1. Are you a chef?
I am a cook, not a chef. A chef is professionally trained and get paid to cook. As for me, my main motivation to cook is not unlike many people – to make meals for myself, family and friends.
2. Where do you get your recipes from?
I get recipes from everywhere! – my travels, friends, family, cooking shows, cooking classes, etc. When I eat out at restaurants or hotels, I’ll try to recreate them at home. When my friends post simple recipes they rave about or make a yummy dish at a party, I’ll ask for it. I love collecting new recipes and experiment in the kitchen. It’s like a hobby!
3. Where do you learn how to cook?
I learn to cook in my kitchen, through trial and errors. That is when I gathered a lot of tips and tricks that a cooking school will probably not teach me (e.g congee in a ziplock bag). Because I enjoy cooking so much, whenever I travel, I’ll always try to find a local cooking class to attend.
4. What’s so unique about your recipes?
I believe cooking should be so easy and fast, it is possible to do it everyday. So I tweak and test every recipe so everyone can make something similar but in a quicker and easier manner.
5. Are you a good cook?
As I am lucky to be able to dine at many Michelin star restaurants and five star hotels, I would only call myself a good cook if my food matches those standards. I would say that I’m not a bad cook. Some of recipes – Thai chicken satay, Khmer Fish Amok, BBQ chicken wings, portuguese grill fish, ginger ale- have family and friends asking for more.
6. It’s rare that a young girl likes to cook. Why?
I grew up with people telling me I’m made to be working in the corporate world, not cooking in the kitchen. But I believe that’s not a right thing to say to anyone. Cooking is a basic skills that everyone should have – whatever age or gender.
I like to cook because in enable me to make hungry tummies happy and nourish myself and my love ones with the freshest and healthiest ingredients.
7. Why are you always traveling?
My partner’s business requires him to travel around the world. So I tag along, explore new culture and food, and bring home recipes and ideas.
HEALTH & APPEARANCE
1. Do you always eat healthy food?
That depends how you define healthy. Health food to me means fresh, non-processed ingredients from the nature. My food are rarely gluten-free or vegetarian, though I try to include more vegetables and fruits in them.
I believe that when you cook at home, food would be healthier. Why? We use the best oil that we can afford (I use olive oil), couldn’t reuse oil again and again, buy the freshest ingredients, etc.
But I don’t eat healthy food all the time. I love indulging in fried chicken and ice-cream once in a while.
2. Why are you so slim?
I think there are a few reasons. Firstly, I eat at home more than I eat out. Hence I consume food that are healthier. They are not big a portion, fattening or high in sodium. Secondly, I love doing things even during my free time e.g swim, travel, cook, throw parties etc. Lastly, I inherit the skinny genes from my mother. She’s in her sixties and a mother of four, but her waist is merely 26 inches!
3. How do you keep your skin clear?
I would credit my skin to a healthy lifestyle, more than a single product or method. I also believe in prevention.
A few things I do to care for my skin: sleep by midnight and for at least 8 hours, drink water, sleep on clean pillow sheets and eat nourishing food that’s good for my skin (Recipes are available at JewelPie)
About products, if I can only use one product my whole life, it would be sunblock. I rarely go out without it.
4. I don’t cook because I live on my own. Why do you cook for yourself when it’s easier to order takeaway?
I believe that health begins in the kitchen and that we shouldn’t oursource it to other people who care for profit not your well being. Cook for yourself. Love yourself. You deserve it.
1. Why and how did you start JewelPie?
After I obtained my law degree, I started a e-commerce fashion business. I was a workaholic and couldn’t stop working. My workaholism, bad time management and misguided goals left me feeling tired and alienated me from family and friends.
One day, when I came home from a long day at work to an empty house with nothing to eat in the fridge and a cockroach in my living room, I decided I must overhaul my life.
So I began finding quick ways to cook healthy food, find ways to be productive, include time to exercise and spend more time with people I love.
2. You are so productive. How are you able to do so many things?
I do a lot of things to be productive and I am still finding ways to be more efficient. So it’s not possible to write in a few sentences. A few important things: I have a daily to-do list which I keep in Evernote. I stick to a tight schedule and give full concentration while at work. Most importantly, I eliminate distractions. I don’t go on Facebook or chat on Whatsapp in between work (It’s on silent).
3. What books do you recommend?
Getting Things Done by David Allen is good. So is 7 habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey.
4. Why are you so particular about saving time?
I want to be productive at work so I can have time to spend with my love ones, rest and explore other interest e.g playing the uke, travel, etc.