TANGS Style Tips for Chinese New Year

TANGS Style Tips for Chinese New Year

  1. Red does not have to be the only auspicious colour. Try out jewel colours such as topaz yellow, emerald green or amethyst purple.

  2. Spice up your outfits with an interesting touch of bright red accessories and footwear.

  3. If you decide that wearing red is a must, take note of these tips:

    1. Wear true red only if you are fair-skinned

    2. If you are dark-skinned, try another shade, such as fuschia pink or maroon.

    3. Lighten a red-on-red ensemble with neutral footwear

  4. Go for a touch of oriental with jade, pearls or precious stone jewellery.

  5. We adore Peter Kor’s cheongsam that has a modern twist to it. It’s a beautiful tartan material with oriental detailing at the ends.


Chef Edward Kwon: Host of Edward's Live Kitchen

Viewer letters to Edward Kwon

Edward Kwon

Host of Edward's Live Kitchen

  1. What are some of the qualities that you feel a good cook should have?

    In my opinion, there are two things that a good chef should have. Firstly, he or she should have a good sense of observation to look at the market and it helps chef to catch up the newest trend and feasibility for a success of restaurant.

    Secondly, he or she should have an ability to communicate with customers as customers are lifeblood in our industry. I know traditionally most of chefs were considered to be in their kitchen without much interaction with their customers. In my opinion, chef should be an entertainer by interacting with customers and share the culinary delights with them and it would eventually give you more return customers and increase of revenue.

  2. Who have been the biggest inspirations for your career?

    Although many chefs have inspired for my career, if I have to name one, it would be Chef Xavier Salomon. He is the Executive Chef of one of the leading hotel companies and is only second in the company to earn the title of French Master Chef. It was great pleasure to have worked with him and ever since, he has been a great role model for my career and more importantly, he loves cooking.

  3. Where/how do you organize your recipes in your kitchen at home? On a computer, recipe cards, scraps of paper?

    I always carry my personal notebook with me and have a habit to write down a menu whenever new ideas come up in my mind and later, I save them into my computer. This habit helps me to organize a new menu and ideas which will be used for my restaurants and training tolls for the staff.

  4. What is your favorite gadget in the kitchen?

    My favorite kitchen gadget is a KNIFE that I carry with me all the time. When cooking, you grab a knife first before anything.

  5. I'm starting a restaurant business in Jakarta, Indonesia. Can you share with me some tips that you wish you knew before you started your own ventures?

    Many restaurant owners are often tied up to their customers by the reason that customer is always right and is a king. If you feel confident about your restaurant concept and food, you would not necessarily feel daunted by such criticism about your food and restaurant. I often say to my staff that customer is no longer a king and if customer wants to be treated like a king, and then they need to show our staff a dignified attitude first.

  6. Are we expecting any changes in food or culinary styles for 2010? Any new tips to share?

    I would say that there are no particular culinary styles for 2010, as food styles are always being changed and get innovated. Furthermore, as our world is getting closer and closer, there is no boarder in culinary industry and food styles are getting more international than before. In order to meet customer’s expectation in the fast change of culinary trend, I always emphasize the need of maintaining strong fundamental skills to our staff and based on the fundamental skills, you would be able to cook more creative dish with new ideas.

Catch Chef Edward Kwon in action in Edward's Live Kitchen, every Tuesday 7pm SIN/HK!


Vern Yip: Host of Deserving Design and Judge on HGTV Design Star

Viewer Letters to Vern Yip

Vern Yip

Host of Deserving Design and Judge on HGTV Design Star

  1. I live in a small apartment that doesn’t really allow for big renovations. How do I give the illusion that my apartment has more space than it really does? Any alternatives besides mirrors?

    When you live in a limited amount of space, creating the visual illusion of more room is an important step in producing a home environment that you’ll want to spend time in. The most inexpensive way to do this is through paint. Although many folks think that going with a lighter color is better…the most important factor is staying monochromatic with walls, ceilings, drapery, rugs and upholstered furniture. You want to make sure to minimize contrast between all of these elements so that edges and corners disappear as much as possible. Try painting your ceiling a slightly lighter shade of your wall color to increase the sensation of volume. Additionally, select fewer pieces but bigger pieces when thinking about furniture. Larger pieces, believe it or not, give the sense of more space…but you want to be careful to limit the number of pieces in order to reduce clutter. Look for furniture that has storage capability to also help manage stuff!

  2. Seeing that fluorescent light bulbs are better for the environment, how do I create lighting in my living room area that is not too harsh?

    Fluorescent bulbs have come a long way since their inception. Initially, the only fluorescent lighting that homeowners were aware of were the ultra-cool tubes that produces an almost bluish glow. Today, spurred by the environmental movement, manufacturers are producing fluorescent lighting with warmer tones that more closely mimic incandescent lighting. These warmer colored bulbs are not only more flattering to people…but also make your home environment more pleasing to be in. Shades and diffusers in all kinds of materials can also help to soften fluorescent bulbs. Hopefully, we’ll see dimmable fluorescent bulbs in the near future!

  3. My entire kitchen is made out of older wood and metal cabinets. I am unable to afford new ones, so what can you suggest for me to spruce them up and make them look (or feel) like new?

    Older does not necessarily mean bad…so it is important to understand the condition of your cabinets first. Oftentimes dated cabinetry in good shape can be easily updated with new hinges, pulls and knobs to make the entire kitchen look more current. Burnished metal finishes are very current and would be a good bet for hardware. If your older cabinets also happen to be in bad shape, a coat of paint could be a good temporary solution. Make sure to properly prepare the wood and metal surfaces by sanding them before painting. Priming your cabinets is also an important step to ensure that the paint endures the heavy use and abuse that often happens in a kitchen. Once you’ve sanded and primed, paint with specially designated paint for the metal portions of your cabinets…and look for a semi-gloss finish for your wood cabinets so that they can be wiped with a damp cloth once they need to be cleaned.

  4. What is hot for 2010? Any new style tips and trends to share?

    As always, interior design takes its cues from the world of fashion. In 2010, expect to see more burnished metal finishes on everything, including upholstery and furniture. Burnished gold, pewter, nickel and chrome will all be very popular. Grey will continue to be the preferred neutral color of choice…and accents of purple in many hues will pop up in accessories and fabrics. Animal themed items will also be popular…as well as environmentally friendly items. The eco-trend is here to stay and manufacturers will continue to offer all kinds of green products for every part of the home!

Catch Deserving Design every Tuesday at 10pm and HGTV Design Star every Tuesday at 9pm SIN/HK!


Yumi Lee: Celebrity Fitness Trainer

Viewer Letters to Yumi

Yumi Lee

Celebrity Fitness Trainer

  1. If I can get a food that is fat-free or sugar-free, which is the better choice? My coffee creamer comes in either. Which should I choose?

    The amount of fat in your creamer is probably 1-2g per serving, which is a small percentage of your daily allowance of fat. Our bodies need approx. 20-30% of our daily caloric intake to be from healthy fats.

    However, our bodies don't need simple sugars and high fructose corn syrup to survive and in fact, those ingredients could be preventing you from losing weight, burnin fat and could be producing minor to severe allergic reaction in your body and blood system. You should try to avoid as much refined sugar and high fructose corn syrup as possible.

  2. I work for a major oil rig as an engineer and our schedule is ridiculous. I'm having a hard time finding healthy choices for meals that are portable and will stay fresh for a long time. Any suggestions?

    I suggest investing in a small, portable cooler (hard or soft) and some reliable ice packs. Make a wrap or two with some lean meats and veggies and wrap them in plastic or foil. Pack a couple pieces of fresh fruit, string cheese, nuts (8-10 almonds) and even some boiled eggs. You'll have food ready to eat, on the go that doesn't need to be heated and will stay fresh in your travel cooler. If you find yourself stuck without healthy food that you've prepared, then remember, eating something is better than nothing. Just try to make the best choice possible and if you have to order a fast food hamburger, ask for no mayo or cheese and only eat one half of the bun.

  3. I know walking up the stairs to my office is a good form of exercise to lose weight and tone up my legs. However, I usually wear heels to work. Besides the safety factor in wearing sneakers, is there a difference in how much weight is lost by the shoes I wear?

    Stair climbing is a great way to maximize a high intense, low impact workout while you tone your legs and butt. However, you would be better off walking up the stairs in sneakers.

    1. The likelihood of you losing balance, twisting your ankle or tripping in heels is higher.
    2. You could move faster in flat shoes or sneakers and would thus burn more calories.
    3. You're forcing your calf muscles to stay contracted in heels which can lead to other foot and achilles' problems.

    If it's too much trouble to wear sneakers and change at work, then maybe you can leave your sneakers at work and do a non-stop stair workout during the first half of your lunch break!

  4. I am a mom to 3 kids under the age of 5 and find it very difficult to exercise with the kids. Being a stay-at-home parent, I find it difficult to be motivated to exercise. I also can't afford a personal trainer. Any suggestions?

    Do some research to see if there's an affordable gym near your home that offers child-care.

    If there's any way you can get all the kids to nap at the same time, use at least half of their nap-time for your workout. I would also suggest getting up earlier than the kids to do a bit of wake up yoga or stretching to get your day started - even for 10-15 minutes. You'll be tired to begin with but will feel much better after. Regular, consistent exercise will give you energy throughout your day. Plan on doing something active everyday so when life gets hectic, you'll be sure to get at least 3-4 days of activity in a week.

    There is a great new product out here in the US that will help you workout at home with some of the top trainers across the US. It's an audio fitness device that will give you completely customized workouts to music. If you'd like to see more about it, go to www.nextfit.myvoffice.com/atomfitness/ if you'd like to see more about it. Good luck!

Brand New Episodes of My Workout airs every Saturday and Sunday at 8am SIN/HK, with repeats throughout the week.


Tara Barker: Editor-in-Chief - The Singapore Women's Weekly

Programme Review by

Tara Barker

Editor-in-Chief - The Singapore Women's Weekly

Iron Chef America

Iron Chef America is based on a super-successful Japanese show, and it has the same format: Two top professional chefs and their teams use a mystery ingredient to create an amazing meal in a set time. Judges then rate each meal for taste, imagination, presentation and so on. The winner becomes that week's "Iron Chef". Everyone bows.

The fun of this show is that it's the opposite of normal reality shows. There are no amateurs – just experts. No-one rolls their eyes or flounces about the kitchen bitching. They just slice, sizzle, and sauté - at speed and in silence. They Just. Do. Not. Stop until the meal is plated. It's like watching the Terminator in a torque chef's hat!

Even better, as the chefs work with grim determination, a voiceover breathlessly shares facts about the ingredients, or cooking methods. "Ooooh, Chef X is using tripe from the fourth stomach of the cow. It's not often used in restaurants because it takes so long to cook. See the larger sacs? An audacious choice by this master."

Some of the ingredients are really odd, so it's doubtful you'll ever cook them at home – but the facts about them are still oddly compelling. You'll find yourself nodding as the voiceover describes different types of garlic in encyclopaedic detail.

My only quibble was the host: his smarmy pseudo Zen manner and sloppy bows didn't seem respectful enough for these talented pro chefs. I hoped the winning Iron Chef would whip out his cleaver and make him next week's mystery ingredient.

The brand new season 5 airs every Tuesday, 9pm SIN/HK!


Dinner Impossible

At the opposite end of the scale is Dinner Impossible. Professional Chef Robert Irvine, has to throw together an amazing meal despite challenges such as unusual locations, tiny budgets, or amateur staff. This is a refreshing change from most food shows because you're not stuck in a kitchen – on the contrary, the tall, gangly and rather jolly chef has to dash around in all directions assembling his kit and crew… all while the clock is ticking.

For example, in Walt Disney World Resort in Florida the chef was challenged to create the resort's afternoon buffet, with help from untrained interns. To find the ingredients, they had to tramp around the theme park, visiting storerooms and getting guided tours of the giant Disney World kitchens. We learnt that the place is huge! Did you know that Disney World has it's own organic gardens? And grows many of its own salad ingredients? Or that they train their cucumbers to grow in the shape of Mickey Mouse's head! Well, you do now, Mouseketeers.

Like the Mission Impossible movies, there's also plenty of action: amateur staff struggle against the clock, vital ingredients run out, no one can work the kitchen equipment… yet and at the end, the meal all works out beautiful. It inspires you to throw a pot luck party, actually!

The brand new season 5 airs every Sunday at 10pm SIN/HK!


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