Being a Happy Weekday Vegetarian

weekday vegetarian 2Entering the year 2014, I suddenly felt the need to feed my body  in a way that says I love me enough to want only what is best for me.

I know about the perils of eating too much fat and meaty dish, and I desperately want to fill my body with food that I believe is more healthy.

I was aware that there are challenges associated with eating meat, and with becoming a vegetarian. As with other aspects of being human and being alive, each of these alternatives have both pros and cons.

With this in mind, I have decided to try to benefit from both worlds by being a weekday vegetarian

weekday vegetarian

What does weekday vegetarian mean?

For me, it means choosing to eat, five days a week, a diet that is  vegetarian or meatless while two days a week during week end I enjoy the delicious and satisfying taste of meat.

Some people who are vegetarian consider all animal flesh as meat, including the flesh of fish and fowl. For these people, it is important to exclude meat from their diet. I know other people who consider themselves to be vegetarian who will still eat butter, cheese, eggs, and milk.

Then, there are people who are  “extreme vegetarians,” and they are called vegans. Vegans eat only food from plant sources, and they exclude from their diets both meat and animal products such as butter, cheese, eggs and milk.

Why weekday vegetarian?

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Another New Year to Celebrate

January 2014 marked

The year of 2014 is a special year as we celebrate New Year 2 times both in January, the first month of this year :-)

New Year’s Day is observed on January 1, the first day of the year on the modern calendar  Gregorian as well as the Julian calendar used in the Roman Empire since 45 BC.

With most countries now using the Gregorian calendar as their de facto calendar, New Year’s Day is probably the world’s most celebrated public holiday, often observed with fireworks at the stroke of midnight as the new year starts in each time zone.

This year,  we will celebrate another New Year – It’s the Chinese New Year which falls on January 31. Traditionally, the  celebrations run from Chinese New Year’s Eve, the last day of the last month of the Chinese calendar, to the Lantern Festival on the 15th day of the first month, making the festival the longest in the Chinese calendar.

Because the Chinese  calendar is lunisolar, the Chinese New Year is often referred to as the “Lunar New Year” and we usually wish Gong Xi Fa Cai to those who celebrate it.

Happy Lunar New Year

As the Chinese New Year is approaching, it means we should get ready to party! And by “party” I mean “eat.”

Many New Year’s traditions around the world involve champagne and firecrackers, but when it comes to Chinese New Year it’s all about the feast!

Food plays an important role in Chinese culture, so it’s no surprise that a huge part of the Chinese New Year celebrations center around big banquets dishing up lucky dishes and symbolic foods.  Dishes served most during Chinese New Year symbolize hope and renewal for the New Year.

Feast Chinese New year

As the Chinese New Year is coming in less than 3 weeks, I start thinking of what to cook for Chinese New Year. Although I don’t celebrate Chinese New Year but I have a habit of cooking a special menu on every festive.  This time I am thinking of cooking Egg Foo Yong or in my country known as Fu Yung Hai.

Why Egg Foo Yong?

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2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for my blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 47,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 17 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

The First Day of the New Year

As we begin on this first day of the new year, rain is pouring down in Raffles Hills in the Southeast part of Jakarta where I live.

I’m now sitting in our family room enjoying the rain and newness of the year and  have a lot to be thankful for 2013 and a lot to be hopeful for 2014…….

First day of 2014

As in previous years, millions around the world welcomed 2014 on New Year’s Eve with fireworks, dancing and late-night reverie, gathering for huge displays of jubilation and unity as the new year arrived across 24 time zones.

In the city where I live, the governor rolled out again the Jakarta Night Festival to celebrate the New Year’s Eve at the iconic Hotel Indonesia Circle, popularly known as “Bundaran HI” and along the Thamrin and Sudirman Boulevard on a car-free night .

Same as last year, Jakarta Night Festival was “a party for all” filled with music galore, parades, performances, fireworks, laser shows, dancing fountains, and zeppelin balloons, creating fun on the first day of the New Year.

While the majority of Jakarta residents were out there enjoying the Jakarta Night Festival, we were celebrating the New Year’s Eve quietly at home with home made Sangria and old time cookies.

Home made Sangria?

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It’s Christmas Time Again

Time really flies in 2013 ….suddenly it’s Christmas time again so I guess it’s time for me to write something about Christmas again.

Christmas.

I live in a country where 85% of the population are Muslim and only around  10% are Christians, but that’s still about 24 million people so Christmas is celebrated too here.

To celebrate Christmas, Indonesian Christians usually go to church services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. In most churches and cathedrals, people create nativity scenes and use them as part of the Nativity drama performance.

Christmas tree in Indonesia are normally artificial ones made of plastic. Although less common, some people have real Pine trees to be decorated as Christmas trees. Another special type of Christmas tree are ones made from goose feathers – made by people in their homes in Bali island. These feather trees have been exported to different countries around the world.

Christmas tree from goose feathers

In early December, huge Christmas trees with beautiful and colorful decorations can be found in most shopping malls in big cities all over the country.

Christmas in Indonesia

Santa Claus is also very popular and is called ‘Sinterklas’ (Dutch’s influence). Sinterklas brings presents to children on Christmas Day – and you also might see him in shopping malls, etc.!

Although we don’t really have typical Christmas foods but some typical cookies are a must-have food during Christmas in my country.

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Catch 22 or the crown of god?

choice

Have you ever experienced a situation where you have to make a difficult choice?

In my country we have a saying ‘bagaikan makan buah simalakama’ - when translated literally = as if eating simalakama fruit. The real meaning is similar to Catch 22 – a situation where no matter what choice you make, something bad is going to happen  or a no-win situation where all the possible solutions have a terrible or undesirable outcome.

So far I have never seen the so called simalakama fruit and I was not really sure if there is such a fruit or it was just an imaginary fruit used in a proverb……

until I checked with Mr. Google…….

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October: Pumpkin Month?

october-month-cat-pumpkin

Ah it’s the last day of October …..

Since I started my blog in 2009,  I always post something in October because my blog was born on 1st October and I was born on 31st October…….

This year I did not post anything on 1st of October

So I guess I have to write something today …..

Well it’s October…which can only mean one thing – Pumpkin is taking the seat of Ingredient of the Month

pumpkin

Let’s start by asking question: is a pumpkin a fruit or vegetable?

The pumpkin is a member of the squash family, and, though it is treated like a vegetable, it is technically a fruit. The reason a pumpkin is a fruit is because it grows on a vine and contains seeds.

Experiencing the diverse tastes of fruit and vegetables everyday, knowing which is which might be taken for granted. However, there is much confusion about these terms. Furthermore, many true fruits are often regarded to be vegetables and vice versa.

So, what is the difference between a fruit and a vegetable?

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