Sunday, 19 February 2017

Bioderma Sensibio: I've found the one! [Advertorial]

I've been hearing about Bioderma Sensibio H2O for quite some time but never had the chance to grab one and try it out for myself until Samplestore decided send me one! 


When it comes to micellar waters, Bioderma Sensibio H20 has to be the one. The world’s first non- rinse cleansing solution using Micelle Technology, this derma-cosmetic hit was first launched in 1995, when women were using cleansing milks, oils, and soaps to cleanse the skin and remove their makeup. Today, it is a backstage secret on fashion runways, the cult favourite of top makeup artists, supermodels, and celebrities from Kylie Minogue to Gisele Bundchen.

$15.90 for 100ml, $28.90 for 250ml, $41.90 for 500ml 

Why is this little pink bottle so well-loved? In just one step, Bioderma Sensibio H20 provides superior makeup removal all over our face, including eyes and lips, and gentle cleansing, thanks to its unique restorative properties, skin is always left feeling soft and comfortable. Soap-, alcohol- and fragrance-free, this non-rinse cleanser refreshes, soothes and preps the skin for subsequent skincare. Bioderma Sensibio H2O is also formulated with highly purified water – water that is completely free of impurities and irritants for pharmaceutical use. As the base ingredient, the superior grade of water used makes this cleanser ultra-gentle and a clear winner for sensitive skin.

There's also not one, but two exclusive patents for Bioderma Sensibio H2O:

#1 DERMO-PATENT Bioderma’s classic Dermo-Patent, also known as Dermatological Advanced Formulation (DAF) is found in most ranges and contains active ingredients such as antioxidants (mannitol), moisturisers (xylitol) and anti-inflammatories (rhamnose & laminaria) to soothe sensitive skin and strengthen skin’s resilience.

#2: TOLÉRIDINE™ PATENT Found in selected Bioderma Sensibio products, the Toléridine™ Patent combines active ingredients such as laminaria (golden seaweed) and enoxolone (licorice root extract) to reduce skin’s sensitivity by raising its tolerance threshold, and inhibit the production of pro- inflammatory cytokines.

As our skin comes under constant attacks from environmental pollutants caused by city traffic and pollution, as well as stress and UV radiation, proper cleansing is more important than ever. Women are also undergoing more aesthetic treatments than before, such as lasers, IPL, and chemical peels, so there’s a keener need for a responsible at-home skincare regimen that’s gentle to even sensitive skin. To meet the need, Bioderma is introducing two new additions to its Sensibio suite.

$33.90 for 200ml

The Bioderma Sensibio Gel Moussant is a gentle foaming gel with lipid-restoring properties that hydrates and calms sensitive skin.
The Sensibio Gel Moussant gently cleanses while hydrating and soothing sensitive skin. Enriched with skin conditioning ingredients such as coco-glucoside and glyceryl oleate, it also has lipid-restoring and moisturising properties. This mild cleanser can be used alone or part of a double cleansing routine after Sensibio H2O.

$19.90 for 150ml

The Bioderma Sensibio Dermatological Water is a face and body soothing spray made of highly purified water enhanced with an ideal balance of minerals that calms skin while maintaining healthy skin cells.

Using highly purified water that is enhanced by a perfect balance of mineral salts and oligo-elements, the Bioderma Sensibio Dermatological Water soothes skin while maintaining healthy skin cells.  A remarkable ally for sensitive skin, it combats various skin reactive signs. Soothing agents such as mannitol, rhamnose and zinc also provide quick and lasting relief to sensitive skin. I especially love the cooling, refreshing feeling it leaves on my skin after spraying. Also acts as a good perk-me-up spray when you're feeling a little sleepy at work. HEH!

The Bioderma Sensibio suite products are available at Watsons, Guardian, Unity, Robinsons, Tan Tock Seng Hospital and National Skin Centre. To find out more about Bioderma products, visit their website at www.bioderma.sg

Till then,
Mia Foo

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

美麗掌櫃 BeautyKeeper [Advertorial]



Well, many thanks to samplestore once again for letting me discover another beauty heaven online! 
BeautyKeeper is your one-stop station to get everything beauty related from Taiwan! 

And here's a few interesting finds from BeautyKeeper!


From skincare, to bodycare and fragrances. They have it all.



First up, the scent is a little tricky to describe. It has that slight hint of a citrus flavour (sourish, fruity scent) yet has an overall more manly feel to it. Does that even make sense?
Anyway, this shampoo doesn't give you lots of lather, but it did make my scalp feels thoroughly cleansed and yet didn't give my hair the annoying squeaky feeling.
Would have been nice if they have a conditioner to go with it, though.


Bravura Intensive Repair Essence Mask

And I always chuck these facial sheet mask into the freezer for a good 5 to 10 minutes before applying the icey cold mask onto my face. SHIOK!
My face does seems brighter and feels very much moisturised after just 20 minutes of application. I'm a huge fan of such facial sheet mask as it's so convenient! Just slap it onto your face, chillax around for 20 minutes, remove & throw the used mask and pat the remaining essence into your skin.


Mdmmd Upra Wakeup Skin & Freeze Age Essence

Initially I mistook this for a toner and was shock to find that the liquid is quite thick. It has that drippy bottle packaging, like a standard toner, hence pouring the product out might take some arm strength (to shake it out).
Application wise, was awesome! Even though the product seems thick, it actually spreads onto my skin really easily, feels extremely lightweight and was absorbed in a jiffy with no heavy or stick feeling afterwards.


Mdmmd Water Drop Cream

Especially love this as it's extremely watery and gives a cool and refreshing feeling to my skin after application. Used this at night before bedtime and I woke up to a well hydrated and soft skin the next morning. The only downside to this product is that the perfumey fragrance is a little too strong for my liking. 

Like what you saw here? Do check BeautyKeeper out at http://www.beauty-keeper.com/ and treat yourself to a whole lot more interesting beauty products from Taiwan!

Till then,
Mia Foo

Thursday, 2 February 2017

Mia Bakes: Matcha Tofu Mochi Doughnuts

Well, other than the super cute paw mold (get it from taobao HERE) I've previously used to bake some Castella Cakes, I've also bought an equally cute mini doughnut mold (get it from taobao HERE) via ezbuy.sg (super convenient, I'll tell you!) that has been sitting in my baking drawer for quite a while. 
And since I've knocked off from work on time today (and there's no gym session scheduled), I thought... why not try making the tofu doughnuts I've been reading up on for the past few weeks? 


Aren't they just adorable?!

Well, to get you started on the recipe, you'll need:

90g top flour + 10g wholemeal flour 
(or 100g all purpose flour)
35g glutinous rice flour
60g castor sugar 
(I used 30g sugar and 30g sugarless sugar)
1 egg
1 and 1/2 tsp matcha powder
(more if you prefer stronger tea taste)
2.5 tsp baking powder 
(or 1 tsp baking soda)
25g salted butter
100g silken tofu 
(there's actually green tea soft tofu, if you want to try them out!)
50ml milk

First up, beat your egg and sugar on high until it turns pale yellow and thick, before beating in soften butter until well combined. 
Sift in your dry ingredients and mix until just combined before adding in your silken tofu by passing it through the sieve. 
Add in milk and mix until just combined. 

As the batter is quite runny, it's easier to transfer the batter into a piping bag to fill up your doughnut molds before sending them into the oven to bake at 175 degree Celsius for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until the surface is browned to your liking. 
The more underbaked your doughnut is, the more chewy it will be (as this is a mochi doughnut) but the tofu taste may also be more distinctive. 
If you absolutely dislike the tofu taste, but wishes to lower the calorie of your sweet snack (by relying on tofu), you may rinse your tofu with hot water (and cool them down to room temperature first) before adding them into the doughnut batter. 



The batter does puff up slightly during baking, but not so much so do fill up your doughnut rings to at least 3/4 full (I filled to almost 100% filled and got cute little FAT doughnuts). 

Till then,
Mia Foo

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Mia Bakes: Nian Gao Mochi Balls

Finally, it's Lunar New Year! How's everyone's CNY celebrations so far? Mine has been a #cheatdayeverday since CNY eve till date, so I'll probably have ALOT catching up to do after my CNY break is over (starting tomorrow). 

Other than stuffing myself silly with the usual CNY goodies like fried hae bee hiam (especially so this year, somehow), pineapple tarts and kueh bangkit, there's always one particular CNY goodies that I absolutely MUST eat every year. 

NIAN GAO!

Nian Gao (directly translated as Year's Cake) is actually a sweeten rice cake the Chinese usually eats during our Lunar New Year. It's either eaten freshly steamed, or sliced and deep fried in normal flour batter or sandwiched between thinly sliced yam or sweet potato, battered and then deep fried. 
Loads of refined sugar, carbs, and fats! What a glorious yummy snack! 
Yes, #fatedieme I know. Don't rub it in.

This year, I've decided to at least cut down on some of the fats and bake my nian gao instead, by marrying it with another of my favourite snack, MOCHI!

First, let's start by cutting the nian gao into roughly 1.5cm small cubes. Make sure you've refrigerated them so that they're harden up. They're a horror to slice if they're all fresh and soft. 

For the mochi bun/shell, you'll need: 
(recipe adapted from gingybite, makes 30 small mochi balls in total) 

180g glutinous rice flour
20g tapioca starch
1.5 tsp cinnamon powder 
(omit and replace with milk powder if you do not like cinnamon taste)
1 egg
60ml vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
100ml water + 20ml milk 
(120ml water if you're replacing cinnamon with milk powder)

Making the mochi dough is super easy, just dump ALL the ingredients into a big bowl and mix until it comes together into a soft dough. It should be soft, yet not liquidy, slightly sticky on your hands but still pliable. 

Divide the mochi dough into small balls of roughly 15 to 16g each and wrap a nian gao cube into each mochi dough to form small ping pong sized mochi-nian gao balls. Make sure there's no obvious exposure of the nian gao or else you'll just end up with nian gao-volcano mochi balls in the end. 

The mochi balls will not spread (at all) during baking, so feel free to space them closer together on your baking sheet. For crispier surface, brush the mochi balls with some water before sending them into the oven to bake at 180 degree Celsius for about 25 minutes, or until you see (some of) your mochi balls cracking open and lava nian gao bubbling through. 


Be sure to let it cool slightly before biting into one because it'll burn your tongue. But try not to wait until they turn completely cold as well, for the lava nian gao inside would have harden back up.


As the mochi shell is not sweeten at all, the sweetness of this snack totally depends on how sweet your nian gao is. And since the nian gao is store-bought, it also means you can't control how sweet this will get, unless you make your own nian gao as well. 
But who cares if it ends too sweet or not sweet enough? The texture of the crispy outer shell of the mochi paired up with the gooey chewy molten nian gao is more than enough to worth all the hassle of baking this cute little CNY treats!

Till then,
Mia Foo

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Food Tasting Invite: Don't Tell Mama



Don't Tell Mama (DTMM) is a Korean-Mexican fusion bistro & bar under the same F&B management group that has brought to us Chicken Up. Located along Tanjong Pagar Road (beside Chicken up), DTMM brings to us an exquisite pairing of Mexican and Korean dishes, infused with creativity and flair. The bar boasts of classic, novel and fun cocktails.



The bistro/bar has an interesting decor concept that's industrialistic from the rustic pipe lights and raw concrete finishing and yet modern and cute with hanging mason jar lights and colourful lightbulbs. 


The handcrafted pallet tables are complemented by recycled plastic crates alongside oil drums and tire tables. 

And of course, beers on taps!

And let's move on to the yums yums for the night, shall we?

Frozen Cocktail + Upturned Soju (Sojurita) - $25
From left: Parcharita (Passionfruit, Mango & Tequila), Strawberrita (Strawberry & Tequila) & Lycherita (Lychee & Tequila)

The rest of the ladies seems to rate Lycherita as the best of the lot but I'll very much prefer Parcharita. Love the tangy, citrus flavour of the passionfruit when it paired up with the soju. I couldn't taste much of the alcohol (tequila) in the frozen cocktail itself though. As long as you don't disturn the upturned soju bottle too much, most of the soju remains in the bottle until you finished about 90% of the drink, only then the soju will start rushing out of the bottle due to lost in the pressure. So you can easily control how alcoholic you want your drink to be!
Cool, right? 

Lightbulb Sodas - $5
From left: Strawberry Soda, Blue Lemon Soda

Yes, those mini lightbulbs hanging from the top of the big lightbulb FLASHES. They just look super-duper adorable and were welcomed with excited squeals from all of us as the staff brought them to our table. 
The strawberry flavour can be a little light, and most of us preferred the tangy blue lemon. 
They also do alcoholic cocktail versions of these lightbulb drinks, so guys... if you want to bring your girlfriend out for a drink. You know where to go now. 

Bulgogi Quesadilla - $14
Authentic Korean bulgogi stuffed in baked tortillas and topped with melted mozzarella cheese, served with guacamole and sour cream. 


Not a beef eater, hence skipped this. From the reactions from the rest of the ladies, I've obviously missed out.... big time. 


Prawn Burrito - $12
Prawn Burrito topped with freshly chopped onions, jalapeno and salsa roja. 


This obviously is not your usual burrito as it has a lot more going on on the outside (all those cheese and toppings) as compared to a traditional burrito. 
I guess if one day, Mr. Burrito and Ms. Pizza fell in love, this shall be their baby. HAHAHA!
Not sure if it's the distinctive taste of salsa roja or not, but it has a characteristic "Indian dish" taste of strong spices to it. It was also one of the first few dishes to be served, but also one of the last dishes we've tasted. Might have done a lot better if it was still warm and not significantly harden up. 

Fried Chicken Gizzard - $8


This is the very first time in my life that I've eaten a gizzard, or an internal organ of any sorts of an animal, and it was surprisingly tasty! Extremely chewy, this should go perfectly well with a mug of nice cold beer. But it might also be a little too spicy if you do not take spicy food very well. 
I love the spiciness though. Yum yum!

Spicy Lollipops - $8

These are actually chicken drumlets made to look like 'lollipops' and slathered with spicy korean sauce, which I believe is the yangnyum sauce (both sweet and spicy). The meat is tender and well flavoured, and it's extremely easy to eat as compared to a conventional drumlet as the meat somehow comes off the bone much easier.

Fried Chicken Wings - $8

Fried till crisp on the outside, well flavoured and tender, you cannot go wrong with this fried chicken wings. Just do not expect yourself to look all dainty and glamorous while eating this. 
No, not happening. 

Kimchi Fries - $18
Sauteed kimchi, soy-seasoned chicken on crispy french fries with kimchi sauce and sour cream.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LURVEEEEE THIS!
Okay, I'm kimchi-bias, I admit. Put kimchi in anything (except beef) and I'll love it. But come on, french fries, with shredded chicken and kimchi? How can anyone not love this? 

Onion Bomb -$12

Actually, I HATE onions. But this, I ate it, and quite a bit. 
Other than looking ridiculously pretty, the batter also has a yummy, peppery flavour which complements the sweetness of the onion really well. 

DTMM is currently have a Beer for a Dollar Deal, whereby you can get a 330ml beer for only $1 with a purchase of any DTMM entree from Mondays to Thursdays, 5 - 7pm. 

From next month (February 2017) onwards, enjoy BOTTOMLESS beer or margarita for only $30++ (for ladies) or $40++ (for gentlemen), from 7-10pm daily for the whole month of February. 

Like DTMM facebook page and follow them on Instagram for more details of their current & upcoming promos.

Don't Tell Mama is located at 
52 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088473
Opens daily from 5pm - 12am
6221 2007
For event enquiries, email drink@dtmm.sg

Till then,
Mia Foo

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Mia Bakes: Cornflakes Crunchy Butter Cookies


Well, guess what? I'm supposed to be putting up a food review but I decided to let this recipe post jump queue. CNY is around the corner and I've been baking more often than usual (aside from my weekly breadmaking) to test out new recipes for my CNY cookies. 

My mum has been bugging me to bake those honey cornflakes cups, but I'll very much prefer butter cookies. So I reckon, why not mix the two up? 

So let's get over the ingredients so we can get started. 
You'll need:

100g salted butter 
(Golden Churn is preferred)
75g caster sugar
1 egg, beaten
150g Top flour (or cake flour)
30g potato starch
(you may use corn flour, but I personally feel PS gives more crunchy cookies while CF makes it more tender)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
30g cornflakes, lightly crushed with hands.
More crushed cornflakes (to roll your cookie dough in)

Instructions are simple. First, cream your butter and sugar until it turns pale and fluffy. Then, add in your beaten egg and vanilla extract and mix until well combined. Sift in your flours and fold until just combined, before folding in the crushed cornflakes. 
The dough should be easy to work with, and shouldn't be sticking to your hands. 
I used a weighing scale to portion my cookie dough into 13g each (my first scoop was a 13g hence I decided to go with it) and then rolled the dough into more crushed cornflakes before putting them onto a baking sheet, spaced a few cms apart.
You need not space them out too much as these cookies do not puff up much, nor spread a lot. I didn't even need to chill the dough before baking. 

Bake the cookies at 175 degree Celsius for about 20 to 25 minutes or until the surface turns slightly browned. 


These cookies are full of buttery fragrance (do remember to use good quality butter if not your cookies will not taste as good) and crunchy from all the cornflakes bits. 
If you'll prefer a more crumbly and tender butter cookies, just cut down the baking time and not let your cookies turn too brown. 

Till then,
Mia Foo

Friday, 6 January 2017

Mia Bakes: Castella Paw Cakes

Well hello people! It's a brand new year, and I've taken the plunge (end of last year) and bought a new oven off taobao.com (along with some cute cake molds). 
So, here's my first baking post for the year of 2017, and hopefully many more to come! 


Upon seeing this cake mold, I just carted it without any 2nd thought. Fretting over which cake to bake comes only after the mold got delivered. HAHA!

And anway, for my 1st try at my own paw cake, I decided to try out a Castella (kasutera) cake, which is a Japanese honey sponge cake.

The ingredients you need are few and simple:
2 eggs
50g AP flour 
(you can use bread flour for new chewy texture)
50g Caster Sugar 
(I used 30g sugar + 20g stevia sugar replacement)
1 tbsp milk
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp unsweeten cocoa powder
**Handheld Mixer is preferable

First up, crack your eggs into a clean, heat-safe bowl and beat with a mixer on high until the egg mixture turns frothy, then add in your sugar in 3 additions, beating in between each addition. Then, place your egg mixture over a pot of simmering water and continue beating on high. Remove the egg mixture from heat when it has warmed up to our body temperature and continue beating on high until the mixture thickens, double in volume and turns into a pale yellow colour, which is the ribbon stage. Check if your batter is ready by lifting up the batter and letting it drop back into the bowl. It should drip down SLOWLY like a ribbon and the ribbon pattern doesn't disappear back into the bowl immedaitely. 
It should take at least 10 minutes for you to reach the ribbon stage, so just whisk away!

While beating your eggs into ribbon stage, warm up your milk (I just stick the milk bowl into the hot water after I removed my egg bowl) and dissolve the honey into the milk. Drizzle the honey-milk mixture into the egg mixture and beat on low until just combined. 

Sift in 1/3 of the flour and mix until just combined. Continue with sifting in the remaining flour and FOLD until just combined. If you're not confident of your folding skills, I highly recommend folding using a hand whisk instead of a spatula as it allows for a more even mixing, hence you're less likely to over-fold your batter. 

Then, take out about 3 tbsp of the batter into a smaller bowl and add in 1 tsp of unsweeten cocoa powder. Mix until just combined and pour into a small piping bag. 

Pipe the chocolate batter into the depression in the mold that makes out the "fingers" of the paw and bang the mold lightly on the counter. If it doesn't spread well or you've messed up, do not worry. Just go in with a toothpick to even out the batter or clean up any mess.

Spoon about 1.5 tbsp of the white batter into each paw, on top of the chocolate batter and tap your mold against the counter for a few times to remove any air bubbles. 

Bake at 170 degree Celsius for about 15 minutes or until the top of your cake has turned brown. 


And TADAA!


As it's my first bake with this oven, I couldn't really grasp the temperature and baking time very well and mine ended up slightly overbaked and they tasted more like Kueh Bahulu. 

Till then,
Mia Foo
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