Pluck: Super Easy Sweets


Tea

I’m getting tired of being asked a certain question: Where did you buy that dress?

Recently, I’ve been asked that a fair bit. And recently, my answer has tended to be the same: Pluck, a little boutique along Singapore’s tiny Haji Lane that sells both new and vintage dresses and accessories.

It’s an answer I hate to give because most of the people asking have been my American friends. And with Pluck, well, it isn’t exactly close enough for them to pop in for a quick browse. (As an immediate gratification kind of person, this kind of thing just will not do for me.)

I recently discovered a bit of good news, however — Pluck just started selling online and yes, it delivers overseas as well. So I’m writing about this here so that a) people can stop asking me where I buy my dresses and b) well … a) pretty much covered it.

How does this relate to food? Not as tangentially as you’d think.

Pluck also sells ice-cream and dessert. While I heartily recommend the pear riesling and lychee martini ice-creams, it’s been the little crunchy and sweet nibbly bits that co-owner Aisah sends out with tea and coffee that have piqued my interest.

When I bit into one recently, I immediately thought of the little cookies that mums would set out as snacks for visitors or after-school treats when I was a child. 

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A Tiger In The Kitchen: Unveiled



Not too long ago, reporter Mark Joyella caught up with me about my cooking and eating adventures for a piece he did for the Brooklyn Heights Blog.

On my little deck in Brooklyn, we had a lovely time chatting about festive cardamom cookies and my stab at eating bull’s penis. (You can also see the video on Vimeo.)

I’d been a little embarrassed about posting it — because you can see exactly how dead my houseplants are in the background of some shots! But Mark did such a nice job, I thought I’d share it with you.

So, if you’ve been wondering what exactly I’ve been up to so far this year, check it out …

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What The Dead Eat


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There is a deep belief in these parts that the dead may be dead — but that little detail shouldn’t get in the way of serving them a good meal.

And so in Singaporean wet markets, alongside stalls selling vegetables and plump pigs’ trotters, you’ll find little places that hawk food of a different kind. Shelves will be filled with boxes of paper dumplings, chicken feet and other dimsum treats — the idea is to burn them as offerings so your deceased loved ones will get them on the Other Side.

I hadn’t seen one of these in a while, mostly because when I’m in these markets I tend to race over to stalls that sell food that I can actually eat.

Like, now. Not when I’m in the Big Upstairs shamelessly flirting with River Phoenix.

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Cardamom, A Love Story


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I've had cardamom on the brain recently. And I blame Padma Lakshmi.

We weren't even talking about food–we were discussing jewelry for a Wall Street Journal fashion piece, for heaven's sake. 

But then the "Top Chef" host started describing a long gold chain that she liked that's flecked with little gold nubs. "Like cardamom pods," Padma explained.

I immediately began thinking about cardamom cookies and haven't stopped since.

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A Fashion Critic's Bacon-Fat Cookies


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High-end fashion and bacon fat.

I couldn’t think of two things more disparate and yet, flipping through the pages of the New York Times a few years ago, there it was: Fashion critic Cathy Horyn‘s paean to a recipe for Swedish ginger cookies made with bacon grease that she has “cherished for years.”

My first reaction: Be still my beating heart, both figuratively and, quite possibly, literally. The cookie seemed like an insane, artery-clogging idea. The first ingredient listed, after all, was “3/4 cup bacon fat, cooled (from 1 1/2 to 2 pounds Oscar Mayer bacon).”

Two pounds of bacon? Cathy was officially my new hero.

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