Monthly Archives: June 2012

Sneak preview: Newly renovated apartment in Paris!

After 8 months of smashing, breaking walls, cementing, carrying, rebuilding, painting, hammering, sleeping in sleeping bags, eating pizza (Can’t look at pizza for a while), spending 6 hours per Sunday in Ikea and Leroy Merlin, trucking rubbish to the tip, and oh-so-much more, we are nearly there! Wonderful J is such a handyman! Here are a few pictures before I do a full post with before and after shots.

I am so excited! Our new home is finally finished!

xxx

Kuala Lumpur: Poco Homemade

Poco Homemade in Kuala Lumpur is just precious. It’s a cosy hangout where attention to detail is taken seriously… and delicious food to boot!

The café offers Japenese food and a surprisingly big Western-inspired cake selection.


Poco Homemade focuses on serving healthy and simple Japanese meals which are the perfect kinds of meals to share.

This is a family-run business, and the food is all homemade, hence the name of the café.

Some of the crafts and knitted items are for sale which certainly adds to the intrigue and charm of this café.

If I didn’t know about this place and walked by, I would certainly want to go in!

Next time you are in Kuala Lumpur, stop by and say hello to the lovely people at Poco Homemade.

1, Lorong Kurau
59100 Bangsar
Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2287 5688
E: poco.homemade@gmail.com

xx

Health Benefits of Matcha – the magic powder that got me through my degree

Never heard of it? It is ground green tea.  Yet to be discovered as it deserves, matcha is not only amazing for your health, but its also so delicious! Buddhist monks once consumed Matcha in preparation for enduring 12-hour straight meditation sessions

A cancer-fighter, a fat-burner, and much more, matcha leaves other green teas far behind.Let me sum up why this powdered green tea is such a miracle food:

– The health benefits of matcha tea exceed those of green tea because when you drink matcha you ingest the whole leaf, not just the brewed water. This really does set green tea and matcha apart.. who would have known! If you ingest the whole leaf you are taking advantage of so many goodies: chlorophyl,  antioxidants including the powerful EGCg, vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium and many more!

– One glass of matcha is the equivalent of 10 glasses of green tea in terms of its nutritional value and antioxidant content. I can promise you, it gives you this incredible pep after drinking it and it isn’t even comparable to coffee!

-Matcha contains over 70 times the anti-oxidants of fresh orange juice, and over 9 times the beta carotene of spinach.


(Image sourced here)

So what does matcha do for you?

-Boosts metabolism and burns calories
-Detoxifies effectively and naturally
– Calms and relaxes
– Enhances mood and aids in concentration
– Fights against viruses and bacteria
– Is rich in fiber
– Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar
– Does not raise insulin levels

The best news is that you can make wonderful recipes with matcha. Matcha lattés, matcha madeleines, matcha cupcakes, matcha marble cake.

I didn’t want to drain you with figures and facts, but inspire you to try this wonderful superfood!

xx

Elodie Garbé: Crolette Blog

Cette fille ne cesse pas de m’impressionner avec ses dessins. Comme vous pouvez le voir, son style a une telle polyvalence, elle peut simplement tout faire! Ses dessins sont pleins d’énergie et créativité.

Je lui ai posé quelques questions pour vous donner une idée de ce qui se passe dans cette tête créative!

Tu a fais ton premier dessin à quel age?
Je ne sais pas… mais quand je regarde mes premiers dessins style bonhomme têtard je me dis que je n’étais pas très avancée pour mon âge. Sauf une peinture de dernière section de maternelle qui envoie du lourd tellement elle est belle!


Quand tu étais petite, qu’est-ce que tu avais tendance à dessiner?
J’avais tendance à copier sur mon grand frère. Donc je dessinais des maisons avec des portes de garage que j’interprétais comme étant des ballons attachés à la maison. C’est difficile pour moi d’en parler car ça a été une grande source de conflit entre lui et moi à l’époque. Sinon je dessinais l’unique animal de compagnie que nous avons eu: un poisson rouge représenté avec sa gigantesque crotte multicolore de 3km.

Quelles ont été tes inspirations?
Mes premières inspirations sont rattachées aux univers de l’enfance avec Zep, Claude Pontil et Tim Burton. Puis quand je me suis lancée dans les études d’illustration ça a été la découverte. Les illustrateurs jeunesse reste toujours dans le top 10, mais au fil des années je me suis ouverte autant à la nouvelle bande dessiné qu’au graphisme ou qu’aux illustrateurs moderne.Sinon mes coups de cœurs de ces derniers mois sont l’acquisition de “pinocchio”de Winshluss, les illustratrices Peppermints, Anne Brunet, et Dass Kopf une jeune graphiste-illustratrice.

Aujourd’hui quel est ton rêvé en tant qu’artiste?
Mon rêve en tant qu’artiste a longtemps été de pouvoir rester dans ma chambre en peignoir à dessiner du matin au soir. Mais pour l’avoir déjà expérimenté je peux vous assurer que je n’ai pas tenu plus d’un mois. L’homme ne peut rester enfermer à se nourrir de pépito et de thé. Mais mise à part le rêve de chaque artiste qui est de pouvoir vivre de son art, mon rêve serait de pouvoir éditer mes livres pour enfant, de bosser sur un projet qui demanderait de concevoir et de fabriquer des décors pour le cinéma, le théâtre ou la télévision. Et avec le temps et l’expérience se serait de monter un collectif ou une agence constituée uniquement d’amis talentueux.

Où est-ce que tu aimes aller passer ton temps libre?
Dans la cuisine de mes amis,sur les quais, au fond de mon lit entouré de BD ou à écouter de la musique, au bar avec des amis et des bonnes bière.

Quelles sont les artistes qui te font rêver?
Pénélope Bagieu me fait rêver par sa simplicité. Korali et Supakitch parce qu’ils travaillent en couple. Pepperminte parce qu’elle vie en Australie et qu’elle fait toute seule ses robes.

Quel est ton dream job?
Mon dream job dans un futur pas si lointain serait de travailler dans un studio qui fait des dessins animés.

Quel est ton idée d’une journée parfaite?
La journée parfaite se serait d’avoir une musique qui me suivrait partout et qui  s’adapterait à mon humeur.

Pour toi, c’est quoi l’homme parfait?
C’est un homme sur lequel on n’a rien envie de changer, et qui n’essayera pas de nous changer.

Que fais-tu quand tu ne sais plus quoi dessiner?
Je dessine n’importe quoi.

Ton repas préféré?
Le petit déjeuner compte comme un repas?

Tu peux nous expliquer l’histoire de ce dessin?
Ma petite sœur ne supporte pas les petits noms affectueux et niais, comme “ma petite princesse” ça l’a fait se transformer en crapaud garou.

Tu t’imagines comment dans 20 ans?
Je partirai en tourné mondial pour la dédicace de l’ultime volume du karma sutra illustré.

Elodie peut faire vos petits dessins pour vos sites,des fresques murales pour chambre, des dessins pour vos blogs, des dessins de couple, invitations de mariage, d’anniversaire, entre autres, il suffit d’envoyer un email: garbe.elodie@gmail.com

In Amsterdam the water is the mistress and the land the vassal

Amsterdam, one of my true loves. I just adore this precious little city.

J and I have been 3 times now, and each time fallen more in love with this place. It feels a lot more friendly than Paris and still has a small town feeling despite being a capital city. Amsterdam is a sassy mix of charm and crass. No other city does it like Amsterdam. Children pedal to school as if in a small town and pairs of police add no stress to the laid-back scene. Tourists crawl out of the station, keen to explore.

We spent a night in Den Haag and Leiden because we have friends there. The photo below is of J in Den Haag.

We enjoyed a leisurely walk in the forest in Den Haag. It’s easy to forget how good this makes you feel.

I came across this little guy in the forest, hand-carved and everything.

Back to our roots in the forest!

Another creature

The King!

Shabby chic bike, the best colour!

Going to Amsterdam has made me really interested in the history of this place. Did you know that in the 16th century, the Dutch Golden Age, Amsterdam was a fortified marina of 30,000 people, mostly merchants, who welcomed ships loaded with material delights from every corner of the trading world? I know that Dutch trading was big, but not to that extent. They’d enter the town from where the train station stands today, parading like pirates with plunder to the commercial altar of the town — the customs and weigh house next to the City Hall on Dam Square, where they docked and unloaded.

The little houses are just divine! Even this shop, which sells an incredible range of condoms in all shapes and sizes, is cute and somewhat classy.

Dutch cheese, the French would argue that it tastes like cheese, but I think it’s nice. I particularly like the presentation. This shop in the main shopping street really caught my eye. It was like the Apple shop of cheese. So organised!

J and I then strolled through Amsterdam, miraculously the sun had come out, to find our rumbling tummies something to eat.

What I find incredible, is that all the houses are different. If you look at a block of houses, they are all varied.

J and mini door.

We found food! Herengracht gave us just what we were after. Herengracht is actually one of the names of the three main canals.

We were seated right next to the canal so we watched the boats glide by.

Orange? It’s the national colour, and the whole city would transform into an orange sea in the next 24 hours for Queen’s Day, their biggest party of the year.

Rocking my Karen Walker’s, love those sunnies!

J too happy to be tucking into his meal.

Eggs Benedict, my fav!

Does anybody know the name of these trees? They are so delightful to look at. Twisted and old looking like an old lady’s hand.

Orange for Queen’s Day.

The beginning of the party.

Visiting the apartment that we celebrated the day in changed my life. It was one of the most incredible apartments that I have ever seen. It looked right over the canal but in a quiet area and everything in this apartment appealed to me.

This is what this magic apartment looks out over, not bad huh?

So what is Queen’s Day all about?It is a national holiday in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Celebrated on 30 April (the 29th if the 30th falls on a Sunday), Koninginnedag (name in Dutch) is Queen’s Beatrix’s official celebration day. Though Queen Beatrix was born on 31 January, the holiday is observed on 30 April as it was the birthday of her mother and predecessor, Juliana. Many of the traditional activities are held outside, and observing the holiday in April makes suitable weather more likely. We were so lucky!!

Feeling the spirit!

Our good friend with crazy glasses, J and I looking somewhat silly!

Amsterdam’s charm — a fun mix of modern and faded elegance — is best enjoyed on foot (ideally with French fries). Take it all in and then pause to watch the sunset, as the Golden Age is reflected in a quiet canal. Just brilliant!

xx

Special visitors in France

In October of last year my wonderful parents visited me in Paris. After an emotional reunion at the airport we had a few fun-filled weeks in Paris and Bourgogne (the wine region) to explore together.

It had been a big transition for me moving to Paris from Melbourne so it was great to see my folks to make me feel a bit of home.

It’s always interesting to hear the “outsider” perspective on Paris, because I seem to adopt the opinions of the Parisians and when friends and family visit me in Paris I realise how immersed I have become.

This florist is just wonderful, it is just near to my old uni Sciences Po, in Rue Bernard Palissy at Saint Germain Des Pres. My favourite things in this florist are the little flower pots covered in moss.

(Sorry for the photo overload I got a bit excited!)

After admiring the rose, I told this rather cheesy couple shot of my parents.

And another..

Cluny is a remarkable city, it is so old! Cluny is situated in the Saone et Loire departement in the region of Bourgogne in eastern France. It is 20 km northwest of Macon. The town grew up around the Benedictine Cluny Abbey, founded by the Duke Wiliam I of Aquitaine in 910. The height of Cluniac influence was from the second half of the 10th century through the early 12th.

This medieval city contains so much history, we were astonished!

The abbey in Cluney was sacked by the Huguenots in 1562 and many of the valuable manuscripts were destroyed or removed.

Looking pretty good for it’s age I say!

This place was just so romantic and the burnt colours of Autumn made me head-over-heels.

Dad couldn’t believe his eyes, he loves history!

Next stop was Puligny Montrachet.
In the middle of the Cote de Beaune, it is a well-known appellation of Burgundy wine, containing one of the most famous vineyards in the world, Montrachet.

Even though it was cold (should I say freezing?), we were lucky enough to have an array of pretty colours that are associated with Winter and it was worth battling the brisk Winter air to see it all!

Love the cobble stones!

Who wouldn’t love to have this outside their little window?

Fairy floss

Adorable little girl with her cigar smoking father

We went to a few local markets and the maternal instinct in me made me feel like buying a country home and cooking for 10 hungry children.

At our B&B

Cheese!

We stayed in a wonderful place in Puligny Montrachet called Domaine des Anges. It is run by an English couple and the service was just perfect. Lady Celine and Sir John are as close as it can get to the incarnation of perfect hosts on earth. They work together extremly well and organisation is certainly their strong point! The place is a typical Bourgogne countryside house, totally renovated with an amazingly well kept garden and courtyard. The beds are comfortable, and I even had a bath each night before bed which was such a luxury. The warm colors and choice of furniture inside make it irresistibly cozy and comfy.

So many pumpkins!

As you can see, these local markets are really doing what all big cities aren’t: eating local, fresh, seasonal food. It would be enough to make me move here (don’t tell J)

Snails on pizza… who would have thought?!

The view from my room at Domaine des Anges. Just perfect.
The best part: sharing breakfast with other guests with fine homemade marmalades, fresh generous croissants, eggs, cheese from the region, fresh baguette, plate of ham, and … a surprise delicacy every morning (first day was cooked apple and cinnamon, second day freshly cut pineapple, third day freshly cut pink grapefruit). Details were taken care of like fresh flowers every morning set on the dining table. I loved the way they set the table!

(Sorry for the photo overload I got a bit excited!)

Looking at these photos made me want to go back and do it all again!

Have you been to Bourgogne in France? What is your most loved wine? (French or other?)

xx

France 2 “C’est au programme”- Mon grand début!

Comment est-ce arrivé? Je ne sais pas, mais j’en suis ravie. Une journaliste m’a contacté et puis voilà, le tournage aura lieu cette semaine!

C’est au programme  est une emission de television francaise matinale diffusée depuis 1998 sur France 2 et présentée par Sophie Davant. L’émission aborde chaque matin de nombreux sujets (culture, santé, voyages et cuisine) présentés par des chroniqueurs, pour un public plutôt féminin.

Je suis enchantée de présenter 2 recettes dont une salée, une sucrée! L’émission passera le 20 juin.

Je vais vous montrer en avant première ce que je vais présenter!

J’ai reçu donc le robot KRUPS que je vais utiliser pour l’émission cet après-midi.

Le plat sucré- Mousse Choco-Meringue! J’adore, et J adore

Le plat salé- Tarte Tatin de Tomates aux Échalotes.

Installé chez moi!

J’ai qu’à m’entraîner et je serai prête!