It’s that time of the year again! Everything is decked out in every possible shade of gaudy red and gold and everyone is unanimously happy for no rhyme or reason other than the fact that it’s Chinese New Year.
Hang on, London looks the same, if not grey-er than usual.
For the third time (read: third year in London) now, I am seriously gutted that I can’t celebrate the festive season with my family in Singapore. I can only call home every so often to catch up on what my family is up to. The truth is there isn’t much going on, and yet I miss the ‘celebrations’ we have; I admit that I actually, really, honestly, just miss my family.
I make it up with organising activities that I can engage in with M and our friends…my new family. Chinese New Year seems to evoke an unrivalled sense of gluttony and disregard for expanding waistlines. This year, I’ve once again endeavoured to churn out pineapple tarts from our kitchen despite attempts that ended horribly in our first year here. I first made pineapple tarts in 2008, and I remember that I had spent the entire day on them, only to have me turn green and collapse in waves of nausea when I was about to bake the final batch. My sister-in-law rescued me and the uncooked tarts. This year, it was just me, the oven, the tarts and M, the taste-tester; I had to make sure that I could finish baking everything without fainting and I’m glad I lived to tell the tale.
I also made cornflake caramel drops that I loved eating when I was a kid. My aunt made them and we would behave like crazy piranhas whenever she brought them to my grandmother’s house in Penang. They are seriously addictive, and seeing as to how the supply is almost depleted as compared to the tarts at our place, it is testament to how cornflakes and oodles of buttery caramel goodness can do no wrong.
The best part about making these goodies? Sharing them and a little piece of home with friends.