Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Great Herbal Discovery (From an amateur gardener's experience)

I just have to share about this wonderful plant which I grow in my herbal garden. When it was planted, I knew it has great medicinal values, yet, I only knew it was good to treat diabetics and cholestrol level. Yes, another on of those home remedial source, one of my collection. But little did I know that I'm going to love this plant so much now, and so excited to have it in my herbal garden!

This plant was about one month old.

In english, this plant can be directly translated as 'Continue Life'...LOL! In Malay, its widely known as "Sambung Nyawa"! In wikipedia,it is classified as below;

Alam: Tumbuhan
Divisi: Magnoliophyta
Kelas: Magnoliopsida
Order: Asterales
Famili: Asteraceae
Genus: Gynura
Spesies: G. procumbens

Since its too scientific for me to explain, so I'll leave it at that, up to your discretion.

The leaves of this Sambung Nyawa is suprisingly and delightfully delicious, unlike other herbal medicinal plants. It has this tangy light smell and crunchy to every bites. I just love taking it raw with our local sambal belacan (shrimp paste chilies) with rice. I can just finish 5-6 leaves easily in a meal.

This plant, apparently is widely used in Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand. However, it is actually originated from Mynmar and China. It can be easily planted by cutting off its twigs. The leaves shaped like an oval with sharp edge and ridges at the sides.

This herbal plant chemiccally contains, flavonoid, glikosida kuersetin, fenoleat asid, triterpenoid, alkaloid, saponin and tannin. Thus, for what it is listed wth, it is said to be a great source for antineoplastik, treating high fever, skin diseases, lowering high blood pressure, sugar level in blood, antimicrobial, anticarsinogenic to cancer cells, hipertension, stroke, lungs, high cholestrol, diabetics, coughs and sinusitis, among others (jargons here..hahaha)

I replant these twigs so it can be given away to friends and relatives who is interested to either plant or consume it.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Basil, Coco, Almond, Honeybun....and Brownie

Last week I had some not-so-good news, but couldn't bring myself to update it, until today, when I feel that I have the strentgh to deal with it objectively. I spent good amount of time gazing at this beautiful plant and its flowers. Some are flourishing beautifully, at its peak of beauty, while some tends to look drying, almost becoming lifeless in the process. That somewhat reminds me that any living thing in this world would not last forever.
A few of weeks ago, when we feel that the two hamsters, Syaoran and Sakura, renamed as Almond and Brownie when we found out and confirmed that both are male hamsters, might get lonely without a she-hamster. So we add another member and called her Coco. The three of them seems to live happily ever after.
But one day, somebody accidentally left the cage not securely fastened, and Almond as well as Brownie escaped. Almond was found in the kitchen after one day, probably out to look for food, while Brownie, the night after in the guest bathroom.

A few days later, Brownie died. He was weak and rather tired the day before, and the next morning, he was gone. Well, for me I've gone through losses of pets several times now, so its nothing new, right? Wrong! The only difference is this time, you manage to stay cool and pretend its gonna be alright. Like when I stared at my basils just to calm down, you have to let go. People you love, pets, even friends...

However, on a more positive note, Coco looks as though she's pregnant!. Now, Ridzzy, if you're reading this, don't get any ideas, ok..! She looks like she's gained weight, and this morning she can't even climb up the trail to exercise...hahaha... Presenting the clipse

Haha...!Actually she managed to climb up after all, after much effort, determination and a strong will to exercise. Don't we all need to learn from that?

But whatever it is, this furball is still the apple of my eye! ;)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Primary 1 First Day at School?

Kids nowadays....

On the first day of school, for the first time. No more crying for mamas or papas. No more looking around for familiar faces. Teachers are just another human beings. Not bothered by new surroundings, new environments. Knew no fears, uncertainties, nor doubts. Whatever lays ahead will soon be conquered!

Looking forward to new things. Make friends easily. Practice taekwandos even before lessons begins....

Saturday, January 3, 2009

I Learned This Online

While surfing the net to look for gardening tips, I was sidetracked and found some recipes too. That's often happens, and reason why sometimes you can reallly spend hours online, as I'm sure some of you agrees with me.

I stumbled upon a photopage entry on this traditional malay cake, Serimuka. Hey, it lookes pretty easy, and the writer also mentined she used the pandan leaves behind her house. And guess what? I also have lots of pandan leaves in my backyard. Sorry I forgot to save her web address, but I think her name is Liza. Here is the recipe.


Layer: A
2 cups glutinous rice
2 1/2 cup coconut milk
A pinch of salt

Layer: B
2 cups of thick coconut milk
2 cups of pandan juice (+ some green food colouring)
1 cup of sugar
3 tbsp flour
3 tbsp custard powder
1 egg
A pinch of salt

Ingredient A
1. Clean the glutinous rice and soak for a few hours.
2. Steam until the rice turns soft and cooked.
3. Press the cooked rice until it becomes nice and solid.

Ingredient B
1. Mix the top layer ingredients together. Sift it out to get a smooth blend.
2. Pour nicely over the bottom layer.
3. Steam again for about 30 minutes.
4. Once cooked, cool it first, before cutting into pieces.

Ta daaa..... almost half eaten entry! Not too perfect result, but delicious all the same. Actually the bottom layer is a bit too soft and doesn't cut well. I guess you need to lessen the liquid content, or maybe its just still too hot to cut. Everybody was hungry...lol!

And here's the source of the pandan juice that graced the top layer of the cake. So far, it had helped me to cook nasi lemak, bubur caca, bubur kacang hijau, pandan chicken, etc.

And yes, when one of my cabinet got this certain musty smell, I just place one or two leaves there to get rid of the smell. And when I took home a whole loads of durian from my friends house/orchard in the car, this leaves helps eleviate the strong odour from tha car faster.

This special plant also have some medicinal values. It was used as bath extracts for women under confinement, and also good for hair. Also used to treat diabetics, joints and muscle pain. Some mid-wife adds this ingredient to their massage oil for that aromatic and medicinal qualities.

I just noticed that there are new sprouts of young batches at the bottom of this plant. Cool, because some of the plants I see end up growing tall and skinny after repeatedly being harvested. Then I learned that what you can do about it, is to cut off the top portion and replant it on the ground, while the stump will regrow with new leaves. You will end up with two plants, too!