Chez Suanne On The Go

Mark today. March 31st, 2011. Thursday. Today is Chez Suanne’s inaugural delivery of her purins!

She can’t believe it having a total of 50 orders! So we are out making delivery right now.

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Oh yeah. Behold the queen of purin delivery in Richmond.

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Today’s delivery is 20 plus 4 free purins. Suanne spent … Continue reading

Breakfast of Champion

Well. It is done. We have initiated the cutover procedures about an hour ago.

It was another early morning for me. Got into the office. Checked all the fury of emails from overnight. Everything fell in place. No big issues. Had a final status review with all team members from Atlanta and Dublin. Went thru readiness checklist. Checked off one item after another. Can hear team is drained from their voices. They gave their all. Can also sense they are relieved. Last minute industry news trickled in. Two more major Global DS announced they can’t cut over at 0000 GMT tonight. Woohoo … Looks like my company will be the first off the starting block. Can imagine there will be a press splash later today! This team should be proud. They beat the world.

After the final readiness meeting was over, cautioned team this is not over yet. Crafted an “RE030 Good To Go” email of overall status. Team recommends we are good. Cutover procedure was to start in 1 hour at 0000 TYO time. Will be a long 9 hour process in three waves ending at 0000 GMT.

Hit the send button. In a way, my role on RE030 is done. Transition from project to operations will be completed by end of day. I will be winding down this phase and kick off the next.

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It is always a surreal feeling at this point of the project. I feel like the center of the universe when the project was in the delivery phase. After this act of handover, it is no longer my baby. The other part of the company takes over. I had to step back while the cutover is in execution.

With time on my hand while the cutover us going on, I thought I give myself a treat. I thought I go have a breakfast of champions. Drove a few minutes to an industrial area. Very unlikely place for good food but this is certainly considered as the best there is for breakfast.

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Went to … Continue reading

Free All-You-Can-Eat: No Strings Attached

So I posed a question the other day.

I was telling you all in this post saying that:

Anyway, Suanne and I had plans already for an AYCE (all you can eat) place for lunch today. It’s a place where it costs nothing and no, this is not an invited media event. They don’t know us and you can get the same deal as us. This is exciting for us and we can’t wait to break the news to you all! Any one smart enough to know where this place is?

I got a few answers … very good answers. Before I go ahead and tell you where we went, I like to ask you where is your best and most memorable AYCE (all you can eat) or Buffet place?

In Vancouver, I seriously can’t think of any place that is good. Perhaps the closest to a good place is Ninkazu Japanese restaurant (post here).

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The other place I like is the Eagles Buffet inside the Tulalip Casino near the Seattle Premium Outlets.

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Some of our other more memorable ones are the ones above. You can click on the pictures above and it will bring you to the post.

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But the best buffets are the ones we had in Asia (picture above is clickable to the post). The buffets in Asia have a wider variety of choices by far.

So back home, Suanne and I decided to do a little experiment. We had been debating between us about this place we had been visiting a long time already. I am sure many of you had been there before.  Continue reading

My Lunch: Cattle Cafe on Kingsway, Burnaby

Let’s see … 47 hours more to go before the project I am working on goes live. Whew. There was lot of last minute issues that we still have. Very busy since 5AM this morning. Helping the team keep calm and focus their attention to the most crucial ones is what I am gonna do. At this stage a few balls will be dropped but the team worked their butts off already. They are all committed to give their 101% and that is I can ask for. Time to let go and let the team weave their magic. All they need is for me to let them do their job … and to trust them to pull through. Am swinging into the “protect the team” mode.

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I just shot off a “48 Hours: The Readiness for RE030 Cutover” email as an update to management. Complex delivery with 8 teams to coordinate. Time to chill for the next hour or so. I can’t go far from my desk and so just went to Cattle Cafe. This place is just 2 minutes walk away.

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This places sways busy during … Continue reading

Meat Glue

Someone sent me a link to a video about Meat Glue and the application of it in the food industry.

Having never heard of it before, I was certainly intrigued by it. Here watch this:

I did a search on Wikipedia to find out more. Meat Glue has a sexier name. It is called Transglutaminase. Apparently this is not new. Meat Glue had been discovered since … Continue reading

Flo Tea Room: Free Toasts Before 5:00 PM

Nanzaro is one of those people who unselfishly volunteers his time helping people or be involved extra-curricula activities. He likes doing things like that. He had been spending a lot of time over months training for a first aid competition against some tough competition from St Johns Ambulance. In the days leading to the competition, I could see he was anxious and did not want me to ask him about the competition.

Well, his team did not win anything. Obviously the St Johns Ambulance groups swept the honors. After all this is a first aid competition. The Air Cadets did not stand a chance against the pros. But despite the results, I thought that his dedication to doing the best he can be is admirable.

The competition started in the morning and it lasted to late afternoon. When we picked him up, he was upbeat despite being soundly beaten. The first thing he said was “Taiwanese and Bubble Tea”. Suanne and I laughed at him, particularly at the bubble tea part. We had teased him before why he is not like other Asian boys who hangs out at bubble tea houses. He always says that only Asian girls hangs out in Bubble Tea houses and boys go there because they are forced to tag along.

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Like Nanzaro, I do not find bubble tea houses appealing. But Suanne latched on to the suggestion. She said we should go to the Flo Tea Room because she remembers that they have free toasts in the afternoon. Moreover the Flo Tea Room was just on our route home.

It was quite a rush getting to the Flo Tea Room. You see, the free toast is available only from … Continue reading

Free Gelato from Kooperz.com, Vancouver’s Daily Deals

I don’t think many of you out there remembers but back in January I wrote briefly about a Vancouver Daily Deal site called Kooperz. At that time, I mentioned that I was doing it for a friend of a friend. I did not realize that the friend of a friend was actually a personal friend of ours!

It is just amazing to learn that our friends are so enterprising that they had been working on this site. The more we learned about them, the more impressed we were. I was curious and wanted to find out more. They are a new kid on the block … on a block of many new kids already. It was only in our discussions that I realize how many daily deal sites there are out there.

Kooperz focuses on putting together daily deals for Vancouver restaurants and other lifestyle pursuits in Vancouver. They do provide an unique differentiator from other similar sites. Kooperz allows their users to suggest and promote deals that they would like to see featured on their site. They will then go out and find those deals for you. So at Kooperz, they put the power of group buying back into the hands of their users — more like what good old traditional group buying is like.

We asked Kooperz for some freebies for chowtimes readers and they readily said yes. So, yeah, here is something for you all!

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Kooperz had offer to give 30 free gelatos as a treat to chowtimes readers. The free gelatos are courtesy of Adria Gelato in Burnaby’s Highgate Village on Kingsways and Salisbury Ave. I had never tried Adria’s gelato before but here is something about their gelato:

  • Gelato are made in small batches throughout the day with only good and fresh ingredients. No chemicals or fillers are used.
  • The recipe follows a secret recipe in Italy. The owner paid through the nose to obtain it.
  • The owner is European and is very persistent and determined to make good gelatos.
  • Gelato batches are thrown away after a few hours when they are not consumed, to ensure the freshness.

If you would like to try it, all you have to do it simple. Just … Continue reading

Chez Suanne’s Purin: Sales Update

We received a few emails asking us if we are serious about the Chez Suanne making purin and selling it. The background of this initiative is found on this post called Battle of the Purins: Cake Ya $2.50 vs Chez Suanne $1.25.

The answer is, yeah, we are serious. We are serious in a fun sort of way. It is something we thought would be great to extend the sharing of things related to food. Through the posts on chowtimes, we share our experiences and stories and in return we get to learn a lot more from you all.

The above is the actual action shot of the purin made by Chez Suanne. They are as real as you can see above.

This is another crazy experiment that Ben cooked up and which we think is fun. In this experiment, we want to see if we can raise the engagement with chowtimes readers not just reading posts and attending chowdowns but also sharing Suanne’s amateur cooking every everyone.

We are not here for the money, obviously. We just want to go through the motions of doing something fun and putting our passion in action. We think through this process we will learn a few things but I think the best thing is we will have fun.

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Then there is this nagging question if Chez Suanne is up to snuff with handling food and such. There! Suanne has basic training in food handling and in her weekly involvement in the Richmond Community Kitchen, she is very much exposed to proper food safety matters.

Hehehe … here is the fun part. So how many orders did Chez Suanne manage so far? Here are the total orders received:  Continue reading

Banana Split with Pineapple and Maple Walnuts

The South Arm Community Kitchen completed the meal with a dessert. Minoo prepared a Banana Split recipe with a twist.

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This Banana Split with Pineapple and Maple Walnuts is just the right size and not as indulging as the version served at the stores. I like the portion size and the addition of the pineapples with a slight sourness to counter balance the sweetness of the ice-cream.

While we were enjoying our meal, Minoo shared with us some tips for a healthy lifestyle and a cleaner environment, starting from our own kitchen. Here is the link to the tips.

Ingredients

  • 1 x 15 ounce can crushed pineapple, in natural juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice, preferably freshly squeezed
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 ripe, firm bananas
  • 6 scoops vanilla light ice-cream or frozen yogurt, 1/4 cup each
  • 6 fresh mint leaves, for garnishing, optional
  • Maple Walnuts for toppings (refer Butternut Squash Soup with Maple Walnuts recipe)

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Source: unknown via Minoo

Serves 6

Oh!, I learned something new about banana from a NCIS: Los Angeles show and it is also mentioned in Wikipedia.

Bananas are naturally slightly radioactive, more so than most other fruits. Small amounts of the isotope is found in naturally occurring potassium.

Continue reading