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30/6/10

Blood and needle

Hello world!
As always, I've been to lazy to write new post here :3

Last week was my second time donating blood in Melbourne, my third time in total! 

My first time was during high school, where PMI (Palang Merah Indonesia!) people came to collect our blood...That sounds like a vampire story, hmm. Anyway. The nurse (?) who pierced me with a giant needle and suck my blood told me that my blood flow was really reaaally slow and asked whether or not I exercise regularly. Geez, I was still in the basketball team at that time!! D:

Weird, I didn't mind giving blood in my school's old and dark and damp clinic, laying on the dodgy bed with few more students. That would creep me out now.

The good thing back then, we got boiled egg, chocolate bread and milk, and also vitamin for a day! Plus,  I got to skip some classes...xD You know, I think some students gave blood just for the sake of skipping classes.

Last year was my first time donating blood here. I came with my church group, around 10-ish people? The facility here is incomparable with the one I saw before, of course! 

My blood type is O+. The majority of the people on earth has O+ blood type. I'm like, the most common type of person living. My bf's AB+. The rarest blood type in the whole world. Like, 2% of our population is AB+. The Red Cross staffs called him regularly to ask if he's available to give blood. Me, on the other side, joke around with my friends that Red Cross won't need me since there are too many O+ people living. 

If you give blood here, sometimes you will receive a letter showing 3 people whose lives you saved. My bf got 6 people saved. Since my last donation, I haven't got any letter. Maybe they gave my blood to lab-pigs or the Cullens. Hmmm.

But few days after the joke, Red Cross heard me. A girl called my cell (which I almost ignored, having past unpleasant experiences with useless sales n promotion calls), asking me if I wanna give blood again. Waahh! So I said yes.

I forgot that the Blood Donation Centre has moved. I had to went around asking people where the new one is =.= Lucky it is still quite close to my apartment. 

The guy who took my blood was not an Aussie bloke. He has a rather unique name, and spoke reaaallly softly. I could hardly understand what he said. So gentle too, in an almost creepy way. 

You know, from my two blood-donating experiences here, I can say that the nurse who took my blood back in high school was wrong. Eight minutes. I gave 440 ml in 8 minutes. My blood flow isn't slow!!! And I don't even exercise here...Answering the questions and checking and waiting took longer than giving blood itself. 

There will be blood donation event again in my church on 12 July, check out the link below for a video that our Media ministry did! I had lotsa fun making this vid heheehhh



Definitions of blood donation on the Web:
  • A blood donation occurs when a healthy person voluntarily has blood drawn. The blood is used for transfusions or made into medications by a process called fractionation.




16/6/10

Slow day is the best.

Alright, today's a day off, and I'm loving it. I made green tea jelly, topped with red bean paste *leftover from green tea swiss roll and red bean rice balls*. Turns out nice and wiggly and bouncy, a tad bitter tho *read tips below*. I'm feeling nice today so I'm sharing the recipe :D


green tea jelly with red bean paste
from Okashi by Keiko Ishida

Ingridients:
15g Kuzu powder*
200g Room temperature water
100g Hot water
8g Green tea powder
200g Soy bean milk
4g Agar-agar powder
90g Agave syrup**

Red bean paste****:
100g Red beans (azuki), washed and drained
50g Beet sugar***
A pinch salt
  1. Combine kuzu powder and 2 tbsp water in a small bowl and mix well. In a separate bowl, gradually add hot water to green tea powder white stirring until completely dissolver.
  2. Combine soy bean milk, remaining room temperature water, agar-agar powder and kuzu mixture in a small saucepan and bring to a complete boil while stirring continuously. Add agave syrup and green tea mixture and mix well. Remove from heat and strain.
  3. Pour mixture into jelly moulds and chill in the refrigerator until jelly has set.
  4. Make red bean paste. Boil red beans in a pot of water, then drain and transfer to a saucepan.
  5. Pour enough water to cover beans. Simmer over low heat for about 1 hour, skimming off scum that rises to the surface. When beans are soft, remove from heat and drain.
  6. Return beans to saucepan and add beet sugar. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes. Add salt and mix well. Remove from heat and spread paste on a tray to cool.
  7. If you're having hard time unmoulding the jelly, place some hot water in a bowl. Put jelly mould into hot water, then remove immediately and unmould jelly onto a serving plate. I used a silicone 12-cup muffin mould and unmoulding the jelly was easy-peasy. Serve, with red bean paste on the side.
Notes
* I had no luck finding kuzu powder, so I used cornstarch instead. I believe kuzu powder is superior for this recipe but I also heard that it's more pricey, and hard to find here. Some sites said you can substitute it with arrow root or potato starch.
** Agave syrup is thinner and sweeter than honey. I used honey, which makes my jelly a tad too bitter. You can try adding sugar.
*** I used castor sugar instead. Worked fine.
**** Red bean paste takes long to make, but it's a must in this recipe. The bitterness and smoothness of the green tea jelly and the sweetness, nuttiness and creaminess of red bean paste complements each other! You can make red bean paste ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks in the fridge or up to 2 months in the freezer
Another important note; don't use only a chunk of red bean paste like shown in my photos. Use a spoonful, or two spoonful. You want more, trust me.


Now, what are you waiting for? Dig right in!
Oh I forgot, you're still preparing your red bean paste and waiting for the jelly to set! Muahahaha omnomnomnom

14/6/10

Happy birthday to the Queen! Yep, the Australians are celebrating the Queen's birthday, and even tho I don't, I'm happy that today is a public holiday.

So you might notice that I've revamped my blog! I loved the previous template, but I wanted a more personalized one, so here we are! I spent the whole afternoon doodling and resizing pics o.O

Other than sitting in front of my laptop, I managed to make some red bean rice balls...I'm sure most of you won't have any idea, so here's a photo:

They look and taste like mochi! Why only 5, you ask? Because it's hard to mold this thing! The dough sticks to my finger and quite hard to wash off, so I gave up at 5.

I got the recipe from Okashi, my favorite baking book to date :)

I have a lot of red bean paste leftover from another recipe, I don't know what to do with it! I will make a batch of green tea jelly *which calls for red bean paste for a side* but I doubt it will need that much red bean paste. Humm.

Aah but I'll have to wait until Wednesday until I can bake or cook something else. Holiday's over! :(

Anyway, Nadia asked me to draw a character for my church's news, so I came up with this. She's to be called Joy. My church is Place of Joy (POJ) and the newsletter's called Joy Cast. Joyjoyjoy. People, meet Joy! xD Funny cos I have a niece named Joy :p

It was a really quick drawing, and I haven't managed to color her. The news is BW so this will do for now hey.

4/6/10

Always Enough - Casting Crowns


Always Enough
Casting Crowns

In  a dry and weary land
LORD You are the rain
In a sea of shattered ones
Your love comes rushing in
You hold the world within Your hands
And see each tear that falls
Through every fire and every storm
You're Always Enough
Always Enough

Your love is peace to the broken
Faith for the widow
Hope for the orphan
Strength for the weak

Your love is the anthem of nations
Rings out through the ages
And You're Always Enough for me


In the watches of the night
LORD You are my song
Hope is in the morning light
Your love shines like the dawn

You keep my heart in perfect peace
My life is in Your hands
When confusion hides my way
You're Always Enough
Always Enough

Your love is peace to the broken
Faith for the widow
Hope for the orphan
Strength for the weak

Your love is the anthem of nations
Rings out through the ages
And You're Always Enough for me


I rejoice for my for my Saviour reigns 
I rejoice for He lives in me
God on high, He has set me free and
Worthy is the LORD


Loving this song!

2/6/10

hello, June!

Oh wow it's June! It's halfway through 2010, how fast is that!
I have no time for long paragraphs since it's 10.55 PM here in Melbourne and it means skype-time is nearing, so here are some of my favorite happenings in May :)


1. Melbourne Zombie Shuffle
Photographer haven!

2. Rosemary's Bday
It was at Sante in Crown Casino. Dressing up once in a while is fun :p Not a really flattering photo, but it's the only one where I can see my outfit head to toe :p

3. Red Velvet Cupcakes
It was a big hit in my office's Master Baker competition :p It scores me first place and a heart-shaped fondue set! I made chocolate-coated cake balls from the leftovers but I finished them too quickly for any pics to be taken :p

4. Combined oikos!
My cell group (called 'Oikos' in my church) split to two groups since we had too many members, but we had a combined one because Tiff, our previous leader came for a visit x) we had a huge 34 people cell group!

5. Universal Pizza
This was taken this afternoon @Universal. I always love the chicken schnitzel and parma there :3 Tiff is leaving tomr so we're hanging out today.