Wednesday, 22 February 2017

King's College London (KCL)

I knew I wanted to pursue my study even before graduation. But there were a lot of things to think about. 

I need to find scholarship, figure out how to delay my bond with Khazanah and actually find the courses that would worth my time. 

I planned to study overseas since I did my diploma and degree locally. I thought it's gonna be a good exposure. Australia never intrigued me. And US seems a little bit scary for a hijabi (now more than ever) so the safe bet would be the UK. 

What I did back then was to go over the list of 50 top universities in the world. I shortlisted UK institutions and went to their website to see if any particular Master taught courses intrigued me. 

And one really did.

MSc Accounting, Accountability & Financial Management - King's College London

When I was looking, I was very particular about the modules they offered and KCL has everything that I had in mind.

  • Corporate Governance and Accountability
  • Financial Management
  • Financial Reporting & Analysis
  • Management Accounting & Control
  • Research Methods
  • Financial Statement Analysis
  • Accounting Organizations & Society
  • Dissertation
The application process was interesting.

The first year I applied (2014); everything was done online, free of charge.

Recommendation letter is a must for postgraduate study application. Usually they would ask for a couple of em. One of the most interesting part (for me) was knowing what your academic referee wrote about you. The glowing recommendation letter really boost my confidence.

Even now, when I look back at the letters I felt a sense of achievement and pride. 💟
Hahaha

My advice for the recommendation letter; go to the lecturers you are most comfortable with and knows you the best. I went to 3 lecturers; my dissertation supervisor, my Account lecturer and the Deputy Dean.

Since Deputy Dean (Dr Shahrul Nizam Selahudin) was a very busy man, he asked me to outline the points that I would like to be included in the letter.

Malu sangat rasa nak puji diri sendiri so I just gave really simple points for him to elaborate. Alhamdulillah, his letter turns out great.

Dr Shahrul's recommendation letter. I owe him a lot for his help throughout my time in Uniten

Such kind words from Pn Norlaila Mazura. I had no idea that she was going to write a lengthy letter and the content was surprising because I didn't give her anything to work on; only relying on her experience with me in class. Thank you Madam Laila ❤

After you got all the letters and documents in place, you can just upload them and pray for the best.

Another thing to prepare is the personal statement; describing your academic background, reason for applying and how you could benefit from the program.

I remember the email (result) came at 4 in the morning.


I GOT IN!

Now the hard part of getting a scholarship. Though KCL is in Khazanah's list of universities, I still need to complete my bond before I can re-apply. So that's one down the drain.

Believe it or not, at that point of time there was not a single scholarship available for overseas students to do Masters that I'm eligible to apply.

The next year (2015) I tried again as I heard MARA did offer scholarships.

I re-applied at KCL but starting from that year onwards, there was application fee of 50GBP (Duit melayang di situ).

And again, I got in.


And that year, was the year that MARA decided to hold off all overseas scholarship, turning them into education loan instead.

Ain't nobody got time for that. To pay back everything plus interest. That's not a wise move in my opinion. I was not THAT desperate to go.

Tapi ada hikmah di sebaliknya.

I applied for Peneraju's ACCA scholarship and got it.

InsyaAllah after I become ACCA affiliate I'll continue my Masters journey. It may or may not be in King's College London, or it may or may be immediately after I graduate with ACCA, but I know I'll want to do it.  
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Thursday, 16 February 2017

Thai Green Curry Recipe

This is my all-time favorite  Thai dish. 
I kid you not. 
And not to be biased, but my mom made the best Thai green curry ever. 
Maybe because I'm accustomed to her style of cooking that I prefer hers compared to others.

Anywhooooo... 

Here's the recipe for Thai Green Curry ala mother ❤

The ingredients: 
Coconut Milk (Tips : Add in some coconut cream as well)
Green Curry Paste
Chicken
Fish Sauce
Kaffir Lime Leaf


Thai Basil
Terung Pipit

Thai Eggplant
Thai Palm Sugar
This was what I used (Thai palm sugar). But the former has more authentic taste
Garnishing :
Long Beans
Cucumber


Basically that's it.

Kepala Santan [Not sure what is it in English. Basically, it's the potent part of coconut milk #ehyeke

Stir fry coconut milk with green curry paste

Continue until the paste is fragrant and bubbling *pecah minyak* If it's taking too long. you can add some cooking oil to expedite the process

Add in the main star of the dish

Make sure all of em are covered and let em cook for a while
Then some chicken stock or water and coconut milk
Adjust the consistency 

Add the kaffir lime leaf, Thai basil and the eggplants

Add fish sauce and palm sugar.
Adjust the taste accordingly.
Wallaaaaa!! 

I like to eat them with spaghetti or rice. The authentic Thai way is to eat with rice noodle (khanom jeen) which is my FAVOURITE!!! But it's quite hard to get my hands on it locally.

No, it's not the same as mee hoon

So for the green curry paste, I know it's quite difficult to find here, in Malaysia. In Thailand, you just buy them at the market. Just tell the vendor how many kilos you need.


Alternatively, you can find those packed paste at convenience store. I saw them once in Tesco/ AEON.

Of course the best option is to go down to business and grind the paste yourself.
Here's a recipe from my cooking class back in Chiang Mai.

The ingredients are easily available. But it's gonna take some time and effort, like most delicious paste do.

Dry fry in hot skillet to release fragrance for 30 sec;
1/2 teaspoon Cumin Seeds (Jintan Putih)
1/2 teaspoon Black Peppercorns (Lada Hitam)
1 teaspoon Coriander Seeds (Biji Ketumbar)

Pound all these dried spices into powder.

Next add in these ingredients;

1-2 big green chilies 
1-5 green bird's eye chilies (cili padi).
1 inch galangal 
1 lemongrass
1/4 teaspoon kaffir lime peel
3 coriander roots
1 clove of garlic
1 shallot
1/4 teaspoon of shrimp paste (belacan)

Pound until paste is smooth.

You can keep the paste in the fridge for few weeks or 3-6 months in freezer.

*blending the ingredients using machine wont yield to the same results as pounding with pestle and mortar
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Monday, 13 February 2017

Ana Ikan Bakar Petai Shah Alam Review

I just looove seafood. 

I had the chance to visit Ana Ikan Bakar Petai Shah Alam last weekend. It's located at Ken Rimba, near Section 7.

My favorite spot for seafood used to be Ana Ikan Bakar at their Tanjung Lumpur, Kuantan branch. This is their third branch after the one in Bangi (which I don't really like because it's quite congested). But this outlet is somewhat new, encompasses a few proper shop lots and it felt more comfortable. 

They do have fewer choices of seafood, but still ample for you to have decent lunch / dinner. 

I went for dinner with Nazli. 


I was still feeling a bit under the weather, so we didn't ordered too much. 

Sotong goreng tepung, butter prawn

Pari Bakar Petai
Keropok lekor
All of the above with 2 white rice and watermelon juice comes down to ........... RM52.

Is that cheap or what? 👍

Price : 8/10
Taste : 7/10

Pros : Reasonable price, fast service (for a seafood restaurant), not packed with people, surau provided
Cons : A bit hot; not enough fan, smaller selection of seafood compared to other branches



Updated Review Heree!!
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Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Recipe - Biskut Gery Salut Malkist [DIY]

Suddenly everyone is talking about Biskut Gery Salut Malkist #mudahterjebak

Curiosity got the best of me and I tried looking for it at Mydin USJ, Giant, Aeon. Everywhere. 

Credit : Mahamahu.com

Around the same time, the recipe for DIY version if this sugary treats emerged online. So I gotta do what I gotta do. Hahaha

Surprisingly enough, this recipe only require 4 ingredients and they are reasonably priced.


1. Sugar Crackers (netizen recommended Julie's)
2. Butter
3. Cheddar Cheese Slice (I bought Anchor because it was the cheapest LOL)
4. Condensed Milk

With these, you can make a few batches.

You'll need 2 slices of cheese, agak-agak 1 spoonful of butter [untuk mencairkan bater], 2 tablespoon of condensed milk
But you can adjust accordingly. Kalau nak kurang manis, lessen the condensed milk and so on. 

Let it melt over low heat

Then you can dipped the crackers (on the un-sugared side).
The first few I did, I was clumsy. I dumped the crackers face down.
Waktu bila nak angkat, panas ya Rabbi cheese concoction tu terkena jari.

Later I use a spoon to spread the cheese on the crackers. Wayyyy easier. But you have to be quick because it hardened quite fast.

I ate them while they are still hot. And it was soooo good. Guilty good.




I prefer to eat them while they're still hot, though.

Boleh buat lagi, tapi tak boleh selalu 👯


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Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Honeymoon Trip : Phuket & Krabi [Krabi]

So we've arrived at Krabi at around 6pm on a Friday.

To be honest, we could have opted for the ferry ride which will only take 2 hours to get to Krabi. But there's a catch. 

To catch a ferry from Phuket, you'll have to go to Rassada Pier which is about 1 hour away from Patong. The ferry ride is at 8.30am (daily) and that would mean that we need to check out by 7am. And we're not ready to leave Phuket that early. Haha


Minivan [Phuket Town - Krabi Town] 350 Baht per person
Songthaew [Krabi town - Ao Nang] 60 Baht per person


Tuk Tuk [Ao Nang - Phu Phi Maan Resort & Spa] 100 Baht
So after 6 hours journey we finally checked in our hotel.


Rating : 9.5/10
Hotel Star : 4 Star
Pros : Halal certified restaurant, excellent and courteous staff, buggy service, free shuttle to Ao Nang, delicious Thai food at the restaurant, the honeymoon decoration, welcoming drinks, big and comfortable bed, big bathtub, big breakfast spread, 3 swimming pools!
Cons : the bedroom floor was a bit sticky [but there's indoor slippers available], there's no elevator in the old wing









We got a discount voucher for dinner at the restaurant. It was located at the new wing, up a hill (buggy cars are provided). We decided to choose the Thai full course and that was the best decision ever!! They were soooo good!

The appetizer, Thai chicken salad

Thai green curry, stir fried glass noodle with vegetables and sweet sour fish fillet.
Not in the picture : Pok Tek Tom Yum and banana coconut milk dessert


We were so full afterwards. Came back to our room to another surprise, sparkling juice for us honeymooners.


We were so tired from the long journey that we called it a day. 


The next day, we had a big breakfast at the hotel. Then we went for a dip at the swimming pool. 





Then we rent a bike at Ao Nang town for 250 Baht.
[It's usual for the vendors to ask for your actual passport for collateral purposes]

I loveeee this yellow bike

The first thing that we did was to find the number one rated massage spot in Ao Nang according to TripAdvisor.

Rating : 7/10
Pros : Quite near to Ao Nang beach, professional masseuse
Cons : Can be hot at times as the place is quite 'open' without AC, for body massage there was no private room; only partitions, the massage was decent, wildly overrated






Just down the road, we came across the famous rotee stall in all of Krabi so we decided to stop by.




I had the mango Nutella rotee. Amazingly delicious!!
The squid here, soooo big. Only 200 Baht each


We strolled around a bit then went back to hotel for a quick nap. In the evening, we rode our bike all the way to Krabi town for the Night Market. We bought manyy Thai delicacies here. 

Baked Custard


Rotee Sai Mai. Essentially it's a crepe, to be eaten with these colored sugar floss [from the internet]


Pulut Mangga
Grass jelly cha yen [from the internet]
Thai pineapples
On our way back from the market, we stopped by Rotee Yaminlah. Again.


Banana Nutella this time
Before we called it a day, we went for oil massage. It was quite terrible. The place was crowded, the quality was bad. I didn't remember the name of the massage parlor but it's nearby Mc Donald's. The place looks nice from the outside, though.


The next day we got up early and went to Nopparat Beach instead of Ao Nang since it's nicer there, I think.  We took some photos here and there. 

Nopparat Beach 


Thank you for showering me with love ❤ 
We returned the bike later and waited for a van to fetch us at the hotel.


We had lunch at the airport. Well, there's no halal food inside the airport itself. So we came down to the the arrival floor and went outside. The restaurant, named Charmed or Charm (I can't remember) served great Thai food. 




And that's the end of our wonderful honeymoon trip to Phuket and Krabi.

Will definitely re-visit these places, insyaAllah. 


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