Sunday, February 15, 2015

Nic & Rocco, Rundle Mall, Adelaide

Before I begin with the post, I'd like to thank all of my readers for bearing with me when I had to tie the emergency loose ends in Adelaide. This mini review shall thus mark my return to the blogging arena and get the wheel moving.

We were walking towards Rundle Mall after spending a fraction of the afternoon in Victoria Square, exploring Central Market and St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, and swung by Nic & Rocco for a late snack.

Nic & Rocco is a small espresso bar situated on Rundle Mall and although it may be as such, the cafe provides a unique array of savory and saccharine desserts such as cronuts (a blend of croissant and doughnuts), quiches and muffins. I love the way how the owner had organized the seating arrangements; garden tables were placed in such a way that it wouldn't hinder the queue for order and how the person could sit by the window, sipping a hot drink while watching the people sprint by or even casually investing his time in reading a book.

Small Cappuccino (AUD$3.50) didn't arrive with a stencil; it instead had a comfortable dash of chocolate powder on the foam. It lacked the coffee flavor that I'm accustomed to: that thick punch when one has the first sip, but it contained enough caffeine to keep me surviving through the entire evening.

Flourless Orange and Lime Cake (AUD$2.50) was a tad bit sacchariferous for the both of us, but we believe that the reason lies with the amount of oranges and lime used as balancing elements. The aftertaste of lime punctuated the air that it left hints of lime on my palate, overriding the beautiful zing of oranges. The best part is that it is gluten free and more than suitable for anyone who is allergic to wheat.

Flourless Almond Biscuit (AUD$2.00) had a sweet tang to it, especially with the fragrance of the almond melting in the mouth. Like the Orange and Lime Cake, this biscuit is gluten free as well and contains more piquancy than saccharine.

Nic & Rocco,
6 Rundle Mall,
SA 5000,

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Oh, hello!

This is not an actual post; it's just to inform you, my readers, that I'm finally where I'm supposed to be in one piece.

I'll be back with another post once I've the utilities all set up. Who would've known that it had to be connected and disconnected under the current resident's name, and not the owners?

Anyway, peace out.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Prawn and Mushroom Dumplings

1 Tablespoon bread crumbs
1 egg
10 medium-sized prawns, peeled and chopped
3 shiitake mushrooms, soaked and finely sliced
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
Dumpling skin
1/4 cup water (as the adhesive)

Glaze the steamer with vegetable oil and leave aside in a pot of water; this helps to prevent the dumplings from sticking.
Combine mushroom and prawns in one bowl.
Pour bread crumbs and egg and stir until well-mixed.

Add sesame oil, salt and pepper.

Put a teaspoon's worth of filling on the middle of the dumpling skin.

Dip finger in water and apply it on one end of the skin before sealing with the dry side.
Repeat the process until the filling has been used up.
Bring the pot to a boil and insert the dumplings as many as you can without overcrowding it.

Steam for 15 minutes on high heat - or when the dumplings look airtight.

Serve warm.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Cultura Bakery, Bangsar

Staring at the remaining Worthy book vouchers that I still hold, we immediately knew what we wanted since what was meant to be a dining trip to Brickfields landed us in a quiet residential cafe in Lorong Kurau, Bangsar instead.

Nestled between the condominiums, the average-looking houses and the well-known press companies, Cultura Bakery is hidden away from the dizzying traffic congestion and offers a sense of tranquility to all of its customers.

We were enveloped with the warmth of a welcoming cafe when we stepped in, with the evening sun spilling in at our entrance and making it more homey; it may be smaller than envisioned but it makes up for the lack of size in coziness. The placement of an older sewing machine by the entrance ignited a memory of my grandaunt in her pair of spectacles, concentrating hard on hemming the seams of the silky material to make beautiful cheongsams for her daughter and nieces and on her tapestries. Next to it laid was a complimenting part of art; it was brilliant to perceive something so plain yet unique.

I really admire the idea of Cultura incorporating the love of reading into their cafe by placing piles of books along the table, tempting the bored diner to flip through his or her favorite creative piece while enjoying a cup of coffee and toast. For someone who has an avid interest in reading, this is a plus point because not many cafes or coffeehouses go to the extent of providing a variety of reading materials, some of which I've never seen before.

A list of books for the voracious reader.

Peeking at the far end of the bench table is a handmade book with the unique words "DREAM" as its spine where diners can pen personalized messages and heartfelt wishes for Cultura. (If you're fluky, dear readers, you may stumble upon mine. *winks*)

The drinks menu

For 15.90, the homemade peanut butter consist of water, peanut butter, oil and sugar.

Freshly Pressed Smoothie (RM 9.00)

The popular dishes among Cultura's mixed group of customers that range from young people and working adults are the cafe's flavored toast, which comes in 9 flavors with the most popular being banana peanut butter and mushroom cheese, and the crème brulee latte.

Matcha Mousse Cake (RM 13.00)

I strived away from the latter, not wanting to overload the caffeinated bloodstream with a stronger whiff of coffee and played it safe by ordering a cup of cappuccino and a plate of tofu cake.

The first sip of Cappuccino (RM 9.00) burst in flavors and with less frothed milk, the natural tang of the roasted DeGayo beans is allowed to shine. It left specks of velvetiness and delicateness when you swallow; you can't help but want seconds of it.

Cappuccino and Tofu Cake

Tofu Cake (RM 11.00) consists of whipped tofu and has digestive biscuits as the crust.

The batter was beaten until it achieved a smooth consistency, which contributed to its softness on the throat and whetted the appetite. For someone who's sugar sensitive, it is one of the best cakes that I've sampled as it blended well with my taste buds. It was saccharine perfection; yes, it was sweet but not overly intense like its competitors on the market. The selling point was that there were no traces of cheese - or at least powerful hints of it.

Name: Cultura Bakery

Address: 1, Lorong Kurau,
59100 Bangsar,
Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 011-12275938



Business Hours: Mon - Sun; 8 am to 6.30pm

For those who are unfamiliar with the Jalan Riong/Jalan Kurau area, attached herewith is a Google map for your reference:

For more information on Worthy Book, you can peruse the following links... or even purchase a booklet for yourself to use?


FnB Edition is available at all major bookstores (MPH, Popular, Times, Borders, Kinokuniya) and selected outlets in KL and Selangor.
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