Thursday, March 1, 2012

Haiyah, go bake and cook instead of gossip

Here is an excerpt from an article by Frank McAndrew, Professor of Psychology at Knox College, saying that, spreading negative gossip could benefit the gossiper but would you do it?  I wouldn't!


"I do not deny that gossip is usually perceived to be a negative thing by the person being gossiped about and that it can have destructive effects, but gossip can also have beneficial effects for groups and for individuals who gossip as well. First of all, the presence of social gossip serves as a deterrent, and it keeps people honest. Knowing that your reputation will suffer via gossip may force you to carry your share of the load in a work group and keep you from exploiting people with whom you come into contact. Also, sharing gossip is a sign of trust, and it helps to create social bonds between people and build cohesiveness within groups. You can also become more socially successful by tuning into the gossip network. You can learn the unwritten rules and customs of a group that you are new to and also gain valuable information about others than can be used to get ahead."

The article suggests a positive benefit to the group (and/or the gossiper) even if it is negative gossip. It seems a rational argument, but we know intuitively that the subject of the gossip is often negatively affected to some degree, not least of which is because gossip is often innacurate.  Furthermore, gossip, is likely to affect our own appraisal of the subject, driving us to wrong conclusions. A simpler way to say this is that we could be, and often are, dead wrong. Gossip, is notoriously innacurate, especially in the re-telling, which seems to be the sole purpose of gossip. If gossip is not passed along it dies. If it is not passed along, there IS no group. How often does that happen?  


There have been many occasions, where I found I had to struggle with deciphering between idle chit chat and gossip.  Nevertheless, there is a difference in my view. Idle chit chat is like talking about the weather or the headlines of the day. When the conversation turns to being about someone it often becomes gossip. Gossip can be mild, and not result in injury. It can even be favorable. So when my gut feeling tells me that a conversation has reach a stage where I feel uncomfortable, it is time to excuse myself. I certainly do not want to cross the fine line between chit chat and gossiping. My mum used to say "if you have a daughter, do not gossip about another person's daughter; if you have a son, do not gossip about another person's son". Her point was simply that one can just as easily become the victim of gossip as the source of gossip. In other words, "what goes around comes around".


When a conversation turns into gossip, we will know it immediately. The other day, I was at the salon for a haircut, and I overheard two women talking about one of their common friends. What they were saying was particularly damaging, and involved conjecture. I knew I should mind my own business, but I could not help wondering why they had nothing better to do. I thought of asking them if they would like to spend their time to learn how to make these almond crisps in today's recipe instead. Of course, I held my horses and did not do that. Otherwise, I may have been drawn into an argument and ended up with two tight slaps from those two old cackling hens! AIYOH!! LOL!


You are going to love these treats, especially as they are the easiest thing to make that I have found since I became attracted to cooking and baking. I call it a "no brainer" and I love, love, recipes like this!!  Warning: They are super delicious and VERY addictive. Once you start eating them it is nearly impossible to stop. They are far more compelling than the peanuts that Chinese restaurants bring to your table after seating. (We all know how fast we empty that bowl.)  I suppose that this is similar to the gossiping I witnessed in the salon. Those poor old aunties could not stop themselves. Gossip is like peanuts.... or worse...like almond crisps. However, the only victim involved will be your waistline so proceed with caution.

Note: The Quay Lo taste test was a resounding success, though I only gave him one small piece. He has since asked me to make another batch and said he wants that to be all his own. Reason being the I finished the first batch all by myself. LOL! 


Here are the two methods to make these wonderful crisps. Take your pick. I am lazy to do from scratch, so I used Bienetta mix.


I saw these almond flakes being sold in Tong Kee and a very small packet cost RM11.00. Now that I know how to make it myself, there is no way I will buy it. OOOO... SO expensive! I think with 600gms of Bienetta mix, I can make 10 small packets like those sold in Tong Kee. And if you are not lazy, do it from scratch, your cost will be even cheaper. 

Almond Crisps




Using Pre-mix
Get this magic mix called Bienetta. A packet of 600 gms cost RM25.00 (I think). I got mine from Pastry Pro

Ingredients:
150 gm Bienetta
200 gm almond flakes

Method:
Mix above items thoroughly and spread thin layer on the parchment paper and bake in a preheated oven at 170 degress C for 13 minutes of till it is golden brown.

From Scratch:
Ingredients:
3 egg whites
1/4 cup or 32gm (all purpose) flour
1/3 cup or 67m sugar
2 tbsp oil
1 1/2 cup or 128gm almond flakes


Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celcius (350 Fahrenheit). Spread the above mixture thinly across a silpat or parchment paper. 

Bake on mid shelf for 16 minutes. The sides usually turn brown first. Cover the sides with aluminium foil, close the oven door and turn off the heat. Just leave the almond cookie crisps in the oven. Alternatively, you can break off the brown edges or cover it with strips of aluminum paper (shiny side out) and put the rest back into the oven, turn off the oven heat, and leave the almond brittel in the oven.

The brittle should break easily. If not, it is not dry enough.


Tip: My Quay Lo came into the room one evening after the second batch had been made. He had crushed a couple pieces of the brittle and sprinkled it on a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Wow!



72 comments:

  1. Yummm....your Quay Lo sure knows how to enjoy good food!

    Do men gossip? Maybe they do but not so dramatically, right or not? LOL!!!

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  2. QP, do you think STP will lend his kitchen to you for a few hours??? :)

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    1. Excuse me, I m going to Sibu to eat not to cook lah! Want to taste Quay Po's cooking, you gotto come to KL baby! Hehe

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  3. Oh yeah, I'd made this too with the same instant mix for Florentines. Super sweet! My mum inlaw has a weakness for these and have been asking for more but she's suppose to keep her weight in check so ... too bad. Have to admit this is very addictive tho. I'd even tried it with sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Good stuff!

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  4. Not going to lie, I do like gossiping! Great post!

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  5. Quay Po, if I can taste this, I will stop gossiping too. This looks so crispy and yummy.

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  6. I'll have me some almond crisps and skip the gossip. Hehe.

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    1. haha, Don't skip the gossip, let's gossip about food!

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  7. YUM! I rather make these awesome almond crisps than gossiping! What a waste of time!! :)

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  8. That almonds crisp looks yummy ! Now , let me tell you about ...... #!^@8&!! hahahaha

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    1. hahahaha, you cracked me up! I heard you! !@#$%$##@

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  9. By the way, just came to know this mixture a few days ago. It was introduced to me by my neighbour, an American lady. She made it lighter colour but I prefer darker colour something like yours. Melaka selling it for RM29.00 per packet, btw. It was quick and easy. Hassle free! Honestly, who didn't like to gossip but something it's best to have jokes than to gossip, but actresses & actors are acceptable. haha....
    Kristy

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    1. Wow it is RM4.00 more expensive for the mix in Malacca? One would think they should be cheaper there. Although I said it is a no brainer recipe, we have to be very careful on the baking time. It can get too brown easily if no watching the time.

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  10. gossiping? life is so short, better do something more meaningful.

    oh...I think I'll love the way your Quay Lo did....with a scoop of ice cream....

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    1. Yes, you are right, life is too short, so much to do, so little time. By right there is so no room for gossiping. LOL!

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  11. Hello Quay Po, this is slightly off topic from your post. I remember reading about an old folk's home you visited on one of your birthday year and i am interested to make a donation in kind similar to what you did. I know there are many charitable organizations out there but i do not know which are genuinely in need. I was wondering how did you choose a home (the one you visited was in Kajang)to donate to? Hope to get your kind advise :) Thank you!

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    1. Hi milink:D I chose the Kajang old folks home because I read the story of the founder, Wendy and I have met her in person and knew the home is in need of donation because they are not supported by any big corporation. You can get the address from my post. Here is the link: http://quaypocooks.blogspot.com/2011/08/give-and-you-shall-receive.html

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  12. These almond crisps look crunchy & delicious!I made almond tuiles for a couple of times & I understand what addictive really means to me.Will try this 1 day! Thanks for sharing

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    1. I am sure once you try this, you will be hooked:D

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  13. ya, this crispy almond flake was so expensive to buy fr shop, thus i do buy the premix to do it our own during CNY. Guess what, we managed to do some business too, hahaha!

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    1. Yes, so much cheaper. haha, so you event made some bucks ha? Clever girl!

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  14. Hmmm.... gossip about food can la ;)hahaha. Agree with your mom, " what goes around comes around"
    Ya, this almond crisp very addictive ;)

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    1. Ya la, we have to listen to the advice from old people!

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  15. I think engaging in gossip is inescapable! I find myself saying I won't do it but then I get sucked in. It's terrible.

    Love this almond crisp! It would definitely distract me from talking about others. :)

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    1. So eat more of this almond crisp so till you are SO HEAVY and nothing can suck you in! LOL!

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  16. Hi, I lovee the title of this post. Was in stitches but yes, me too guilty of this sometimes especially in the 'right' company.. ayoooo.. guilty as charged. Though I am never in a habit to start a gossip but just to listen and smile and concur seemingly approving is as bad I think. But I love you mom's point which is very true "one can just as easily become the victim of gossip as the source of gossip".

    Love the almond crisp...look so sinfully yummy.. will eat at my own peril haha

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    1. Angie, you are very frank! You did not start the gossip? You will get a lighter sentence, so say the judge! LOL!

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  17. Cooking is much better for the soul! Love these little crisps.

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    1. Exactly. When you cook and bake a lot, you probably don't have much time to gossip.

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  18. Gossip becomes like a kind of poison, I think. Your almond brittle looks yummy!

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    1. Oh yes, I am sure some people need to go to the rehabilitate center. hehe

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  19. thanks for your lovely sharing..

    our websites are 徵信社. and 台南室內設計.

    welcome to see us..

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  20. They really look very addictive :)

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    1. Oh they truly are. My SIL just came visit this afternoon and she started eating a piece and ended up with finishing almost half container.

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  21. i'm not aware of this mix but i've done almond crisps before long time before. They tasted good just that i couldnt get it as thin as what you show here. Gossip? just few weeks ago me and some friends were talking about 'gossiping' and i joked' oh, gossiping is good, can reduce stress, stimulate our brains, improve bonding..ok ok..quaypo, lets' do some healthy gossip in fb..shhh..

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    1. Lena, let's go! hehe BTW, do you want some of the mix? Let me know, I can get a packet for you the next time I go to Pastry Pro.

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    2. thanks for the offer. When i need them, i will buzz quay po!!

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  22. I love almond crisp and I can just eat so much of it....yeh, very bad for the waistline! I was just discussing about gossiping to my teenage daughter the other day. We both believe that if you treat your friend as a true friend, you shouldn't bitchy about her behind her back. There's nothing you should enjoy hurting someone's feeling!

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  23. They look delicious! I much rather bake then gossip. I love your point of view to walk away when it comes out of the ordinary chit chat. I will do the same.

    Have a wonderful weekend.

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    1. Thanks for your visit. You too have a wonderful weekend. XOXO

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  24. they look so crisp and flavoursome. THe first thing that come to my mind is on ice cream too!

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    1. haha, you are like my Quay Lo but I have to concur that it is really good on ice cream!

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  25. Totally agree on the gossip, better to walk away than chime in.

    I love almond crisps and these look yummy. I'm starving right now and would love to have some.

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    1. Yes, I am glad you agree:D hahaha, if you are starving right now you don't want these crisps! Sugar Overdose!

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  26. I hate overhearing other people's gossip in public (especially on transport or something, where you can't just walk away!)- it's so annoying!

    I can definitely see why these would go faster than peanuts at Chinese restaurants (I don't even like peanuts and i get through them at lightning speed- I'm always so peckish before dinner!)- they look super delicious! My mum makes a similar version of these, and it's so hard not to finish the whole batch in one go!

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  27. I gossip too, but gossiping should be keep in moderation. Quay Po love ur phrase, go bake and cook instead of gossiping...That's very true...

    The almond crisps flakes looks tasty to me.

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    1. That's true, just don't cross the line:D

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  28. I would crumble your almond crisp on my ice cream in a second, yum!

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  29. Your mom spoke wise words. And these almond crisps look fabulous!!! No wonder another batch has been requested :) Hope you've had a nice weekend, my friend~

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    1. Yes, that's why I always listen to her advice. I had a great weekend and hope you have a great week ahead of you.

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  30. I totally agree with Frank and I learnt this when I was in school and experience this in everyday life. So its better not to gossip.
    the almond crisp is lovely. What is the substitute for Bienetta?

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    1. Balvinder, glad you agree. I am not aware of any substitute for Bienetta except to use the recipe that start from scratch.

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  31. I quite like this almond crisp also and I get to eat it once every year during CNY coz my MIL makes them..hehe.

    Thanks for the reminder though. Although sometimes it's hard to control ourselves from gossipping..hehe.

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    1. It is hard but once we apply conscious effort not to, we usually will not be caught in situation of mean gossiping:D

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  32. I love almonds and these look so delish.

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  33. Andrea, looks like almonds are a crowd pleaser.

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  34. Great recipe, I searched for it a lot! Everyone's using this mixture, but it's nowhere to be found in my country, so I have to try the traditional recipe. Thanks a lot! I hope it will work! :)

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  35. Ralu, thanks for your visit and your comments. Hope the recipe works for you.

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  36. I tried the from scratch recipe, but they didn't break easily like the ones you gave me. the sides are brittle but the center is soft. maybe i didn't spread it thin enough. will try again

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  37. hi just wanted to know do u need water for this?:D

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    1. Lara, no need water. I suggest you use the premix. 100% success not like making from scratch. It's tricky to do.

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