A Visit to Borobudur Temple

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I last visited this temple which once the 7 wonders of the world site when I was a kid, so it’s been many years since then. Upon arriving in the Borobudur, we realised that it has changed so much compared to our first visit.

This pathway and lush trees didn't exist before
Pathways and trees

Now it has a long pathway to reach the temple, surrounded by beautiful lush trees that makes the area looks very peaceful. The stairways in the temples is now protected with wooden boards too which help preserving the original stairways.

 

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Borobudur now also has a lot of officials around to control the crowd behaviors which is very nice to see as i remember previously there was no prohibitions so everyone can walk on everything. Kudos to the regional government of Yogyakarta for taking care of our heritage.

Coming out from the temple, you will be bombarded with street seller seling souvenirs at heavily reduced price with less bargaining. You will still walk through the souvenir market anyway and has more options to choose.

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Beautiful masks 😍, I want everything and I know someone who love masks

Although my dad couldn’t enjoy the Borobudur with us (because he was exhausted after going up the steps in Borobudur), but it was good to discover better management of our heritage site. Maybe one day the elders could enjoy Borobudur without tiring themselves…

 

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Yogyakarta Trip (Day 1)- Gudeg Pawon

After asking people around in Pacitan about how far Yogyakarta is from there, my dad decided to might as well visits Yogyakarta as it’s only 3 hours away.  Upon knowing this my mind starts to wander about all the foods that I will be eating in Yogyakarta and it feels my heart with excitement hahahahah (Gluttony alert !! But Gudeg and Bakpia… I love you since i first knew you, though we are always apart, still my love for you is the same…, is this like reminiscing my puppy love? Not sure why reminiscing Gudeg and Bakpia feels so much better..)

Alas,after 3 hours+ roadtrip we arrived in Yogyakarta around 9.30 Pm. So since many restaurant is near to the closing time (google-wise), we decided to go to Gudeg Pawon which I had always seen on “Things to eat while in Yogyakarta” and this place is open from late till they don’t have stock anymore to sell.

It was kinda hard to find the place as it isn’t in the main road

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This is what sets it apart from other Gudeg shop, we are able to go and are actually served in the pawon (kitchen) of the house.

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For those who love spicy, they don’t really have chilli sauce (sambal) to go with it, but they will give you plenty of birds eye chillis. This is how the Gudeg looks like, it’s called Gudeg Basah or wet gudeg, many people from other cities come here to try this delicacy.

After waiting for 45 minutes and spending a mere 5 minutes to eat. I can say that it isn’t as spectacular as ordinary gudeg, but still many people queuing up for this gudeg, it sold out in 3 hours… As we heard people say “habis” (finished) when we are leaving

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Our verdict : it was an interesting experience, but would we be coming back again? Personally we rather stick with the ordinary normal gudeg, this gudeg seems to be popular mostly with tourists as all of our uber drivers said they prefer to eat no name gudeg from the street stalls. But if you do want to try for the experience, here is the address :

Gudeg Pawon

Jl. Janturan UH/IV No. 36, Warungboto, Umbulharjo,
 Yogyakarta, Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta 55164

Madeline’s at Jells

After exhausting options for lunch around Glen Waverley Mr. M and me decided to go somewhere new for our lunch today. Madeline’s at Jells is located in Wheelers Hills just about 16 minutes from Mulgrave so I asked Mr.M to go to this restaurant because …

The restaurant looks good with high ceiling and wooden elements throughout                          it is rated #2 in Wheelers Hills based on Trip Advisor,                                                             the price is in normal range of Melbourne brunch scenes,                                                       everyone rave about the view,and the scones                                                      

Because I simply want to surprise Mr.M to have a good view and decent coffee on the weekend without driving too much

Upon arrival the restaurant was less than half full, so we were quickly seated by the waitress and managed to get a good seat next the window yet it took a while for the waitress to bring the water and menu to us. Mr. M also had a problem explaining his dietary requirement as the waitress was not familiar with the allergen in the foods.

After a lot of discussion,  I decided to take the Open Lamb Souvlavki ($23.50),while Mr. M takes the special Roast Pork ($25), because he could not take the first item he chose. While waiting for the food Mr.M ordered some bread to snack on and it came spread with butter, I felt sorry for him because it was not a short wait for the bread to come so we asked for replacement which did not pose any further problems. It seems that the delays and mistakes was caused by not having enough waitress on the floor for the day but service overall is nice and friendly

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8 Hours braised lamb, Garlic Yoghurt, Sumac, Ribbon Salad, and Side Chips

Beautiful presentation but the lamb was dry, and not much flavor pronounced from the overall dish, even though I ordered mine without feta cheese on top (because I want to share with Mr.M), i still needed to crack salt and pepper because It did not have much flavor. On the other hand, the portion is big so you can share the chips rather than ordering chips on the side.

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Special of the Day : Roast Pork with Buttered Beans, Apple Sauce and Jus Reduction

Mr. M’s lunch however was much better than mine, everything worked perfectly in the dish, and was perfectly seasoned. the portion was enough to fill his appetite without feeling overwhelmed.

Overall, this is a good place to either take your family or someone you want to impress for a nice relax lunch with a good view and ambiance. In our personal opinion, within that price range we rather try something else after we have tried this place once especially Melbourne has so much to offer.

Izakaya Jiro

Not knowing where to go around Glen Waverley for a good fresh Japanese foods (I know there is Shira Nui but I heard the quality has depleted over the years) and not being able to take Mr.M to city leave me with the task of searching for good Japanese foods around South Eastern suburbs.

it was a difficult challenge, I didn’t have much options because most restaurants close on Monday unless they are in city and Mr.M doesn’t really like the idea of going to city.

So i found this place in Hawthorn, the foods look goods, well priced for such Japanese tapas and well-rated in Urbanspoon. More importantly it opens today.  When i called the restaurant I was told that i have seats upstair but not downstairs because it’s a full house downstairs. I didn’t mind

As we arrived 30 minutes later to my surprise the place was not busy at all and only the front tables were occupied. We were seated straightaway without needing to inform that we have made a booking but obviously we can see it’s not necessary

We ordered some items to share and a bottle of Homare Yuzu Sake Alladin Bottle ($23) because Mr.M never tried Yuzu before, it delights me to introduce something new to Mr.M. It was delicious and low in alcohol content, Mr.M and I tried to out-drink each other in this

Tempura Teishoku
Tempura Teishoku ($11.80)

First come the Tempura, Mr.M loves tempura he said in Naples there is food similarly deep fried in light airy batter. Nothing really amazing from this tempura

Jiro Maki
Jiro Maki ($13.80)

Jiro Maki, the combination of the sushi rice and what the put inside the sushi didn’t manage to impress us, too many items of the same mild flavor really make everything taste flat. We both didn’t like this.

Wasabi Octopus
Tako Wasabi ($5.00) 

Tako Wasabi – Mr. M loves Octopus and Calamari, and he never tried this one. Wasabi octopus seems to be a pretty popular dish in Japanese restaurants as i have seen it in other Japanese restaurants` menus. I was expecting Mr. M to make strange faces because of the wasabi, but it was pretty mild. Mr. M said the dish tasted normal, he doesn’t like but he doesn’t dislike

Gyu Tongue
Gyu Tongue ($3.80 each)

Gyu Tongue – was normal, It didn’t have melt in your mouth quality

Wagyu Amiyaki Karubi
Wagyu Amiyaki Karubi ($15.00)
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Wagyu Beef Tataki ($15.00)

When I made the order for Wagyu Amiyaki Karubi , the waitress mixed it up and we got the Wagyu Beef Tataki instead, but we were so hungry that we just take the Tataki and ordered again for the Wagyu Amiyagk Karubi. Nevertheless none of these two were mind blowing, I couldn’t taste the ponzu sauce and the Wagyu Beef Tataki didn’t have freshness and complexity that makes us want to eat more, it was plain and mild all the way for both

The special : Fried Crispy Rice Cake with Spicy Salmon. This one was not that bad, but the cubed rice cake was did not elevate the texture of the spicy tuna. It would have been better if it was made thin and crispy so It feels smooth and crunchy. Imagine eating chunks of crunchy bread and jam…..this was how it felt, we were a fan of the spicy salmon though in fact as we were talking Mr.M just eat everything cleaned.

Crispy Rice Cake
Crispy Rice Cake with Spicy Salmon

Overall, it was a so so experience, service was could have been better rather than having the mix up order and strange booking experience. Would I recommend ? probably not, Would I be back? No.  By the way, we did not see any other large group came and we were there until the kitchen closed so we really didn’t understand why we were told that the restaurant is fully booked.

Izakaya Jiro

830 Glenferrie Road, Hawthorn, Melbourne

03 8899 6609

The Turkish Tea House

Me :”Can we please go to that Turkish Tea House I told you about? I really wanna try before I go”                                                                                                    

Mr. M : “Ok, I also want to eat that Indian food again with you for the last time”            

Me : “Ok, deal, we eat the Turkish for breakfast, Indian for dinner, how about that?”

Since the moment I saw this place from Google I know I want to take Mr.M here but we never managed to go because it closes on Sunday and we always have late mornings on Saturdays. Being a man of his word, Mr.M took me here on my last Saturday in Melbourne. It was a beautiful drive on our way to Balwyn, there were scenic old houses, flourishing tress on the sides of the road with their color changing to Autumn leaves mesmerizing those who see

Upon arriving in front of the Turkish Tea House, we were quite blown away by the pretty ethnic decors and the hanging Turkish lights. The place was not very big, small compared to the popular Melbourne brunch places, it was full when we arrived but we didn’t wait  long to get a table. Upon seating, we were given the menu, the menu is totally a refreshing change to the Melbourne brunch scene,  not to mention that it’s very well rated and very affordable.

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It was definitely was a happy place for Mr.M that he can order a lot of Turkish bread to munch on. When the owner took our order we asked if Mr.M’s dietary requirement can be accommodated, in an instance he called the cook from the kitchen and the cook turns out to be a Turkish mother (perhaps his relatives?). She assured us that what we are going to order will be made safe for Mr.M. We ordered Sucuk Menemen for Mr. M, Quinoa Salad to share, and Manti for me

Sucuk Menemen, is like the Turkish version of Morrocan Shakshouka. Mr.M really enjoyed this dish, and he scooped all the sauce with the Turkish bread (we ordered more bread, they were was very fresh). Mr. M said this dish reminds him of a dish from Naples, and apparently the cook lady said that Turkish foods have similarities to Italian foods, well we learn something new !

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Sucuk Menemen

Manti is a homemade Turkish beef ravioli with Garlic Yoghurt Sauce. It was my first time trying it, it was unique and really good but would be perfect to share as it was quite rich. The homemade ravioli was very different to the ones we normally know, the size is much smaller and it’s more transparent than yellow, a really unique dish that really stands out and the small size makes the eating experience very different too. Would I order again? YES !

Manti
Manti

Quinoa Salad was good but nothing extraordinary but it could be because it was adjusted to Mr.M’s dietary requirement.

Quinoa Salad
Quinoa Salad

We finished the meal with a Turkish coffee and Ristretto and were given complementary homemade Turkish delights coated with crushed Pistachio. I actually bought some Turkish Delights home because it was so good and Mr.M loves it too along with Pistachio Slice that was equally good. We also had a look at the second floor where they sell imported Turkish decors and everyday items

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Authentic Turkish Coffee

Overall, I would HIGHLY recommend and visits this place again, the food was amazing, service was very accommodating & friendly, generous portion and very affordable. We left the place full and happy that we didn’t even have the space to eat dinner (Mr.M even took the business card, and it rarely happens)

The Turkish Tea House

232 Whitehorse Rd, Balwyn, Victoria 3103,

Australia

 

Laksa King

Dear readers,  Do you know any cookies anonymous group for Mr.M to sign up to?

I actually wonder if such thing exist….

This morning before Mr.M goes to his friend’s house, Mr. M was teasing me that all the cookies i baked are his and I was chasing him for the cookies so that he will not take the whole bag and finish it. Mr.M kept running away while munching the cookies, as I was carrying my stuff Mr.M gave me two pieces of cookies,  and drove off taking a whole bag whilst I could only look helplessly as I know there will not be much left when he came back.

On his way to his friend’s house Mr.M called me to say that he did not realize he really take the whole bag of cookies as he was joking around

Mr. M : (*munching cookies) “I’m sorry, I didn’t realize I took all the cookies with me”        

Me : …. “You…around sweets, you are really bad”                                                                            

Mr.M : “I’m really sorry, but anyway they are mine”

Knowing how much Mr.M loves his sweets, I can never get angry towards him, I just think it’s cute (more likely, I’m just blind). After coming back from his friend’s house, Mr.M took me to eat something quick for dinner, Mr.M was already full, so I ordered only 1 Assam laksa for myself in Laksa King near the Glen Waverley Station. Before the food arrives Mr M said that he will just try but he changed his mind, I’m not sure because the way it smells (sour & fishy) or he was just too full but i do know it’s an acquired taste which I love.

Assam Laksa
Assam Laksa, because I love sour and I love fish

The Assam Laksa is completely different compared to the Chicken laksa. This laksa originally come from Penang and you will not find coconut milk in the broth, rather the broth is a concoction of fish stock and spices. it served with shredded mackerel and shredded fresh cucumber, red onions, and mint to help freshen the palate. This branch in Glen waverley is more modern looking than the original restaurant in Newmarket, and the food taste exactly the same so it’s a good option when you are in South-Eastern Suburb and you want to have a reputable good laksa.

We ended the night by having some cups of coffee in Pescare, an Italian bistro inside the Century City Glen Waverley, the coffee was normal, but the time spent with Mr.M made everything so much better.

Laksa King

Shop 3/39-51 Kingsway, Glen Waverley, Melbourne

03 8555 0755

Oasis Bakery

Today we didn’t really know what to do, so I asked Mr. M if he wants to go to Costco even just for browsing and i always love Costco for their cookbooks and all those bulk prices, Mr. M didn’t say anything. As we went out to find something to eat I asked Mr.M if we could go to Oakleigh to eat at that Souvlavki joint that he took me because it was seriously one of the BEST that I have tried in Melbourne, but it wasn’t open. Mr. M suggested that we eat at Oasis Bakery in Murrumbena and I asked him if it was possible for us to check out Costco afterwards because we never been there together (Mind you, for me grocery shopping is romantic, yes, I am easy to be pleased in this matter, it can even make me goes from grumpy to happy)

Me : “Can we go to Costco too after? because it’s in the same area?”

Mr.M : “Why do you think I said to go here for lunch?”

Me: ” Is because so we can go to Costco after? Oh my GOD !! You are so sweeeet”

Mr.M : “You are an idiot…”

Me : *smiling from ear to ear, couldn’t hear anything, was too charmed*

As we arrived, the place was packed with families and kids there was no tables at all. Mr.M wanted to just get some stuffs from the grocery because there was no place to sit. Mr.M was interested in some of the pastries but they could not make sure that the pastries would be without olive oil.

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One of those so affordable, good looking pastry ~The name made us laugh~

Looking at the plates people carrying, I set my heart on the mission of finding food for Mr.M to eat and find the seat. After a long consideration, I decided to get Ely’s eggs with extra Morrocan Lamb ($5) and a side of chips ($5) for Mr.M the waitress assured me that it will be olive oil and dairy free.

I ordered the Waffles ($14.90) because it has Lebanese twist in it with rose,pistachio, and orange blossom elements. I also managed to get a temporary seat for us because since the seat was too close to the entrance and the cold wind was unpleasant, we were kindly given a seat upstairs in the end, which was much better as it’s less loud and I could annoy Mr.M without straining my voice (told him I didn’t order any chips for him, and his eyes looked like it just had enlargement plastic surgery)

We were given a machine that will beep and let us know when the food is ready. It was around 15 minutes wait for the food, which was not so bad considering how busy they were. These were the foods :

Elly's Eggs
Ely’s Eggs with chips and chipotle mayo

Mr.M said his meal his is pretty good, but the Morrocan Lamb is especially nice. They forgot to remove the haloumi cheese, so I voluntarily remove it to my stomach. The fries was definitely worth it, and for $5 the portion was huge and the fries was crunchy and nice overall. Do yourself a favor and order the chipotle mayo too 🙂

Waffle
Lebanese Twist on Waffle

As for mine, the waffle was good, you do not expect a Waffie kind of waffle though. The Lebanese elements on this waffle was interesting, but the waffle was a bit cold and there was something missing to cut through the sweetness, but I cannot complaint much as it was still interesting twist and the price was reasonable.

After having a really satisfying meal from Oasis Bakery, Mr.M wanted to drop by RSEA for his work stuffs, but it was closed, so I told Mr. M to go check out SAVERS together which is just next door in an attempt to make him appreciate second hand shop better. Unexpectedly, we spent around 40 minutes inside, with Mr.M bought himself an Indonesian batik mask and a vintage store sign. We were also so amazed by the old European ceramic dolls, and Mr.M couldn’t help to laugh and annoy me when I showed him Indonesian doll I found below ….(the beauty of both kinds were not comparable sadly..). 

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We went to DFO in Moorabin which was a strange decision for me as it took me hours to explore DFO in South Wharf, but Mr.M said not to worry, because this DFO is only a single floor. Stores were ready to close but we managed to squeeze in take away coffees and buying some chocolate from Lindt (was so cheap), I found dairy free chocolate for Mr.M

At the end of the day Mr M was successfully converted to appreciate second hand shop admirer as he said “Oh my God, this place is dangerous for me”. So, YAY !!, to more adventure with Mr.M in hunting antiques and second hand shop !. Today was another happy day with Mr.M, good food, good company, good laugh ! always.

Oasis Bakery

993 North Road, Murrumbeena, VIC 3163, Australia

+61395701122