Back to the grind…

School has just reopened last Thursday, the 2nd day of 2014, and I’ve driven to Selangau and beyond to Melissa’s school three times, one and a half hours each way! Yes, we’ve been busy tying up loose ends to get back into the same ol’ routine now that the holidays are over…so I have not been around much to try out new food at new places in town.

Like what she used to do before, my missus would cook some stuff for Melissa to just heat up and eat in the course of the week but my instincts tell me that most of the time, she’ll be too busy with her work and everything to even cook rice so she would skip her meals. That is why I would think it is better to cook her something that she can just heat up and eat without having to go through the chore of cooking rice and heating up the dishes to go with it.

With that in mind, I made sure there was a little bit extra of the fried mee kua (dried egg noodles) with sambal hay bee/udang kering (dried prawns)…


…that I prepared for breakfast over the weekend and the next morning, I cooked some more dabai fried rice


– skin removed so it would not have the siap-siap taste. I wonder how they say that in English. It’s not exactly bitter – let’s just say that it’s not particularly all that pleasant. Period.

Other than these two options for my girl to take back to her school, the mum cooked her some stuff as well…and hopefully, she will take some time off her work to eat and will not come back home looking like a refugee from Somalia or Ethiopia. That daughter of mine is always too serious in what she does and would go out of her way to make sure everything’s to her satisfaction, neglecting most of everything else. Sigh!!!!

Besides not going out to eat lately, we have not been cooking anything special at home either – just the usual stuff but we did get one HUGE buah sukun (breadfruit) from my brother-in-law from Bintulu. I mentioned in a recent post that he drove back to Sibu and gave us some giant freshwater prawns and we all went out for dinner together. He also gave us one of the fruits from the tree in his own house compound and it was sooooo big, as big as a giant buah nangka (jackfruit) and among the things that my missus cooked with it was this very delightful local dessert, the bubur cacar


…comprising the buah sukun and sweet potatoes plus sago pearls in thickly-richย pandan-flavoured and gula melaka (palm sugar)-sweetened santan (coconut milk). Oooooo…that was so nice and the three of us finished the whole big pot of it in no time at all.

So how has your new year been?

Everybody’s grumbling at the rising prices all around, it seems. I was at a shop buying things for my girl to take to her rural school and I saw some bottles of Bovril…and I had not had Bovril noodles for quite a while now – not since the last bottle ran out and I had been using the Bonox and Vegemite that I got from people overseas but not to look at a gift horse in its mouth, I frankly feel that they’re not as nice – definitely not with noodles. I used to buy the big bottle, over RM20, almost 30, but I guess at times like these, it would be best not to indulge too much and try to do without some things that are quite dispensable…so I got the medium one instead, over RM14.00 a bottle. I think at this point in time, I can still afford that but I guess rising prices or not, it is always wise to keep an eye on our finances and expenses. As they say, a fool and his money are soon parted…and look after your pennies, your pounds will look after themselves. At times, it’s all those little little bits of spending that we do not pay much attention to that will burn a hole in our pockets.

The next morning, I cooked some Bovril mee sua for breakfast…


…tossed with pounded garlic chili and garnished with fried shallots and chopped spring onions, with fish cake slices, cherry tomatoes and egg by the side – no msg and no extra salt added and it was so so so good! Boy, did I miss that?

Well, I’m back in my usual empty nest syndrome now and let’s hope that things will start happening soon so I will have something to blog about, otherwise I may be forced to go on an extended hiatus until further notice. Hang around! You’ll find out soon enough.

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

22 thoughts on “Back to the grind…”

  1. Get a microwave for Melissa? Reheat everything in a jiffy! Do we describe “siap-siap” as astringent?

    Not too sure, maybe. I guess there are things in each language that may not be found in another – like there are so many words, three, at least, for rice in Chinese and just one in English. I’m thinking of getting her a small conventional oven – we have a microwave at home and I hardly ever use it. Don’t like food reheated in it.

  2. Is it flooding in your place? (Out of topic question pop up. sorry. hehe)
    Time flies, don’t worry. I’m sure you’ll manage to fill up the ’empty nest syndrome’ ๐Ÿ™‚

    Not at my place, thankfully. Just some parts of town. I saw on Facebook that the tide was very high at Kpg Nangka.

  3. how thoughtful and loving our Sibu Food Mayor is!! maybe while he is preparing the just-reheat-and-serve stuffs for Melissa next time, he would cook some extra, got them frozen and then courier them to all his loyal readers here, or at least to all those many people who had been always sending him stuffs to eat!! hehehehehehe~~ :p

    Too bad, not allowed to send frozen stuff by pos or courier…but if my loyal readers will come to Sibu, sure I will cook up a storm to welcome them….and yes, I’ll freeze some for them to take home too. How does that grab you? Wink! Wink!

  4. So nice of you to pack food for your girl…. she will remember this always!!
    What empty nest syndrome? You are never alone or lonely, you have the other half with you… for me, I am not empty too, at least for now… someone has finally finished his studies and he will be home for quite some time, at least till after CNY… then I might be facing the emptiness again… ๐Ÿ™‚

    Empty nest for both of us mah! Wahhhh!!!! Ipoh also like Sibu, everybody running off somewhere to work. Lots of my friends in KL, all from Ipoh. Why? Ipoh no good kah? Like Sibu – they complain hard to find a job or if they can find a job, the pay is very low. Actually, if considering the cost of living and living on one’s own, much better to stick around here. Of course, small town…not happening, too boring for young people lah.

  5. Is that any way your girl able to transfer to a school nearby so that no need to go to the hassle of driving one and a half hours each way… And also she’s able to come home every day…

    Actually it’s a lot easier teaching in a rural school, small classes and no demanding, trouble-causing, very difficult parents. The drive is quite pleasant and normally, it’s just once a week and the school’s very nice too.

    If not for the fact that she has a single lady quarter-mate in one of the other two rooms, I would have moved there to stay with her. The lady might not be comfortable having a man in the house.

    After all, many live in Johore and work in Singapore – one and the same thing…or in KL and they live in Seremban. Much worse, with the horrible traffic jams!!! I do not see how the drive can be an issue.

  6. What a loving parent ! Tell Melissa to eat else she will be sick with gastrointestinal disease. Aiya … of course price increased, RM conversation rate now so high compared with other currencies. They really have to fix the economy. Purchasing power went down.

    No problem for you earning SIN$. Now getting to be filthy rich!!! Bet you’re wishing the currency will drop even more. Later like Indonesia, instant millionaire…or perhaps, you’re one already by now? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. World’s greatest daddy. Melissa feeling loved & blessed. Bubur cacar & brovil mee sua looks too good to resist. Love the egg.

    Just the way I like it!

  8. LOL…kesian empty nest syndrome pulak..

    kinda hard also if wanna cook for only two person to eat. some time hard to think what to cook. If Melissa around then better la

    Can cook extra, not a problem at all – freeze part of it for her to take the following week.

  9. I don’t mind cooking more and then save for the next day. It makes tomorrow less hectic by just taking the food out and reheat it. Like you said, there is no reason to skip a meal…

    Yup! We cook something and have it for dinner and save the leftover for the next day…and the next…and the next. My missus comes from a large family and she is used to cooking a lot!!! For one thing, she would forget there is something in the fridge and cook something else the next day. Would have to remind her…or do the heating up myself…or sometimes I would also forget (old folks like that lah) and after sometime, I would find it in the fridge and I would just have to throw it away – too long already. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  10. When our kids are not around us, we feel the emptiness and something is not that complete. Understand your feeling. So I must enjoy and pamper and make fuss about my kids whenever I can. In 10 years time my eldest is going to be 18 and leaving us for higher learning. Oh dear, 10 years may sound long but with blink of eyes, time can tick very fast. Sigh!!

    Doesnt they provide stove and gas in school hostel? Better ask Melissa to reheat using stove. I seldom reheat using microwave and now in Sibu house we dont have any so I rely on stove.

    I am sure Melissa would be fine and she can take care of herself. With understanding and loving parents, she is one lucky girl.

    They have their own gas stove, rice cookers, water boiler, refrigerator and all, just that they are too pre-occupied with work to worry too much about meals. Young people today seem to be able to survive without eating – wake up late, straight to work, skip breakfast and lunch….and nap or meetings and activities in the afternoon…so by evening, it is quite obvious that they will not have any energy left to cook dinner. Body needs food for strength, that’s a fact.

    That is why we will cook all kinds of things for her to take with her so hopefully, she will heat something up and eat sometimes. I know other teachers would sneak home to cook during their free periods – but my girl is one straight line and she will do no such thing. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    Ya, your turn will come soon enough. You’ve so many – it would not be so bad. Mine’s the only one…sticks like super glue. ๐Ÿ˜€

  11. You always have something to blog about, hahaha, your post always pop up at 12 o’clock midnight!!!

    Ya, I always schedule my posts for 12.05…a brand new day, a brand new post.

  12. I must say I agree, that everything has gone up in the New Year and dining out seems to have turned into luxury (like in the older days!) Sometimes it feels like everything is going back to where it used to be instead of moving forward….I wonder~
    What a lovely spread of morning breakfast meals….I’m sure everyone looks forward to breakfast at home, with meals like these!;-)
    Happy New Year to you ๐Ÿ˜€

    Happy 2014 to you too. A warm welcome to you and thank you so much for dropping by. Do come again!

    Breakfast is the most important meal in the day and I’m an early riser so no problem trying to come up with something nice to sit down and enjoy.

    Indeed, it’s like a vicious cycle…back to the time when life was simple, people did not have much money and they did not need much anyway as there was nothing to spend on all around – dining out was almost unheard of then, everyone ate at home…and invitations to wedding luncheons or dinners were a very much awaited delight. For one thing, people then were a much happier lot, contented – these days, everyone seems to be bitter, angry, unhappy with most everything. Sad.

  13. Food porn!!! Love the fried rice pic the most!!!

    LOL!!! Drool! Drool!!! That’s the whole idea! ๐Ÿ˜€

  14. gosh, that’s a lot of driving (i must admit, i loathe long drives. even kl to malacca feels agonizingly long for me, heh) ๐Ÿ˜€ anyways, love all the food in this post. creamy eggs, creamy carbs, love, love, love ๐Ÿ˜€

    Count your blessings – you have smooth, multiple-lane highways there – wait till you try the so-called pan-Sarawak/Borneo highway, you’d certainly be glad you do not have anything like that over at your side.

    Well, me old man – I sleep early and wake up early…and this is what I do in the early morning. Whip up something nice for breakfast for a great start to the day… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. I want to give you an award for being a caring and thoughtful dad!!
    I do cook extra at night so that I could dapao some to work for lunch the following day. Can save too… ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Yup, when working, one would need to see how to cope with one’s meals. Homecooked’s the best – not good toe at out all the time.

  16. Yes, back to the grind, back to busy schdule again.

    You pre-cook mee kua for Melissa to bring back also?? Wow..lucky Melissa. Dabai fried rice? Never try before, is it good? Hmmmm…maybe i still prefer to eat dabai on its own. hehehehe

    I like it better with fresh dabai as I am not really a fan of the preserved/salted ones. Nice also though. Can fry for you when you come back – I’m keeping some dabai in the freezer.

  17. Yeah, that’s what we do too! ๐Ÿ™‚

    We’ll cook extra and reheat the leftovers. It’s just more efficient and less troublesome.

    Yup! Just remember to heat up and eat – my missus tends to forget and will cook something else so the stuff may sit in the fridge, all forgotten…till one fine day when I discover it, by which time it would have been too long in the fridge, I would have to throw it away. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  18. OH YUMMM! all the food in this post. zomg. ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ (and noodles are my weakness, too)

    Mine too! Your first time here, I see. A very warm welcome, thanks for dropping by & commenting. Do come again.

  19. Your Bovril mee sua look very delicious indeed! And I sure like that hard boiled egg with the soft centre ๐Ÿ™‚

    I blogged about how to cook egg like that once… Never go wrong, will always get it perfect like that.

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: