重啦,畢竟是巧克力的天堂,大膽地去品嚐吧!

Continue reading “It’s Time For Chocolate!”

Fancy some Thai cuisine?

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This is our third time here at Chaophraya Edinburgh. As much as I don’t want to make this sound like a Tripadvisor review, the whole experience in this restaurant is just magical. From the interior decor to the food itself, I can’t think of any negative aspects about it. When we visited the first time, this Thai street pancake WOWed us big time. You don’t get to see green pancakes everyday, do you? The second time I was amazed by Chaophraya Wild Tea (it’s actually a cocktail). The drink is a mixture of Absolut Wild Tea Vodka, Elderflower Cordial, fresh apple juice and lemon juice. You can even choose to have egg white in the cocktail (imagine that )!! I personally love trying new things, so, why not? That king prawn fried rice served in a pineapple container is THE DISH you have to try! I came back the third time just for the fried rice. I attempted to make this fried rice at home but it’s just not the same. Wonder where did I go wrong. If you are lucky enough come here on a sunny day and being seated in the glass box, you can have an amazing view of the Edinburgh Castle while dining. Be prepared to book your table in advance though, weekends here can be packed with customers. Till next time 🙂

為了圓YI同學想吃一份專業(她曾嘗試過自製,味道不忍多說)菠蘿飯的夢,我們又一次來到了chaophraya泰國餐館。

  • 座標位置:33 castle street,Edinburgh      靠窗的座位可以看到城堡美景噢
  • 很有特色長的像奏摺一樣的菜單 (也可能很像未來的iphone 50==)
  • 點單推薦:
    1. 蝦仁菠蘿炒飯
    2. 雞肉椰汁濃湯
    3. 泰國 pandan pancake

Continue reading “Fancy some Thai cuisine?”