Tag Archive | Betty Khoo

Agnihotra Workshop

This post is to help my friend Betty Khoo publicise a workshop she’s very much involved in.  It will be held on Feb 16 and 17 at Kampung Senang Holistic Lifestyle Centre.

There will be preview this Sunday at the same place by a recent acquaintance of mine, Nazli Anwari. It’s a free preview, lasting 90 mins, from 6.30pm. She will also take Q&A.

For more info click on this: WORKSHOP POSTER A4 SIZE

For my personal experience of an agnihotra session go here


Good luck n enjoy!


Road to vegetarianism

Although there are many species of meats and seafood I don’t eat — duck, goose, beef, lamb, veal, deer, turtle, to name but a few — I’m not a natural vegetarian.

I do like meat and seafood, most times.

Despite this, I’m all ears when a conversation turns to vegetarians and vegans, as it did last night.

Some friends and I were having a hearty meat and fish dinner at Pieterasanta, that delightful Italian restaurant in the heart of Portsdown Road. More about that dinner in a future post.

For this post, it’s about the train of thought triggered by HTK, one of my dining companions, who in turn turned to the topic because I started talking about one of his ex-colleagues I had run into recently.

That started him talking about another ex-colleague who had turned vegetarian in preparation to become a Buddhist monk. But that wasn’t the thrust of his spiel. Instead it was about the good value and service of the $25+++ set lunch served by Seven on Club.

He extolled Seven on Club for being so service oriented that it was prepared to cobble together a vegetarian set lunch for his ex-colleague, even though it wasn’t part of the daily deal — and charged nothing extra for it.

Besides making me want to visit Seven on Club sooner rather than later, HTK’s story also caused me to think about the vegetarians and semi-vegetarians I’ve known, who took their meatless route for different reasons.

There was my dad. He became a vegetarian when he was 19 and according to family folk lore for no reason than that he fell sick every time he ate meat. And so he continued his meatless regime till he passed away at 87.

Then there is this friend from Kuala Lumpur who made a vow to go vegetarian for life if her desperately sick older sister could survive her heart operation. Her sister did and my friend has been a staunch vegetarian for over a decade now.

A new young friend who came into my circle recently — via the chair yoga class — is also a vegetarian.

She’s a jet-setting professional who just returned from a 3-month working stint in a Namibia manufacturing operation. She’s healthy and full of life and when asked whether vegetarian food was available in South Africa (I’m quite suaku), declared it wasn’t a problem at all.

And of course there is my old school mate, the indefatigible Betty Khoo — mother of motivation guru Adam Khoo and also best selling author of the Cancer Cured and Prevented Naturally book.

She has in recent years gone vegetarian, for the environment and health, though I don’t think she’s as strict about it being a wholly non-meat meal at all times.

A close relative of mine who after a family tragedy a couple of years ago has gone vegetarian too but, like Betty, not in a fussy way. Eat vegetarian whenever he has control over his meal.

A long-time Indian friend is vegetarian for a few days every week. He reminds me of the time when my mum ran a hair-dressing business. She and her staff used to go vegetarian for 10 days every month, and in certain months — the 3rd, 6th and 9th month according to the Lunar calendar, if I remember correctly.

In those days, staff were given board and lodging as part of their employment package. So some workers who weren’t into vegetarianism used to complain that that was a cunning way for the boss to save on her workers’ food bills.

Of course that was decades ago when veggies were cheap and meat expensive. Now both run neck and neck!

Killer bacon

This is a post that will please my friend Betty Khoo, author of the best selling book, Cancer Cured Naturally.

Normally I would eat bacon only in a restaurant setting, as I found past attempts to fry bacon in Singapore had always left the pan sweaty, as a lot of water comes out the bacon slices.

Friends with culinary skills advised me to dab the bacon dry first, not take it straight from the fridge and put it into the frying pan. Didn’t work. Instead, bits of kitchen paper tower gets stuck to the bacon.

Others advised me to put the bacon into a deep fryer, the same way you would do chips. I didn’t do that as I didn’t want to waste a lot of oil just to get a few slices of fried bacon.

Till last Sunday when I suddenly felt like having pancakes, eggs sunny side up and fried bacon, mushrooms and tomatoes for brunch.

At which my sister, whose family was asked to join us for the meal, laughingly said: “You think you are in a hotel?”

Not so, but I always reminisced about the free flow breakfasts that was served on Super Star Virgo which I travelled on several times, accompanying my mother on her gambling binges. And the crispy fried bacon served was first class!

Anyway, Daffy brought the bacon. I had the rest of the brunch stuff all ready except for the bacon. I decided to cook it in a very hot non-stick skillet, to try and prevent the sweating and other yuckiness that result cooked in a normal frying pan.

OK, the bacon browned quickly, almost too quickly. It wasn’t as crispy as that on the Super Star Virgo. But there was little sweating and everything tasted fine.

But when it came to washing the non-stick skillet hours after the brunch, I had a nasty shock. The pan was coated with thick oily gung that had coagulated. That could only have come from the bacon since nothing else was cooked in the pan. I didn’t even add oil.

I poured boiling water into the skillet to try and help with the cleaning. Then I poured away the water and tried to remove the softened mess with paper kitchen towels.

Here is the picture of the remnants of that cleaning exercise. Now if that doesn’t put one off eating bacon and other salt cured meats, I don’t know what will!

paper towel covered in "gung"

More December memories

Two other eating events, or to be more accurate 3 other eating events, in December stuck in my memory, although there are pix for only two of them.

The first was not so much the food or the event itself, altho both were off the beaten track enough to qualify as memorable in my calendar.

It was Dec 20 and Acres (Animal Concerns Research and Education Society) was holding a fund raising dinner. Modest by any standard. $25 per head, cash payment only, with half the proceeds going to the restaurant owner and the other half  to Aces which was founded by an idealistic young man named Louis Ng.

The event was held at Living Greens in Beach Road, opppsite the Concourse, a cafe which sells organic vegetarian food without MSG. Tho Betty Khoo, author of Cancer Cured Naturally,  and prime mover in the event, raved over the food, “Singapore’s best organic cook etc”, I thought it ho-hum OK but nothing to lose saliva over.

no saliva lost

no saliva lost

What was noteworthy was that my friend TC received a call during the meal and she became quite teary in the process. It transpired her “old maid” (as in old servant, not spinster) had just passed away unexpectedly at Tan Tock Seng Hospital, after collapsing with a brain aneurism while visiting a sister at the same hospital!

Because I didn’t know the deceased I was curious but not upset and proceeded to talk about my recent experience at TTSH where my mother had been hospitalised twice in July, the expensive food at the hospital foodcourt and so on..

Little did I realise that I would be visiting the hospital several times in the coming week, because even as we chatted, a member of my extended family had been hit with bleeding in the brain, would be warded in the same ICU where the old maid was warded and within days would go down the road that TC’s old servant went.

Such is the irony of life and its unexpected turns….

Ignorance is bliss as they say, so I blissfully tackled lunch with J at our 2nd annual turkey hunt, ie eat a real roasted turkey with tradiitonal trimmings. In 2007, she sourced the Ritz Carlton’s Greenhouse and we ate a really terrible pre-X’mas lunch. Mainly because the turkey main that we were supposed to get wasn’t the one on display but white meat carved from the kitchen from who-knows-what-bird.

This year she left the sourcing to me and between a $55+++ buffet lunch at the Four Seasons which included a real roasted turkey and a $35 4-course turkey set lunch at the Tanglin Club, she opted and I concurred to eat at the club.

Big mistake because the turkey wasn’t the traditional turkey. Just de-boned meat rolled up and then sliced, much like a sausage. The Brussels sprouts were half cooked and the rest was nothing to write home about.

If that meal left me with a stuck in the gut feeling, worse was to come when I got home and got the news of what happened to a member of the extended family. In TTSH. ICU. Bleeding in brain. Just operated on.

But I’m pragmatic. No point me rushing to the hospital like other members of the extended family. Altho I didn’t knthere was little time left, I slipped in several visits be4 the end came.

I also had an appointment. L was hosting a dinner for an “odd” couple (French n Cambodian is but one aspect of their oddness) who came to spend X’mas in Singapore. She met them on the trip to Yunnan organised by R.

Venue: Palm Beach @ One Fullerton. Menu: Starter Platter, one gigantic Sri Lankan chilli crab, masses of steamed drunken prawns, brocolli and scallop, cruitters stuffed with chopped squid, deep fried buns, rice etc Drinks: Singapore Sling, beer and wine.

platter with bamboo clam as highlite

platter with bamboo clam as highlite

Portions were quite large and even tho the five of us were hungry, we didn’t finish everything, in particular the crab and the prawns, so these were tar-pau for the visitors, who were R’s house guests, for breakfast.

prawns galore

prawns galore clawed back for brekkers

clawed back for brekkers

thick with meat also for brekkers

L dishing out the scallops

L dishing out the scallops