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Soon Lee

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April 5th, 2017

02:25 pm: [sticky post] About the new LiveJournal Terms of Service
Every LiveJournal user will be offered to sign the new User Agreement with SUP Media.


It wasn't so much "offered" as "click on agree or be unable to login". As I'm posting this, no prizes for guessing what I did. (I had noticed the recent change that disabled logging-in with https too, which is something else of concern.)

Given the new TOS means having to comply with Russian laws that are rather unfriendly to LGBT, I am unhappy about this forced change. I am for people being to express who they are and being able to love who they love without being discriminated against.

I've been crossposting from my Dreamwidth account for a few years now, and it's become more & more my home account. If you're on DW, feel free to link me.

ETA: If you could also drop a quick comment to identify yourself, it would be appreciated.

At this time, I don't know if this will be my last LJ post, or whether I'll keep crossposting to both DW & LJ. For now, I will continue reading & commenting on my friendslist posts at both locations.



Current Mood: grumpygrumpy
Current Music: "Heartland" The The
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May 21st, 2018

06:39 pm: Recipe: Kon loh mee
Kon Loh Mee
(Fine egg noodles in a thick soy sauce, with shredded chicken breast, choysum, and beansprouts)

Serves 3-4

The typical Malaysian version I grew up eating is also called Wantan Mee because it was served with wontons. This version doesn't have wontons. The typical version is also served with char siew (BBQ pork). This simplified version uses shredded chicken meat instead.

Ingredients:

Main:
One large chicken breast poached & shredded. (Hang on to poaching liquid)
250 g of fresh fine egg noodles
One bunch choysum, chopped into bite-sized pieces
200 g of bean sprouts, rinsed

The Sauce:
1 teaspoon white sugar
2 tablespoon kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
2 teaspoon light soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon vegetable oil

Garnish:
1 tablespoon sliced spring onion

Accompaniment:
Two pickled green chillies sliced added to a small dish of light soy sauce

Light soy sauce & white pepper to taste.

Method:
Put to boil two large pots of salted water & the poaching liquid.

While waiting, make the sauce by combining the ingredients & stirring until the sugar is dissolved.

When the pots are boiling:
1. Add the noodles to one pot, stir to separate the strands. Once the pot comes back to boil again, the noodles should be cooked. Drain the noodles and stir in the Sauce.

2. Add the bean sprouts to the second pot of boiling water. Stir for ~10 seconds. That should be enough to blanch the sprouts. Drain them and set to one side.

3. Add the choysum to the boiling poaching liquid. Stir until the choysum is well wilted (should take less than a minute). Drain and set aside.

To assemble, dish out a serving of the egg noodles in soy sauce onto a plate. Add the chicken, sprouts & choysum.
Sprinkle chopped spring onion on top to garnish.
Serve with the side dish of green chillies in soy sauce. Add white pepper to taste.

NB: You can also use the dried egg noodles instead of fresh but you'll need to allow much more time for them to cook (fresh is faster). Follow the instructions on the packet.

After you have made it for the first time, you might want to adjust the proportions of the different soy sauces in "the sauce" to your own preferences as different brands can have different saltiness levels.

This time I've also sprinkled crispy onion as a garnish.

The prep.
Kon loh mee
https://flic.kr/p/26guBCC

The finished dish.
https://flic.kr/p/24BzcbU
Kon loh mee

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May 10th, 2018

01:08 pm: Fog
This morning the fog was so heavy a bit of dew condensed onto eyelashes while walking to bus stop.

Flights were delayed, diverted, or cancelled.

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May 4th, 2018

07:50 pm: Well played, New Zealand government.
The New Zealand government website 404 page has a map of the world...

...and New Zealand is missing from it.

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April 29th, 2018

10:58 am: Medical photo?
Now that the metalware has been removed from my knee, should I post a photo of the bits I got to take home?

ETA: So here is the metalware that used to hold my kneecap together. I got to take them home after extraction. They've been cleaned & sterilised (and also photographed).

Photo below the fold...Collapse )

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April 26th, 2018

05:57 pm: Restaurant noise
Restaurants are getting louder, and not just in America. I've noticed it locally. It's bad enough that there are some places I won't go back to because they're too loud.

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April 16th, 2018

10:06 pm: Also: did you see the one about the aquarium thermometer being used to hack a casino?
Yes, really

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] andrewducker

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09:36 pm: Biohacking -> computer hacking
Encoding malware in synthesized DNA to hijack computer that does DNA sequencing & analysis? It's not nearly as science fictional as it used to be...

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04:28 pm: Pēpi packs.
I love that the Māori version of the Finnish baby box is woven from New Zealand flax.

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03:28 pm: Cyborg no more
Surgery to get metalware out of knee done.

(It went well.)

Post-op recovery includes a very welcome tea & sandwiches (especially since I've been nil by mouth since last night's dinner).

20180416_114858
https://flic.kr/p/J5jcfs

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April 5th, 2018

06:45 pm: Recipe: Spaghetti aglio e olio with rocket & prawns
So the last time I made this, I actually wrote down what I did. (I'd been making it for a while from memory so who knows how far it's diverged from the original recipe? It's a simple enough recipe that it's a regular part of my weeknight dinner repertoire.)

Spaghetti aglio e olio with rocket and prawns
https://flic.kr/p/FSGWL8

Spaghetti aglio e olio with rocket & prawns recipe below the cut...Collapse )

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March 31st, 2018

08:34 pm: You're a penguin
"You're a penguin"



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March 29th, 2018

04:04 pm: Memo to self
Never try to arrange same-day delivery of grapes from Marlborough to Waiheke on the day before a long weekend.

Again.


Because there is too little wiggle room for comfort. Any hiccups:

- flight delays,

- delays in groundcrew unloading plane,

- congestion due to heavy traffic on the afternoon before the start of a long holiday weekend (who would have thought?),

- ferry service oversubscribed because of crowds heading to the island for the long weekend, and extra freight being sent to feed & water aforementioned crowds meaning there might not be room for your stuff...

Any hiccups and the fruit doesn't make it to the destination and that is NOT GOOD.


(I think we might have managed to squeak it in but I'm holding off any celebrations until I get confirmation that the fruit have safely arrived at their final destination.)

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March 26th, 2018

02:19 pm: That Feeling When...
...the vineyards you were going to get fruit from get picked early, and they forget to tell you...


¯\_(ツ)_/¯

(The weather changes, picking dates change. And if the rains are due too close to harvest date, picking grapes early is the better option. Rain increases chance of disease, swells the grape berries diluting flavours, and is generally undesirable close to harvest.

So if rain is forecast to fall close to harvest and picking dates are brought forward. And if rain is imminent, there is a rush to get the grapes picked.

And sometimes, not everyone is told about the change in picking dates.


These things happen.)

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Current Mood: sigh
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March 21st, 2018

01:14 pm: Nets over grapevines
Nets over grapevines in a Martinborough vineyard.

It's vintage now and grapes are being harvested and turned into wine. The ripe grapes are especially attractive to birds hence the use of netting to keep them out.
https://twitter.com/SoonLeeNZ/status/976249451751751680?s=19

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05:08 am: New cryptocurrency udea
Fitbitcoin: the cryptocurrency that's generated by blockchaining workouts.

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March 20th, 2018

06:56 pm: Escarpment. Martinborough. New Zealand
https://twitter.com/SoonLeeNZ/status/975965488118247424?s=19

(Still haven't worked out posting pictures from phone)

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06:24 pm: Feeling especially socially awkward today...
*sigh*

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March 14th, 2018

06:44 pm: Recipe: Lemony mushroom risotto
Lemony mushroom risotto.
#vegetarian
https://flic.kr/p/243Xvfs
Lemony mushroom risotto

The recipeCollapse )

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March 11th, 2018

08:12 pm: It happened again!
Second day of skies clear enough that Mt Taranaki is visible from Mt Ruapehu at sunset.
https://t.co/FxDZVheTl6
https://twitter.com/SoonLeeNZ/status/972729675658149889?s=19

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07:43 am: Volcano sunrise
It's addictive watching the day brighten up with Taranaki visible in the far distance. https://t.co/ZLNlwBxWFQ

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07:39 am: Volcano sunset
That's Mt Taranaki in the distance. And we are looking at it from Ruapehu (another volcano) https://t.co/B5m2btaDmj

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March 9th, 2018

02:18 pm: No plan survives contact with fieldwork.
Woo! It's on!

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DXzx9AxVQAA2T1L.jpg
(This is Pinot Noir grapes, just about ready for picking)


For now I am in the lab helping to coordinate sampling efforts & holding the fort. But who knows where I'll be next week. We've already had to change plans twice this week as harvest dates for different vineyard blocks shift.

It is at once exciting, stressful and fun (for given values of 'fun').

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March 7th, 2018

09:01 pm: New Zealand's most expensive wine?
It's the White Diamond from Longview Estate which sells for an eyewatering NZ$1206 a bottle.

Last time I bought a bottle (a few years ago), it was for its novelty value and back then I thought NZ$30 was quite pricy for an unregarded grape variety. White Diamond is made from Niagara a North American grape variety that used to be more commonly grown in New Zealand. The wines made from it taste to me like grape bubblegum. It's a novelty wine, not something serious wine drinkers take seriously. So imagine my surprise when I heard that the price had leaped from NZ$30 to NZ$1206.

A search found this article from 2016 which had it selling for NZ$598. Looks like the new owners have identified a market in Chinese consumers willing to pay big money for an unusual New Zealand wine.

Maybe I should have stocked up on a few cases when it was still the relatively affordable NZ$30 a bottle.

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February 23rd, 2018

01:35 pm: I have just bought...
...eight (yes eight) boxes of the extra long vet gloves. The ones that come up to your shoulder.


These gloves will not be going anywhere near a cow.

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February 20th, 2018

06:07 pm: How slow was traffic coming home today?
Slow enough that we were overtaken by this runner on the causeway bikepath.
(To be fair, this was not a normal day. There was an incident further along the motorway that resulted in much more congestion.)

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DWc5YQ4UQAArYNR.jpg

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February 4th, 2018

04:22 pm: I did some afternoon cooking, and now there are lots of flies in the house...
It was a sambal, some chicken curry. I also roasted some peanuts in the oven followed by ikan bilis (dried anchovies).

It was the last item that attracted all the flies.

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January 28th, 2018

08:20 am: I'm not sure if we dodged a bullet with this one.
Imagine if Laurie Anderson had agreed to Thomas Pynchon's terms...

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DT7W7CYX4AIwXlI.jpg

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January 18th, 2018

07:49 am: Posted without comment

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DTspwl7XkAASU8U.jpg

(I blame andrewducker)

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January 2nd, 2018

02:03 pm: One morning while out hunting Pokemon
20180102_064757
https://flic.kr/p/233sXUy

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December 31st, 2017

09:18 pm: Happy New Year 2018!
Off to bed now (and not staying up to see in the new year), so Happy New Year 2018!

May the new year be a good one!

(As 2017 was surely not a good year in my book, what with cancer in the family, broken knee, and other "merry" happenings.)

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December 24th, 2017

09:15 am: Christmas Shopping Madness
I normally do the supermarket shopping at 8am on a Sunday morning (when they open). It's nice and quiet then and I don't have to get aggravated by trolleys blocking the aisles.

By 8:10 am today, the local supermarket carpark was basically full. People were milling around the aisles with a glazed and desperate look. This is no ordinary Sunday. The shops will be closed tomorrow! What will we do?!

But the shopping is now done & I can relax a bit.

Hope you all have a lovely un-stressful time over the Christmas/New Year break.

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December 22nd, 2017

08:26 pm: "Sun rises on the (day before the) longest day of the year"
Today's sunrise was overcast so instead, here is yesterday's.
20171221_053916
https://flic.kr/p/EyRKhL

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December 17th, 2017

02:16 pm: Quickie update
Specialist has discharged me, so it's just more knee & leg physio for now. Fern has finished chemo. We'll both be glad to see the end of 2017. May 2018 be a good year for all of us.

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December 14th, 2017

08:28 am: Look what I found while packing up to shift to a new office.
Found while packing up to move offices

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December 5th, 2017

05:11 pm: This is Auckland
20171204_073015
https://flic.kr/p/Hc8oBV

It's a pohutukawa in bloom. Pohutukawa typically flowers from late November and lasts until just after Christmas why is why it is also sometimes called the New Zealand Christmas tree.

As for the other part of the photo, finding parking in downtown Auckland is always "fun".

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November 27th, 2017

07:14 pm: Merediths for the last time
Merediths is one of Auckland's best restaurants and is closing permanently at the end of the year.

So we decided to go while we could. It's a degustatiom-only restaurant and depending on the night of the week, you get a choice of a different number of courses.

You can see the photoset here or scroll down for pictures & descriptions.
Merediths: Last Meal
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November 21st, 2017

09:33 pm: Cooking Diary
Week starting November 13
Monday: Rice vermicelli with shiitake & choysum. Chilli & soy on the side. #vegan
https://flic.kr/p/21oxZVN
20171113_172647
https://flic.kr/p/21owc81
20171113_170443
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November 20th, 2017

08:17 pm: Cooking Diary
Week starting November 6
Monday: Steak, asparagus, & orange salad
https://flic.kr/p/Z8e5A3
20171106_173318
https://flic.kr/p/21aaWAE
20171106_164719
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November 19th, 2017

08:13 pm: You think the internet is forever?
Here are a Babylonian businessman's dodgy practices (from ~1750 BCE) recorded for posterity.

(The internet has some catching up to do)

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November 18th, 2017

08:46 pm: This is how Skynet begins.

https://youtu.be/fRj34o4hN4I

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November 5th, 2017

12:20 pm: Cooking Diary
Week of 30 Oct
Monday: Slowcooked pork (cooked at the weekend) with sticky soy sauce and bean salad
https://flic.kr/p/ZTTUHd
20171030_171922
https://flic.kr/p/CQuYjQ
20171030_165756
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November 3rd, 2017

08:40 pm: Cooking Diary
Week starting Oct 23:
Tuesday: Blackened salmon, couscous, salad
https://flic.kr/p/ZFSFoS
20171024_172634
https://flic.kr/p/ZFQHys
20171024_165140
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08:05 pm: The Beginner's Guide to Game of Thrones by Samuel L. Jackson
(Contains strong language)
https://youtu.be/IsAU9qBRjNY


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05:38 pm: Flying Carpet
I'd love to have one of these, but then I'd probably bust my other kneecap trying it out.
https://youtu.be/lqlrru1V69E


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October 31st, 2017

04:33 pm: Julian May (1931-2017)
Julian May's Saga of the Pliocene Exile/Galactic Millieu books were a big part of my formative reading. I was saddened to hear that she has died. I've started a re-read of the Saga of the Pliocene Exile. It's holding up well.

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October 30th, 2017

09:27 pm: Cooking Diary
Week starting Oct 16:
Monday: Mushroom risotto
https://flic.kr/p/ZqUuXC
20171016_172320
https://flic.kr/p/Z5UqMS
20171016_163842
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