Hotel Review – Masbro Village Homestay

Masbro Village Homestay

We wanted to take a short trip before the girls go back to the UK.  Malacca seems to be near enough and there were few places that we wanted to visit. We saw this Masbro Village Homestay listed in one of the attractions in Malacca.. so we decided to give it a try even though there were mixed review about this place. Told the kids not to expect much but kids were too excited by just looking at the photo. Nurin’s exact words was ” Picture worthy “. At this point they didn’t care about the negative feedback.. they just wanted to take pictures… so here goes nothing…

Masbro Village Homestay is a unique triangular houses filled with colourful exterior. It has a large outdoor swimming pool for both adults and children. It is a beautiful place, clean unit with comfy beds and basic facilities, warm and friendly staff. Cost for a unit is RM280 per night and one unit could accommodate 6 guests but they accept additional 2 guest at additional cost of rm30 per person. Paying additional RM30 does not get you an extra bed.. just additional towel, pillow and blanket. So, please bring your own comforter people!

The upper level

The unit has 2 levels. On lower level, you will  have a kitchen that is equipped with cooking utensils, a kettle, a microwave and a fridge, a 6-seater dining table, a TV, a sofa bed and a bathroom. On the upper level you will have a 2 double bed and a bathroom. Oh.. the stairs going to upper level is quite steep, so if you have small kids, please pay extra attention to them. We don’t want any mishap right? If you come with a large family members, you can ask for a connecting units. The 2 units will be connected via a door at the side of the unit… convenient.. just like the connecting room at the normal hotel. The unit is fully air-conditioned and the bathroom has a great shower with high water pressure. Sadly.. there is no soap or shampoo in the bathroom however they do have toilet paper.

Masbro Village is still quite new, they are still expanding few more houses. They have ample parking but it is rather  dark at night and the road leading to the parking lot is still under construction, so when it rains it become muddy. The main gate will be closed after 8pm, so you need to unlock & lock the main gate yourself if you need to go out at night. Main gate key is included together with your house key.

All in all, I would say that Masbro Homestay is a great place to chill for family with small kids.  I would definitely recommend this place for family and friends. The price is reasonable and the place is clean and comfortable.

swimming pool

 

Advertisements

Food Review – Kari Kambing 40 hari

Restaurant Kari Kambing 40 Hari

Assalamualaikum and good day to all. Its nice to be able to write again… been awhile since my last posting. Drafted few recipe postings since February this year but was not in the mood to publish them.. feels like too predictable hehehe.. So I decided to take my kids and my better half’s suggestions.. do some food review. They have been asking me to do this food review thingy for quite some times now but I felt that I am not the best person to do it… who am I to review people’s food.. but hey.. we are the customers.. we have the right to let our opinion heard, right? Everyone is entitle to their own opinion. So, here goes…

What comes to mind when you see this restaurant’s name for the first time? Oh…  for the sake of people who doesn’t understand Malay.. the name of the restaurant is “40 days Mutton Curry”. Hahaha.. I know what you’re thinking.. mutton curry that has been reheat for 40 days, right? That was exactly what came to my mind when my better half suggested we check out this place on our way to Johor. To be honest.. I was a bit skeptical about this restaurant at first.. takut sakit perut hahaha.

Mutton Curry

Okay.. Kari kambing 40 hari… this restaurant is owned by Malay chef. He is an ex 5 star hotel chef. What I love about this restaurant (besides the food) is all their staffs are Malays.. no foreigner.. semua pekerja faham cakap Melayu. Senang nak tanya apa2.  So.. why is this restaurant called Kari Kambing 40 hari? Well.. some said because you can smell the mutton curry on your hand for 40 days after you eat them (true if you didn’t wash your hand with soap hehehe)  and some said because the restaurant is opened for 40 days straight and then closed for 3 days. I am not sure if the open and close thingy is true because from their FB page, they said that the restaurant opens everyday.

The restaurant opens daily from 7.30am to 3pm. I am not sure about the breakfast menu but for lunch, they serve Nasi Arab with Kari Kambing or Chicken Mandhi. This restaurant adopt a self service concept where you need to queue for your food and drinks. There are 3 queuing lines; one line is for those who want to order talam serving (big tray), one for plate serving and another one is for take away. Queuing time will depend on the time of arrival. If you arrived before 12pm, the queuing time will be around 15 to 20 minutes but should you arrived after 12.30pm, be prepared to wait longer.

This restaurant has a big seating area but still.. if you arrive during lunch hour, finding a seat is not easy. Besides the normal table seating, they also have the Arab style / kampung style seating ie makan bersila.. So..kalau nak ambik feel macam makan Nasi mandhi kat middle east.. boleh la opt for makan dalam talam kat this area.

The food is served using a plate or a talam. For the talam serving, you can can have either Arabic rice with mutton curry or Arabic Rice with Chicken Mandhi or Arabic rice with the mix of mutton curry and chicken. One talam is good for 4 to 5 adults and if you order 1 talam you will get 1 jug of syrup for free. Cost for a talam set is rm48 and a plate of arabic rice with mutton or chicken with a glass of syrup only cost RM 14. Reasonable price I would say considering the portion is quite big.

Chicken Mandhi

They serve beautiful saffron colour arabic rice that is super soft and moist. It has a slightly sweet taste that you just can eat it by itself. The mutton curry is so tender and juicy. It is so tender that it melts in your mouth (hehehe just like what Manu said in My Kitchen Rules). The curry is superb..sweet and spicy at the same time.. the spices was blend harmoniously to give this heavenly taste… delicious! If mutton curry is not for you, you can try their chicken mandhi.. it is juicy and tender with a hint of sweetness.

All in all, I would strongly recommend this restaurant.. a must try food place if you are in the area. We would definitely go here again.

Address and Direction below is taken from their FB page.

Address : 215 Kg Hj Ghafar , Bt 5 1/2, Jln Yong Peng, Batu Pahat , Johor

Direction :
Dari Selatan ➡️ keluar tol Ayer Hitam➡️ 🚦kiri ke pekan Ayer hitam ➡️🚦kanan ke Jalan Yong Peng

Dari Utara ➡️ keluar tol Yong Peng utara ➡️pekan Yong Peng➡️🚦kanan ke Jalan Ayer Hitam Johor

 

 

 

Spun Candy Making Class

IMG-20160726-WA0005

Last weekend we decided to attend a candy making class at Spun. Spun Candy is a UK based company. They opened their first store in Covent Garden London during the Summer of 2013. Since then they have grown across the UK and the Middle East. Each Spun Candy collection is vegetarian, full of natural fruit flavors and completely handcrafted.

IMG-20160726-WA0009

The store in Oman offers a few classes but I think the UK store offer more options. We opted for Children’s Masterclass. This class is designed for kids from 6-17 years old. But since there were no other Malaysian kids to join us, we did it as a family. The Children Masterclass for 6 to 10 people cost RO 7.5 per person. If you only have 5 people joining the class, they will still run the class for your but the cost will be higher.. about RO9 per person.

IMG-20160726-WA0016

Two members of staff took us into the little area away from the shop to make the candies. First they make sure we washed our hands and dried them. Then we put on hair nets, apron and gloves. They pointed out that the  station was hot and always remind us to be careful. The station needs to be hot as they want to make sure that the candy remain soft and pliable.

20160726_104627

They allowed us to mix colours up, knead and pulled the warm candy to bring out pretty colour. They showed us how to make lolly pops, heart shaped lollies and candy cane.

To make lolly pops, first…you need to make 2 medium size candy balls of different colours. Roll out the balls into thin rope. Stick them together with water and then twirl each end in the opposite direction so the twisted candy looks like a rope. Then you roll them in to one thin candy rope and cut the long piece in roughly in half. Roll the candy rope in upon itself to make a spiral and flatten out the round shape. Then you stick a lollipop stick into the candy.

20160726_104819

They also showed us how to hand craft roses from candy, make some fantastic faces and make our names from the sugar. We had a fantastic time as a family.

IMG-20160726-WA0019

I love the apron.. too bad that they wont allow us to bring back one hehehe.

IMG-20160726-WA0003

A great experience for kids and adults too. The class lasted for about 90 minutes.

IMG-20160726-WA0013

Haqeem joined us for 30 minutes and then decided to just lie down on the bench and chill hehehe.

IMG-20160726-WA0007

The best part of the whole thing is, the kids get to keep all the candies that they made. I’m gonna make sure Aina and Nurin bring back some of those candies back to UK… can’t afford to allow the small kids eat all those candies. Dr Mike will be cross at me should he knows about this hehehe.

Deep Chocolate Sour Cream Pound Cake

20160726_094420

Assalamualaikum and good morning to everyone where ever you are. Muscat is very quite at the moment.. all my friends are still in Malaysia enjoying their summer holidays. Cant wait for them to come back. Would love to lepak2 and kopi2 talking about everything under the sky. Thank you for making my life interesting friends… and just to let you know.. Chatime and Costa miss us very much hehehe. Come home soon please!

Last weekend we attended a candy making class at Spun in Avenues Mall. It was fun. I will tell you all about it in my next posting. Okay.. as for now, let me tell you something about this fabulous cake. To tell you the truth.. I have been wanting to make this cake since last year but the word ‘pound cake’ made me a bit skeptical. You see.. I love a soft and moist cake and the word pound kinda suggested that the cake would be dry and hard.. so I keep on pushing the recipe down my baking list.

What make me decided to bake it? Well.. Bisous A Toi’s last IG posting made me change my mind. She baked it in a very lovely bundt pan.. and not all cakes can be baked in a bundt pan, it has to be of certain texture. Since I have a bundt pan that I have bought loooong time ago and never been used.. I decided to  give this recipe a chance. And… I am so glad that I baked it. The texture is soft and definitely moist. My kids told me that even though the texture is different than my normal chocolate cake but it is a good kinda different… yeayyy!

This is where I took the recipe from.. Bisous A Toi blog. Rima is one of my favourite blogger.. love her cakes and recipes. May Allah bless her always.

20160726_094510

Ingredients

1.5 cups (181g) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (57g) cake flour
1 cup (92g) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2.25 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1.5 cups (340g) unsalted butter, softened
2.5 cups (500g) granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup (242g) sour cream
Method
  • Preheat the oven to 150C. Grease the inside of a 10-inch Bundt pan generously with butter and then dust with flour. (I baked mine at 160C and next time I am gonna dust it with cocoa powderso that it would not have white spots on the cake)
  • Sift the flours, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • In a bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until very creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually beat in the sugar. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the mixture is well-blended and light, about 4 minutes.
  • At medium speed, beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.In a small bowl, stir the vanilla extract into the sour cream. At the low speed, add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the sour cream mixture in 2 additions and mixing just until blended. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
  • Bake the cake for 65 to 75 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Then invert the cake onto the rack and let it cool completely.

Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Brownies

Assalamualaikum all. We are in the middle of 3 months summer break at the moment. Kids were on leave since mid June and the school will only resume end of August. I was actually looking forward to days not having specific things to do.. days that I can just chill around the house… well after I month of doing nothing, I kinda miss my normal routine sending kids to school and attending some classes myself. How I wish the weather is not this hot.. at least we can go to the beach and relax. With the temperature well above 46C.. we would be ‘ikan kering’ kalau dok bercanda di pantai hehehe.

If it is up to me, I would be trying all the recipes that I have accumulated for the past 9 months but I am worried that with  no activity what so ever, my kids will be unrecognizable by the end of summer due to all the cakes and other sweet stuff. So.. I am trying to just bake once a week. And… the winner for this week is this Butterscotch  Chocolate Chip brownies. Recipe was taken from I am Baker blog and thank you for such a simple yet delicious recipe. This recipe is not huge, so if you have big family like me.. it will disappear the moment you put them on the table hehehe.  Maybe.. I can bake again this week since this recipe only yield 9 normal size brownies hehehehe.

Okay.. let me show you want are needed..

Dry Ingredients
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 100g butterscotch chocolate chip
Wet Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup butter melted, then cooled
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions

  1. Sift together all dry ingredients except chocolate chip in a medium bowl.
  2. Melt butter and set aside to cool slightly.
  3. Add two eggs and vanilla into the bowl and stir gently.
  4. Pour the melted butter into brownie mixture and mix until just incorporated. Add in the chocolate chips.
  5. Spread batter in a prepared 8-inch square pan and bake for 20-22 minutes at 350 degrees.”

20160303_192728

P/S: At the very moment I am writing this post.. there are only 2 slices of brownies left hehehe. Well done girls!

Red Velvet Layered Cake

20160714_172239-01

Assalamualaikum. Hopefully it is not too late for me to wish everyone Eid Mubarak. Ooppss.. some people maybe angry with the phrase that I use here.. Eid Mubarak.. hehehe. Why don’t I use Selamat Hari Raya? Perlu ke use arabic phrase? Melayu dah lupa their root ke? Well.. I don’t care what people say. If everything need to use the Malay words.. then every time I want to say Alhamdulillah, I need to say Terima Kasih Allah? Hmmm.. I don’t think so kan? Hehehe.. just saying.

Anyway.. this year is our 1st time celebrating Eid in Oman. Sedih? Sedih la jugak but I am grateful that even though we were celebrating Eid away from family and friends.. our daughters Aina and Nurin are with us in Oman to celebrate Eid. They were back from UK couple of days before Ramadan. As my other half said “.. the sense of completeness fills the heart..”hehehe. As usual.. the Malaysian Embassy did their Raya Open House on the first day of Raya. We did our own open house the next day… invited few families… dapat lah merasa suasana raya tu.

As for this cake.. I made it yesterday.. the cake is moist and delicious. Not that difficult to make.. took me a little over 2 hours from start to finish. Amount of eggs and butter used were very minimal except for the cream cheese.. it uses 500g. Quite a lot for just 3 layers of it. Anyway.. worth the effort and definitely a recipe to keep. The recipe was taken from here. Enjoy and happy baking peps!

20160714_172256-01

Ingredient  for Red Velvet Layer:

  • 250g Butter
  • 5 Grade A Eggs
  • 235g Flour*
  • 2 tbsp Cocoa* (* sift together)
  • 175g Caster Sugar
  • 150g Condensed Milk
  • 1 cup (135g) Mixed Berries Yogurt or 1 cup of buttermilk
  • 1 tsp Ovallette
  • Red Coloring 

Ingredient for cheese layer:

  • 500g Cream Cheese
  • 3 Grade A Eggs
  • 120g Caster Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Essence

Method:

Red Velvet:

  1. Beat butter & sugar until fluffy. Add in ovallette, egg one by one while continue beating until smooth.
  2. Add in condensed milk & mix well.
  3. Add in flour mixture* gradually & combine with slow speed. Add in yogurt or buttermilk and red color; mix well.

Cream Cheese:

  1. Beat cream cheese & sugar until smooth and combined.
  2. Add in egg and Vanilla Extract and mix until combined.

Baking:

  1. Preheat oven to 170 to 190C… grease 8″X 8″ baking pan
  2. Weigh the red velvet batter and divide it by 9 ( the number of layers..mine was about 155g per layer)
  3. Weigh the cheese batter and divide it by 3 (the number of layers.. mine was about 141g per layer)
  4. Place the greased baking pan in the preheated oven for 1 mins. Then take it out and pour 155g of red velvet batter into the batter and bake it for about 6-7 min.
  5. Repeat the process for red velvet batter for another 2 layers.
  6. Now pour the cheese layer. bake until cooked.
  7. Repeat the whole process.. it should be 3 red velvet layers, 1 cheese layer, 3 red velvet layers, 1 cheese layer, 3 red velvet layers, 1 cheese layer.

Rainbow Cake 2

DSC_3820

May and June were the 2 most stressful months for me for the last 4 years and it has not changed much for this year. Having said that, I think I have learn to let go certain thing over the course of these 4 years and I think I am more relaxed this year with the whole exam thingy… lucky for Sofea. For some of my friends who have kids taking IGSCE exam for the first time, I can see how stressful this must have been for them.. looking at them took me back 5 years ago when Aina took her IGCSE hehehe… breathe in breath out Mummies!

As of last saturday Sofea has completed 12 papers and she still has 4 more to go. Last 2 papers gonna be English and they will be conducted during Ramadhan… I hope I can have an IGCSE/A level stress free for the next 3 years as Jasmine will only take her IGCSE in 2020 insyaallah.

Unlike in Malaysia where there are tons of tuition center around, here.. to get additional help outside school is very difficult. The teachers are not willing to do a paid tuition classes because of the law but they always do extra lessons after school.. just that sometimes those extra classes are not enough. Besides that, there are no practice questions being published like the one in Malaysia that can hep the kids to do extra work.. they only rely on the questions given by the teachers and also the past papers. I remembered when I was doing my SPM… my days were filled with doing sample questions just to familiarize myself with different type of questions. Here.. you only rely on teachers and school .. sigh!

DSC_3823

Enough with that.. okay.. what can I say about Rainbow cake… hmmm this cake I baked for Haqeem’s birthday quite sometimes ago. It was quite sweet for my liking, but my kids absolutely loved them. It was a hit among some of my friends and I have baked this cake more than 5 times for the last few months. If you have time, do try and bake this cake as the kids would definitely love the taste and not to mention the colours. For this cake I used Swiss buttercream frosting as it is not too sweet and it will compliment the cake. The recipe was taken from Diva can Cook.

Ingredients:

  • 2½ cups white granulated sugar (you can reduce the sugar to 2 cups as I think the cake is a bit sweet)
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Food coloring: red, yellow, blue, green
  • Swiss buttercream
Methods
  1. Preheat oven to 160 C.
  2. Generously grease and flour 6 (9-inch) cake pans. I only had 3 pans so I had to bake in two rounds.
  3. In a large bowl cream together sugar and butter.
  4. Mix in eggs until thoroughly incorporated.
  5. Mix in vanilla extract, buttermilk and heavy cream.
  6. Mix in half of the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  7. When mixture is combined, mix in the rest of the flour.
  8. Divide the batter into six bowls (I weigh the batter and divide them by 6)
  9. Add food coloring to each bowl to create a vibrant red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. (see note on how to make colors)
  10. Pour each colored batter into the prepared pans and spread out into an even layer. (layers will be thin)
  11. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until center is set.
  12. Remove from oven and let cakes cool in the pan until pans are warm enough to touch.
  13. Run a spatula around the edges of the pans to loosen the cake and then very carefully remove the cakes from the pans.
  14. Place on a cooling rack and cool completely.

To assemble

  1. Place the violet layer down first and frost.
  2. Followed by the blue layer, green layer, yellow layer, orange layer and finally the red layer. (frost between each layer)
  3. Frost the whole cake.( I did the naked cake style.. )
  4. Slice & serve!

DSC_3825