Once a year…

My uncle and his wife, my auntie and their children, my cousins, would drive all the way from Kuching once a year without fail every year. They were here on his 75th birthday in 2015 and last year, they came again…and again this year.

They would stop at towns or bazaars along the way to buy the fruits but this year was a disappointment. The fruits were not out yet but they did manage to get me these buah engkala or buak terbulus in Melanau

Buah engkala/terbulus

from Jakar where they stopped for the celebrated prawn noodles and they drove into Sarikei too but all they got was this unripe durian

Derian mantak

They did bring me a whole lot of things from Kuching though. I asked for a bottle of tuak, the traditional ethnic rice wine – my aunt is actually of Iban descent and she just made a fresh batch in October and brought me one bottle and another bottle, a vintage dating back to 2015…


She also made me a whole lot of nyonya changs…

Nyonya chang

She and my mum and also my aunt, her 2nd sister since deceased, were the ones who knew how to make them and now, she and my aunt’s daughter-in-law now residing in Miri are the only ones left who are able to do so…and she is actually an Iban! I hang my head in shame!

One of their daughters could not come with them, only two of my cousins were here but she sent me this huge loaf of no-knead bread

No-knead bread

…that she made herself. That was indeed a great achievement considering that she has never ever been a kitchen person her entire life.

It was very nice and went so well with the lovely Saudi Arabian (made in Riyadh) cheese that I had in my fridge and my extra-creamy scrambled eggs…

Bread with Arabian cheese and scrambled eggs

…and it was good too, toasted and eaten with a generous spread of butter and raspberry jam…

Bread with butter and raspberry jam

She went to Korea on a holiday not too long ago and she gave me this cute fridge magnet…

Fridge magnet from Korea

…from there.

Another cousin in Kuching made some tempoyak (fermented durian)…


…and sent me a bottle through them just when I was running out of the precious stuff stored in my fridge.

Thank you so much, everybody, for all the goodies. It sure looked like Santa came early this year!