Sweet Tooth

27 October 2011

One of the things I love and miss about Hong Kong (or perhaps this applies to Asia in general) are the unusual foods that are available. About half of the snaps I've taken below and grouped together in this dessert post are Japanese snacks. Japanese cuisine and culture are extremely popular in Hong Kong and is evident in the many Japanese supermarket chains and department stores that make up some of the main shopping destinations in the thriving city.

My aunts have a lot of colleagues who frequently travel over to Japan for business trips and one of them very kindly bought these Matcha green tea Kit Kats for us to try! My aunts had actually saved the chocolates in their fridge anticipating our arrival (which is a distant memory now!). If you're a fan of Matcha in general, you would love these. They taste a little like green tea lattes in solid form! Yum.
greenteakitkatThe fish shaped dessert below is a Taiyaki. They are traditionally made from waffle batter and filled with red bean paste (adzuki beans). As you can see from the slight ice still left on them, these are ice cream versions! I suppose they're pretty much like ice cream sandwiches but they are filled with Vanilla ice cream with a layer of red bean paste. These remind me of being little, not because I used to eat them regularly but I recall them featuring in many of the Animes that I used to watch!
Taiyaki ice creamOn the left is Hailey and her melons. Haha ok (I couldn't resist), they're little watermelon sorbets that I snapped while we were in one of the Japanese supermarkets. I think this was in City Super at Times Square, Causeway Bay. As with most Japanese supermarkets, it's full of cutely packaged food and adorable kitchen paraphernalia. On the right is more Green tea goodness (you guys know I'm obsessed with anything green tea flavoured!) and it's a green tea ice lolly filled with red bean paste. To be honest, I think Green tea, Red Bean and Sesame are three hugely popular flavours in Asia, and it's something that I always miss when we come back home to the UK!
melonsorbetandgreentealollySpeaking of sesame flavoured things, this was a dessert that we had at the end of one of our many dim sum sessions or yum cha (literally translates as 'drink tea') that the Chinese tend to refer to it as. They're little dumplings made from glutinous rice flower (tong yuen), rolled in an almond powder that are filled with a black sesame paste. Oh my, this was one of Hailey's favourite things and she definitely let out a little 'oooh' in nostalgia as she saw me putting the images together.
sesame dessertOne of my favourite desserts ever is Tofu Dessert (Dofu fa). The dessert is made from very soft Tofu with a sweet ginger syrup. Other times sugar or syrup is added to taste. It's the best thing ever! The dessert shop, Sweet Auntie or 甜姨姨 in Tin Hau, serves the dessert in the traditional way in a little wooden bucket! My grandad ordered this and he was given a timer. When the timer beeped, you were allowed to take the lid off and eat it. This was torture for my grandad, as we all finished our cold desserts and he hadn't even started his.
grandad's tofu dessert I love this picture of my grandad, he was SO pleased when the timer went off and he could finally dig in! The photo on the right is actually an Instagram photo I took yesterday, just so you guys know what Tofu dessert looks like. I also take a constant stream of the photos I eat on Instagram, it makes me obsessive about well presented food!
grandad dofufaThe thing is, when you're on holiday you eat so much which is not so good on the waistline! My family kept surprising us with various treats. So after a long day of shopping and entertaining ourselves around Hong Kong, we came back to these yummy Napoleans one evening. Forget that crummy one from this post these ones might not look as colourful but they were amazing and filled with fresh cream and made on the spot for us.
Mimosa Napoleans These were even more cakes that we carried home one day from near where we live.As ever, they're all made from the lightest sponge which is traditional with Chinese style cakes and I spot a Chocolate, strawberry, Mango, Black Forest and Black Sesame flavours.
cakeshkThe last of my green tea flavoured desserts on here is this lurid green tea ice cream we had one evening at a Korean BBQ restaurant. I've definitely had better but it's still something I'd order without a moment's hesitation.
greentea_ice creamvitasoyandbubbletea
Lastly, It's not exactly dessert but Bubble Milk Tea is one of my favourite things and they're pretty much a meal in itself with the large tapioca pearls that you end up chewing on. Yum! On the left is me sipping some Chocolate Soya milk by Vitasoy. You guys probably know by now that I am hardly a giant at only 4"11' so the proportions do look a bit funny in this photo! The Vitasoy in hand is actually mini and we couldn't resist buying a pack and coo over their miniature cuteness. I think all Asian kids grow up with this drink and the Vitasoy brand is STILL very much a staple in our fridge at home! 

Over and out! x


Little Blue Dress

23 October 2011

Oh I feel so out of the loop these few weeks when it comes to blogging. I remember the days when I used to blog three times a week back when I was at uni (what on earth did I write about?) but blogging more is definitely something I need to try and do. This is especially because after months of volunteering for a local fashion event, it all came to fruition on Friday night which means I have a lot more time on my hands! I will be posting about the fashion show soon. It was an amazing, sold out show and I managed to get lots of backstage pics as well as from the end of the runway! Anyway, enough of my rambling, here is an outfit shot featuring another little HK purchase.
is it sunny?
Beverly Island Dress
Dress (Apostrophe- Island Beverley, Causeway Bay, HK) Cardi (Oasis) Necklace (c/o Tatty Devine) Tights (House of Holland) Shoes (New Look) Ray Bans (c/o Mister Spex)
I love this dress which was bought from Island Beverely in HK from one of the miniature boutiques that can be found inside the mall. It's actually asymmetrical with the ruffle going over my right shoulder. I have a thing with my upper arms so I tend to keep them covered up but that suits me fine in the UK as cardigans are pretty much needed all year round.  
tatty devine bow
rayban sunniesBarry M Nail Paint in Indigo and Gold.
I do miss the sun. You know the seasons have changed when you take to Twitter and start tweeting about cups of tea, winter boots, woolly tights and cosy knits with other bloggers. Actually, what am I saying? I love all of those things!!


Fashion and Birthday Cake

14 October 2011

A few weeks ago I was invited along to 'The Show' at the Bullring Shopping Centre, where I took my seat at the end of the catwalk situated within the mall with my sister Hailey and the lovely Fritha from Fish Tank Fashion. The mini-fashion show showcased what the UK High Street had to offer in what is now, a yearly fashion event for the Bullring. This particular spot is also where TV stylist and haberdashery lover (well I had to say it!), Gok Wan likes to put on his roadshows. The show itself featured brands that were available in the shopping mecca that is The Bullring. They also played with the idea of the hologram and a screen at the end of the catwalk displayed images of Tiffany Pisani (winner of 6th Cycle, Britain's Next Top Model) appearing alongside the live models who strutted their stuff down the runway.
SDC19779SDC19774Personally, none of the looks that went down the runway were really 'me' but it's great to draw inspiration from them from the textures, tailoring, layering and accessories. There were some really fun pieces and I particularly loved the turquoise trousers and jacket combo which of course, was from Zara. It's all in the tailoring isn't it?
After the show, the lovely Emma (thank you!) handed us press passes to the final show of the day of Style Birmingham Live at Birmingham Town Hall which is hosted by the always dapper, George Lamb.
Similar to last year, it was full of theatrics and lots of choreography, the kind you tend to see at the Clothes Show Live. This show concentrated on department stores and shops around the city centre, with the likes of House of Fraser, Harvey Nichols and local boutiques taking part. I thought it had improved a lot on the previous year as they had left out the lingerie modelling which let's face it, is a little on the cheesy side. When Kristabel and I visited last year, we thought was super random!
SDC19807SDC19791I've become more of a fan of all things red over the past few years so I love the red pieces above. I also couldn't help but note the very Chuck Bass-like influences in some of the male styling. The one below is definitely Chuck worthy. Yep, I still watch Gossip Girl even if the series seems to be crumbling around the edges and has kind of lost it's sparkle, any thoughts? All in all, it was a pretty fun day and I did leave wanting to go shopping and inspired to stock up on a few Autumn/Winter essentials (hello Velvet and statement jewellery!).
stylebrumOn to the next event in the Diamond Canopy household! You know I love to talk about my family and it was my youngest sister's 14th birthday. Of course, she had a wonderful cake and chose this calorific chocolate cake to celebrate. Such pretty packaging!
SDC19895The cake was incredible. Absolutely Chocolate laden but made from the typically light sponge that is used in Chinese cakes and layered with chocolate caramel filling. So moreish! Usually we have the more traditional Chinese cakes covered in cream and fruit but I would say that this kind of style cake is more contemporary Hong Kong style.
SDC19903Of course I took out my Instax and snapped a few pics of Becky and her cake. It's been a while since I've taken any photos using the camera. I have so much film all stocked up now, I really better get back into the routine of using it again! 
becky's14th instax
Me, Becky, Hailey, Cake, Becky's new HP net book and random plastic fruit in the background (yeah I think this is weird too!) 
So here is another photo of us sisters, you guys must be used to seeing our faces after our many family snaps in HK (plenty more food posts to sift through yet!). Becky has just had a new wardrobe and it's looking rather empty and forlorn as she's just cleared out a whole bunch of her kiddy clothes. She is itching to fill it up with lots of new clothes and this definitely spells trouble! She's already taken to reading Tavi's Rookie Mag (I wish I knew what a blog was when I was 14!) and I know it won't be long until her wardrobe rivals ours!


Mmmm noodles and dumplings!

07 October 2011

On to my next HK food post! When I'm with my dad, a restaurant that we always seem to visit when we're in HK is the Sichuan restaurant, Wing Lai Yuen. So on one particularly hot day, we visited their restaurant at Hunghom over on Kowloon side. There are many ways to travel over to Kowloon but my favourite is one of the oldest modes of transport, the Star Ferry which is also one of the cheapest! We hopped on at Wan Chai and it wasn't long before we arrived a mere 20 mins later. It's always nice to sit on the ferry and a great way to see the HK skyline too.
star ferry
on the way to Hung Hom
star ferry and me!
becky on star ferryI love the shot below that Hailey took of a block of flats near the restaurant. To me, it pretty much sums up HK. High rise living, plenty of washing hanging out despite the smog, fast fashion, food and of course, those iconic red taxis. Oh how I miss them!

Hung Hom flats
As with many restaurants, Wing Lai Yuen can be found inside a building/food plaza called Whampoa Gardens which houses many other restaurants. It has a mock traditional decor which pretty much borders on kitsch. Lots of red wooden furniture and also plenty of Chinese silk embroidery and framed awards on the walls.
wing lai yuen Wing Lai Yuen, Hung Hom
Me at Wing Lai Yuen
Ready to stuff my face!
My dad likes to pretend that he's a HK food connoisseur and he has so much fun ordering dishes that he might have seen on Chinese food programmes. I think his dream job would be to present his own food show, exploring Asian cuisine. Actually, that sounds like my dream job too!! So soon enough, our table was filled with lots of dishes and among the things we ordered at Wing Lai Yuen were their famous and most popular, Handmade Sichuan Dan dan Mien (noodles) all served in a yummy spicy peanut soup. Writing this post is making me so hungry!
Food shots at Wing Lai Yuen table
We also ordered lots of side dishes including Jellyfish, Thinly sliced braised Beef and below you can see Sauteed eel with Chinese chives (garlic chives), cucumber and bean starch noodles with peanut sauce. We also ordered plenty of dumplings including wor tip (Chinese gyoza) but my favourite are the dumplings in chilli oil.
Food shots at Wing Lai Yuen dumplings
Wing Lai Yuen: Shop 102-105, 1st Floor, Site 8, Whampoa Gardens, Hunghom, Kowloon, HK.
My dad said that it wasn't as good as the last visit (about 3 years ago) but I liked it, especially because the unfussy food is modestly priced and a meal for a family of 5 cost us about HK$500 which is £41. I'm not really picky about food but HKers absolutely love to compare food places and actually my dad didn't consider the food cheap (which is funny because obviously in the UK, it would be an absolute steal!). The dining website, Open Rice is hugely popular over there and many people consult it to find the best restaurant to visit depending on the cuisine/price/location etc. The majority of my visits to various restaurants in HK were found via that particular website. It's also available in English, so non-Chinese readers can also give it a go when they visit Hong Kong.

After our lunch, we decided to leave Hunghom. There really isn't much to do over there, although there's a department store (Justco) situated on a landlocked ship which is a bit random. From past visits, I took lots of Purikura (Japanese photo booth) in there when I was younger. So it wasn't long before we decided to make a move and caught a taxi to nearby Tsim Tsa Tsui. Not before taking a couple of pictures with my sisters of course!
Justco Hunghom
Sisterly love at Hung Hom
Me, Hailey and Becky
When we arrived at TST, we hopped over to Harbour City, where we browsed the shops and er...stopped off at one of their cafes to take a quick break (Strawberry Forever) and sampled the overly-custardy strawberry Napoleon below (but too vibrant not to take a photo of!).
Strawberry Napoleon
hk skyline from kowloon side
The Cafe really isn't really worth talking about and was just a place to rest our weary feet (Harbour City is a gigantic mall!). However the view as we were digging into our pastries was pretty damn awesome!

PS: Marian has an incredible Give away for an Alexander Wang Diego bag, I'm totally entering!


Sweet Violet

02 October 2011

Firstly, how on earth is it October already? Secondly, what crazy, beautiful weather we're having at the moment! Every Summer we talk about having an Indian Summer but it never happens, so I'm welcoming this heatwave with open arms. When it's this warm, I stick with simple outfits so this t-shirt and skirt combo is literally just something I've thrown on. I rarely do back to back outfit posts but the previous post was of my sister so that doesn't count right? (Props to those who didn't skim over the text and assume it was me!) Anyway, I'm not gonna lie, this post is less about my outfit but all about the new addition to my bag collection.
summer day outfit 2
summer day outfit
violet satchel
Tee (UO) Skirt (DIY/Thrifted) Belt (Topshop) Shoes (Nine West) Bag (Motel)
I love a good satchel and there are so many lovely ones out there to choose from. I've not come across a decent in-between size yet so when Motel (thank you Selina!) sent me the Violet Mia Satchel, I was pleasantly surprised to find that it wasn't too big or too small. I also love the rucksack version which Carrie sports in one of her recent posts from her holiday in Portugal.

So what better opportunity to do a 'What's in my bag' post which I've been meaning to do for a while. I kind of love these posts and they always satisfy the curiosity in me when I see other bloggers post these.
inside my bag
Valentino purse, Hello Kitty Fuji Instax, Paperchase Pass holder, Audio Chi Headphones, Ray Ban shades (c/o) Mister Spex), Moleskine and Muji pen, Keys with Totoro Keychain, Rilakkuma iPhone, W♥C Make Up bag.
The little make up bag is from popular Japanese brand, W♥C (a freebie from Japanese Nylon) and is ridiculously empty. Inside is my Majolica Morjorca pressed pore compact, Hello Kitty x MAC lipstick in Big Bow and a sample of Burberry's Body. I am LOVING this fragrance! The marketing tactic of placing a sample in my shopping bag has annoyingly worked on me. So very tempted.
make up
satchel and bear
My favourite thing about the bag is the Violet colour which contrasts so well against the orange leather piping, it also has a lovely bright yellow lining inside. Since it's made out of Canvas rather than leather, it's less versatile on rainier days and I do dread getting it dirty. However it does mean that I'll take it out as often as I can before the rain decides to visit!

As a little extra bonus, Motel are celebrating student month (oh how I miss the student life!) and there is 20% off all your purchases until the 16th October with the the code "STUDENT20". Hmmm...there is a playsuit with my name on it waiting for me...literally!

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