Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Bento #58 - Ground Pork Curry Soboro

Ground Pork Curry Soboro

Servings 2


1) Minced Pork, I bought the minced pork from NTUC and used half the portion
2) Half an onion (diced)
3) 3 or 4 shitake mushrooms
4) About 100ml of water


1) Black pepper and salt for minced meat
2) Half a tablespoon of curry powder
3) A teaspoon of soya sauce
4) A teaspoon of sugar (don’t put if you like it more spicy)


1) Add some oil to the pan and add in the diced onion. Fry until it turns translucent.

2) Add in the diced mushrooms and fry until fragrant.

3) Transfer the onions and mushrooms onto a plate

4) Add the minced pork into the pan and fry until the meat changes color.

5) Add in the onions and mushrooms from (3)

6) Mix the ingredients well and then add in water and curry powder. The amount of water added really depends on you, if you prefer more sauce, then add more water and adjust the amount of curry powder accordingly.

7) Add in soya sauce and sugar (tastes like Japanese curry if you add sugar)

8) Cook for 5 more minutes and it’s ready!

And this is our lunch!

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Bento #57 Fried Chicken Cutlet

Hubby's lunch today:

Fried chicken cutlet

1) Coat the Chicken thigh meat with bread flour, egg, and then coat with bread crumbs. I did this the night before and stopped at this step. I put the coated cutlet into the fridge and just need to take out and fry it the next morning.

2) Fry the cutlet for around 3-4 min each side, or until golden brown.

3) Take out the fried cutlet and use paper towel to absorb the oil. Let it rest for awhile before cutting

Sesame sauce for French beans

1) Mix 1 teaspoon of soy sauce, mirin and 1 tablespoon of grinded white sesame

2) Mix the sauce with the French beans

Baked cherry tomatoes with eggs

1) Cut the hard boiled egg into smaller chunks

2) Put the egg and cherry tomatoes into a baking dish

3) Mix in with tomato sauce and tabasco sauce

4) Top it up with Parmesan cheese and baked in the oven at 180 deg for about 10 min or until the cheese turned golden brown

I love my lunch today. Really regret not frying another chicken cutlet for myself.

Our family trip to Taiwan 2015 - Shangrila Hanging Garden @ Taiwan Cingjing

Ahh..finally the long awaited trip to Taiwan. I have been planning this for almost a year and it's gone in a flash..haa. Well, at least we brought back wonderful memories. Very thankful for the many travel blogs online which provided me with lots of useful information. The highlight of this trip must be our stay in Cingjing. We really love the place for it's beautiful scenery and fresh air, made me all rejuvenated after a 5 hours midnight flight which I did not sleep a wink. Had a throbbing headache, backache and feeling nausea since I was on the plane ...I must say I felt quite sick but thank God all these symptoms miraculously disappeared when I reached our minsu at Cingjing!

 In this post, I will be sharing mainly about our experience at our minsu Shangrila Hanging Garden. When doing my research, I had a few choices in mind, I've considered minsu like Misty (which I heard is popular with Singaporeans) and Vienna, mainly the ones near the Tourist Recreational Centre, where you can find eateries, shops, 7-11, Small Swiss Garden etc.

I chose Shangrila eventually because
1) it has a beautiful name (haa!)
2) it has good reviews
3) I like its cozy countryside feel
4) it opens up their rooms for reservation way before my trip, maybe 9 months before ? They answered all my queries promptly and allowed reservation of rooms via email. This is a good point for me because I can communicate with them in Chinese so it's more convenient using email as I have many queries. (Singaporeans are effectively bilingual). I'm not too sure if they're able to answer questions in English. Provided them with my credit card details and my reservation is confirmed!
5) they serve delicious meals
6) of its convenient location, 5 min walk to the Tourist Recreational Centre. Location is important for me because I do not plan to hire a driver at Cingjing, moreover we have 2 toddlers and 1 elderly in our group.

1) Shangrila has different blocks for their rooms and for some blocks, you will have to climb a long flight of stairs to reach the rooms. Not recommended if you have young kids or elderly. The stairs might be slippery also if it rains. A hazard!
This problem is solved by requesting for rooms near the lobby. It's not guaranteed that they will accede to your request (subjected to availability of rooms) but my wish is granted because I informed them beforehand that I have 2 toddlers and 1 elderly.

This is the long staircase leading to the other blocks of the minsu

2) I am a bit disappointed that their rooms do not have views as I was looking forward to enjoying a cup of coffee while admiring the mountains. However, hubby consoled me that we probably will not be spending that much time in the room except to sleep.

3) Their rooms aren't really soundproof. The noise travels to our rooms and you can hear people talking, walking and running. It's worse if you stay near the lobby. So you should seriously consider this point if you are a light sleeper. It isn't too big a concern for me because I am still able to accept the noise level. (maybe because my boys are even noiser? )

4) Even though Shangrila is only 5 min walk to the Tourist Recreational Centre, we have to walk down this narrow double lane road which I feel is quite dangerous. You really got to look out for vehicles while walking and squeeze yourself to the side of the road to avoid being knocked down. And, I certainly wouldn't want to be out on this road at night.

We hired a driver to drive us up to our minsu from Taichung HSR. The journey took about 1.5 hrs and I'm glad that my boys did not get any motion sickness at all, in fact, none of us did. Abit worried because I have read that the journey up the mountain can get you quite nauseous.Thank God I felt nothing at all!It was a comfortable journey up.

It was drizzling the whole day on the first day we reached CJ but thank God we were blessed with beautiful weather for the rest of our trip.

The area outside the minsu. Think I can sit here the whole day with a cup of coffee and a nice book on hand.

The warmly lit lobby looks so welcoming. Hubby checking in.
We booked 2 rooms,one for our family of 4 and one for my mum and her friend.
The total charges for our 2 days 1 night stay is
(NT$3600 x 2) + (NT$5500 x 2) = NT$18200

Cozy corner for us to rest. Really love the fresh flowers everywhere. There's even a bookshelf of children Chinese storybooks for us to choose from. Great for our bedtime stories.

The staircase leading to our room for 4. Our room is at  Blk A, just right above the lobby, very convenient!

Our room is clean, cozy, big and spacious! The bath room is surprisingly new and clean! There is also a water dispenser outside our room.

This is the staircase leading to Blk B, where my mum and her friend stayed. Didn't managed to take a picture of their room.

This is the view outside our minsu when the weather is good.

Our package includes breakfast and dinner. Every morning, we will choose our menu for our dinner. We gave thumbs-up for their dinner and strongly recommend the chicken. Their breakfast has a good and healthy spread too.

German Pork Knuckle

Grilled Chicken 

Grilled Fish

Free flow for salad bar

Shangrila offers free shuttle bus ride to Green Green grassland and we booked the 9 am ride for the second day. Thank God for the beautiful weather! We were really overjoyed to see the clear blue sky.
The weather at Cingjing in September is cooling, around 20 deg but it does drop further if it rains. However, do bring your sunscreen along as the sun rays can damage your skin too. My husband got kind of burnt.

We spent around 4 hours at Green green and then walked back to our minsu via a trail. It was meant to be a 30 min walk but it felt shorter to me and I really enjoyed it. The walk is a pretty easy one for my fitter-than-I Mummy. No problem for both my boys, 2.5 and 5 years too. 

We have to conquer this few hundred steps before we reach our minsu though.

We ate lunch at one of the eateries near our minsu. Lunch is simple fare but pretty decent. There is also Mos Burger and some small shops.

Carton King, where we ate our sumptuous lunch on the first day, and Small Swiss Garden is also a 5 min walk from Shangrila.

If you spend a certain amount (forgot the amount!) at Carton King, you will get complimentary tickets to Small Swiss Garden.

I think 2 days 1 night is more than enough time to stay on Cingjing. My only regret is that we did not have a chance for high tea at Old England Manor (the most expensive minsu on CJ and under the same boss as Shangrila). Other things you can do on this mountain would be to go for a hot spring and viewing the sunrise at Hehuanshan, none of which I did because I wasn't sure if my boys are able to take the high altitude.

My itinerary at Cingjing
1st day: 
Check-in to minsu
Lunch at Carton King
Explore Small Swiss Garden (which was postponed to the second day, hence I sort of wasted my first day)

2nd day:
Green green grassland
Walk back to minsu
High tea at Old England Manor (which was replaced by Small Swiss garden)

3rd day 
Driver sent us back to Taichung

I was glad that I did not engage a driver on Cingjing. A driver isn't really needed if you're staying near the Tourist Recreational Centre. Green green grassland is also within 2 km so you can take this opportunity to exercise! Otherwise, you can take the bus too! 

Hope my post has been helpful. This post is really just to share on my experience at Shangrila so there might be details of my trip that I have missed out. However, I will be more than happy to answer your queries, just drop me an email!

I will end off with our favourite snack at Cingjing, bought from 7-11


Nantou Shangrila Hang Garden & Resort
Address:No.8, Rongguang Lane, Datong village, Renai Township, Nantou County, Taiwan, R.O.C.
TEL:+886-49-2802166 FAX:+886-49-2802169

Email: service@s-villa.com.tw