Wednesday, June 8, 2011

How many kinds of friends have you?

There are a few kinds of friends in my life.  There are my real life friends, business friends, social network friends and the recent addition is my food blogging friends. 

My real life friends are those whom I am sharing a big part of my life with. They are the ones I trust and feel safe to wear my heart on my sleeve. They are the ones who are not afraid to tell me that I am a bitch when I act like one and still love me. If I were to end up in the hospital, they will be the ones who will rush to visit me and let me know I am okay.  If I am no longer in this world, they will miss me and remember all the memories we have made together during our life time. I do not need to mention names but you know who you are.  I love you all very much and thanks a million for being part of my life.

Next, I have some business friends whom I still keep in touch. These friends are those I see or chat on the phone once in a while but I am happy to know that they are keeping well and vice versa. I am very grateful for the business support that were given to me in the past.

A couple of years ago, I have some facebook friends, most of them are my real life friends and some are new FB friends whom I have not met in person but  enjoyed our chats whenever we catch each other on line.  Then, ever since I started food blogging last July, I made many new friends from the food community.  These friends are mostly family orientated , warm, thoughtful and generous in sharing their knowledge related to cooking, baking and travelling. Diane from My Life in the Charente is one of them.  I was so delighted to receive a post card from her yesterday.  The joy of knowing that I am in her thoughts is heart warming. Diane, many thanks, I love the post card and I appreciate your friendship. 
The post card from Diane
If you want to see enchanting places like those in the above post card, but are not keen to fly the tedious hours like me, Diane's blog is where you should go.  I saw many wonderful places through her eyes.  She is not only a good writer and story teller, she is a skillful photographer and takes breath taking shots of all the wonderful places she has visited. 

Diane, I would like to give you back the joy you have given me. I baked this cake to feast your eyes for now, since you are so far away. Hopefully one day you and your other half will come to Malaysia for a vacation and spend an evening with me and my Quay Lo so that I can bake this cake again to feast your tummies.

I have many packets of rhubarbs in my fridge. Would you believe me if I told you that I have bought the whole shipment of rhubarbs from the supermarket near my home the last time I went there? I am not kidding, I really did! LOL!  So now, you know why a new way of using them up will not escape my eyes? My mum was curious about how the taste of this red celery looking plant, so she took a small piece and said it was sour and nothing special.  She wondered why both Quay Lo and I like it so much.  Although rhubarb is sour but when combined with sugar and baked with a mixture of brown sugar and butter in pies, crumbles or cakes, it tastes sweet yet retaining a little tartness and that makes it appealing to the palette. I am quite happy with the outcome of the upside down cake I baked except that it is a little dry but eating it with vanilla ice cream seemed to balance that up. Other than that, the cake could be taller if I had used the right size spring foam pan but mine was 10-ins not 9-ins. Anyway, the two flaws did not stop the cake thief from stealing a slice when the cake was left to cool on the rack. I am sure you already know who he was. 

Rhubarb Strawberry Upside Down Cake
Adapted from The New York Times – Dining and Wining, with modification

This recipe was featured in Asian Food Channel (Official) Facebook page
on 22 October 2012

2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature, more to grease pans
3 cups rhubarb, rinsed and sliced into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cups sliced strawberries
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar 1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 cups cake flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
Zest of 1 lemon, grated
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1/3 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons lemon juice.

1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Butter the paper and sides of the pan. Wrap two layers of foil under the pan, and place it on a buttered baking sheet.
2. In a medium bowl, mix rhubarb, strawberries, cornstarch and 1/2 cup granulated sugar.
3. Mix the brown sugar and 1/2 stick butter in a pan over medium heat. Whisk until smooth and bubbling, about 2 minutes. Sift together the cake flour, baking powder and salt.
4. Whip 2 sticks butter in a mixer with a paddle attachment for 2 minutes. With your fingers, blend the remaining 1 cup sugar with lemon zest until the mixture is uniform in color. Cream together with the butter at medium-high speed until it is light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, stopping to scrape down the bowl halfway through. Add the vanilla and mix well. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in the sour cream, then the lemon juice. (It’s O.K. if the mixture looks curdled.) With the mixer set to low speed, add the flour mixture, 1/4 cup at a time, until well combined. Scrape down the mixer bowl in between the additions.
5. Pour the brown-sugar mixture into the cake pan, then spoon in the rhubarb and its juices. Spoon in the batter so it covers all of the rhubarb. Smooth out the top.
6. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the top of the cake is firm to touch and a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out without any large, moist crumbs.
7. Place the pan on a wire rack, and cool for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the cake, place a plate on top of the pan and turn it upside-down. Release the cake from the pan while still warm or else it will stick.


  1. What a lovely postcard and a lovely dessert! We all need different kinds of friends - especially those who will tell us the hard truth!

  2. Hi Quay Po! Hehehe..i really feel so eating this so much!! And I think it's not easy to find rhubarb in Singapore? I didn't see any in the supermarkets..

  3. I think one can never have to many friends, and this cake looks divine :)

  4. yes, there are all sort of friends ...some just passing through and some will stay in our life.

    Have a great day!

  5. That cake is beautiful! I just might try baking with rhubarb this year. I keep seeing tempting recipes to try and yours is the prettiest one yet!

  6. 嗯,的确,我们人生中各个阶段都有不同的朋友,可是每个朋友都是我们掏心来交的,对不对?

  7. I have different types of friend's as well, and within those friends I also have different groups of friends. Haha. Bloggie friend's definitely do rock though. How thoughtful of Diane to send you that beautiful post card. I've yet to send you my gift. I haven't forgotten!

    Your Rhubarb upside down cake looks beautiful and delicious. I love the colour of the rhubarb in there. Another lovely recipe, Quay Po.

  8. Thank you so much for your very kind comments and I am glad the PC arrived safely.
    I love rhubarb but mine this year is not doing well despite me watering it. The drought is getting to everything!!
    I am drooling over the picture of your cake, it would be great to try a piece one day :-) Take care Diane

  9. Great blog and that looks so beautiful.


  10. What a pretty masterpiece! I wonder how rhubard taste like...

  11. Veronica, thks for sharing your friendship post! I treasure friendship a lot & I'm still in touch with my friends from elementary & sec schools. Like u, I've met many wonderful blogger friends too! Hope our friendship will blossom too :) Oh but before that, I need some of those cake!

    With love from S'pore!

  12. The categories of friends is nicely put together. 2 categories for friends you have met in person and 2 categories for cyber friends. I wonder how this would look in the next decade or so?

  13. A lovely post! That cake looks so divine.

    I have met a few good friends through my blog....



  14. This is such a great departure from the typical strawberry rhubarb pie.

  15. Woww.. thats yummmm :)

  16. It looks so yummy. I think I would use Xylitol or stevia to substitute the sugar.

    I might try using a gluten free flour. Will it taste different if I omit the sour cream, since I can't have dairy?

  17. That is so sweet! I agree with you. What a coincidence. I was just looking at an Italian Strawberry Cake recipe today. Your cake looks good! Can I have a slice, please?

  18. Veron, another great post! I love reading it. Reminded me of mine blogger friends too. Most of my blogger friends are very supportive and encouraging. If not because of them, I don't think I can last untill today. I only started my culinary 2 years ago and that's the time I started blogging. I've learned so much along the way. I am thrilled when they started sending me all kinds of cooking & baking ingredients and even sending me chocolates & sourvenir. They suddenly brightened up my life completely. I love all of them very much, of coz including YOU! :o) Have a great day.
    Blessings, Kristy

  19. This is totally mouthwatering!! Ohh my goodness I love it!!!!

  20. how lovely! the friendship and the cake. My close friends are from my pri/sec school + church..
    the beauty of blogs is exactly like what u said, knowing more friends and I know we would have love to have bonded over that cake!!!

  21. Veronica, what a lovely post and how nice of Diane to send that beautiful card. I love visiting Dianes blog to get my craving for beautiful gardens, landscapes, old buildings, doors, bugs, sunsets....well just about everything. I love my blogger friends, it is so nice to be able to share a common interests and learn from them as well. (My in person friend just don't get as excited as I do when I find a new ingredient or kitchen gadget)

    Now on to the cake. This is the hardest to me, (rhubarb doesn't grow here in Florida, so if we do find it it's very expensive, and not everybody loves it like I do) The cake looks so beautiful and I want to take a big bite of it so bad. Thanks for sharing.

  22. This year I have seen so many new ways to use strawberry/rhubarb combinations, but this cake tops the list of deliciousness. I have to try it!!

  23. I'm so jealous of you, veronica! That you have such great friends and you have rhubarb! This vegetable is virtually non-existential here in Singapore.

  24. Alan, Coraine: The last time I was in Singapore, 2 months ago, I bought rhubarb from Jasons Market place.

    Kristen, Sandra, thekitchenaffaire, That girl, The experimental cook, Farida, barefeet in the kitchen, : Many thanks. What you said about my cake made my day.

    Lyndsey: What you say is true. Some of my real life friends don't share the same interest with me too but it is okay, now I have you guys to share with:D

    daphne: Me too, I still keep in touch with my kindergarden classmate, she lives in Australia and whenever she comes back to KL to visit, we will spend time together.

    Kristy: I know exactly what you are talking about. My blogger friends' comments put a smile on my face everyday and I learn so much from their blog, needless to say you are one of them:D Hopefully we will meet in person someday.

    Reese: Anytime if you are near. Perhaps, you might even get sick of me sending you my bakes to you. hehe

    Healing Journal: If I am not mistaken, your cake will be a denser if you omit the sour cream.

    Rosa: I am sure you did, isn't that amazing?

    Three Cookies: Don't we all wonder about that?

    Shirley: Our friendship will blossom, it is up to us ya?

    Diane: Nothing can grow well in this hot weather:(

    LeQuan: Don't worry too much about the gift. Your thought is good enough for me:D

    Small kuching: you are right:D

    David: It is good to have lots of friends especially when we grow older.

    Belinda: I am with you, I want my friends to call a spade, a spade.

    Hui Boon: I cannot agree with you more:D


I love to hear from you. Your comments mean a lot to me. Thanks!