Friday, May 6, 2011
Alas, the temporary housing budget has ended and so have the expense account meals. I've been attempting to cook this past week-hence no blog posts. As most of you know, cooking isn't one of my strengths and doing it in a foreign country has added its challenges. I have a two burner gas stove (hob as they are called here) and a two burner inductive hob. Of course none of the pans I brought with me work on an inductive burner, so off to IKEA I went. Luckily it isn't too far from home, but it took several attempts just to find the parking lot. Never having been to an IKEA in the states, it has become my go to store for everything I need here. I got nightstands for the guest room, shelves for the office, plants, trash cans and the inductive pots. Several trips later I was set to start assembling, even had to assemble the pots. So much for dinner that first night, I hadn't even made it to the grocery store! Having never tried an inductive stove before, they are amazingly fast and they don't heat up the kitchen, which is critical here in Singapore. A pan of water boils in less than a minute, and since we don't have a microwave we've been using it a lot. The other odd thing is they aren't much into electrical outlets here. There are two in the whole kitchen and they are right next to each other and on the small counter. This is also true throughout the apartment which is surprising given that they are into electronics as much as we are. We have been buying multiple surge protectors and have wires strung throughout. Next trip was to the grocery store. Luckily there is one close by that deals with expats, so I don't have to buy a whole fish or chicken. Hard to imagine me trying to cut the head or feet off of said animal. In the local markets you can actually buy a package of chicken's feet, doesn't seem like there would be a lot of meat on there. Luckily the veggie selection is great and I've mostly been doing chicken or beef stir fry or spaghetti. All easy ingredients to come by and can be prepared quickly. As I'm still driving Bob to work and picking him up, we usually get home around 7:30 and I need something that I can prep ahead and then cook up when I get back-I'm always open to suggestions as well. I have now also purchased a rice cooker and can set that up to cook the rice while I'm driving to get Bob. I may have to look into a crock pot, but that seems like it would heat up the kitchen, not something I need help with. At least Bob is enjoying the home cooked meals and we don't have to figure out where to go for dinner. Next up is figuring out the exercise plan.