28 June, 2014

Quartet Cafe @ TTDI

Our adventurous food souls bring us to the quieter side of the mature neighbourhood in TTDI this round, to enjoy some comfort food in a tranquil, comfortable setting. Quartet is a casual coffee place located just a few doors away from my favourite nail parlour, Posh Nail Spa TTDI

The shop is located at the shady side, and surrounded with lush green bushes, therefore it may not be noticeable from the roadside. But you'd notice a huge crowd swarming into the cafe as early as 8am in the morning for hearty breakfasts and morning coffee dose.

Walking into the cafe, we are greeted by a warm and cozy dining area
with modern wood furniture and dark tile floors surrounding us.

At the corner of the cafe, you can sink yourself onto the comfortable sofa and enjoy a sip of coffee.

 The menu here is pretty simple, but it seems like every item on the menu sounds as good as it tastes. 
So tempting that I feel like coming back for more!

If you are an avid coffee drinker, you can drop by for their extensive range of freshly brewed handcrafted coffee that ranges from RM5 to RM10. Definitely a pocket friendly alternative compared to other coffee chains.

#1 Strawberry Yoghurt @ RM12.00

Let's begin the meal with a thirst-quenching yoghurt smoothie. This thick, creamy blend of fresh strawberries and yoghurt is indulgently rich and smooth. Simple and sweet!

 #2 Egg Royale @ RM16.00

Salmon lovers should go for this beautiful variation of the usual Egg Benedict as the turkey ham is replaced with thick slices of salmon. I have always loved poached eggs and I'm glad that the chef has a great job in making set white eggs, leaving the egg yolk nicely cooked but runny.

Not forgetting the smoked salmon is so flavourful that it lifts up the taste of the dish!

#3 Quiche Lorraine @ RM14.00

This quiche filling is like liquid satin--it's just so rich and creamy, not at all "eggy tasting." Chicken ham, cheese and onions mingle in perfect harmony amidst the eggs and cream in this timeless classic. Plus, I enjoy the lovely crust too!

My all-time favourite! Perfect for brunch, lunch, dinner or simply an indulgent snack.

When it comes to dessert, Quartet has few selections of sweet treats on the counter such as banoffee pie, pavlova, creme brulee, chocolate mousse, walnut carrot and moist chocolate cake. Well, I definitely go for the most unique one among all-- a new variation of classic cheesecake.

#4 Snickers Cheesecake @ RM12.00

Yes, what I mean is this decadent piece of cheesecake loaded with chunky Snickers bar, sitting on a Oreo crust. I notice that Snickers is a great ingredient that already contains chocolate, nuts and nougat, so when added to a cheesecake it is a perfect sweet and salty combination. A pure, sinful indulgence...

Also, you can see various types of sweet and savoury freshly-baked bagels lining up at the other side of the counter. All in all, it is a satisfying meal and afternoon considering the quality, fair price and portion size. I'd definitely be back for more! :)

21, Lorong Datuk Sulaiman 7,
Taman Tun Dr Ismail,
60000 Kuala Lumpur.
Contact: 603-2857 6041
Email: quartetttdi@gmail.com
Website: www.quartetsupply.com
Facebook: fb.com/quartetttdi
Twitter: @quartetttdi
Instagram: @quartetttdi
Business Hours: 8am to 10pm daily

25 June, 2014

Review: KISS ME Shiny Jewel Eyeliner

Hello pretties!! ♥ Look what's the latest addition in my Kiss Me cosmetics collection. I have always been a huge fans of Kiss Me especially its eye makeup products as they come in really good quality and affordable price tags. 

KISS ME Shiny Jewel Eyeliner (3ml) @ RM49.90 

Newly introduced in Kiss Me Heavy Rotation collection, I just got myself a Shiny Jewel Eyeliner that comes in glittery liquid. Now these glitter liners are perfect for jazzing up your dazzling eye look! 

KISS ME Shiny Jewel Eyeliner comes in 3 colors:
01 Shiny Black
02 Shiny Brown
03 Shiny Pink White

01 Shiny Black and 02 Shiny Brown look pretty on upper eyelids for the large, dramatic eye look. But if you want to reduce the appearance of puffy eyes / eye bags, try blending the under eyelids with 03 Shiny Pinkish White. Now which is your favourite pick?

Honestly I couldn't decide which to buy! So I thought the basic, shiny black eyeliner would be great as it pairs well with any eyeshadows. The color is clearly stated on the packaging board and container, so you can easily identify the right one. 

Look at the container, it's so pretty with lots of fine, light glitters! 

Why Shiny Jewel Eyeliner?

I always prefer gel / liquid liner due to the precision of the lines I draw, especially around the outer corners of the eyes. Now it's even better because the Shiny Jewel Eyeliner glams up any makeup, leaving a sparkling veil over the face!

I notice that the tip of this latest eyeliner is even finer than usual, and therefore every stroke has become effortless to create thin, defined line that enlarges the eyes. 

For myself, I can live without falsies, but I'd never go without eyeliners because of my naturally small eyes. The vivid, high definition color impresses me with its awesome brightening and eye-enlarging effects. 

The application of this eyeliner is quick as it glides smoothly onto the eyelid, and able to fill the gap around the corners of the eyes and between the roots of lashes. I love the glamorous effect of outlasting sparkle glitz along the sharp, precise line!

Personally, I feel that the glitter is quite subtle under normal daylight, therefore it is just nice and suitable for my daily basic makeup for any occasion, be it working, shopping or partying at night. 

Under flashlight, you can see the difference-- The eyeliner instantly lights up my eyes with glamorous glitters! KISS ME also understands our concern about the sensitive eye area, therefore the latest formula includes 3 types of beauty essence to better protect the eyes. 

A smudging eyeliner is a major turn-off, so I tested it and found that it is water resistant, rub-proof and even oil-proof! The glitter and eyeliner will stay in place even after long hours. In case you're wondering if it is difficult to remove, no worries as this film type eyeliner is easily removable with lukewarm water.

For night makeup, you can jazz it up with some shimmery eyeshadows 

 With Shiny Jewel Eyeliner, my eye makeup wouldn't be the same anymore!

#1 100% Water/Sweat/Rub/Oil-PROOF and it lasts for long hours without smudging!
#2 Now I can have vivid, dark, sharp and precise line with fine glitters that make the eyes sparkle.
#3 Rating: 5/5 ♥ Repurchase? Definitely! I'd love to try Shiny Pink White for my eye bags too.

 KISS ME Shiny Jewel Eyeliner (3ml) retails at RM49.90.
Available at selected SASA and Watsons outlets. 

 For more information, visit www.facebook.com/KissMeMY

24 June, 2014

US Fresh Potato Culinary Challenge 2014

Do you know that potatoes are often the much sought after ingredient in the kitchen? From salad and mashes to fries and desserts, we come to realise that potatoes have been part and parcel of our everyday diet. How can we not love this indispensable source of nutrition?

Varieties of Potatoes from US Potato Board

Until recently a wide variety of US potatoes swamp into the country, I'm amazed that US actually produces and exports an astonishingly wide array of potatoes. Some are freshly imported here while others are instantly quick frozen to lock in the taste and nutrients of fresh potatoes.

In a bid to enable the creative local chefs demonstrate their skills and culinary excellence using US potatoes, the US Potato Board (USPB) has partnered with the Culinary Association of Malaysia (CAM) to organize the “US Fresh Potato Culinary Challenge", a cooking competition judged by fellow food bloggers as well as the President and the Secretary General of the Chef Association of Malaysia.

Special thanks to US Potato Board, I was invited to be one of the blogger judges for this eye-opening event. Chefs from five leading F&B outlets comprising cafes, restaurants and hotels had whipedp up and served a scrumptious dish each featuring different types of US fresh potatoes. Let's see what they had created to amaze us judges! 

#1 [Sheraton Imperial, KL] Trio Combination of Fusion US Potatoes

Our first stop of the evening was Villa Danieli, a popular spot for steak and wine at the 5-star Sheraton Imperial hotel. Chef Eugene had combined an electrifying trio of Chinese, Western and Indian flavours into one harmonious dish. 

On the left, we had an Asian-styled potato croquette that exuded rich flavours of beef from the inside and topped with sweet, caramelized onion marmalade. This crispy creation brought us a pronounced flavour of Indian spices on its hot crispy exterior. 

Moving towards flavours from West, we enjoyed each layer of the open mushroom lasagna with creamy mashed potato and mushroom filling in between the spinach pasta sheets. Rich and creamy, it was simple yet satisfying.

To complete the fusion combination, lastly we had a nice variation of Chinese yam puff in which the yam was replaced with US purple Peruvian potato. It was a beautiful interpretation to enhance the color and texture of the puff. Unravelling the crispy puff, we were surprised with a golden ball of salted egg yolk with crispy duck skin in it. Marvellous! 

Chef Eugene from Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur

#2 [Suka F&B Restaurant, KL] Baked Russet Mashed Potato with White Cod

If you often visit Changkat Bukit Bintang, surely you'd notice this fine restaurant at the corner lot of One Residency opposite Istana Hotel. The next dish was presented by SUKA in a duo combination of US Russet mashed potato filled with steak and a thick cut of seared American white cod topped with deep-fried ginger on a bed of grilled grapes, cherry tomatoes, bell pepper and tomato chutney.

Beautifully marinated with thyme, salt and pepper, the fish itself was already a winning taste, as each bite was heavenly filled with fresh oceanic flavours. However, the US potato ingredient could only be found in the mashed potato sitting on the medium rare beef steak. 

The beefy potato was fired with Cheddar Cheese and served with stewed Mushroom Ragout that enlivened the beef with its deep, earthy flavours. Unfortunately it was a tad dry for my liking.

Executive Chef Khoo Keit Seng from Suka F&B Restaurant

#3 [Bankers Room, KL] Potato in Bone Marrow Style

At the first glance, this third culinary masterpiece did not attract me as much as others did. He was probably the only chef who omitted the usage of beef steak in the dish. But as soon as I savored the dish, the marriage of Japanese, Western and Chinese styles of cooking impressed me with beautiful contrasting textures and flavours that won some brownie points for the creativity. 

I appreciated the idea of wrapping the egg yolk and mashed potato with crisp greens delights which reminded me of a Chinese mooncake. Served warm and crusty with Japanese tamago, the bone marrow was firm and tasted good with the brown sauce made of beef jus and potato skin. The only thing I was confused here was whether it should be served great as a cold dish or something hot.

 Sous Chef Kiong Lian Chai from Banker's Room

#4 [Dorsett Regency, KL] Sous Vide Strip Loin with Parmesan Crust and Foie Gras Roll

The fourth masterpiece was dished out at Checker's Cafe, Dorsett Regency Hotel KL in a beautiful presentation. Taking centre stage of the dish was the slow-cooked Australian strip loin with parmesan crust and black pepper sauce. Cooked to medium rare perfection, the meat was dripping in its own deep-flavoured jus, and punctuated by Sous Vide Vegetables and shallot balsamic glaze, every bite yielded an exquisite crunch and tenderness.

On the side, the Foie Gras Roll was equally noteworthy as I loved how the US potato puree and chunky foie gras melted in the mouth beneath the slice of turkey ham. It could be a winning taste if they further enhance the usage of US potatoes.

Chef Hakim from Dorsett Regency Kuala Lumpur

#5 [Muzeum, Setia Walk Puchong] Pan Seared Tenderloin on Potato Foam with Potato Pave

Personally, the last dish was impressive in terms of presentation and utilization of US Potatoes. Although Muzeum was well-known as a drinking hole in town, Chef Amirul proved us on the great quality of hot food here. 

Sitting on a bed of potato foam with minimal shallot jus, the premium New Zealand tenderloin was of topnotch quality but unfortunately it turned out overdone and slightly burnt at the edges. Nevertheless, it was still tender and went well with the black pepper sauce with beef jus inside.

Topped with sauteed mushroom, I noticed that the Potato Pave was nicely baked and it exuded rich, buttery aroma. A beautiful complement to the red meat. On the side, Confit Potatoes (Idaho, Purple and Sweet Potatoes) wrapped up the dish with its wonderful synchronicity of taste and texture. They were lightly boiled but didn't appear too raw, and able to retain its crunchiness.

Chef Amirul from Muzeum, Setia Walk Puchong

Anywaym, the winning chef will be awarded a study tour to the USA for a week, specifically at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) where he will be joined by other chefs from Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Mexico, and Central America. There will be an exclusive opportunity for interactive learning and exchange of knowledge and culinary skills amongst the best chefs in the region.

Now who's the lucky grand winner?
Stay tuned at this page as I will update you with the results soon! 

For more information about US Potato Board, please visit www.potatoesusa.com or www.potatoesusa-malaysia.com.
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