Archive for the 'food' Category

Jonesing for butter fruit

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

Yesterday at lunch, I made myself yet another salad from the salad bar in the cafeteria. My salads are getting boring, due to the fact that the options at the salad bar never really change beyond the occasional switch from parmesan to cheddar. But 1: the salads are way cheaper than anything else in the caf, 2: the salads taste way better than anything else in the caf, and 3: salads are generally good for you. So salad it was. But then I realized what ingredient was missing from the salad bar that would make my lunches so much better: avocado.

A member of the cafeteria staff came out to refill something at the hot bar. I realized this opportunity, and with a huge smile, went up and asked him if he had any avocados.

“I’m sorry, what?” he says.
“Avocados,” I replied, “for the salad bar.”
“Ohh. No, I don’t think so. But we have some in the back, I can get some for you.”
“No, it’s okay, if it’s too much trouble…”
“Of course not, let me run back and get some”.

He grabbed a bowl and headed back to the kitchen. A minute later, he reappears, half an avocado sliced and presented neatly in the bowl. “Avocado!” He smiles. I smile. And after thanking him a thousand times, I go on my merry way to eating my (yummy) lunch.

Now today, when I was making my salad for lunch, the same kitchen staff member came out to fix something at the hot bar… so naturally I asked him again if he had any of those avocados out back. He laughed and said of course, grabbed a bowl, and went back to the kitchen.

He reappeared with the bowl, this time with an entire avocado, still in shell, sitting in the bowl. He hands it to me, and says “One dollar. You still want it?” I laughed and took it. I wonder if he’ll give me an entire avocado tree tomorrow. More likely he won’t even be there tomorrow.

[in case anyone was wondering: avocado in Chinese translates literally to ‘butter fruit’]

So really, where does time go?

Tuesday, July 10th, 2007

Yesterday after work, while waiting for the shuttle to the train station:

Me: “Let’s do some food and wine at the park this weekend, if it doesn’t rain. It’ll sort of be like my birthday celebration”
Nods and smiles of agreement
Ning, fellow intern: “Sounds good… when is your birthday?”
Me: “Soon.”
Ning: “When, like, next week?”
Me: “Actually, it’s today.”

So, another year has passed. I didn’t do much yesterday, but it was nice that way. It being, what, 36C outside. I did, however, get treated to a nice birthday dinner by my mom at Gordon Ramsay’s Maze. It was fantastic. Although I may now be celebrity-chef-ed out, after having gone to Bobby Flay’s Bar American two weeks ago, and Mesa Grill just last week. But Maze was an entirely different experience, being modeled by Ramsay’s delicate small-plate, tapas style Asian-influenced French dishes, whereas Bobby Flay’s restaurants were all-out Mexican feasts. On my birthday dinner menu (for my own sake of remembering, if anything):

  • Salad of globe artichoke, chickpeas, green beans, truffle dressing
  • Carpaccio of tuna and swordfish with lime and cucumber marinade, soya dressing
  • Gilthead bream with native lobster risotto, lemongrass and Thai basil
  • Madagascan vanilla rice pudding, raspberry and lemon thyme jam, mascarpone and pecan ice cream

Yum. Happy Birthday to me indeed. Thanks to everyone who sent their well wishes my way :)