We’re now coming up to our second Christmas in Malaysia and I realised that I had hardly written anything this year. There are so many reasons why… time seems to slip by and we’ve been busy

Pantai Cenang, Langkawi

Pantai Cenang, Langkawi

We’ve been travelling around Malaysia… exploring beautiful beaches

Kuala Selangor

Kuala Selangor

and being punted down the river at night to watch fireflies...

Singapore - Marina Bay

Singapore – Marina Bay

I drive to Singapore every few weeks to see my best friend from my teenage years and we try out roof top bars to see where we get the best view

Elephant sanctuary at Kuala Gandah

Elephant sanctuary at Kuala Gandah

We’ve taken our friends to the elephant sanctuary, where you can help bathe baby elephants in the river

Batik painting

Batik painting

and I’ve taken up batik painting at the Kraf Kompleks in the centre of KL

Mei King Fatt crabs, Ampang

Mei Keng Fatt crabs, Ampang

We’ve gorged on amazing crabs

Jalan Alor

Jalan Alor

and we always take our visitors to Sun Chui Yuen on Jalan Alor, the famous street of food off Bukit Bintang, where you eat outside at plastic tables, using melamine tableware… but the food is five star.

Raju's

Raju’s

.. we breakfast at Raju’s, where roti canai, chicken and squid are eaten from banana leaves.

It’s not all eating out. I have cooked at home

Eating in

Eating in

where we can relax

Night view from the balcony, looking at the Petronas Towers

Night view from our balcony, looking  over the city towards the Petronas Towers

and enjoy the view with our after dinner drinks.

But cooking at home has taken a back seat really,  with all of the other things we do.

And it’s so hot! My kitchen is always over 85 degrees. All I want to do is relax and drink cold drinks. I bought a day bed so I can keep cool under the fan…

Day bed... for thinking on

Day bed… for thinking on

… it’s where I relax and read and think about writing things up, but mainly, I have to say,  it’s where I just relax.

I was there one day when I read about  Cakeyboi’s delicious Vanilla Bean Lemonade and realised that would be perfect, just perfect, for drinking as I idled an afternoon away. When he described it as “almost like drinking lemon meringue pie’  I knew I had to make it.

Lemonade...

Lemonade…

I had four beautifully juicy, organic and unwaxed lemons that squeezed out at least 125ml of sharp and aromatic juice

90g of sugar

90g of sugar

Sweetness was needed, so 90g of sugar was weighed out

90ml of water with the sugar added

90ml of water with the sugar added

… and heated with 90ml of water to make a simple, pure syrup, which once everything was dissolved and the mix was clear,  was left to cool completely.

Lemon juice...and vanilla bean paste

Lemon juice…and vanilla bean paste

I have a beautiful, old glass water jug that was perfect for this – the lemon juice was added and two teaspoons of vanilla bean paste was added to that

Whisking in the vanilla

Whisking in the vanilla

and then the  vanilla was whisked into the lemon juice

Adding the syrup

Adding the syrup


… then the cooled, clear syrup added…

...topping up with sparkling water

…topping up with sparkling water

When you’re ready to drink it, top up with sparkling water…

Vanilla bean lemonade

Vanilla bean lemonade

… and you’re ready to serve.

Vanilla seeds fleck the surface

Vanilla seeds fleck the surface

It’s so beautiful… the vanilla seeds fleck the drink

Vanilla bean lemonade

Vanilla bean lemonade

And the taste? Sweet and sharp, deep and rich… perfect for a hot day.

Perfect to serve to our guests who don’t drink alcohol but who need something more exciting than a glass of water.

Cheers!

Cheers! 

 

 

 

… and perfect for me to drink as I read and laze about. One more reason why I haven’t been into the kitchen really….

 

 

Thanks, Cakeyboi! A great idea and a great drink.

Now all I have to do is start cooking again.

Merry Christmas!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 Comments on Hot days and cool drinks…. excuses, excuses…

  1. Noble Nourishment says:

    Sounds like you’ve had a tremendous year, Wendy! That drink looks divine, I’m always looking for mocktails to combat the boredom of water! I’ll need to give it a try.
    Merry Xmas to you and The Bear :)
    P.s. nice daybed!
    P.p.s. I want that baby elephant!

  2. wendall says:

    Thanks, Catherine! Come out to stay and you can lollop on the day bed and I’ll take you to see the elephants :-)
    Try the lemonade – perfect at this festive season when some people can’t drink because they’re driving, or they don’t want to.. perfect, when, like we have, guests who, for religious reasons, don’t drink.

  3. Janice says:

    It all looks so gorgeous, you seem to have settled into your ‘ex-pat’ lifestyle very well. Lovely lemonade, more like hot toddy weather here. Have a great time in the holidays.

  4. So that’s what you’ve been up to – sounds like a great year to me. Have a great Christmas.

  5. Kath says:

    Time flies… Have a lovely Christmas, life sounds mighty fine. x

Leave a Reply