Thursday, September 04, 2008

Partying with the Housewives

Hot from the oven--homemade coffee-flavored Mexican (aka Roti Boy) buns!

People said good things are worth the wait and distance. I couldn't have agreed more.

Lian Toh (my co-worker at the college) and I have been talking about getting together to cook up a storm since end of last year, but things have not been materialized due to the clash of our schedules. So, when we found out that we shared a common holiday, we immediately set that day as potluck party with her housewife/homemaker friends in Cheras.

Since I don't live in that area, I had to travel a bit to meet them, but it was all worthwhile because these housewives/homemakers are extremely warm, friendly and hospitable. I fell in love with them immediately because of their unpretentious characters and great sense of humour.

Meet the housewives-- except Lian Toh and me

I was also very honoured to be invited by Lian Toh, the hostess of the party, to cook in her newly-renovated kitchen. It was spacious, clean, inviting and well-equipped with kitchen tools I have been eyeing on for ages. Most importantly, she is so very generous to share her Penang (or Assam) laksa recipe with me.

All of us brought our specialties to the party. I made Thai green curry the night before and brought over to Lian Toh's on the day of the party, so I could concentrate on cooking assam laksa. It was complicated but FUN... will share the recipe on my food blog with you next time.

There were eight of us at the party, including children (unfortunately, I haven't had any) that will make... about 20 of us? Besides cooking assam laksa, one of the ladies, Foong, who is an avid baker, demonstrated the making and baking of Rotiboy Mexican coffee flavour buns. According to her, it takes 3 hours from start to finish to make a bread... Wow... it's such a long time. So store-bought bread suddenly does not sound so bad after all, huh?

Here's how to make Rotiboy bread (the short version):

Let the mini dough (weighs about 45 g each) rise for 50 minutes

Put butter cubes in the center of each rised dough and wait for another 40 minutes
Pipe the coffee flavour topping on each bun

Put them in baking trays and bake for 15 minutes @ 170 degree Celsius

Enjoy Rotiboy bread while they are hot from the oven! It is so good that kids (and adults) just love them!

But a firm believer and lover of homemade food, I strongly believe that nothing beats the taste of homely wholesomeness. This is why I enjoy the company of my new found friends so much. Yes, they have different areas of dominance compared to working women like Lian Toh and myself, but their contributions to their family and society are none the less significant than ours.

Most of all, because they are veteran cooks, all of the dishes they brought to the party were so delectable and finger-licking GREAT! Not all food are pictured as I was too busy chomping away... hehe

Here's Lian Toh's homemade assam laksa, so good that it beats
SS2 pasar malam's !

Ah Xia's veggie wrap, it's her Hakka specialty

My Thai green curry chicken

Sally's specialties--herbal tea eggs

This nostalgic scene reminds me of the home party my mum used to host at home.
Xia, Sally and Lian Toh