I am back in Brunei because my father-in-law passed away last month. Since last month till now I haven’t spend quality time with my own family members and the time that we have here is so limited. I feel like I couldn’t visit them so freely this time. A few visits won’t feel enough. Thanks to my husband the permission was granted that I could meet my sisters and my mother, just us, the ladies (My father and brother had other plan of their own).
Sham’s BBQ Grill
We chose to eat at Sham’s BBQ Grill, Kiarong. There are some good reviews from people who already have gone here. So I ought to try their food grills. It is easy to locate the place. It is just next to Kiarong Primary School you can see the row of buildings before the school. They have few branches, though. Since we were close to another next destination I think it is better to just dine in here.
Review: The BBQ sauce that they used and the juiciness of the chicken wings are superb, super, super delicious! The waitress is super friendly and welcoming. The place is worth photo taking. 9.5/10!
If they add up Tongkeng(chicken butt) in the menu I would rate it 10/10 🙂
I can say after I had Majestic Wings in Jerudong Food Court this place is way better than them.
After our dinner, we went to see Street Food at Digital World’s parking lot. The COVID case wasn’t that high, I was thinking if the mall were crowded with people, here perhaps they are full of people too. However, it wasn’t as I expected it would be.
Yet I was happy I could find foods that I wanted for takeaways and lip tints sold there.
I want to pat myself on the back for coming up with so many sketches these few days. This had made the pages of my sketchbook only a few left empty.
2022 I want to reopen my Etsy shop where I can sell some of my illustrations that will be made into the digital planner stickers and print.
Before this, I sold colouring pages black and white digitally. However, that didn’t grab much attention than my Fiverr gig, which at that time the sales went far well. It was a simple gig; I gave services to draw kids colouring pages for certain prices. The prices were damn cheap. I attracted several buyers, but there’s this one regular buyer who bought my gig so many times that put some orders before I could even begin his current order. I got too overwhelmed and spent hours and hours completing the gig and that led me to put my Fiverr gig on hiatus.
Back in that day, I didn’t know how to limit the orders – I didn’t even know the setting existed. Lol. But that’s okay, I guess. Since I know how it works now I’ll begin again, but not this sooner. I’m focusing more on creating digital products for my Etsy shop.
Currently, I’ve been busy creating the ‘breakfast‘ and ‘Daisy‘ themes. However, it’s still a long way to go. It’s one of my goals for this year. Have I told you I also want to publish my romance & comedy comic on Webtoon? That too has been keeping me busy. I don’t know when I able to complete it, but for sure the mission is to publish the first 3 episodes on the platform. If that attracts many readers or even nice the Webtoon editor’s attention, that’ll put a smile on many faces; my parents, my in-laws, my husband, and myself once again.
If they hire me, at least I could help my husband to pay my daughter’s therapy bill and help buy any necessities for the household. But yeah, I’ll let you guys know when it gets published.
Do follow my Instagram for my work and give them some love. Merci beaucoup!
The part of what I loathe the most when living in a foreign country is when you crave more of your home country’s foods.
I finally uploaded my vlog #20 here. When I see there are still backlog videos that I need to edit for the sake of ‘purging’ them out of my cellphone storage, I realized most of them are all foods. It already sucks that I’m living away from Brunei it even sucks that some of the main ingredients or products I couldn’t even get from any Asian shop here.
For example, if I wanted to make Kuih Kosui, this sweet jiggly pandan taste-like cakes coated with shredded coconut they need to have lime water to make it perfect.
Can I tweak or substitute it?
The answer is yes and no. Yes, if you expect the imperfect taste of it. However, if you are like me, who doesn’t know how to tweak or couldn’t find any substitute for the ingredients or even worst a bad cook, then you’ll know the answer to this is no.
I miss eating…
There are so many I miss about Brunei foods. But I mainly miss eating the traditional wet dessert cakes like Kosui or Malaysian called it Kaswi, Pinyaram, Ardam, Wajid, and Kelupis. Whilst Brunei traditional cuisine that I miss as well are Belutak and Aminah Arif Restaurant’s main dish, Daging Urat Tumis.
The appearance of traditional kuih-muih you can watch in my latest vlog below.
My attempt & What Is Missing
Glad I still keep this picture with me. Compare to the first picture here and my experiment, straight from the bat you already know something is missing. My Pinyaram tasted tough, but the perfect Pinyaram usually tastes soft and has this crunchy edge frills that roll up after frying and the middle usually raises like a UFO spaceship shape and does not turn up like Dorayaki.
What did I do wrong here? Simply say the substitute ingredient that I thought I could tweak made it a failed attempt. Instead of using gula Anau I used brown sugar. Bear in mind that gula Anau is nowhere to be found here. In order to get it, you have to wait for my husband’s generous colleague who wants to help us to bring it here– that if they want to help. Asking my family to post it via normal mail post is not an option here because it’s not dry food. Even if I ask them to crystallize the sugar so that it’ll turn up like refined sugar I’m not so sure the quality will be good.
Same as Ardam although it almost looks the same as the perfect one (pardon me there’s no picture of my failed attempt) the texture was very unlikely the same. Mine was hard and not soft and gritty at all.
Selurut, Wajid & Kelupis
I think I can make the filling of these two wet foods. However, I couldn’t find the leaves that wrapped these foods here, because Selurut uses Nypa Palm leaves, which come from a tropical palm tree that is usually found near the mangrove swamp river, and for Kelupis, you gonna need Daun Nyirik (peel leaves).
The only leaves that I saw last time in the Asian shop were just frozen pre-cut banana leaves packed in clear plastic. So without the leaves, it won’t be as fragrance and authentic as the original recipe.
For Wajid, since I used to help my mother make it during Eid Ul Fitr’s eve I can accept that I can eat it without the need to wrap the Wajid with Daun Nyirik. I remember my mother giving me a spoonful of serving size and placing it on the plate for me to taste. To me, the taste was already good so I don’t think I need the leaves to complete the taste.
My 6-year old’s brain used to think this snakelike food was fine as long as this ‘snake’ tastes as beefy and sweet, just like real beef meat 😄 but actually, Belutak is made up of salted minced meat stuffed into casings of cow’s or buffalo’s small intestines.
In Brunei, they sell it in a clear packet in the supermarket or personal vendor and the price ranges from BND6 to BND10 depending on the weight of the product. I love to buy it from Perindustrian Beribi which cost the cheapest and stir-fried it with onion and a pinch of salt. I can make 4 portions from just one whole roll. But don’t expect me to share it with you because it’s so so so delicious, although the look isn’t that appealing.
Daging Urat Tumis Aminah Arif
It’s trimming of the beef cooked with soy sauce and turmeric and other ingredients that no one can copy no matter how many recipes you can find out there that claimed it’s Aminah Arif’s real recipe. It’s already their signature dish along with their main dish, Ambuyat that is solely served here. One dish cost BND4 and it’s for two persons serving. If you order in a set with Ambuyat I think it’ll cost you much cheaper. A whole set of Ambuyat full package (if I can remember) comprises of Ambuyat, Daging Urat Tumis, choice of cooked veggies, Ulam-ulaman, the Ambuyat dipping sauce, Belutak, and cooked fish. You can watch my vlog below for a better view of it.
One word is already enough to create the buzz amongst Bruneian. Yes, the other district in Brunei Darussalam that famous for its beautiful reserved tropical rainforest and its popular Malay local foods: Wajid Jawa, Cendol Temburong and last but not least, their local giant freshwater prawn or what we called it Udang Galah.
Since the Temburong bridge is open until 10 pm it is accessible for the people to be able to go there and I feel so grateful I could experience passing the 22km long bridge which takes about 20 minutes to go to the other side when my family kind of ‘stranded’ in our own country in the midst of this pandemic.
I almost forgot the new craze menu the Temburong people manage to create from Udang Galah–it’s the Burger Udang Galah. If you don’t mind waiting in queue for hours just to get this burger, for BND3 it is worth to try once in your life.
I also have the chance to see some improvement done by the government for the place especially at the public areas like this one image below.
It isn’t officially opened to the public yet. However, I am excited about what else they want to do with this place in the coming few weeks. What I know at the moment phase 2 is under construction. Phase 2 is building a waterfront. I can’t wait to see it. Although we can’t go to Miri or Limbang– two of Malaysia’s small towns that close to Brunei’s border due to the Covid-19 restrictions, at least we get to see a new place inside our country that worth for a visit.
I never thought of winning something but since someone tagged me in Instagram about this local beverage shop’s tag and win thing so I tagged again my friends and my hubby and just this Tuesday I read my IG message the shop chose me amongst the 10 winners. I felt so lucky!
I won two vouchers: free Signature Kurma drink and 50% off if you purchase the same drink. Brew9 is a new shop. So I guess this is just their marketing strategy to introduce the shop to all.
So yesterday I came to Brew9 shop to get my free drink. The taste was not overly sweet. I could taste the blended coffee and dates. Even though there were jellies in it, it didn’t taste weird. Also, I am very surprised that coffee and dates do go well together. Cool combo.
The shop has an app if you want to make your order and delivery too. It’s a must I guess since we are still not free from the pandemic. But just a few days ago Brunei had announced that local premises is open to the customer to dine in(with maximum 30 persons and still maintain social distancing), many people came to order their drinks.
They have other drinks that I feel like I want to try. However, they aren’t cheap. Lol. Perhaps, when payday comes I would try their juice and the macarons.
Brew9’s location: Ground floor, The Walk, Beribi, Gadong